Luckily for us, the first part just received a release date, and it's surprisingly close. Here's everything you should know.
The Release Date
With plenty of teases and speculations, it makes sense that the release would be just around the corner. They want as many people playing it as possible and with hundreds of millions of copies bought, there should be a lot there for release.
As you can see from the above tweet, Minecraft Caves & Cliffs update is due to release on June 8th this year. This places it just one week before the start of E3. This makes sense to get it out into the world just before tonnes of news comes out from all over the gaming world. If you're looking for someone to do while you wait for E3, Minecraft is looking pretty good right now.
When Does Part 2 Release?
Their choice to split up Caves & Cliffs into two separate updates allows them a little more room to experiment with what they have.
Over on the Minecraft website, they made the announcement to split the parts a few months ago. This came with a short update and explanation, as well as a rough release window for both parts. Where the first part was scheduled for Summer, the second part is currently scheduled for "the holiday season".
Citing extra dev time and the desire to make a more polished product, we can expect to see an ambitious and big update around November / December this year.