A photo of Jewel Cave

Trip Planning

Go RVing at These Top Caving Destinations

Check out these incredible cave formations during your next RV adventure!

Carlsbad Caverns National Park in New Mexico and Mammoth Cave National Park in Kentucky are internationally known for their accessibility as well as the diversity and beauty of their rock formations. But there are many other caves across the country that are also worthwhile destinations, too, some of which are connected to campgrounds that offer tours of these underground wonders.

Campgrounds that provide their own access to cave tours include:

  • Caves of Sonora in Sonora, Texas: These caves, which opened to the public in 1960, are located 15 miles south of Sonora, which is the halfway point between San Antonio and Big Bend National Park. Tours are available through nearly two miles of highly decorated caves. Children’s activities include digging for fossils and panning for gemstones in the outdoor mining sluice.
  • Natural Bridge Caverns in San Antonio, Texas: Discovered in 1960 by local cavers, this family owned and operated natural wonder is the largest cavern in Texas. Cave tours are offered of two distinct and stunning caverns. More of the cavern is still being discovered. The Wuest family along with their caving team are still actively exploring new areas in the massive system. Natural Bridge Caverns is a designated State Historical Site and National Natural Landmark of Historic Places. The property also features above ground adventures of a different kind, including a ropes course, zip rails, a 5,000-square-foot outdoor maze, and an interactive “gem panning” activity.

Image removed.(Photo courtesy to Natural Bridge Caverns Media Assets)

Endless Caverns Resort in New Market, Virginia: Discovered back in 1879 as simply a deep, dark hole covered by boulders, this beautiful underground treasure has been fascinating visitors for nearly 150 years. Sitting at the base of the Massanutten Mountain range, this six-mile cave system still has areas that have yet to be explored. Experienced guides lead visitors on tours through the caves.

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Of course, there are many other interesting caves to explore across the country. Here’s a sampling of several of them along with links to nearby campgrounds that can be used as base camps for cave tours and adventures:

Karchner Caverns State Park near Benson, Arizona: This network of caves wasn’t discovered until 1974 and wasn’t opened to the public until 1999, with the lower caverns opening in 2003. Various tours are available, including one that enables visitors to experience the cave as the discoverers did in 1974 , using only the light provided by the headlamp on your helmet. There are campgrounds inside the park. Additional campgrounds in the vicinity include:

Image removed.(Photo courtesy to Butterfield RV Resort and Observatory in Benson, Arizona)

Mammoth Cave National Park in Kentucky: Mammoth Cave is the world's longest known cave system, with more than 400 miles explored. It’s also one of the oldest tour attractions in North America. Numerous tour options are available. Nearby campgrounds include:

Image removed.(Photo courtesy of Jellystone Park in Cave City, Kentucky)

Image removed.(Photo of Lassen RV Park Campground, McArthur, California)

Carlsbad Caverns National Park in New Mexico: One of the most famous cave networks in the world, this park offers both self-guided and guided cave tours. Nearby campgrounds include:

Image removed.(Photo courtesy of Peter Jones, National Park Service)

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Ape Cape Interpretive Site in Cougar, Washington: This cave is inside a lava tube that was created by an eruption on Mount St. Helens almost 2,000 years ago. It extends more than 2.5 miles and is one of the largest continuous known lava tubes in the Western Hemisphere. In addition to nearby Forest Service campgrounds, nearby private campgrounds include Cougar RV Park & Campground in Cougar.  

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Jeff Crider


Jeff Crider, President and CEO of Crider Public Relations, has been involved in covering the campground industry for over 25 years. Jeff has worked as a freelance writer for publications such as RV Business, Motor Home Magazine, Trailer Life, Highways and other Affinity Group Inc. publications since 1995. He has also successfully pitched many of the nation's top tier media outlets, including CNN, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times, USA Today, The Financial Times, Reuters, The Associated Press and National Public Radio. In addition to writing, Jeff is also a talented photographer and humanitarian.