Beneath the foothills of the Shenandoah Valley lies a subterranean world waiting to be explored. Shenandoah Caverns offers guided tours of this peculiar landscape. First discovered in the early 1800s by the owners of a local farm, Shenandoah Caverns opened to the public in 1922. The calcite formations of the cave have been developing for millions of years and are still growing.
Shenandoah Caverns is a mystical world of stalactites, stalagmites and other strange cave formations. These caverns are known for their bizarre “cave bacon” formations that were featured in National Geographic. The tour meanders through large rooms with high ceilings and names such as “Grotto of the Gods.” Intricate underground geological formations are known as “Cardross Castle,” “Diamond Cascade,” and “Capitol Dome.” The caverns use multicolor lighting to give visitors a unique view of these formations.
All tours are guided, are about an hour long, and cover a walking distance of 1 mile. The cave remains at a temperature of 56 degrees year round, so a light jacket is recommended. The pathways are large, well-lit and made of gravel, making traveling around the cave easy. For the most part, the cave has high ceilings. At several points on the tour, travelers will need to duck in order to move through cave passages. Shenandoah Caverns is also the only cave in Virginia equipped with an elevator, making the cave easily accessible to people of all ages.
Keep your hands off the walls! It is illegal to touch any of the formations in the cave. The oils on human skin can hinder the continued growth of these formations.
The caverns are open year round, with hours depending upon the season (check the website for current hours). Tours leave about every twenty minutes. Adult tickets cost $24. Above the cave is a large gift shop with restrooms, a variety of souvenirs and snacks. Access to a large onsite “parade float museum” is included in the price of admission.