“Home to sparkling calcite crystals”
Jewel Cave is a unique world of sparkling calcite crystals and other spectacular cave formations. The cave is currently the second longest in the world, at 155.12 miles. Immerse yourself within the second longest cave in the world. With over 160 miles of mapped and surveyed passages, this underground wilderness appeals to human curiosity. Its splendor is revealed through fragile formations and glimpses of brilliant color. Its maze of passages lure explorers, and its scientific wealth remains a mystery. This resource is truly a jewel in the National Park Service. Jewel Cave is world renowned for its crystal-lined passages and rare cave formations such as hydromagnesite balloons and conulites.
No one under 5 allowed? That's a fairly crappy thing to read for a family.
Simply unexceptable caving experience. Can't make reservations in advanced. Unwelcoming staff. 30+ people per tour. Perhaps the walls are lined with "jewels" perhaps not, can't tell due to improper lighting. Must use hand rails on over 700 stairs but the hand rails are covered in a massive amount of truly disgusting bat drippings and NO SOAP in the restrooms. Do yourself a solid and mark this an experience worth missing.
Very educational and fun stop! As others have said, you do need to get tickets early. We arrived at 10 and the first available "scenic" tour (1 hour 20 minutes) was at 12:40. We just went down the road to the historic site, had a picnic lunch, a quick short hike and had a very informative talk from the volunteer park ranger so it all worked out well. Just a word of caution if you have kids: the junior ranger program was pretty involved. At other parks it didn't take the kids very long to complete it but this one took quite a long while. It was a bit frustrating for all of us since we were used to them being completed during the tour/drive/hike and they weren't allowed to bring them in the cave so had to be done before and after. It probably took an extra 90 minutes to complete the entire thing (including a talk from a park ranger). Having said that, it was very educational and the place is cool and well run.
Do get there before they officially open. Don't miss this one. Wide open caves won't make anyone feel claustrophobic. Learned a lot!
We were very disappointed to miss this cave. Didn't think the tours for the afternoon would sell out in the morning
Children under 5 are Free.
Jewel Cave was great. Large rooms. Get there early for tickets, they sell out fast.
Very cool! So many different things to see. The tour was great.
Really fun. We did the lantern tour (with kids 5, 6, 7) and they all had a great time.
Was passing by on the way to Rapid City and noticed this place, had to stop and check it out. I was able to arrive in time for the last basic tour. Since it was mid May I assume that is why it was not full or sold out. I can imagine on weekends and peak times this place is packed. It was a very worthwhile experience. If I ever get back this way I would like to do the more extensive tour.
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Jewel Cave National Monument
- Sun - Sat: 8:30 am - 4:30 pm
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