The Ultimate List of Caves in America
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Did you know that the United States has over 45,000 caves and caverns? That is a lot of places to explore! This list of caves in America provides some suggestions for where to go if you want to explore America’s natural beauty.
If you are looking for adventure and seclusion, try exploring one of the many caves in North Dakota. There are more than 60 known caves in this state alone. If you prefer living things instead of empty space, then head south and check out some Texas caves where there are bats flying around and fish swimming through subterranean rivers. If you are near the Rockies, then take a look at Colorado for its limestone caves.
The Ultimate List of Caves in America
There is no shortage of places to explore in America! Whether it be deep inside Texas or climbing around New York, there’s always something new to see and experience.
What kind of caves are we talking about?
These are caves that formed by the dissolution of limestone. They are primarily found in the eastern quarter of the United States and southern Canada
These formed from soluble rocks such as gypsum, which dissolved into a base rock like sandstone during rainstorms or snowmelt. These types of caves can be very large with features like stalactites and stalagmites.
These are formed as a result of weathering and erosion, where the softer rock is worn away by wind or water to create roofless openings in the earth. These types of caves are often found in the Great Lakes region and the Southwestern United States.
This type of cave forms when lava cools enough that it begins to harden. The ceiling may never form and the roof is often at a much lower level than the ground surface outside of the tube.
These are caves that form in a type of limestone called tufa, which is porous and has an irregular surface.
These are formed when an ancient sea dries up. It results in a layer of salt over the ground and can create cavities by sucking water from the soil
These form on glaciers, due to constant freezing and thawing cycles. The caves are generally not very large but ice sculptures often decorate their walls.
These are caves that house populations of bats.
These are caves that form underwater. They can be found in the ocean, lakes, and even rivers
These are caves that were formed by natural processes. They can be found in limestone, sandstone, granite, and other types of rock
These are caves that have not been explored and remain largely unknown.
These caves are formed when a mineral deposit like gold, silver, or iron is found and mined.
And let’s not forget:
These are a type of cave with large spacious rooms. These types of caves often have formations like stalactites, stalagmites, or columns!
How big are these caves?
There’s no one answer for this question- some of them can be small enough that you could explore them in an hour, while others might take days or even months to explore.
While our state lists do not include all 45,000 caves, they do pick the best available to visit caves of each state – giving you a fantastic starting place for spelunking where ever you roam.
Let’s get started!
List of all states alphabetically: Just click on the state to go to the list of caves in that state
Arkansas – Cathedral Caverns should be on your must-see list
Alaska – Devil’s Canopy Cave is the gem to make sure you see here!
Arizona – make sure you check out Kartchner Caverns!
Arkansas – Blanchard Springs Caverns is our top suggestion here.
California – “All the gold….in Ca-li-for-nia….” Yup, there are mining caves here and so. much. more.
Colorado – Mollie Kathleen Gold Mine is our top suggestion to hit in Colorado!
Connecticut – Tory’s Cave is our favorite natural cave in this state!
Delaware – check out the cave at Beaver Valley Rock Shelter Site
Florida – the Wes Skiles Peacock Springs State Park is a must if you are a fan of underwater caves!
– Georgia –
Hawaii – the Thurston Lava Tube is a 500-year-old lava tube that nestles within the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park and is worth a visit!
Idaho – Wilson Butte Cave is a fun one here!
Indiana – We had a total blast at Squire Boone Caverns! The ziplining was great!
Iowa – Make sure you check out the Wapsipinicon State Park Caves.
Kansas – Make sure you check out Oven Cave where Native Americans used to dry their meat.
Kentucky – Our favorite hot spot here is Mammoth Cave!
Louisianna – Murrell’s Cave was one of the biggest hideouts of the famous bandit of yesteryears – it should be on your list!
Maine – Small state, with big adventures. The Ovens are one of Maine’s most well-known sea caves but one of the toughest to get into.
Maryland – A Haunted Cave! Be still my heart…
Massachusetts -Dungeon Rock Cave has a curious history and a spooky reputation that is hard to ignore.
Michigan – Four Words here: Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore….. just. wow.
Minnesota – Minnesota has a lot of great ice caves to check out!
Mississippi – The Natchez Trace Parkway has lots of exciting attractions, and Cave Springs is one of them.
Missouri – There is even a “stage cave” and Cheese Cave – Yum!
Montana (place to visit: Rocky Mountain Caves National Monument)
– Nebraska –
Nevada – How can you go wrong checking out a cave called Devil’s Hole?
New Hampshire – There are some fantastic ice caves to see here!
New Jersey – This small, but the mighty state has plenty of adventure to offer!
– New Mexico –
New York –
North Carolina (Place to Visit: Carlsbad Caverns)
North Dakota – The South East edge of the Killdeer Mountains has the Medicine Hole plateau – it is a must-see!
Oklahoma – place to visit: Robber’s Cave!
Oregon – Lava Caves are great here – one of the lava beds was used by NASA as a training ground for its lunar landings!
Pennsylvania – If you want to know about the Native Americans, you must come down to Indian Caverns at least once. There is almost a mile of paved and gravel path in the cavern, and visitors can learn about the history of this cavern by exploring the artifacts left behind by the Native Americans.
Rhode Island – some great salt caves here!
South Carolina –
South Dakota – Rushmore is the 9th largest cave in South Dakota, and it comes complete with a zipline, a gemstone mining area, roller coasters, and much more.
Tennessee – Sooo many fun caves to check out in this state!
Texas – Wonder World Cave, located in San Marcos, was created by an earthquake…it is just one of the fun ones to check out!
Utah – Who knew that Utah could have Ice Caves?
Vermont – you should see the Sea Caves in Vermont!
Virginia – Located in the Blue Ridge Mountains, the Luray Caverns was first discovered in 1878. The water that streams down from the cave’s roof carries limestone and has led to the formation of stalagmites and stalactites over the years.
Washington – Washing has CHEESE caves. With Cheese. That blows my mind!
West Virginia – Lost World Caverns is a great must-see gem!
Wisconsin – Cave of the Mounds is a great place to hit if you have kids with you!
Wyoming – The caves of Wyoming have been described by many as underground gems. There are innumerable caves to explore across the state’s length and breadth, and most of them are accessible to the public.
There – that list should help you get started! Let’s share a few things before you go caving:
Cave safety tips…
Formations to find…
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