Underground wonders and adventures await visitors in the caves, caverns and mines of Arizona, USA.
|Grand Canyon Caverns|
|Many know the Grand Canyon, perhaps fewer have visited the caves of Grand Canyon Caverns, located in Peach Springs. Here, visitors can explore, eat and even lodge in the caves. The tour begins with an elevator descent 200 feet underground to explore the largest dry cave system in the United States. Underground, the Caverns Grotto restaurant serves classic American cuisine. For an exclusive experience, visitors can spend the night in the Cavern Suite, a unique room, equipped with a bathroom and a sitting area. After the caves, head to Peach Springs for a tour of the capital of the Hualapai Indian Nation, located on Route 66, and which inspired the city in Pixar’s “Cars” films, before heading to the glass walkway in horseshoe shape that spans the rim of the Grand Canyon.|
| Kartchner Caves State Park
Located near Benson, less than an hour southeast of Tucson, the magnificent Kartchner Caverns National Park limestone caves discovered in 1974 offer several guided tours year-round. Since 2017, Kartchner Caverns State Park has also been recognized as a “Dark Sky Park”, for stargazing. Besides the caves, this state park offers cabins for rent, as well as three hiking trails.
| Emerald Cave or Emerald Cave
The opportunity to kayak in a cave bathed in emerald-colored water is a unique experience that travelers can enjoy at Emerald Cave. The nearest access point is Willow Beach Marina, located less than 100km north of Kingman. You can paddle through clear water surrounded by towering canyon walls on the Black Canyon Water Trail, a recommended stop on the Colorado River. The best time to admire the emerald water is in the early afternoon, when the reflection of sunlight helps give the water its bright emerald green hues.Lava River Cave
A hidden gem in the middle of the Coconino National Forest, Lava River Cave was created from lava that erupted from a volcanic vent, leaving stone icicles hanging from the ceiling. The first part of the cave is tricky, explorers will have to use their hands to climb and be careful with their footing. Volcano-themed, after a walk through the cave, visit the Sunset Crater Volcano National Monument.Tonto National Monument
In central Arizona near the town of Globe, Tonto National Monument houses the remains of ancient adobe “pueblos” built in caves in the year 1300 BC. A hike of less than 1km leads to Lower Cliff Dwelling and offers a nice view of Lake Roosevelt, while Upper-Level Cliff Dwelling can only be visited by reservation, accompanied by a guide, from November to April. This time you have to walk nearly 5km to admire this remarkable construction of 40 different rooms, spread over several floors.
| Wave Cave
1 hour east of Phoenix at the foot of the Superstition Mountains, this wave-shaped cave is arguably one of the most Instagrammable in Arizona. Well hidden, it is however not easy to find since the path is not marked. You will have to walk about 5km, climb a good hill at the end and do some climbing before reaching it.
| Coronado Cave
In southern Arizona, visitors can explore the large cave formations of stalagmites, stalactites, and columns in the Coronado National Memorial cave in Hereford. The tour begins at the Visitor Center with a short trail that leads up to the cave, where there are many rooms, some of which are only accessible by crawling, a favorite spot for non-claustrophobic adventurers. In order to preserve the limestone cave, visitors are advised to wear gloves. Coronado National Park commemorates the legacy of early interactions between American Indians and Europeans.Mine toursThe Copper Queen mine in Bisbee
In southern Arizona, the Copper Queen Mine can be visited in Bisbee, a former mining town that experienced copper mining. Equipped with a headlamp, visitors transform into miners as they board a mine cart that wanders through the depths of the mine. Visitors learn about mining and the way of life of mine workers from tour guides who were once miners themselves. We learn the essential role that copper has played in the history of Arizona.
| The Hull mine from Castle Dome
Entering this mine is like entering a kaleidoscope. Castle Dome Mine Hull, near Yuma, has fluorescent mineral walls that can display up to ten vivid colors under ultraviolet light. Mine tours show mining artifacts, an underground blacksmith shop, and a Desperado Refuge, a place where thieves fled to hide. Back on the surface, the tour continues to the ghost town of Castle Dome, Arizona’s oldest working mining district.Good Enough Mine
The Good Enough Mine Tour is a real step back in time and gives visitors a taste of what it was like to be a miner in the town of Tombstone. This mine, discovered by the founder of Tombstone, was one of the city’s first silver mines. Several tours are offered including the Toughnut Dinner Tour where guests can enjoy a miner’s meal of chili con carne and cornbread in an 1800-style underground dinner theater. Those who want to experience all that typical Tombstone town of the Wild West has to offer, can embark on a combined excursion Mining & Trolley with a tour of the mine and then aboard a trolley to see Tombstone’s most popular historic locations like the OK Corral, Bird Cage Theater and Boothill.
|Additional information is available on the website:www.visitarizona.com|