|Kartchner Caverns State Park
To make Cave Tour Reservations and Book Tickets:
Kartchner Caverns is a living cave in which water is continuously percolating down from the surface, and the formations are still growing. The caverns are enormous, with 13,000 feet of passages and two huge rooms--dubbed the Rotunda and the Throne Room. In addition to the caverns, this new Arizona state park offers a Discovery Center, a campground, above-ground hiking trails, and a hummingbird garden. The hummingbird garden attracts many beautiful butterflies as well as birds and is listed as an attractive butterfly viewing location by the Southeast Arizona Butterfly Association. The park is located on Highway 90, about 10 miles south of the #302 exit from Interstate 10. Kartchner Caverns State Park is open daily, 7:30 am to 6 pm (MST). Park gates close at 6 pm and open at 7 am. Cave tours run between 8:30 am and 4:30 pm. The park is closed Christmas Day.
The park staff and guest speakers offer monthly programs on subjects including bats, snakes, mining, map & compass, worms and javelinas. Contact the park to learn more about these guided walks, activities, and shows. You can request a copy of the "above ground" interpretive program schedule. Call (520) 586-4121.
The Discovery Center at Kartchner Caverns State Park
Rotunda/Throne Room Tour
Big Room Tour
All cave tours are guided by a Park Ranger. No photographic or videographic equipment is permitted. Please allow a minimum of three hours to enjoy the cave tour and the park. Information for Parents: it is not uncommon for young children to become uncomfortable in the cave environment. In these instances, the child and parent will be allowed to leave the cave tour. Please inquire upon check-in, if you have any concerns.
Although walk-up tickets are often available, reservations are strongly recommended to guarantee a cave tour. Reservations can be made up to a year in advance by calling (520) 586-CAVE (520) 586-2283. Payment is due in full when you make the reservation using a credit card. A tour confirmation letter will be sent. Reservations are non-refundable but tours may be rescheduled within the year, subject to availability.
The campground has sixty campsites with electric hook-ups and water. RVs and tents are welcome. All sites are on a first-come, first-serve basis. There are restrooms with showers and flush toilets. There are no fire rings or grills -- all units must be self-contained. The front gate opens at 7am and closes at 6 pm. Campers are asked to remain within the park after that time. The park staff advises campers to arrive no later than 5:30 pm. Maximum campground stay is 14 days and $22/night fee includes hook-ups.
The park, including the Discovery Center, is handicapped accessible, and the cave tour trail is barrier free.
The Kartchner Caverns State Park web site provides current information on tour availability as well as articles on the discovery of the caverns, the ecosystem of the caves, and the history of cave development. The Friends of Kartchner Cavern have a nice website which contains a virtual tour of the caves and exclusive photos.