Luray Caverns is one of the most celebrated and largest caves in the US which goes beneath the earth’s surface upto 16 stories deep. Discovered in 1878 by local men who were, at the time, looking for places which they can promote as a tourist destination in the area. I think its discovery must have felt like seeing a pot of gold for them as it definitely is something to be revered.
We arrived at Luray Caverns at around 10am, with a 2-hour travel time from our house. The roads leading to Luray Caverns was a bit steep and since you’ll be going through mountains, there were lots of curves and turns. The scenery that you see of the Shenandoah Valley is absolutely amazing! The drive itself is already a tourist activity.
Entrance fee was USD26 per person which includes a guide with you the whole time. Our guide was very informative and patient, I think she was one of the reasons why I enjoyed this tour immensely. Guided tour leaves every 20 minutes.
It was hot outside but the temperature inside the cave is cool and refreshing. I probably would advice everyone planning to go there to wear comfortable and not slippery shoes as you’ll be walking for quite a long time inside the caverns and some pathwalks are a bit slippery.
The whole cavern is surrounded by numerous stalactites and stalagmites formed millions of years ago. The lighting creates a wonderful ambiance inside the cave focusing on the beautiful rock formations. One of my favorite areas inside the cavern is what they call the Dream Lake. It’s a series of stalactites which clearly reflects on the water below it. The reflection’s so clear and still that you’d think that there are stalagmites forming from the bottom of the cave.
And of course, another favorite is the area inside the cavern where you can find the world’s only Stalacpipe Organ. Someone thought of a brilliant idea of putting mechanical rubber mallets on the stalactites which produces sound and program it in accordance to the notes of a piano. The tour includes a chance to listen to a short song played using the Stalacpipe Organ. It was amazing!
The whole tour lasted for about an hour and the groups were small which is good as it doesn’t feel very crowded inside the cavern. It’s something you shouldn’t miss if you find yourself in the area specially if you like being awed by mother nature. 🙂