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Best Caves to Explore in Missouri

Caves in Missouri


Missouri is home to a ton of fascinating natural and artificial resources. This includes lakes, skyscrapers, picturesque sceneries, vibrant artistic architectures, and lots more. The state is also plagued with some of the most amazing people, social activities like hunting, canoeing, and of course flourishing tourist attraction sites too. On the list of Missouri’s natural occurring tourist attractions is its caves. The state has lots of them, about 7300 to be precise, scattered across its different zones with each one more unique and awe-inspiring than the last. Thus, you can say this is how Missouri earned its long-standing name as the ‘Cave State’. Thanks to the Missouri Department of Natural Resources, a lot of these caves are centered around the state park and can be used for sightseeing, tourism, or even educational programs too. Hence, with so many caves and caverns, you must have a rundown on what the most popular ones have to offer. Here is a little expose on the caves in Missouri.


  1. Marvel Cave

With a depth of 500ft, Marvel Cave is singlehandedly the largest cave in Missouri. This national landmark occurred naturally, and it is located just west of Branson, Missouri. This cave was discovered in the 16th century by the Osage Indians after a tribe member fell through the sinkhole which so happens to be one of the cave’s two entrances. Presently and after a lot of conservation, the Marvel Cave is now a part of the attractions at the Silver Dollar City Theme Park and it is owned by the Herschends. However, because of its depth, it is still unrecommended for people with any form of physical or respiratory challenge. Like most public caves engulfed by state parks, the price of entry is included in the theme park pass. In this cave, tourists can have a traditional tour or a lantern tour with illuminations of the famous waterfall room. This cave is truly breathtaking, and it has tons of rooms, passages, and rivers to look out for.


  1. Bridal Cave

This cave has quite the story attached to its name. Located near Camdenton, Missouri, this cave was created by the Ozark upheaval some 46 million years ago which also happened to have created the Ozark Mountains. Now after a lot of safety measures were established, the bridal cave was first opened to the public in 1948. This cave is one that is adorned with the most beautifully massive columns, stalactites, stalagmites, and draperies you may ever see. These profiles start from the beginning of the cave and continue down to its end at the Spirit Lake which so happens to be sparkling and clear as crystal, just like its name divulges. Now, maybe it’s about its majestic profiles or maybe its something about the ancient story behind its name, or it’s probably because of the name itself, but since its opening in 1948, over 3000 weddings have been hosted within the walls of the Bridal Cave, in the bridal room to be exact. With a depth of only 200ft, the cave is also a big one and the price of entry differs per age bracket. This cave is saturated with rooms and passages of natural treasures.


  1. Onondaga Cave

Located in Leasburg, Missouri the Onondaga Cave is surely one of America’s finest. This cave is a property of the Missouri Department of Natural Resources and it has magical sceneries confines in its rooms and passages. This cave has it all, chandelier-like stalactites, towering stalagmites, and of course its active flowstones. This me Onondaga Cave State Park was built around the Onondaga Cave. This cave is one of the most easily accessible ones which is why it is highly recommended for kids. With 1.5miles of passages decorated with majestic deposits and rooms, the tours in this cave feature paved walkways with steel railings and electrical lights. One room that always receives an appraisal is the Lily Pad Room. The transparent waters in this room illuminate the features below it. The Onondaga Cave is filled with over 68 diverse species of animals ranging from the tiny invertebrates to the grotto salamanders. The price of entry for this cave ranges from $0-$15 and it is dependent on the age of the individual.


  1. Jacob’s Cave

This cave is a prehistoric work of art and the different ages of time are evident in its walls, crevices, and features. Jacob’s Cave is a privately owned natural attraction that can be found in Versailles, Missouri, and is even close to Missouri’s Lake of the Ozarks. This cave tells many stories and it is very scenic. One of the major reasons why this cave is so popular is because it is completely accessible to all, including persons with disabilities in their strollers and electric wheelchairs. This cave is also famous for its plethora of cave formations which visitors can see on the mile-long tour. This cave possesses depths of illusions, reflective pools, prehistoric bones, and let us not forget the world’s largest geode. Apart from the stalactites, columns, soda straws, helictites, and lots more, this cave also possesses the evidence of five ice ages and three earthquakes as well. There’s vast history engulfed in this cave and it is very scintillating that Jacob’s Cave is as magical as it is beautiful. The price of entry ranges from $0-$18 per person and there is an age margin.


Missouri has so much to offer residents and visitors. From naturally occurring touristic wonders to artificial picturesque locations and let us not forget about the adrenaline-driving activities permitted in the state. However, with all these options, your stay at the ‘Cave State’ would be incomplete without a visit to any of the 7300 caves embedded with rich tapestries of time. With each cave as unique and beautiful as can be, choosing can be a hard decision. Therefore, we have highlighted quality features possessed by the top four caves in the state in a bid to help you decide on where to go. Hence, if you have got kids, respiratory challenges, disabilities, or phobias, there are still caves that will show you a great time.


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