When you arrive at the park, leave all your belongings in the car, they do not allow any cameras, backpacks, purses, food or drink in the cave. Pretty much just you and the clothes on your back. This is necessary for the protection of the caves so nothing is dropped or left in the caves by accident. The cave is warm and moist at 68 degrees and 98 % humidity year round, so don’t overdress. A very light jacket or sweater is all that is necessary, you will not be cold. Wheelchairs are allowed in the caves, but no strollers, walkers, crutches or motorized scooters are permitted.
The Kartchner Caves is a first class operation, they have a beautiful interpretive center full of cave exhibits. This is where you sign in for your tour. Arrive early so you have time to fully explore the center and all the exhibits they have there. When your tour is called, go outside and get on the tram which will take you up the hill to the caves. All Kartchner Caverns Tours are guided and narrated.
Your tour will last about an hour and a half to two hours. You enter the caves through a couple of airlocks (how cool is that). Actually this is a living cave so they are fanatical about protecting the integrity of the cave and controlling the atmospherics so that there is no damage to the caves. The tour is a very easy walk on well constructed pathways throughout the caves.
After your tour you may want to stop back by the gift shop in the center and pick up those gifts or souvenirs you looked at earlier. Do this after your tour because they will not allow you to carry your purchases on the tour.
This is a really interesting tour and we cannot recommend it highly enough. Brenda loves the caverns and we go down once or twice a year ourselves.
Driving Directions: The Kartchner Caverns State Park is about an hour Southeast of Tucson, near Benson. Head East on I-10. Get off the freeway at exit 320 and go south on Highway 90. Follow the signs, it’s not far now. Click here to view the map.