DISCOVER the wonders of Crystal Cave on our one-hour tour. EXPLORE the passages more than 70 feet below ground. LEARN about the history, geology, and bats of Wisconsin’s longest cave!
One hour Cave tours are led by Certified Cave Guides. The tour is designed for people of all ages. Learn about the discovery and history of Crystal Cave, the geology of caves including the rocks and how cave formations (speleothems) develop, and the biology of bats. During the tour your guide will highlight unique features of the cave and answer your questions.
Whether it’s raining, snowing, or the sun is shining, the cave is always 50 degrees and dry. Escape the summer heat or the cold days of early spring or late fall! We suggest you wear long pants and a sweater or light jacket in the cave but you can still enjoy the cave without a jacket or sweater.
Children are welcome on the tour. However, due to safety regulations, strollers or backpack style baby carriers are not allowed in the cave. Soft, front style baby carriers are ok. Small purses and camera bags that fit inside our Size Test Box may be brought into the cave. For larger items or any items you do not want to bring with you on the tour, we are happy to provide complimentary lockers or you may leave your items in your car. You must climb down and up stairs on the tour, so please wear appropriate footwear. The passages on the tour are walking height, the trail is gravel, and the cave is well lit.
Gem Panning at Prospector’s Creek
Uncover gems, crystals, minerals, and fossils from all around the world at Prospector’s Creek®. During this above-the-ground adventure, you will have the chance to use our sluice and mining pans to discover and collect a wide variety of gems and fossils. Prospector’s Creek® is fun for all ages. We have many options and varieties of mining rough for purchase in the gift shop.
Complete your tour with a Prospector’s Package by purchasing the basic Prospector’s bag of mining rough. With the Prospector bag you will discover real gems such as crystal points, pyrite, garnets, amethyst, jasper, and more! All gems are yours to keep. You will also receive a gem identification card with every bag of purchased mining rough.
Upgrade your Prospector’s Package to the larger bag of Gems and Minerals mining rough. This bag is packed with all of the same gems found in the traditional Prospector bag, but the Gems and Minerals mining rough has much to discover. This bag offers more gems and more mining rough to pan at the sluice.
Become a paleontologist for a day, and uncover real and ancient fossils with the Fossil bag. In the Fossil bag, you will find fossils dating way back to the Ordovician period – twice as old as dinosaurs! Some of the fossils you will find include trilobites, gastropods, crinoids, and more!
The Mother Lode bucket is one of our most popular options and comes jam-packed with everything a Prospector could hope to find: gems, minerals, and fossils. Not only will you find a larger quantity and variety of gems, minerals, and fossils in the Mother Lode bucket, but you will also discover larger specimens not found in any of the other bags. The Mother Lode bucket gives you the chance to dig into mining rough, one scoop at a time, to reveal a combination of both fossils and gems for you to identify, collect, and cherish for a lifetime.
Wild Tour of South Portal Cave
Experience a cave as a true caver! The South Portal Walking Flashlight Tour will take you deep into South Portal cave, the most recently discovered cave in Crystal Cave Park. This tour will take you to a cave where few people have gone before, lit only by our caving headlamps.
On this 1.5-hour walking tour, you will learn about caving safety and exploration. We will spend about 45 minutes in the cave and 45 minutes split between preparation and travel to the entrance of the cave. You’ll learn what guides and cavers bring with them on long adventures, and you’ll get a chance to trek into a wild cave with all the proper caving equipment: helmet, lights, and boots. The tour includes a short hike through the woods and down into the gorge where South Portal is found. We provide the helmets, lights, and boots for everyone exploring South Portal.
South Portal Walking Flashlight Tour is available to visitors age 14 and up. Children under 18 years of age must be accompanied by an adult. Reservations are necessary for this tour, and there is a maximum of 6 people per tour. We recommend you prepare by bringing a light sweater or jacket (50F, 10C in the cave) and socks to wear inside of the boots provided. If you’re excited about adventure, and you’re okay with tight spaces and dark caves, then this tour may be right for you!
The unimproved trail to and from South Portal Cave is rated as moderate/strenous. South Portal Cave is a smaller cave on the Crystal Cave Property. The passages are slightly smaller than Crystal Cave and there are no large rooms in South Portal. There are no lights nor is the path in the cave improved. A liability waiver must be signed and you must be OK with tight spaces, hiking in the woods, and be physically fit. We reserve the right to remove you from the tour and refund your admission fee for any reason.