Moaning Caverns Adventure Park

5350 Moaning Cave Road, Vallecito
(209) 736-2708
Spiral Tour Cost

Adult (ages 12 and up): $22.00 | Children (ages 3 – 11): $15.00 Children (ages 0-2): Free

Expedition Trip Cost

Ages 12 and up only: $95.00

Gemstone Mining Cost

$6.99 to $9.99 + tax

Geode Cracking Cost

$10 each + tax

Moaning Caverns Adventure Park holds California’s deepest cave chamber, where you can descend deep underground on a guided walk tour.¬† Gemstone mining at the custom flume system is always fun for the whole family and cracking geodes is a big hit with rock hounds of all ages. Reservations are strongly recommended for all activities. The park is open Thursday through Monday, 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM.

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Moaning Caverns: Spiral Tour

Descend sixteen stories underground via the spiral staircase into the deepest cave in California and see massive cave formations. Learn about the history and geology of this fascinating cavern including how the massive stalagmites and flowstones formed and how people explored the cave before the spiral staircase was constructed. You’ll also see the “moaning holes” – rock formations caused by dripping water that cause the sound which inspired the cave’s name.

Vallecito Top Attractions: Moaning Cavern Adventure Trip | Dave Bunnell
Adventure Trip | Dave Bunnell

Moaning Caverns: Expedition Tour

With only a cave helmet to light your way, you’ll be climbing, crawling, squeezing and sliding through the unlit, wild areas of the cave far below the main chamber. You’ll explore areas with names like Godzilla’s Nostril, and the Meat Grinder. This cavern tour is available for ages 12 and up only – parents must accompany their children. Reservations are made in advance for a small group of up to 8 to explore this area together. We recommend using optional knee and elbow pads to protect yourself from the hard marble. Are you up for the challenge? This is one caving trip that will create memories to last a lifetime. Not suitable for those with claustrophobia – early exits are available if you run into unexpected problems.

Moaning Caverns: Gemstone Mining, Gold Panning & Geode Cracking

Moaning Caverns’ custom flume system, fed by a 12-foot water tower, is designed to accommodate gemstone mining and gold panning – a great activity especially for kids and youth groups. You’ll want to pick out a bag of rough in the gift shop – you can choose from several kinds and then mine out the contents into the flume using either a screen-bottomed box or a gold pan (depending on whether you’re gemstone mining or gold panning). ¬†Geodes are available for purchase from the Moaning Caverns Visitors Center and Gift Shop. Pick one of these rather dull looking rocks and help crack it to be the first person to see the beautiful, unique crystals that formed inside thousands of years ago. Inside the gift shop you’ll find lots more minerals and rocks available for purchase, plus books, jewelry and souvenirs.


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Moaning Caverns Adventure Park’s cave tour was recently featured on the PBS TV show: Rob on the Road. You can watch the video below: