Last-minute summer road trip: Visit Natural Bridge Caverns

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Technically, summer starts June 21 and ends Sept. 22. But for most people, the season actually begins on Memorial Day weekend and ends with the arrival of Labor Day. Meaning, the finals days of summer are upon us and there are only a handful of weekends between now and Sept. 5 to get out of the house and soak up the last rays of summertime sunshine.

We’ve got a few ideas to help you make the most of this summer’s official last hurrah.

If a reprieve from the Texas summer’s scorching heat is what you seek, grab your headlamp, and get ready to head underground and explore a showstopping Texas cave.

Located west of New Braunfels, deep in the heart of the Texas Hill Country, Natural Bridge Caverns is the largest commercial cave in the state and registered United States National Natural Landmark.

The cavern was discovered in March 1960 and opened for public tours in 1964. It’s chambers are colossal, some ceilings as high as 100 feet. The room known as the Castle of the White Giants contains the largest formations in the cavern, including a flowstone formation called the Bomb Burst and the cavern’s tallest column dubbed The Watchtower. The Hall of the Mountain King, the largest room, is over 100 feet wide and 350 feet in length.

Several different tours are offered. Get up early enough and you can take the popular Lantern Tour, the first tour of the day. On this tour, visitors traverse the cave’s passages illuminated only by the light of handheld lanterns, just like the original cave’s discoverers did decades ago. Other tours include the Discovery Tour, Hidden Passages Tour and the Adventure Tour.

The cavern’s perpetual 70-degree temperature is a delight. It’s near-constant 99 percent humidity, however, is a smidge less than. Pro tip: Bring shoes with decent traction. The cave floors can be slippery.

Finished your tour and craving even more adventure? Head back above ground and participate in the Canopy Challenge, a high ropes course, zip line over the Texas Hill Country or mine for minerals and fossils.

26495 Natural Bridge Caverns Rd, San Antonio;


Searching for more things to do in and around Houston? Visit our Things To Do page.

About the Author:

Briana Zamora-Nipper joined the KPRC 2 digital team in 2019. When she’s not hard at work in the KPRC 2 newsroom, you can find Bri drinking away her hard earned wages at JuiceLand, running around Hermann Park, listening to crime podcasts or ransacking the magazine stand at Barnes & Noble.