Kim Knox Beckius is a Connecticut-based travel writer, author, photographer, and editor. WHEN TO GO Daily (except holidays) year-round. A one-hour "family tour" takes you down 170 feet on steps and a slanted floor for a 1/2-mile walk ($11 adults, $8-$9 school-age children). Cave exploration -- or spelunking -- is an affordable, family-friendly activity that can feel like a bona fide adventure. Caverns/ Caves in Camden - Mid Coast Maine. Advertise with Newsday | Participants must be at least 9 years old and wear long pants and a long-sleeve shirt for protection while crawling up and over rocks along the way ($16, reservations required). California Privacy Rights | The Polar Caves were created some fifty thousand years ago as the third continental glacier blanketed the White Mountains in northern New Hampshire. Salt therapy is gaining steam as a trendy and natural way to relax and heal, and this amazing cave surrounds you with the most therapeutic atmosphere imaginable. Terms of service | Credit: Natural Stone Bridge and Caves Park. Top 10 Road Trip Routes in the Northeastern U.S. Von Dark's Tunnel of Terror, plus many more activities on 47 acres, you're sure to spend a refreshing day at the park. More than 500 couples have been married on the illuminated heart-shaped bridal altar. Caverns/ Caves in Somerville - Massachusetts. More challenging is the "upper spelunking" tour -- a three-hour look at the more geologically developed parts of the cave. The East's largest marble cave entrance leads to what is said to be some of North America's oldest rocks, where you can see tourmaline and garnet in the walls. Pennsylvania's largest cave is set below a 435-acre geological park. There's also a nine-hole flying disc "golf" course. Caverns/ Caves in Springfield - … Caverns/ Caves in Concord - New Hampshire. More experienced spelunkers who don't mind getting dirty can opt for hands-on tours that call for maneuvering through tight spaces. Walk down 48 steep steps to the cave entrance and board a motorboat for the hourlong cave tour ($16.50 adults, $8.75 ages 2-12). Privacy Policy | No matter how high summer temperatures soar, New Hampshire offers fun ways to chill out. Want to beat the summer heat? You'll pass through narrow tunnels and rooms to see flowstone, drapery, pillars and column formations. Information to help you plan your day at the park is available at the Water Country website. Cave tours cost $11 ($7 ages 3-12). You'll want to bring a light jacket and wear sturdy sneakers or hiking shoes. Saturday evenings, you may do this tour with a guide by lantern light and headlamp followed by s'mores around a fire ($25 adults, $20 ages 4-12). Rides range from those appropriate for the tiniest of tots to big thrillers including Racing Rapids and the utterly dark, roller coaster-like thrill of Black Hole. One of New England's largest water amusement parks, Water Country, is located in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, near the state's compact seacoast. A new section of boardwalk over Paradise Falls brings you to a scenic mountaintop high above the gorge, river, granite pothole and vernal pool. Help, The ultimate guide to LI winter dining: Pop-up holiday experiences, igloos, more, LI restaurants with heated outdoor dining, Bird-watching on Long Island takes flight during the pandemic, A drive-through holiday light show comes to LI car wash. Please enable notifications or using normal browsing mode. Spurred along by changes in the atmosphere involving wind, water, sand erosion and powerful shifts of earth, it can take thousands of years for caves to be carved out. You'll walk a 3/4-mile loop along a boardwalk overlooking the river, past waterfalls, including 35-foot Paradise Falls. Belcher’s Counterfeit Cave, a natural chamber about 30 feet long and 10 feet wide, can still be visited; locals are usually happy to direct visitors. WHILE YOU'RE THERE Howe Caverns has a new above-ground zip line and rope course ($10-$23) as well as kid-friendly diversions such as gemstone mining and selecting a geode (sphere-shaped volcanic rock) to crack open. WHILE YOU'RE THERE Above ground, hike the 1/2-mile ecology trail and visit a garden with 300 varieties of plants. Offered weekends only, it takes visitors ages 12 and older down 45 stories of rock into caves that are developed and still forming ($22). An outdoor exhibit of 24 life-size dinosaurs is slated to open in 2013. Set in the Lehigh Valley, this 250,000-year-old limestone cavern has five chambers, with crystals, that can be explored on foot. The daily 80-minute traditional walking tour ($23 adults, $19 ages 12-15, $12 ages 5-11) leads you farther downward, through serpentine corridors, past stalagmites, dripping stalactites, flowstone and other huge formations such as Titan's Trumpet and Pipe Organ, to an underground boat ride on Lake Venus.

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