Spelunking Adventures near PittsburghThe subterranean wonders of western and central Pennsylvania come alive in the underground caves and caverns that dot the state. It comes as a surprise to most, but Pennsylvania has 1,500 known caves according to the National Speleological Society, and even that's thought to be just the tip of the iceburg. Only nine of the caves are open as commercial show caves, however, including several in the region of Western Pennsylvania between Pittsburgh and State College, PA.
Pittsburgh's Underground PlaygroundThe largest commercial cave in Pennsylvania is located in the greater Pittsburgh area. The unique catacombs of Laurel Caverns in Farmington, about an hour's drive southeast of the city, are just part of a 430 acre geological wonder. Explore the largest cave in Pennsylvania with a 1-hour family guided tour, or let your adventurous side take reign by spelunking through the several miles of cave which are open to caving and rappelling, led by experienced guides. Or for something more lighthearted, try your hand at the 18-hole "Kavernputt" miniature golf course layed out in a simulated cave.
Central Pennsylvania Caves
If you're up to traveling a bit further afield, head east from Pittsburgh to the counties of central Pennsylvania where you can explore more fascinating underground attractions at Indian Caverns, Lincoln Caverns, Whisper Rocks, Penn's Cave and Woodward Cave, all located within 3 hours of downtown Pittsburgh.
- The famed Coral Caverns of Bedford County are visited by thousands each year hoping to see the fossilized remains of sea-creatures exposed in the walls. These fossils were left behind over 400 million years ago by an ancient inland sea (yes, a sea where the rolling hills of Western Pennsylvania now stand).
- Interesting geological attractions such as "cave bacon" a "Chinese pagoda" and a wishing well await you at Lincoln Caverns in Huntingdon County, PA. Discovered in 1930 during the construction of US Route 22, the cave has been preserved in a near natural state. Nearby, Whisper Rocks cave features some spectacular stalagtites and a "cave organ."
- You don't even have to walk to explore the interesting attractions of Penn's Cave, in Centre County, where custom-made motorboats take you on a tour of the unique all-water cavern. Its natural limestone passageways are filled by springs which run through the cave. Once used by Seneca Indians and early explorers, Penn's Cave is on the National Register of Historic Places.