July 19, 2004
Having never been inside a cave before, we had no idea what to expect. It turned out to be a great little place to take the family, we were very pleased. We first stopped for a bite to eat at the little Penna, a Dutch restaurant on the grounds. It was fast-food counter service with booths and tables and the food was tasty, though expensive. Too bad we didn’t realize that Crystal Cave has a picnic park, we could have made a nice long afternoon of it.
Discovered in 1871, near Kutztown, PA, the Crystal Cave is the oldest operating cave in Pennsylvania. Our admission for 5 (3 adults, 2 kids) was $35.50US and you begin your tour with a little movie about the geological history of caves entitled "Inside the Earth". Once over, you are then led into the mouth of the cave. The pathway is quite navigable with concrete walkways and steel railings. There are a few steps and areas that have low hanging rocks; after all, you are in a cave!
Our guides were quite knowledgeable and witty, always a plus in any tour. The tour took about 45 minutes not including the movie. The crystal formations and natural stone "sculptures" were incredible. We were all very fascinated by nature’s work.
Some tips that would be helpful are that the cave is always 54 degrees F, so we brought sweatshirts/jackets and were glad to have them. Also, there is no bathroom in the cave, be sure to go before you enter! I had to cut my tour short and leave the rest of the family behind to tend to a potty emergency for my 8 year old. There are plenty of photo ops for shutterbugs, but only half of our pictures came out due to the low lighting, and that was using a flash each time. You might want to invest in a disposable meant for low lighting pictures.
There are two nice gift shops that have lots of neat stones for rock enthusiasts, and many gifts made of stone plus all that a tourist might expect! If it is a hot day, you can grab a nice cool treat in the ice cream shop, or play a relaxing game of mini golf. You can also hike on their nature trail to complete your day.
We really enjoyed this little site. It reminded me of all the cool little places that my parents took us as kids when we took our vacations as a road trip and camped every year.Check out their web site
From journal Pennsylvania Poconos-Not just for Honeymooners