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DeSoto Caverns, Childersburg

#13 of 61 in Nature in Alabama
Cave · State Park
DeSoto Caverns is a series of caves and a tourist attraction located in Childersburg, Talladega County, Alabama. Located in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains, it is touted as "Alabama's Big Cave". In addition to the caves, the park offers various other attractions, including a three-quarter acre maze known as the Lost Trail Maze, panning for gemstones, a climbing wall, and amusement park style rides. While on the caverns tour, visitors can view a sound, light, and water show that changes with the holidays and seasons.
Before being commercialized as DeSoto Caverns, the cave was well known locally as Kymulga Cave. There is evidence that the cave was formerly used by Native Americans, and it was mined during the Civil War.
The main room of the cave is twelve stories high and larger than a football field. The entrance has been enlarged from an earlier period when it was a 4ft by 8ft hole in the side of a hill.
It was thought at one time that the cave system was very large, extending from near Childersburg to Talladega, Alabama. However, explorations have revealed only one place where the cave continues for any distance beyond the main room. At the left end of the rear wall of the main room, the cave continues some two or three hundred yards, ending at a blank wall and a small pool of water. With the possible exception of an underwater exit through this pool, there are no other known unexplored routes in the cave.
The caverns are noted for one of the largest continuing accumulations of onyx-marble stalagmites and stalactites in the world. DeSoto Caverns has actively growing rock formations (speleothems). For this reason, guests are not permitted to touch most of the rock formations.
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DeSoto Caverns reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.0
301 reviews
  • I almost didn't go to this hidden gem because of the bad TripAdvisor reviews. My wife wanted to go so I added it to our Anniversary Road Trip list of things to do. You do not have to pay the full.....  more »
  • Had things to look at but to go into the cave was way to expensive. Very nice people and the place was very clean.  more »
  • Our family had such a great time at DeSoto caverns! We went on a weekday so it was not crowded at all. The tour of the cave was great. It was interesting to experience total darkness, and we loved the laser light show. We had lunch at the cafe. The prices were not bad but the food was just okay, hence the 4 stars. I saw several people who brought their own food. We would probably do that next time. There are plenty of picnic tables. We did some of the attractions like panning for gemstones, train ride, archery, and paddle boats. The kids loved pretty much all of it. This was a really great and memorable summer day trip for our family!
  • We did not have high hopes this would be a really good experience, but we were WRONG! The cave tour was informative and fun. Our tour guide was knowledgeable and able to answer any questions that were asked. After doing the cave tour, we explored the rest of what Desoto Caverns had to offer. My two boys aged 6 and 3 absolutely loved panning for gems and the crystal dig! There was also putt putt, pedal karts, and other fun activities. We ate lunch at the cafe which was very reasonably priced. We finished off the day at a wooden pirate play ship. From start to end we were there about 4 hours. My only word of warning would be that older kids might not like the other activities outside of the cave as they are geared toward younger kids. I would definitely recommend this experience, it was a fun family trip!
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