CAVE TOUR FAQ's
Admission to the cavern tour is $27.00 per adult, $14.00 for children 5-11, children 4 and under are free. Visit the tour page for details.
Season pass rates are available. A season pass for adults is $35.00. A Season pass for children ages 5-11 is $19.00.
Group rates are available for groups of 15 or more. Discounted rates are as follows $18.00 per Adult, $13.00 9th-12th grade, $10.00 7th-8th grade, $9.00 K-6th (5-11 years old). One complimentary pass will be given for every 20 tickets purchased.
Reservations are only needed for groups of 15 or more.
The tour takes one hour and twenty minutes to complete. It is a walking tour covering 1 1/4 mile round-trip. Abbreviated tours (45 minutes in length) are available for groups upon request.
No. Tours depart every 20-30 minutes throughout the day.
No, unfortunately not at this time due to the natural terrain in the cave of ramp ways and narrow walkways. There is also one flight of steps. We have ample waiting areas for those who cannot make the trip.
No strollers are not allowed on the cave tour. Due to the grooves in the concrete walkway (which allow moisture and water to drain from the walkways) the small size of stoller wheels tend to cause excessive vibration to the stroller and the child. Backpacks or child carriers are suggested. Use caution when carrying child or infant for the ceiling is low in some areas.
The temperature of the cave is a constant 58 degrees fahrenheit (10 degrees celsius).
Since the cave is at a constant 58 degrees, a light jacket is recommended along with comfortable, non-slip walking shoes. Our Gift Shop has a large selection of warm, comfortable, and affordable sweat shirts and jackets for purchase.
Yes, the cave is safe for young children. Being a commercial or show cave, Meramec Caverns undergoes strict inspections to ensure the safety of its visitors. A responsible parent or adult should supervise children at all times, making sure children stay on the designated walkways.
There are no bathrooms inside the cave. It is recommended that restrooms be used prior to cavern tour.
There are no tight spaces on the tour. We can accommodate groups of up to 100 at a time. The smallest room inside the cave is comparable to the size of an average bedroom. If a problem arises, tour guides will assist in escorting the individual from the cavern tour.
On occasion, the tour guide may show visitors what it is like in total darkness. Please inform your tour guide of any issues with darkness and they will accommodate you.
Yes, there are bats inside the cave; mainly small Eastern Pipistrelle and Brown Bats. The sighting of these nocturnal creatures are minimal due to the magnitude of the cave system. Despite common misconceptions, they pose no danger or threat to humans.
Proof of Jesse James’ usage of the caverns as a hideout is found through collaborative factual evidence. This evidence consists of sheriffs’ reports, eyewitness accounts, and physical material found inside the cave. Among the artifacts found inside the cave (at Loot Rock) were strong boxes traceable to the train robbery at Gadshill, MO, rifles, and shackles. Additional information can be obtained by visiting the Jesse James Wax Museum in Stanton, MO. For hours of operation, please call 573-468-3166.
Unfortunately, no gold has been found inside the cave.
Although we don't have official documentation of the cave's usage by the Underground Rail Road due to the secrecy of the issue, it has been part of the local lore that the cave was the second to last stop along the Underground Rail Road before one's exit to freedom. This coincides with the cave’s usage as a Civil War gunpowder manufacturing plant.
It is a six mile float, and takes on average between 3-5 hours to complete. Time may vary due to the amount of stops taken, watercraft rented, as well as amount of paddling.
You must be at least 3 years old to be in a raft. Our two person canoes and tandem kayaks minimum age is 10 years old, while accompanied by an adult. Single kayaks minimum age is 13 years old.
Please check both our website pricing, as well as our FareHarbor reservation system, to see our most up to date pricing. All rafts are priced at a discounted rate when raft capacity is 1 person under capacity or more. Once a raft is filled to capacity (exe. 6 people in a 6 person raft), there is an additional $35 charge.
No. We do not shuttle personal watercraft. Meramec Caverns and Caveman Floating is private property, and does NOT allow any type of personal watercraft on the property for putting in, or taking out. If you choose to bring your own watercraft, you will need to shuttle it to a public access put in and you would need to take out at another public access (not the Caveman Floating take out, or Meramec Caverns property).
In order to receive a full refund, you must call at least 7 days in advance in order to receive a refund for your reservation.
If there is no lighting or heavy rain, we will still be floating. In the event of severe weather conditions where we do not feel it is safe to float, we will push back floats until the severe weather passes.
We ask all floaters to be back to our take out by 7pm in order to avoid late fees of $35 per person, per hour. Our late time is liable to change due to time of the year, river conditions, etc., and this time will be made known several times by our bus drivers.
If CFC does cancel floats for the day of your reservation, we do not offer refunds, but offer rainchecks. This allows you to come back anytime within a year of your reservation date, to use your reserved watercraft.
Pets are welcomed in canoes and kayaks. Pets are NOT allowed in rafts.
No. Reservations are not required, but highly recommended to guarantee the watercraft and departure time you desire.
No. We do not offer vehicle shuttles.
No. We do not offer overnight float trips.
We ask everyone to be here at least 30 minutes early at our Campstore, the brown building with a porch on the front, located in our campground in order to check in, fill out waivers if not done so already, and to prepare for your afternoon on the river. Our buses leave promptly for each float trip, so in order to avoid missing your float trip time, please arrive 30 minutes early.
Depending on your cell phone provider, cell service is available in some areas. If taking cell phones, we ask that you have your cell phone in a water-proof/water-tight container.
No. At this time we only offer our 6 mile float trip.
We recommend coolers no larger than 50qt in rafts. Coolers any larger could potentially cause your watercraft to drag if you have several people in your boat. For canoes, we recommend no larger than 30qtz, and for kayaks no larger than 20qtz. There are no styrofoam coolers allowed.
No. You cannot bring glass containers on the river.
Primitive sites (no hookups) are $23.00 per tent. Sites with electric hookups are $38.00 per RV. Site prices are based on 2 adults and 2 children. Additional adults and children on one site are charged $2, and $1, respectively. Check out our Lodging & Camping Options!
The campgrounds are open from April 1 through October 31 for 2022.
Reservations are available for the 40 electric hookup sites.
There are 40 sites available with electric hookup.
No, full service sites are not available. There are 40 sites available with electric and water hookup.
Yes, a dump station is available and located at the campground entrance.
Yes, if you have 10 or more tents per site, $1 off will be issued per tent. Special Scout rates are available for current scouting groups camping together: $19 base fee plus $1 per scout and $2 per adult.
No, we do not have cabins.
Yes, dogs are allowed if kept on a leash and quiet at night.
We no longer offer this service. We recommend contacting Bridal Cave in Camdenton, MO for wedding services.
The Meramec River is fairly calm. It does have undertows, which can be dangerous. We recommend the usage of certified life preservers for persons of all ages.
Yes, Meramec Caverns' restaurant offers an extensive menu with daily summer specials, in-house catering, a snack bar, 28 flavors of ice cream and is open daily during cave hours. (Dec-Mar - Very Limited Menu)
Yes! For your animal's health and protection, free kennels are available to house your pet while you tour the caverns. For a $6 refundable fee you may rent a lock and key (available at the Information counter) to safely secure your pet in a 4x6 shaded, concrete floor kennel. Please bring food, a water pan, and any additional items, such as a favorite toy, to make your animal feel at home in their temporary set up. After retrieving your animal, simply return your lock and key (back to the Information counter) and you will be refunded the $6.