Explore Seneca Caverns: A Geological Wonder in Our Own Backyard
Grab your sense of adventure, we’re headed to Seneca Caverns. At the start of your journey you’ll descend a staircase into the unknown, ducking under rocks as the mystery of the cave slowly reveals itself. As you descend the staircase you may notice the temperature getting cooler, 54 degrees Fahrenheit to be exact, as the cave is consistently the same. You may be welcomed into the cave by a “cave kiss” or a drop of water from the ceiling of the cave.
However as your journey begins, you’ll quickly realize this is an experience unlike any other in the area. Officially designated as a Registered Natural Landmark by the Ohio Department of Natural Resources, Seneca Caverns in Bellevue is one of Ohio’s largest underground caves, and a geological wonder to behold. The cave is formed from a karst, or a landform consisting of dissolving limestone, dolomite, or gypsum, which creates sinkholes and caves. On your journey in the cave, you may come across some stalactites in their initial stage of development. Stalactites at this size are called “soda straws” because they are hollow and very fragile. While you won’t see any stalagmites or massive stalactites, the soda straws stand as a reminder of the wonder of science taking place all around us.
The cave consists of seven levels descending into the earth. At the lowest level, 110 feet below the surface, sits the “Ole Mist’ry River '', which is a part of the water table. The water in the river is naturally potable and consistently 48.9 degrees Fahrenheit.
Throughout the year, Seneca Caverns hosts special events, including Gemstone Discovery Day. There are four different dates to choose from for this fun, gemstone mining adventure for ages 4-12. For ages 12 and up, the Lantern Tour is an one hour trek through the cave guided by headlamps and lanterns. Accompanied by spooky ghost stories, this tour is perfect for those adventures looking for more of a thrill. Seneca Caverns is open for tours seven days a week from Memorial Day through labor day, and is closed in the winter. Tickets can be purchased ahead of time on their website, senecacaverns.com, or from the Visitors Center upon arrival.
Once you’re finished exploring the cave, you can take a peek into the olden days by gem mining with the Seneca Mining Company. With all the fun of exploring the cave, don’t forget to check out the wide selection of options at the gift shop. So what are you waiting for? Get out and explore the underground adventure that is Seneca Caverns!
15248 E Township Rd 178, Bellevue, OH 44811