New York State's Second Most Visited Natural Attraction!
New York State's Second Most Visited Natural Attraction!
Lester Howe


New York State's Second Most Visited Natural Attraction!

Howe Caverns Spelunking Tour

Signature Rock Discovery Tour

Finally, A Century Old Question Will Be Answered:

What’s Behind Those Dam Doors?

Since 1900, the 1,200 foot section of the Signature Rock Discovery Tour has been closed to the public leaving Howe Caverns visitors perplexed and wondering what might be behind the “dam doors” at the furthest point of the Traditional Cave Tour. Opened to the public May 3, 2015, the Signature Rock Discovery Tour revealed the mystery behind the doors opening a new world of fascination, sights and memories for adventurous visitors.

The Signature Rock Discovery Tour is a 2.5 hour adventure, with visitors donning boots and helmets as they journey through the halls, tunnels and walkways of the original cavern discovery. Sights, lighting and sounds are dramatically different than what guests experience on the Traditional Tour.

Signature Rock tours will only be offered at 12pm, noon, 1 tour per day.
(Reservations Required)

The Dam:
Installed in the early 1900’s by Helderberg Cement Co. after 900 ft. of the cave was destroyed by mining for limestone.

The Old Boat:
The remains of Lester Howe’s boat that he used for transporting visitors across the Lake of Venus.

The Music Hall:
The sound was said to echo better in this area than any other part of the cave system.

The Fan:
The Fan used to circulate air, provide air conditioning to the lodge (originally Howe’s idea), and to prevent fumes caused by blasting at the quarry from entering the cave.

The Pipeline:
The pipeline is believed to have been installed by Howe himself. These were part of the efforts to improve the cave and increase business after the Civil War. One pipeline provided running water for the Cave House and the other provided the cave with gas lighting.

Congress Hall:
Named for its size and resonating qualities.

Sparkling deposits that occur when limestone absorbs water. In the 1800s, gypsum was mined out of many caves for the production of gunpowder.

Franklin Avenue:
This is a long tall room with a seemingly bottomless pit on the left and the sound of rushing water echoing from below.

Signature Rock:
This massive flowstone formation, including hundreds of initials and notable signatures dates back to 1843– and is only revealed to those who visit*.

This tour is available in July & August. Guests must be at least 14 years old to participate.

Please plan accordingly and book early as space is limited!

Traditional Cave Tours

Whether you live in New York, want to take a day trip, or are looking for a fun affordable overnight stay, Howe Caverns is one of the most exciting NYS natural attractions. On your journey you will wind through limestone corridors, pass through cavernous galleries, walk under massive boulders, and take a serene boat ride on a subterranean riverbed carved over countless millennia. The cave is 52°F (11°C) so a jacket or sweatshirt and closed-toed comfortable walking shoes are recommended. Flip flops are NOT permitted in the cave. The cave tour consists of a 1.25 mile walk with a 0.25 mile boat ride. There are 139 stairs throughout the tour.

Get ready to experience the most immersive escape rooms in the Capital Region. 

“The Cave” is the first of three high-tech escape rooms to open at Howe Caverns.
Do you think YOU know HOWE TO ESCAPE!?

The Ultra-Max penitentiary known as “The Cave” houses the most notorious criminal geniuses in the country. Built 15 stories underground, The Cave has the latest in cutting-edge escape deterrent technology deployed in the facility. Many infamous individuals have spent the waning years of their lives behind its triple-reinforced cell walls and state-of-the-art security systems. This distinguished clientele has resulted in multiple escape attempts, but none have been successful… until now! A motley crew of the criminal elite, led by maniacal mastermind, Stu “The Flu” Galopso, have done the impossible and breached the confines of their containment sector. Society’s most dangerous and unpredictable fugitives are now at large, and only YOU can stop them!

Escape Room By Reservation Only

All ticket sales are nonrefundable, non-transferable, and may not be exchanged.