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Jewel Cave National Monument

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Address: 11149 US Hwy 16, Building B12, Custer, SD 57730
Phone Number: +1 605-673-8300
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Today
8:30 am - 4:30 pm
Closed now
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Hours:
Sun - Sat 8:30 am - 4:30 pm
Activities: Group tours/day tour, Group tours/walking tour, Hiking
Description: Jewel Cave National Monument is home to one of the longest caves in the...
Jewel Cave National Monument is home to one of the longest caves in the world. Offering an assortment of cave formations and recreational opportunities, many visitors are truly amazed by this underground wilderness. Most impressive is the fact that exploration and discovery continue to take place at this significant natural resource. As part of the National Park Service, the monument offers four different types of cave experiences: Scenic Tour (1 hour and 20 minutes), Discovery Talk (20 minutes) Historic Lantern Tour (1 hour and 45 minutes), and Wild Caving Tour (3 to 4 hours). During the winter months, limited tour options are available. Furthermore, the monument is open Mondays through Fridays through early March. NOTE: At present, advanced reservations for cave tour tickets are not available in 2015. Cave tour tickets will only be made available on a first come first serve basis at the Monument. Interested park guests are welcome to call the visitor center directly for planning assistance.
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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 647 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 368
    Excellent
  • 179
    Very good
  • 63
    Average
  • 20
    Poor
  • 17
    Terrible
Black hills must see

Our family of 6 took the scenic tour. While it sounds like a lot of stairs, the tour rarely covers more than 20-30 in any section. Our DNR Guide was excellent, informative and... read more

5 of 5 starsReviewed August 31, 2015
Michael W
,
Chanhassen, Minnesota
via mobile
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647 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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English first
Chanhassen, Minnesota
Level Contributor
20 reviews
11 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 31, 2015 NEW via mobile

Our family of 6 took the scenic tour. While it sounds like a lot of stairs, the tour rarely covers more than 20-30 in any section. Our DNR Guide was excellent, informative and lively. Our youngest daughter, 1 month past age 6 had no trouble with the tour or stairs. A little hand holding and guidance was required, but otherwise... More 

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Chaska, Minnesota
Level Contributor
20 reviews
12 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 30, 2015 NEW

Several tours available. If you have children under 6 years old, for now they are only allowed on the Discovery Tour, which is plenty anyway at 20-30 minutes long. We took our 6 and 3 year olds on the Discovery Tour, and they enjoyed it. The elevator ride takes you 23 floors down (the ride down only takes about 30... More 

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Alberta
Level Contributor
18 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 41 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 30, 2015 NEW

Our family, mid and late forties mom and dad with two teens, enjoyed the scenic cave tour. Not the best cave tour we have done but interesting and worth doing. The 770+ stairs are broken into short sections for the most part so are not too rigorous and only a couple of head ducking points are required to avoid low... More 

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Penn Valley, California
Level Contributor
35 reviews
16 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 29, 2015 NEW

We decided to visit Jewel Cave on our last day in Custer. It is only a few miles out of town, and it was not crowded at all. The cave is stunning, but don't expect to pick jewels out of the walls. As our ranger explained, the 2 brothers who discovered it, went into Custer to file a claim, and... More 

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NPSParkRanger, Manager at Jewel Cave National Monument, responded to this review

Our name, Jewel Cave is somewhat misleading in the sense that there are no true gem stones. But looked at another way, the cave is uniquely beautiful. We are happy you enjoyed your trip out to the Monument. More 

Kentwood, Michigan
Level Contributor
110 reviews
27 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 40 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 29, 2015 NEW

Make this a must see stop. Modern visitors center with a large parking lot. The cave was really impressive. It was much larger than I expected (see Wind Cave). Was a good walk so keep that in mind. It was cool in the cave so bring a jacket or sweatshirt.

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NPSParkRanger, Manager at Jewel Cave National Monument, responded to this review

All your comments are correct! Come early, Come with a sweater (its 49F down there) and enjoy a truly wonderful cave! More 

Traverse City, Michigan
Level Contributor
10 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 28, 2015 NEW

We arrived in time to catch the noon tour and our Ranger did a great job describing the cave's highlights and history. It was beautiful, safe and very interesting.

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NPSParkRanger, Manager at Jewel Cave National Monument, responded to this review

Being able to show our cave in a safe manner is one of our top priorities. We have happy to have been able to do that for you. More 

USA
Level Contributor
7 reviews
5 attraction reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 27, 2015 NEW

You rarely get to experience a cave like this, regardless of where you live. The depth and breadth were significant and the guides were great! Lots to learn here but book your trip early! We made this our first stop at 8 to get the time slot we wanted and then went back after Custer and Rushmore. Made for a... More 

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NPSParkRanger, Manager at Jewel Cave National Monument, responded to this review

We do recommend that visitors come early in the summer months has our visitation is quite high and our tours can fill up quickly. More 

Anaheim, United States
Level Contributor
8 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 27, 2015 NEW

If you have time to do one of the tours here it is NOT to be missed! Fascinating and awesome! We took our kiddos - ages 7, 9, and 11... we all loved it!

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NPSParkRanger, Manager at Jewel Cave National Monument, responded to this review

The scenic tour is a widely popular tour here in the Black Hills. Its a perfect activity on a rainy day. More 

Hawkwell
Level Contributor
86 reviews
12 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 27, 2015 NEW

We were driving back to Colorado from Keystone and decided to take a detour to take a look at the Jewel Cave National Monument. This was a spur of the moment thing but luckily we were able to get tickets for the scenic tour and only had to wait 45 minutes. The only downside was our lack of suitable clothing... More 

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Batavia, Illinois
Level Contributor
9 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 27, 2015 NEW

Loved Jewel Cave. We liked it better than wind cave because there was more to see of the different formations in Jewel Cave than in Wind Cave but do both if you have the time. Got first thing in the morning because by the time we got out, there were lines for the rest of the showings.

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NPSParkRanger, Manager at Jewel Cave National Monument, responded to this review

Happy you had a good time here at Jewel and at our sister Park Wind Cave. Its fairly impressive how different our two caves are given we are two of the longer caves in the world and are so close together. More 

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Questions & Answers

Here's what previous visitors have asked, with answers from representatives of Jewel Cave National Monument and other visitors
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2 months ago

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Typical questions asked:
  • Do I have to buy a ticket for my infant?
  • How do I get there using public transportation?
  • Is there a restaurant or café onsite?