We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.
Review Highlights
Worth much more than $8 for this guided ranger tour!

My husband and I did the Big Room tour one day and came back a second day to do the King's Palace... read more

Reviewed November 15, 2018
Denver, Colorado
Fine tour, not great for photography

We took the guided Kings Palace tour while at Carlsbad Caverns, and it was beautiful. Unfortunately... read more

Reviewed November 14, 2018
Enfield, Connecticut
via mobile
Read all 329 reviews
All photos (130)
Full view
Certificate of Excellence
Traveler Overview
  • Excellent80%
  • Very good17%
  • Average2%
  • Poor1%
  • Terrible0%
Travelers talk about
“ranger led tour”(27 reviews)
“total darkness”(17 reviews)
“great tour”(23 reviews)
This area of the Caverns contain the most stalactites and stalagmites, and must be visited with a guide.
Carlsbad Caverns National Park, NM
+1 575-785-2232
Improve This Listing
Reviews (329)
Filter reviews
320 results
Traveler rating
Traveler type
Time of year
More languages
Show reviews that mention
All reviews ranger led tour total darkness great tour tour group big room natural entrance worth the extra money extra fee green lake jim white tour takes early explorers general admission beautiful formations self guided ahead of time park ranger
Updating list...
1 - 10 of 320 reviews
Reviewed November 15, 2018

My husband and I did the Big Room tour one day and came back a second day to do the King's Palace. Our guide was Andy, who had been there about 1 year. It was so helpful to have the ranger take the group through...More

Date of experience: November 2018
Thank ConnieBuck
Reviewed November 14, 2018 via mobile

We took the guided Kings Palace tour while at Carlsbad Caverns, and it was beautiful. Unfortunately tripods are not allowed, so I could not take the long exposure photos necessary to capture the beauty. It was neat to see, but I wish I could have...More

Date of experience: October 2018
Thank 618DavidB
Reviewed October 21, 2018 via mobile

We would highly recommend buying advance tickets and taking this ranger tour. Although not as huge as the Big Room, the formations are stunning. Our ranger had a bachelor as well as masters degree in geology. Obviously he was extremely knowledgeable, but was also able...More

Date of experience: October 2018
Thank billr488
Reviewed October 13, 2018

This tour should be 2 hours instead of 90 minutes in order to allow the visitors to really look at the fantastic scenery. The ranger did a fantastic job talking about the formations and the history of the caverns. The King's Palace and Queen's Palace...More

Date of experience: September 2018
Thank Diane B
Reviewed October 11, 2018

We visited during the off season, only one tour per day was offered at 10 am. The meeting point was in the cafeteria near the Big Room. That gave us enough time to walk down from the Natural Entrance trail. Our ranger gathered us up...More

Date of experience: October 2018
Thank Brown_Samantha
Reviewed October 10, 2018

Great ranger led tour of the King's Palace. Ranger was very informative and entertaining. The tour was at 10 am in the morning and lasted about 1 1/2 hours.We had made reservations weeks earlier and with senior discount it was only $4 each. Highly recommend...More

Date of experience: October 2018
Thank Jane_A60
Reviewed September 29, 2018 via mobile

We signed up for the 10 am tour 3 months early. There were 34 folks on this tour which was 90 minutes long and conducted at a very easy pace. Our guide Ranger Laurel was fantastic. She was extremely entertaining very humorous and packed in...More

Date of experience: September 2018
Thank pasweet
Reviewed September 16, 2018 via mobile

We were glad we booked this inexpensive tour. We purchased our tickets online about three weeks in advance and were glad we did as it was sold out the entire weekend. We did the 10am tour so we were able to do the Natural Entrance...More

Date of experience: September 2018
Thank 957carleec
Reviewed September 8, 2018

This is a paid guided tour. Very inexpensive and worth it. Our guide was very knowledgeable and didn’t rush anyone. Give yourself at least 2 hours. Definitely a must seee. Pathways r very good condition. There r some very steep areas to climb up on...More

Date of experience: September 2018
Thank bjdeshaies44
Reviewed August 14, 2018

I went to the caverns for two days. On the first I self toured the big room and the second I did the King's Palace tour. Both were excellent. Ranger Rick was great.

Date of experience: August 2018
Thank Heather D
View more reviews
Nearby HotelsSee all nearby hotels
White's City Cavern Inn
57 reviews
3.94 miles away
Whites City Resort
28 reviews
3.94 miles away
Rodeway Inn
419 reviews
4.02 miles away
La Quinta Inn & Suites Carlsbad
146 reviews
18.37 miles away
Nearby RestaurantsSee all nearby restaurants
Carlsbad Caverns Restaurant
198 reviews
.21 miles away
Cactus Cafe
170 reviews
3.90 miles away
No Whiner Diner
217 reviews
20.36 miles away
98 reviews
20.34 miles away
Nearby AttractionsSee all 14 nearby attractions
Big Room
850 reviews
.19 miles away
Carlsbad Caverns National Park Visitor Center
931 reviews
.01 miles away
Lower Cave Tour
64 reviews
1.75 miles away
Questions & Answers
Ask a question
September 23, 2018|
Response from 957carleec | Reviewed this property |
Yes, every participant gets to carry their own lantern, you actually get to pick if you want to carry a small or large one, but everyone in our group picked large. The walk back up is steep with many switchbacks and we... More
September 10, 2017|
AnswerShow all 4 answers
Response from Judy G | Reviewed this property |
I would probably do one each day since you are going to be there two days. However, I also don't see why you couldn't do them both in one day, if the timing works. Just be sure to leave a couple of hours to walk down the... More
Travel Forum Posts
Grand Prairie, Texas
King's Palace tour mid-novemeber (1 Replies)
Hello, Does anyone know if there is more than one scheduled tour for the weekend of Nov. 18th? I see that you can only reserve at 10am slot, but on the Caverns NPS site it says there may be also a 1:30pm tour, but you have to check? Is it not a for sure thing? Thanks!
November 01, 2017|
Response fromSandiaman|
According to their website there is only the one tour to Kings Palace until March 2018. I surmise that it is due to lack of funding for enough personnel to guide more tours in the Caverns. I would contact the Caverns at 1-877-944-6771 for information
New York City, New York
King's Palace tour & Natural entrance-doable in a day? (3 Replies)
Hi, I am visiting the Carlsbad Caverns NP on Dec 23rd for the 1st time and am wondering if it's possible to do both the King's Palace tour (I have tickets for the 10am 1,5h tour) and the self-guided natural entrance in one day? How much time would it take to do both? Fitness level required for the natural cave entrance/exit? I will be arriving at 8am. Grateful for any feedback. Thank you. :)
December 03, 2017|
Response fromSandiaman|
Plenty of time. Take the elevator down to do the Kings Palace tour, then back up for a snack. Then do the Main Entrance taking you down over 800 feet into the Cavern. Continue on to the Big Room. Time for the afternoon would be 2 to 3 hours . If they are still working on the elevtors, be prepared to wait awhile to get up or down. What you might do, is stay down after the Kings Palace tour, and do the Big Room, then if you have time in the afternoon do the Main Entrance. You could do the...More
King's Palace (4 Replies)
We will be visiting Carlsbad for the first time this summer and will be spending several days in the area. I had a couple of questions about the King's Palace tour. With the family will be my 80 year old grandfather. He is in excellent health, but getting a little creaky - as he says. He loves the national parks and ranger and naturalist talks, so we are considering the tour. I know there is some descent, but is this stairs or sloped walkways? Also, I understand there are points on the tour...More
March 20, 2013|
Response fromSandiaman|
The Kings Palace tour requires some downgrade into the area, and an kupgrade to get back out. Both are fairly steep, but they are paved. Sitting down is not required when they shut off the lights, however, it is absolute darkness, and you might feel some problems with equilibrium. Sitting is only on a ledge that is about 6 inches higher than the paved walk. I am 81, and in good health. Walk 2 miles every day, but I don't think I could do the main entrance, or the kings cavern due to the climb...More