Caving in Southern Arizona comes in two varieties. "expert-led" tours and "self-guided" tours. The majority of the tours below require a guide. Even the ONYX tour, which is for serious cavers, requires a guide with expert knowledge of the cave.
Kartchner Caverns - Part of Arizona State Parks system, Kartchner Caverns has three tours; The Rotunda/Throne Room; The Big Room and the Saturday Helmet and Headlamp Tour. You will definitely need to call in advance for reservations to this most popular site.
Colossal Caves - in Colossal Cave Mountain Park has several tours tailored for large and small groups and all skill levels. Southern Arizona Guide has three videos introducing you to the Caves, the Park, and Trail Rides. The general tour is a good introduction. If you are a little more adventurous, the Ladder Tour is for you. Get a glimpse of what real caving is all about. Headlamps, and helmets are provided. Full finger gloves are required but not provided. The Wild Cave Tour will take you to areas that have not been improved and give you a real caving experience. For an additional fee they will feed you afterwards. Now that is service. Colossal Caves also offers Candlelight Tours by reservations for groups and at special times of year. Check out our Halloween Howl slideshow. On the scariest night of the year, they give you a candle and send you down into the abyss. When we were down in the cave photographing, we witnessed more than one person get maybe 25 steps down into the cave and then turn around in terror and scramble back to the surface. Good luck! Watch our short video of the caves here. Read More