Howe Caverns

Useful Information

Location: I-88 Exit 22 to Rte 7 E, 2km to Caverns Rd, 3km to Howes Caverns. Between Central Bridge and Cobleskill.
Open: JUL to LD daily 8:30-20, last tour 19.
LD to JUN 9-18, last tour 17.
Closed Thanksgiving, 25-DEC, and 01-JAN. [2006]
Fee: Adults USD 18, Children (12-15) USD 15, Children (5-11) USD 10, Children (0-4) free, Seniors (65+) USD 15.
Groups (15+): Adults USD 12.86, Children (12-15) USD 10.80, Children (5-11) USD 7.56, Children (0-4) free.
Classification: ExplainKarst cave, Explainriver cave. Silurian and Devonian limestone: Coeymans limestone, Manlius limestone and Rondout waterlime.
Light: electric
Dimension: T=12°C
Guided tours: D=90min. V=200.000/a[2002]
Bibliography: Dana Cudmore (2002): The Remarkable Howe Caverns Story, Overlook TP; Reissue edition (March 13, 2002), paperback, 166 pages, ISBN: 1585672467.
Address: Howe Caverns, RD Box 107, Howes Cave, NY 12092, Tel. +1-518-296-8990. E-mail: contact
As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
Please check rates and details directly with the companies in question if you need more recent info.


Known to the Indians as Otsgaragee, or Cave of the Great Galleries.
1842 discovered by Lester Howe, drawn to a rock ledge in search of his cows.
1843 Howe built his first cave house hotel at the natural entrance site.
1845 the Cave House needed an addition to accommodate the growing number of guests.
1847 this first hotel burned down.
27-SEP-1854 as a publicity stunt, Harriet Elgiva Howe wed Hiram Shipman Dewey in a natural loft called the Bridal Chamber.
1872 the second Cave Hotel burned.
1888 cave sold, closed, and mined for cement making!
1929 two new 47.5m deep elevators, light and walkways installed, reopened.
JUN-2005 Great Rotunda reopened to the public after more than 100 years.
2007 cave sold for $3.7 million to Emil Galasso and Charles Wright.


Howe Caverns lie in Coeymans limestone and Manlius limestone. Coeymans limestone can be seen in the upper portion of the cave near the entrance. Coeymans limestone is more difficult to dissolve than the Manlius variety, so the water naturally choses a lower path through the Manlius layer. As a result, almost perfectly flat ceilings can be seen in parts of the cavern, which are actually the underside of the Coeymans limestone layer. Rondout waterlime is the cream-colored rock that runs along the underground stream.

The regular cavern trip of more than 1.6 km takes an hour and includes everything except the boat ride. Those wishing to take a longer trip of one hour and twenty minutes may take the regular trip and a boat ride of 400m on a beautifully illuminated lake.