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We’re Caving in! Here are Vancouver’s Top Caving Spots 

Best Caving Island in Vancouver
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In Vancouver, nature surrounds us everywhere, especially along the Seawall, where everything looks so beautiful. 

But there’s a hidden world of caves and natural wonders waiting just a short drive (and hike) away from the city center. If you love adventure, simply adore nature, or just want to step out of your comfort zone, we’ve got you covered! 

Check out these top caving spots around Vancouver and the cool guided tours that are worth checking out!

Best Caving Islands in Vancouver

The best caving spots in Vancouver include Upana Caves, Little Huson Cave Park, Horne Lake Caves, and Cody Caves Provincial Park. 

Upana Caves

Upana Caves
Image by Raymond Champagne  on Shutterstock

Address: Comox-Strathcona G, BC V0P 1X0, Canada

Situated just over an hour away from Strathcona Provincial Park and a 20-minute drive from Gold River, the Upana Caves promise a rustic adventure in a cool Karst landscape.

Here you’ll find over 100 individual caves, with varying sizes and lengths. Put together, all the passages run for as long as 450 metres.

At the cave’s entrance, you’ll find a map for a self-guided, day-use trail. The first cave it recommends exploring is the Insect Cave – it welcomes visitors with the most challenge in this experience.

But you’ll do all the scrambling and climbing down in perfect light and the route is only good to explore for five to ten minutes.

The second Cave is called the Main Cave, where just outside, you’ll find The Keyhole – a short tunnel perfect for a quick photo session. Then comes the Tunnel Cave, a bit longer than The Keyhole.

For the brave hearts, there’s the Corner-Slither-Cave  – it’s dark, and the deeper you go, the more you’ll find yourself squeezing through rock formations. The thrill peaks as you reach the Resurgence Cave, marking the end of the route.

Pro tip: While you’re there, don’t forget to check out the waterfall viewpoint and another platform offering a view of the Resurgence Cave entrance, from where the river pops back up to the surface.

Little Huson Cave Park

Little Huson Cave Park
Image by Daves Raw Footage on Shutterstock

Address: Mount Waddington D, BC V0N 1A0, Canada

Phone: +1 (250) 956 3301

On Northern Vancouver Island, you’ll find the Little Huson Caves just 20 minutes from Highway 19 and off the beaten path near the village of Zeballos.

It’s a Mount Waddington Regional District Park, and like the Upana Caves, sports a karst landscape. While it’s tucked away amidst the moss-draped rainforest, the park’s 15 known caves are easily accessible via a short 0.5-kilometre trail. 

This hiking trail leads you to a natural bridge over a large cave. This same cave is Vanishing River Cave housing the Atluck Creek, which runs through the canyon for 60 metres and gets its water from the lakes Huson and Little Huson.

As you wander through the ancient forest, you’ll stumble upon limestone caves that reveal the geological wonders beneath the surface and are part of the Quatsino formation throughout the island.

If it’s your first time exploring caves, you won’t have a difficult time at Little Huson Cave Park if you’re only going to explore above ground. Underground is another story – use caution and bring a flashlight when exploring the smaller side caves.

Pro tip: Be prepared to go off the grid – there’s no cell coverage in the area. Make sure that you leave your itinerary and expected return time with a trusted individual. 

Horne Lake Caves

Horne Lake Caves
Image by Ronnie Chua on Shutterstock

Address: 3905 Horne Lake Caves Rd, Qualicum Beach, BC V9K 2L7, Canada

Phone: +1 (250) 248 7829

Horne Lake Caves Park is located on the eastern side of Vancouver Island. Accessible from the town of Qualicum Beach, this park boasts a variety of caves, each with its distinct character. 

Horne Lake Caves is an immersive experience where you’ll traverse through ancient passages adorned with stalactites, stalagmites, and the mesmerizing glow of bioluminescent formations. 

Many caving enthusiasts first hike to the Riverbend Cave for around 25 minutes. This cave is 348 metres long and 68 metres deep, and requires navigating not only ladders and sliders, but three waterfalls.

As you explore this subterranean realm, you’ll witness the geological history etched into the limestone bedrock of Vancouver Island. 

But if you prefer to stay above ground, you can check out the Cave and Karst Education Centre instead to see the rock formations and fossils that can be found underground. You can also take the Phil Whitfield Interpretive Trail for a self-guided walk.

Pro tip: While it’s more advisable to join a group when visiting the Horne Lake Caves, the Andres Annex Cave and the first 20 metres of Main Cave are open for those who want to explore at their own risk.
Just make sure to bring a helmet and headlamp.

Cody Caves Provincial Park

Cody Caves Provincial Park
Image by Greg Nesteroff on Nelson Star

Address: Ainsworth, BC V0G 1A0, Canada

Just around five minutes north of Ainsworth Hot Springs, one of our recommended hot springs around Vancouver, Cody Caves Provincial Park presents a network of limestone caves beneath the Selkirk Mountains.

The limestone beds here at Cody Caves date back an astonishing 600 million years, while the caves themselves have stood for approximately 170 million years.

Maybe because of these ancient roots, the calcite formations here are extremely fragile. Nevertheless, the stalagmites, stalactites, soda straws, boxwork, and flowstones at Cody Caves showcase nature’s meticulous artistry and are worth checking out.

Such is the beauty of this place that the article “The Noble Five” published in the late 19th century made it famous by describing it as “lined with gold.” And today, over a thousand visitors come to witness the beauty of this subterranean park.

For those adding Cody Caves to their must-visit list, preparation is key. The adventure begins with a brisk 20-minute outdoor hike before descending into the cave, where temperatures hover around a cool 4ºC (39ºF).

Pro tip: Extend your exploration beyond Cody Caves by taking a short drive to Ainsworth Hot Springs. Immerse yourself in the resort’s expansive pools—one warm, the other cold, fed by the flowing waters of Munn Creek.

Chipmunk Caves

Chipmunk Caves
Image by The Fraser Valley via Facebook

Address: Fraser Valley, BC V0X 1X0, Canada

Found near Lindemann Lake and Chilliwack Lake, Chipmunk Caves are just a 90-minute drive from Vancouver, tucked away in the Iron Curtain Cave Recreation Reserve.

To get to Chipmunk Caves, you have to hike a 2.1-kilometre out-and-back trail that takes about 33 minutes to complete. It starts off easy, a flat access road that follows the river until you spot a small stream joining the Chilliwack River.

You’ll discover three main caves. To reach the biggest one, climb some wobbly steps to the second cave, then inside to the largest of the three.

Families often explore this cave since it’s more accessible. But be careful—the trail and steps might not be in the best shape.

Pro tip: Skip the smaller caves with steep and tricky trails along the cliffs, especially if you’ve got kids in tow.

Guided Tours for Caving in Vancouver 

Guided Tours for Caving in Vancouver
Image by Petrushin Evgeny on Shutterstock

Upana Caves, Little Huson Cave Park, and Chipmunk Caves can be explored via self-guided tours. Horne Lakes and Cody Caves can be explored through local guide tours.

Horne Lake Caves

Phone: +1 (250) 248 7829

Book Now

Horne Lake Caves Park offers guided tours to visitors, regardless of experience. With five different offerings, you get to dive into the geology of the place while also choosing how long and challenging you want your caving experience to be.

The easiest of the guided tours is the Riverbend Cave Explorer – but visitors still need to be fit to walk in a crouched position. It’s also the tour that permits visitors as young as five years old to join.

The most challenging of the five guided tours is called Max Depth Adventure. Aside from the 4 hours and 15 minutes inside the cave, you also get over an hour of above ground rappelling for up to 20 metres. 

If you want to check out their other offerings, all you have to do is check out their webpage. You can easily choose which one to book online, add your name (and others’ if you’re coming with a group), and select the date you want to reserve.

Cody Caves

Phone: +1 (250) 359 2283

Book Now

If you’re visiting Cody Caves Provincial Park, you should contact the local park tour operator Cody Caves Tours. 

They offer three kinds of tours: Adventure, Explorer, and Family. The Adventure Tour runs for 6.5 hours (with 2 hours above ground) and includes some rappelling down the Cody Falls and crawling through mud rooms.

The Explorer Tour runs for 5 hours (with 3 hours underground time), while the Family Tour runs for a total of 2 hours (with only an hour of tour underground).

Aside from the shorter and less strenuous tour, the Family Tour also accommodates visitors as young as 5 years old. If your children are up for some adventure, doing the Family Tour with them is a great way to spend the summer.

As with Horne Lake Caves, all you have to do if you’re interested in a guided tour to Cody Caves is simply hop onto their website and hit the “Book Cave Tour” button. In case your preferred date isn’t available online, feel free to give them a call and inquire. 

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