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Maquoketa Caves State Park
Review Highlights
Good fun exercise

We were camping up the road and figured we'd check out the caves. We weren't disappointed. There... read more

Reviewed 5 weeks ago
Clive, Iowa
via mobile
perfect family time

This is a great place for a family with children about 6 to 16. However it is great for all ages... read more

Reviewed August 27, 2018
james c
Vadnais Heights, Minnesota
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All reviews change of clothes day trip tennis shoes fun exploring main cave bring a flashlight walking shoes trail map flash light bring water bug spray this past saturday well worth the trip family outing a lot of fun couple hours dirt road
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13 - 18 of 178 reviews
Reviewed September 4, 2017

We went on Labor Day, so we can't speak to what attendance is like any other day, but we were there by 9:30 AM and parking was filling fast. When we left a couple hours later, it was overflowing with people and vehicles. The volunteer group Friends Of The Makoqueta Caves State Park were there, welcoming visitors, providing maps, and making suggestions, and were all friendly and helpful. We traveled with our 16 year old and 9 year old through about half the cave course, and found our way without too much trouble, and both kids had a great time. You'll definitely want a flashlight or headlamp, jacket (it gets cool underground), clothes that you can get dirty, shoes with good traction (lot of damp, and uneven terrain), and drinking water. Lots of opportunity for great photos, and some time with the family in the outdoors. The DNR website has limited specific information, so you may want to check outside sources for reviews or additional information.

1  Thank Becky W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed September 2, 2017 via mobile

This is one of the nicest parks in the midwest. Clean, great trails, friendly rangers, good parking and excellent small caves. The creek and forest are beautiful and the wooden walkways to the caves are lovely. Bring your camera and old clothes because the caves are authentic and natural (water and dirt). It is a first rate experience.

Thank Jen L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed August 24, 2017

My wife and I explored Maquoketa Caves State Park for three hours this past Saturday. We are in our 60s and were able to hike and explore the main trail system during this time period.

There was no charge to enter the park.

Be sure to pick up a map of the trail system. All of the caves are numbered on both the map and signs on the trail but there are no “You Are Here maps” on the trail system
Most of the caves are small containing only one or two chambers but Dancehall is huge and has three different entrance/exit points. Dancehall also contains lights and a paved path through most of the cave (although there is a good chance you are still going to get your feet wet) The one entrance requires you to stoop for 40 – 50 yards but the rest of the cave (which resembles a tunnel) is probably over 6.5 feet high.

None of the caves contained stalagmites or stalactites
Strongly recommend that you wear hiking shoes or tennis shoes with good tread. We found flashlights beneficial in some of the minor caves if you wish to explore the secondary chambers. I got down on my knees a few times so “old clothes” are appropriate or you can simply turn around and exit the cave
There are no trash receptacles in the park. So if you want to carry water or food with you be prepared to carry your trash out with you.

The park was busy the afternoon we visited but it was fun observing the kids and more adventurous visitors crawl/climb through holes and openings that I never would have even seen. That said it would be great to revisit the park in the fall during the midweek when I assume there would be far less visitors in attendance.

The afternoon we visited the park two members of the Department of Natural Resources were at the Visitor Center and brought three milk snakes with them. They allowed visitors to hold the snakes if they were so inclined.

A great park and if we are in the area again would consider stopping in for another afternoon.

4  Thank DePere
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed August 23, 2017

What a beautiful spot! We planned a day hike here, as our eldest son (16) is a cave nut. It felt like we were in Rivendell or Endor! Hiked for 3 hours, but could have easily stayed all day... Be sure to wear old shoes and knee pads for those who want to crawl in!

Thank April R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed August 18, 2017 via mobile

Worth stopping by for couple hours before heading back to Chicagoland after visisting Dubuque area for short trip.

1  Thank Soo M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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