Crystal Grottoes, Boonsboro, Maryland

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By John B. Cowgill

The Appalachian Mountains are known for many things, including the numerous cave systems throughout the mountain range.  This includes popular caves like Luray Caverns in Virginia and the Mammoth Cave in Kentucky, to lesser-known caves like Crystal Grottoes in Maryland.

Maryland is mainly known for its waters, although many of the state’s best kept secrets are in its mountains, to include Crystal Grottoes, a cave that was discovered while Maryland Route 34 was being built.  This family-owned cave has some unique features and is one of the most naturally kept caves in the world.  The site’s tour guide will show the different formations, along with the history of each room.

The floor at Crystal Grottoes is not paved and there are tight passages as well as low areas where you will need to lower your head.  The cave is also not wheelchair accessible.

Crystal Grottoes is located at 19821 Shepherdstown Pike (Maryland Route 34) outside Boonsboro, Maryland.  Hours vary throughout the year.  Parking is on site on a gravel lot.  They accept credit cards, but they do prefer you pay with cash.  You can get more information on hours and read more about the history at

Crystal Grottoes

Looking through the formations at Crystal Grottoes

Crystal Grottoes

Color on the formations at Crystal Grottoes

John B. Cowgill frequently writes about regional destinations for Prince William Living.


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