Cave of the Bells

Sonoita, AZ

3 (4 reviews)

Where are we going?

Address: Gardner Canyon Rd, Sonoita, AZ 85637, USA How do we get there? Number: 520 388-8300
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Attractions Family Days Out
Attractions in Sonoita
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About this activity

Sometimes you come across something so special, that you just have to go and explore it - and that's what Cave of the Bells is!

This amazing, fragile and beautiful underground wilderness can be found in Arizona, and is very much for those families who love exploring nature.

The cave itself is an amazing subterranean gallery of rock, which is really known for it's variety of minerals and formations. In fact, kids - did you know that they have been forming over thousands of years? How impressive is that!

The cave it actually SO fragile, that some parts have actually been damaged, so it's very important to take great care when you are exploring. It is for this reason that they have actually gated and locked the entrance, so you need to reserve a time to explore, and pick up the keys from the Forest Supervisor's Office in Tucson.

The Cave of the Bells is actually found in Sawmill Canyon. The drive up might need a four wheel drive so be prepared. The experience of exploring the cave is very impressive!  Lake Tunnel is one of the most notable passages to get you there. This leads through a large room and even an underground lake!

What you might notice is that the cave actually gets warmer as you descend, rather than get cooler. Even the lake itself is 76 degrees! Scientists feel this is heated by sources far below your feet. The wonders of nature!

Cave of the Bells is a unique experience that not many people get to explore. Why not do something more special for your family day out! After all, adventure doesn't have to be ABOVE ground!

Activity location

How much does it cost?



$100 deposit


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Cave of the Bells FAQ’s

They have gated and locked the cave for a reason, so please make sure you help them look after this delicate feat of nature

Why not take a great lunch to enjoy and eat it as a picnic in the park?

Starting at I-10 and Exit 281, head south on AZ Hwy 83 (known as S. Sonoita Hwy) for approximately 20 miles until you come to the Gardner Canyon Road (FR92).

Head west (turn right) on this main dirt road for approximately 6.5 miles. You will pass a private horse ranch on your left and continue down a wash and up a hill. Now at a junction, turn right on FR4084.

The road gets rough here and is not recommended for two-wheel drive vehicles. You go down into a second wash and up the hill, and the road curves to the east and heads north. There you will come to another junction. Head right on FR4085, cross Sawmill Canyon and continue .4 miles until the road forks.

Turn left onto FR4086, go .4 of a mile and you're there. You will see a camping area and a sign for Cave of the Bells. Then, just walk the trail behind the sign for 50 yards to the cave entrance.

You do need to be mobile to explore the cave, but just give the ranger a call if you have any questions

There isn't an actual fee for the park but you do need to pay a despot for the key to enter the cave

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