We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.
The latest reviews. The lowest prices. The perfect place to shop for hotels.

Left Hand Tunnel Tour

Map updates are paused. Zoom in to see updated info.
Reset zoom
Updating Map...
Get directions
Address: Carlsbad Caverns National Park, Carlsbad, NM
Phone Number:
+1 877-444-6777

TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 28 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 23
  • 3
    Very good
  • 2
  • 0
  • 0
Fascinating way to experience the caverns.

We did the Natural Entrance, the Big Room, the King's Palace, and the Left Hand Tunnel tour. This may have been our favorite. The "decorations" may not be as ornate as the Big... read more

Reviewed 4 weeks ago
Duncan M
Add Photo Write a Review

28 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

Traveller rating
Traveller type
Time of year
Showing 28: English reviews
Level Contributor
20 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 4 weeks ago

We did the Natural Entrance, the Big Room, the King's Palace, and the Left Hand Tunnel tour. This may have been our favorite. The "decorations" may not be as ornate as the Big Room, but it's not really about that. This tour goes beyond the paved path. Often, you're having to watch where you're walking rather than gaping at the... More 

Thank Duncan M
Kodiak, Alaska
Level Contributor
24 reviews
12 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 13 March 2017

We signed up for this tour, attracted by the idea of traveling in the tunnel with candle-lit lanterns. A little sleepy at first, then twists and turns, ups and downs, made for interesting photographs. At one point the ranger has us blow out our lights, plunging the group into silence and darkness. A lovely, almost spiritual, glow enveloped us. In... More 

Thank AlaskaMarion
San Jose, California
Level Contributor
58 reviews
39 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 37 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 December 2016

Backpacks are not allowed. Cameras (and flash photography) is allowed. I recommend booking your tickets online in advance. Arrive about half an hour before the tour starts to pick up your tickets. Meet your ranger / guide at the visitor's center, and after a short briefing, collect your equipment (candle lantern) and take the elevator down. You'll be at the... More 

3 Thank theimmc
San Juan Capistrano, California
Level Contributor
25 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 October 2016

Frankly, I had just been in the Big Room, so I was disappointed by this tour. It starts very slowly above ground with lots of instructions. You then deposit anything you can't take with you in a locked closet and proceed to the elevator. After a bathroom break, the candles are lit, and you start down the tunnel. Candlelight is... More 

Thank SanJuanCapoMom
Lubbock, Texas
Level Contributor
71 reviews
31 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
Reviewed 27 September 2016

A chance to explore with only a lantern holding a candle - how cool is that?! Not so many fancy formations, but then, that's not the point of this guided tour. It's to experience a more authentic caving adventure. I recently went with only 7 people and the ranger, who by the way, was David. Nice guy who helped me... More 

1 Thank erwretired
Cumberland, Rhode Island
Level Contributor
164 reviews
54 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 70 helpful votes
Reviewed 26 August 2016

We bought our tickets on-line through the National Park Service ticket website (Recreation.gov), but you can take a chance and buy them when you arrive at Carlsbad Caverns. The group size is limited to 15 people, so it's best to buy ahead if you're buying for a group. We enjoyed this tour very much. Our park ranger guide Jason was... More 

Thank HowieTraveler
Level Contributor
27 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed 17 August 2016 via mobile

I've been waiting for my son to be old enough to do this tour and we finally went yesterday. I've been coming to Carlsbad since the 80s and figured I'd seen it all. I was wrong. This tour gets you about as close to "exploring" the cavern as you can get these days. Using candle light rather than flashlights just... More 

Thank jtaggtx
Level Contributor
64 reviews
38 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed 29 July 2016 via mobile

There are not as many formations in this part of the cave. However, I still enjoyed this tour greatly because we were able to experience the cave as early explorers would with lanterns. We also learned some interesting stories about the history of the cave from our tour guide, Mannie, and experienced total darkness and silence when we blew out... More 

Thank Paige C
San Diego, California
Level Contributor
138 reviews
39 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 46 helpful votes
Reviewed 23 July 2016

Be sure to make reservations in advance for this tour. It's a wonderful tour by candlelight that gives an idea of what it must have been like in the early days before the cave was illuminated. Children must be at least 6 our 7 year old did just fine.

Thank Lynn J
Las Vegas
Level Contributor
141 reviews
83 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 376 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 July 2016

Breathtaking views inside the cavern, the guide did a great job with the history and geology of the caverns. Highly recommended. Note: Wear comfortable shoes, bring a light sweater, it can be cold in the caverns.

3 Thank JRinLasVegas

Travellers who viewed Left Hand Tunnel Tour also viewed

Carlsbad Caverns National Park, NM
Carlsbad Caverns National Park, NM

Been to Left Hand Tunnel Tour? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing

Questions & Answers

Here's what previous visitors have asked, with answers from representatives of Left Hand Tunnel Tour and other visitors
2 questions
Ask a question
Eagle Point, Oregon
over a year ago
Eagle Point, Oregon

See all questions (2)

Questions? Get answers from Left Hand Tunnel Tour staff and past visitors.
Posting guidelines
Typical questions asked:
  • Will you pick up and drop off at my hotel?
  • I have a family of 7. Can your tour accommodate all of us together?
  • How should I dress for this tour?