Sleeping in a cave may not be at the top of your post-pandemic travel bucket list, but maybe it should be. More like luxury hideaways, the world’s best cave hotels aren’t filled with anything like bats or cobwebs, or annoying drips and drops—instead, they’re beautifully furnished, come with all the modern amenities, and offer endless ocean views or mountain vistas right outside your door. So, even if you’ve never been tempted to sleep in a cave before, you might just want to look into these six spectacular cave hotels in the U.S. and around the world.
Cave Hotels in the United States
With travel in 2021 still likely to be limited for at least the first half of the year, consider a unique family vacation where you can all sleep in a cave without traveling overseas.
Beckham Creek Cave Lodge – Parthenon, Arkansas
This 5,800-square-foot luxury cave hotel in the Ozark Mountains of northwest Arkansas sleeps up to 12 people in its four-bedroom, four-bathroom accommodations. Nestled inside a cliffside cave with an open living space, well-appointed kitchen, and sweeping views for miles, Beckham Creek Cave Lodge also boasts a natural waterfall right in the middle of the lodge that you can enjoy from the top or bottom floor.
The outdoor patio overlooks the mountains and a lake, making it an unforgettable spot for everything from romantic weekend getaways without the kids to once-in-a-lifetime family vacations. The upper floor is a dedicated private honeymoon suite, complete with a master bedroom and bathroom and rounded bed tucked into the natural rock formations of the cave.
Cave stays at Beckham Creek Cave Lodge start at $1,200 per night, but there’s no multi-night minimum except for bookings made over major holidays, which require at least a two-night stay.
Grand Canyon Caverns Inn – Peach Springs, Arizona
Billed as the “largest, oldest, deepest, darkest, quietest motel room” in the world, the 80,000-square-foot Cavern Suite at Arizona’s Grand Canyon Caverns Inn is a 65-million-year-old underground oasis that sleeps up to 10 guests. With 70-foot-high ceilings and a private elevator to and from the surface, this is a place to truly get away from it all. And don’t worry, there’s water, electricity, a bathroom, a TV, and a library stocked with books and DVDs for entertainment.
Overnight stays in the Cavern Suite book up quickly, so you’ll need to make reservations at this historic Route 66 attraction well in advance if you want to sleep in a cave 220 below the surface. But, the Grand Canyon Caverns also offers plenty of aboveground motel-style accommodations, as well as daytime cavern tours and evening ghost walks. You won’t have to go far for other activities, either: The motel can arrange rafting tours and even an overnight trip to the scenic (and oft-photographed) Havasu Falls.
Kokopelli Cave Bed and Breakfast – Farmington, New Mexico
Built into sheer sandstone cliffs overlooking the La Plata River Valley near the the Four Corners region (the intersection of Arizona, New Mexico, Utah and Colorado), Kokopelli Cave Bed and Breakfast in New Mexico is a 1,700-square-foot underground getaway made all the more special because there’s no easy way to reach it. The spacious cave hotel is 70 feet below ground, and to get there you’ll need to walk a sloping path carved into the sandstone. (You’ll probably want to pack lightly so you aren’t making more than one trip.)
Once inside, you’ll have access to a master bedroom, living area, dining area, kitchen, bathroom, and replica Native American kiva. When it’s time to relax, sit back and enjoy the rock-wall waterfall and Jacuzzi. It’s not all subterranean darkness, either. There’s a spacious patio with sliding glass doors off the main entrance and master bedroom.
International Cave Hotels
As travel opens back up, likely sometime in 2021, these overseas cave hotels will be welcoming returning international visitors.
Perivolas Lifestyle Houses – Santorini, Greece
Located high on a cliff above the Aegean Sea, the 20 amphitheater-inspired cave houses that make up the Perivolas Lifestyle Houses on the island of Santorini are almost unimaginably luxurious. Notable for their smooth whitewashed arches, sculpted walls, and vaulted ceilings with skylights, these breezy cave hotel rooms are an attraction all on their own. But there’s also an infinity pool where you can cool down after your days or nights exploring the surrounding beaches and villages of this sun-drenched Greek island.
Les Hautes Roches – Rochecorbon, France
Twelve of the 14 rooms at the one-of-a-kind Les Hautes Roches hotel are carved into the cliffside, transforming caves that were once used by the monks of Marmoutier Abbey into luxurious accommodations overlooking the Loire River in France. Even the furniture is carved out of limestone at this cave hotel.
Beyond its unique architecture, Les Hautes Roches wows with its extravagant terraced gardens and central location within the Loire Valley. Outdoor dining with river views caps the experience. And, just a few hours away by train, Paris makes for a great family trip before or after your Loire Valley stay.
La Dimora di Metello – Sassi of Matera, Italy
This small cave hotel in Matera, Italy, features four large suites, a common area, terrace, and a spa nestled into the rock face. At 3,200 square feet, La Dimora di Metello is larger than you might think based on the number of rooms. But perhaps that’s to be expected: Cave dwelling has been a part of the region’s culture since the Paleolithic period, and the hotel’s location in Matera, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and past European Capital of Culture, means there’s plenty to see and do when you’re not enjoying the luxurious cave hotel.