We live somewhat near Luray Caverns. There is a huge mountain between us and the caverns and a decent amount of flat & foothills, but it does qualify for spur of the moment trip status.
sidenote – when I lived in the suburbs, the first 25 or so years of my life, anything 30 miles or more away was a day trip. It was just too far to go without advanced planning. Now that I live rural and just buying milk is a 20 mile drive, anything under 120 miles is considered ‘nearby’
I enjoy Luray Caverns. They have an interesting history, are a nice ambient indoor temperature, involve just enough walking to feel you have earned an ice cream at the end and are a good ‘nearby’ place to take visitors when the weather goes all rainy on a holiday weekend (apparently everyone in a 100 mile radius agrees with this because the parking lot was packed, mostly with Virginia plates with nearby county stickers on them). We’ve been there 3-4 times in the 15 years we have lived in the area. I went once with my parents when I was kid, I think on the way back from Myrtle Beach. The only thing I remember about it is that they put a bumper sticker on my dad’s van while we were on the tour and he was FURIOUS about it.
We were last there when Havoc was a couple years old. Mayhem was an infant. They were still offering guided tours then. Now they give you a headset with prerecorded information you access at different spots & let you follow the path on your own. It’s nice to go at your own pace but with everyone listening to their own headset it sort of stops conversation.
The caverns are huge and full of fascinating rock formations.
There is the fish market
The Saracen’s tent (though I think it has a different name now)
It’s cool, the rocks look like tried out stiff towels
This one reminds me of Jabba the Hut
Can you see the bearded man & the dragon?
And a couple of fried eggs
We’re headed to Wheeling this weekend. I’m going to stuff myself with diCarlos’ pizza and hang out at Wheeling Park, just like I did every summer of my life until I was 20 years old.