Most people visit Inner Space Cavern to explore the gorgeous limestone formations that fill the well-preserved Central Texas cave. My children, too, love to ride the small cable car down into the wonderland of interconnecting caverns. At $11.95 per child (age 4 and up) and $19.95 per adult, however, the Adventure Tour is not something our family of seven can afford to do on a regular basis. Sometimes, we visit Inner Space to enjoy the more budget-friendly above ground activities.
Gemstone Mining at Inner Space Cavern is free with the purchase of a bag of either Pay Dirt ($6) or Fossils ($12). On our most recent visit, I purchased each of my children a bag of Pay Dirt, which contains “mining rough” laden with concealed gemstones. Upon purchasing a bag, you receive a gem identification chart and a plastic bag for the treasures you are sure to find when mining.
Instructions for using the Inner Space Mine are as follows:
1. Select a bag of mining rough enriches with additional gems from around the world.
2. Place part of the rough from the bag in a screen bottom box.
3. Dip the box in the sluice and watch the gems appear as the soil washes away.
Figuring out which gems we had discovered was my boys’ favorite part of the adventure. In fact, they have gotten out their bags several times since our visit and enjoyed sorting their finds all over again.
After mining, kids will also enjoy feeding the resident zebra, donkey, and goats. You can purchase animal feed at the concession stand for 50¢ per cup. People snacks are available too, or you can bring your own and have a picnic outdoors. There is a nice playground for burning off steam before you head home.
For more information, visit the Inner Space Cavern website.Inner Space Cavern
4200 S. IH-35
Georgetown, Texas 78626