Kents Cavern Prehistoric Caves

Duck under stalactites, wander through tunnels and learn about in the oldest human dwelling in Britain.

Explore the rusty red tunnels and caves at Kents Cavern. See cave paintings and fossils of Ice Age animals. View an exhibit on the Kents Cavern jawbone, which is 41,000 years old. Take children on a woodland trail quest and let them play in an archeological dig area, then relax with a Devonshire cream tea in the café.

Kents Cavern was formed around 2.5 million years ago and has been home to humans for over half a million years. Three distinct species of humanity have lived here: Homo heidelbergensis, Neanderthal and Homo sapiens. No other archeological site in the world has yielded evidence from all three of these species. Learn about the humans of prehistoric Europe as you explore these fascinating caves.

The only way to see Kents Cavern Prehistoric Caves is to take the guide-led tour. See the Bear’s Den and learn how bears first found their way underground here. In the Cave of Inscriptions you’ll find ancient European artifacts, such as mammoth teeth, skulls and prehistoric tools. Walk the Long Arcade to learn how the caves were first discovered. See where Roman coins were left under an eerie rock formation known as “The Face.”

Visit the Ancestor Exhibition, which examines the discovery of the oldest human fossil found in Britain. Let your children follow a Stone Age trail, try tribal face painting, dig for artifacts such as sharks’ teeth and paint the cave walls. Eat at the restaurant, which serves a range of snacks and light lunches.

Walk to Kents Cavern from Torquay or take a bus from the town center. Parking is available on-site for a small charge and is located a short walk along on the road. A minimum of two people is required, so call ahead if you’re on your own. Visit the gardens, restaurant and gift shop for free and pay a modest charge for the tour. Opening times vary throughout the year so be sure to check before you come to explore these ancient dwellings.

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