Chislehurst Caves

Attractions, Historic buildings and sites Chislehurst
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The woodlands of Chislehurst hold a secret beneath their roots. Thirty metres below ground is a complex of man-made caves carved out of the chalk by Druids, Saxons and Romans. Since then the caves have been turned to all sorts of purposes, including an ammunition dump in World War I and a mushroom farm; during World War II, they acted as Britain’s largest bomb shelter. Most of the underground scenes in the TV series 'Merlin' were filmed here. The 45-minute lamplit tour covers a mile of the tunnels; children will enjoy locating the Druid Altar, the Caves Church and the Haunted Pool.


Venue name: Chislehurst Caves
Address: Old Hill
Opening hours: Open Wed-Sun 10am-4pm; every day during local school holidays and bank holidays.
Transport: Chislehurst rail
Price: £6, £4 under-60/under-16, free under-two.
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4.6 / 5

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A great way to spend the afternoon with friends and family and something the children will love.

A tour guide walks you through the long dark tunnels telling stories about the Wight Ghost and the secret gigs of when Jimmy Hendrix and the Rolling Stones played here.

Man made and built by three periods; the Druids, the Saxons and the Romans and used throughout the war as a shelter from the bombs.

The tours last 45 minutes to an hour and there is also a cafe on site.

Tickets are very cheap, costing £6 for adults and £4 for children and make sure you wear sturdy shoes!


I am proud to be from this wonderful village and whenever showing anyone around its a corker to drop it into conversation with 'hey youve heard about our famous caves right?' 

These caves are actually man made and have such a rich history spanning from Druid to Roman to Saxon to World War 2 times. There are many stories about the overnight challenges they use to do in the 80s, the ghost at the pool and where the name nap sack comes from. 

The tours leave on the hour every hour of operation and are open majority of public holidays. Theres also a small cafe there. 

Tip: On a sunday youll often see an Orc walking around, the local LARPers are out in the woods near by which adds to the vibe of the area.  


Great day out for children and adults alike, I vaguely remember coming as a child before visiting again more recently - I wouldn't say its suitable for children of a nervous disposition, but as a parent you should know your children well enough to make this judgement call. Very interesting guided tour of part of the caves to hear about the people who sheltered here in WW2 (my grandma as a child being one of them!) as well as the spooky ghost stories - the caves have featured on TV's "Most Haunted" show, though this isn’t a scare attraction there is an eerie atmosphere but nothing too sinister. A little warning, as the caves are underground it does get cold down there! I consider the admission price reasonable for a local historic attraction, conveniently located near the station with lots of nice pubs in the area to go to for lunch or a drink after.


This is a decent afternoon out, with an interesting history that includes wartime bunker space and a concert venue for the likes of Led Zeppelin in the '70s. The gift shop and statues are cheesy, so the kids will be all over them. If you're bunker-mad, I'd recommend going to Kelvedon Hatch in Essex or the Churchill-era bunker in Neasden first.

moderatorStaff Writer

Genuinely fascinating tour of a little known part of history. Expertly put together without being flashy, far more memorable than more mainstream tourist attractions.