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White Scar Cave: An Honest Review About the Tour

White Scar Cave: An Honest Review About the Tour

White Scar Cave (AKA Ingleton Caves) is well-known for being the longest show cave in the UK. To visit the caves, you’ll need to do a tour. Beck and I did the tour recently to experience the caves first-hand and gather some insider tips. So, is it worth visiting? In this guide, we’ll tell you everything you need to know about visiting White Scar Cave, including whether it’s worth the entrance fee. To quickly skip to our verdict, read ‘Is it Worth Visiting White Scar Cave?

About White Scar Cave (AKA Ingleton Caves)

​​​​​​​Before we tell you about the ins and outs of visiting White Scar Cave and whether it’s worth visiting, let’s look at a little White Scar Cave history. The cave was discovered by, a then, 22-year-old Cambridge undergraduate student named Christopher Francis Drake Long in 1923.

Entering via a crack in the rock, near the current cave entrance, he painstakingly crawled for hours and hours to reach, what is now known as The First Waterfall. He then returned several times after, venturing further and further into the cave. His progress into the depths of the cave was always thwarted by a seemingly impenetrable boulder called Big Bertha.

It wasn’t until 1971, that members of the Happy Wanderers Caving Club were able to pass this barrier and discover more of the cave. Seeing this relatively recently discovered section of the cave is now included in the tour.

The caves, located near the well-known village of Ingleton, have been open to the public since 1925. Although, the infamous White Scar Cave flood of 2016 meant the cave was temporarily closed; but, only for a short period. Otherwise, it’s nearing a century since the caves have been open to the public for exploration.

FYI – the caves are also known as the Ingleton Caves and the Ingleton White Scar Caves.

Read our Ingleborough Cave, Stump Cross Caverns and Yordas Cave guides

Where Is White Scar Cave?

White Scar Cave is located in the southwest corner of the Yorkshire Dales National Park in North Yorkshire. To help you get your bearings, please click on the link below to access an interactive map of the area.

Address: White Scar Cave, Carnforth, LA6 3AW, North Yorkshire

A screenshot of where White Scar Cave (AKA Ingleton Caves) are located

White Scar Cave Prices

The price of the ticket itself may determine whether you think it’s worth visiting, as it isn’t cheap. The entrance fee for the cave is £15 for adults and £11 for children over 3 years old. There are also discounts for family passes. Please check the official website for the most up-to-date prices.

FYI – it isn’t possible to pre-book tour tickets. You’ll pay on arrival at the cave. Both cash and card payment is accepted.

White Scar Cave Opening Times

The cave is open daily from 10am. As mentioned, to visit the caves, you’ll need to do a tour. Basically, when you arrive, the time of the next tour is displayed at the ticket office. Usually, the first tour of the day starts at 10:30am and the second tour is at 11am. Tours then run hourly until 3pm or 4pm. It’s usually on the weekend that the last tour is at 4pm. Whereas, on weekdays, the last tour is usually at 3pm.

Again, we recommend checking the official website for the most up-to-date opening times.

White Scar Cave: 10 Tour Highlights

Also known as the White Scar Cave Walk, the guided cave tour follows a 1.6km (one mile) floodlit passage. During the tour, your guide will provide plenty of information about the history of the cave and its geological wonders. You’ll be given a helmet before the tour begins.

Below, we’re going to talk about the 10 best sections of the cave. Hopefully, by knowing about the highlights of the cave, you’ll judge whether it’s worth the entry fee. After talking about the star attractions of the caves, we’ll answer the question – Is it Worth Visiting White Scar Cave?

White Scar Caves map

1. Dummy of Long

Soon after entering the cave, you’ll come across a dummy of Christopher Francis Drake Long – the student who discovered the cave. The tour stops here for some time as your guide explains safety rules and a brief history.

A dummy of the first explorer of White Scar Caves (AKA the Ingleton Caves)

2. The First Waterfall

Not long after passing the Dummy of Long, you’ll arrive at one of the cave’s most epic features – The First Waterfall. This underground waterfall is absolutely astonishing and deserves a visit in its own right. After passing the waterfall, you’ll then enter Long’s Gallery.

The First Waterfall

3. The Witch’s Fingers

In Long’s Gallery, you’ll pass another cascade, before reaching a passageway full of interestingly shaped formations. You’ll first pass the amazing Witch’s Fingers, one of the most bizarrely-shaped underground formations.

4. The Judge’s Head

After passing The Witch’s FIngers, you’ll arrive at The Judge’s Head. This feature of the cave is fairly self-explanatory. The formation is quite small, so you’ll need to crank up the zoom to capture it in a photo.

The Judge's Head in the White Scar Caves (AKA the Ingleton Caves)

5. The Squeeze

After passing The Judge’s Head, you’ll reach a section of the cave, where the tour (from 1925–1990) used to conclude. Thankfully, with the additional discovery mentioned previously, you’ll continue to a section called The Squeeze. You’ll have to bend, duck and weave, as you navigate this section of the tour. You’ll then arrive at more bizarre rock formations such as the Sword of Damocles and Crown of Thorns.

Basically, the Sword of Damocles was an incredibly long stalactite. But, unfortunately, it was snapped by a visitor. So, the sword is currently held together by string. It’s possible for the sword to self-mend; but, this will take many years. Because of these acts of vandalism, you’ll find many formations are protected by a cage.

6. Arum Lily

One of the most spectacular formations in this part of White Scar Caves is Arum Lily, which is a stalagmitic column. This is when a stalactite growing downwards and a stalagmite growing upwards join together.

7. The Devil’s Tongue

Once you’ve admired Arum Lily, you’ll soon arrive at the intriguing Devil’s Tongue.

The Devil's Tongue in the White Scar Caves (AKA the Ingleton Caves)

Given the age of the cave (approx. 350,000,000 years old), there are plenty of fossils embedded in the cave. Keep an eye out for crustacean fossils in the cave walls and ceiling.

Fossils in the ceiling of the cave

8. The Carrots

Afterwards, you’ll arrive at a viewing platform at the Battlefield Cavern. From the platform, you’ll see tens of thousands of stalactites hanging from the cave’s ceiling. Some of these are small orange stalactites known as The Carrots.

9. The Battlefield Cavern

Perhaps, the most fascinating feature of the entire cave tour are the thousands of straw stalactites you can see from the Battlefield Cavern. During the tour, the guide will shine ultraviolet light on the stalactites, which, in turn, glow. These fragile formations are truly wondrous.

The straw stalactites in the White Scar Caves (AKA the Ingleton Caves)
The straw stalactites in the White Scar Caves (AKA the Ingleton Caves) in ultraviolet light

10. The Face

The final attraction of the cave tour is The Face, which is found at the far end of the Battlefield Cavern. You’ll have to use your imagination to find The Face on the cave wall.

After exploring the Battlefield Cavern, you’ll simply retrace your steps to complete the tour.

Is it Worth Visiting White Scar Cave?

Personally, Beck and I really enjoyed our visit to the caves. In terms of show caves in Yorkshire, we think that the White Scar Caves is the best show cave in the area. We’ve also visited the Ingleborough Cave and Stump Cross Caverns show caves and think the White Scar Caves is the pick of the bunch. That’s simply because White Scar Cave has the most fascinating and aesthetically pleasing underground formations.

Additionally, you’ll do self-guided tours at the other show caves. Although we welcomed this freedom, we think we learnt more about the caves by doing a tour, which added to the experience at the White Scar Caves.

So, in short, we think it’s worth visiting and highly recommend it.

How to Get to White Scar Cave

The quickest and easiest way to get to the White Scar Caves is to drive there yourself.

Car Hire

If you don’t have your own car, you should hire one using Discover Cars. Personally, we use Discover Cars and highly recommend them for finding your ideal car hire at an affordable price. Booking online is super easy and the free cancellation policy is great.

To find out more about renting a car with Discover Cars, read our Discover Cars review and Discover Cars Insurance review.

Although it’s possible to get to the caves using public transport, we don’t recommend it. Depending on where you’re travelling from in the UK, you’ll likely have a slow and tedious journey to get there. Additionally, the frequency of buses can be very limited, making public transport an unreliable option.

But, if public transport is your only option, you’ll want to get to Leeds in order to get a train to Bentham. From Bentham, you’ll need to get a bus to Ingleton. From Ingleton, we recommend taking a taxi, which should take around five minutes. Otherwise, from Ingleton, you can walk 2.9km (1.8 miles) along the B6255 to reach the caves.

Another option is to get a bus to Kirkby Lonsdale from Lancaster. From Kirkby Lonsdale, you can catch a bus to the caves.

We recommend using Google Maps and Trainline to help plan your journey using public transport.

Booking Trains


Trainline is one of the best online platforms for booking trains. By using Trainline, you can easily find the best available prices and times for your journey. We always use Trainline to book our train journeys in the UK and in Europe.

White Scar Cave Parking

There is ample free parking on-site.

Other Caves in the Yorkshire Dales National Park

There are plenty of other North Yorkshire caves to explore. Below, are other caves in the Yorkshire Dales worth seeing.

Read more: Caves in Yorkshire – The 14 Best Caves in Yorkshire and The Dales

A person is winched down Gaping Gill
Gaping Gill

Where to Stay

If you need accommodation near White Scar Cave, it’s best to stay in the nearby beautiful village of Ingleton. Below, we’ll talk about the best budget, mid-range and luxury accommodation options in Ingleton.

Dan walks in Ingleton

Budget – Ingleton Hostel

Inside Ingleton Hostel

The best budget option in Ingleton is Ingleton Hostel, which is conveniently located near the Ingleton Waterfalls Trail.

Mid-range – Craven Heifer Ingleton

Inside Ingleton Hostel

This beautiful country inn is one of the most affordable private room accommodation options in Ingleton. Additionally, Craven Heifer Ingleton is one of the most highly-rated options in the village.

Mid-range – The Wheatsheaf Inn

Inside The Wheatsheaf Inn

You’ll want to stay at The Wheatsheaf Inn if you want to stay at the most popular accommodation option in Ingleton. Indeed, this B&B is an excellent place to stay.

Luxury – The Marton Arms

Inside The Marton Arms

The rustic-style Marton Arms is a brilliant country inn to stay at. It’s located just outside of the town of Ingleton. So, it’s the perfect place to stay if you’re after something a little more quiet and removed. You’re also close to Yordas Cave.

Gear Essentials

Below, you’ll find our gear essentials for exploring this cave.

  • Waterproof shoes and jacket are ideal when exploring the wet and puddle-riddled paths inside the caves.
  • A warm jacket is ideal it’s quite cold inside the cave (approx. 8°C), so you may want some warm layers.

Because the caves are so well-lit, you won’t need to take your own headlamp. Whilst, tripods aren’t allowed.

Other Yorkshire Dales Guides

Hardraw Force

For more information about the best things to do in the Yorkshire Dales, click the button below. Otherwise, to help you get started, read our 42 Best Yorkshire Dales Walks or 48 Best Yorkshire Dales Waterfalls guides.

Best Villages to See in the Yorkshire Dales

Bonus Tips

  • Visit the White Scar Cave cafe: you’ll find a nice cafe next to the ticket office.
  • Walks near White Scar Caves: there are many brilliant walks near the caves. Of course, you’ll have to do the Ingleton Waterfalls Trail to see Ingleton Falls. Also, we recommend doing the Whernside Walk or the shorter Ribblehead Viaduct Walk in nearby Ribblehead. Otherwise, in nearby Clapham, you should do the Ingleborough Walk.
  • Consider a dark tour: it’s also possible to do a tour in the dark if that’s your thing!
  • ​​Go to Ingleton afterwards: personally, we went from Ingleton Waterfalls to White Scar Caves. Indeed, visiting both Ingleton Falls and the White Scar Caves is a popular day trip.
  • Other caves in England to visit: there are plenty of incredible England caves to visit. In fact, the nearby Peak District National Park is home to many caves. Go scope out Thor’s Cave, Dove Holes Cave on the Dovedale Walk and Robin Hood’s Cave on Stanage Edge. In terms of other show cave tours in the UK, again, the Peak District has plenty on offer. You’ve got the famous Blue John Cavern, Peak Cavern and Treak Cliff Cavern (guides coming soon) to explore.

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Daniel Piggott

Dan is a travel blogger, physiotherapist, hiker, natural wonder seeker and world traveller. He loves writing travel guides to help his readers explore the most beautiful destinations in the world.

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