Lonely Planet Writer

Venture deep underground for a meal in this Arizona cavern

A new restaurant in Arizona won’t offer an incredible view of the sea or a city skyline – but you will get to look at some pretty interesting scenery. The Cavern Grotto is located deep underground in a cave system, bringing visitors 200 feet below the surface for a dining experience.

The new restaurant is part of Grand Canyons Caverns & Inn, located along Route 66 the famous American road trip route – in Arizona. The spot is about less than two hours’ drive from Grand Canyon National Park. There, travellers can go on tours of the largest dry caverns in the US, a rarity as 97% of the world’s caverns are still wet. To access the restaurant, guests will have to take an elevator ride 21 stories underground before they are welcomed into the only cavern restaurant in the state. Cavern Grotto opened earlier this month and is offering lunch and dinner for the unique experience.

Of course, there are a lot of logistics behind getting food down into a cave. Food will be made in the restaurant that sits above the ground and then delivered down in a bucket using the elevator; a pulley system is used to bring the buckets up to the raised platform where the restaurant is located, reports ABC Arizona. The restaurant is perched on a wooden platform, meaning that guests will be able to gaze out into a large cave room. The price of having a meal – $49.95 per person for lunch, $69.95 per person for dinner – also includes a guided cave tour.

It’s not even the first unique attraction found down in the caves. There’s already an underground cavern suite, where guests can stay in the “largest, deepest, darkest, oldest, quietest motel room in the world,” according to the hotel.