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Crystal Cave

An ecological phenomenon, the Crystal Cave is not to be overlooked on your next journey to Put-in-Bay. Discovered at the Heineman Winery, this remarkable gem complements a trip to Put-in-Bay’s local family Winery and lovely wine garden.

The Crystal Cave Particulars

Crystal Cave is home to the biggest geode on the earth. The walls are covered in strontium sulfate, a bluish mineral called celestite. The Crystal Cave contains beautiful celestine crystals up to 3 feet wide. These crystals can increase in size from 8 to 18 inches in size.

Excursions of the cavern and Heineman Winery are offered for $10 for adults and $5 for youths ages 6 to 11. Tours can be enjoyed seven days a week from May until late September.

Monday through Saturday, cave tours start at 11 a.m. and continue until 5 p.m. On Sunday, tours begin at 12 p.m. and continue until 5 p.m. Be sure to bring a lite sweater or jacket as the temperature in the cavern is consistently cooler than outdoors.

The Chronology of the Crystal Cave

They accidentally came upon the Crystal Cave. Uncovered in 1897 by miners drilling a well for the Winery, the cavern was rather a big discovery. Initially, the cave was utilized to gather crystals marketed for producing fireworks. 

Before Prohibition, Put-in-Bay was home to many wineries making their own wines. Prohibition and the path of the Volstead Act hit the island hard, and all 17 other wineries closed down.

The Crystal Cave also played an essential part in preserving the Heineman Winery during Prohibition. This harvesting expanded the cave to its current size.

Heineman Winery was fortunate to have the entrepreneurial brain of Norman Heineman, son of creator Gustav, guiding the way. Norman opened the Crystal Cave to tourists, selling access and unfermented grape juice.

When other local wineries closed on the island, Norman Heineman, son of the founder Gustav, had the clever idea to open the cavern to the people. He sold access to the cave along with unfermented grape juice.

The Crystal Cave is situated about a mile from downtown Put-in-Bay. Nearby draws include Saunders Golf Course, Perry’s Cave and Family Fun Center, and the Chocolate Cafe and Museum.

Heineman Winery

Gustav Heineman, an immigrant from Baden, Germany, opened Heineman Winery in 1888. Baden is the grape-growing territory of Germany, and Heineman came prepared with expert winemaking knowledge.

The Lake Erie Islands are excellent for winemaking. It is its own winemaking heaven! The grapes are exceptional thanks to excellent dirt conditions and a prolonged growing season due to the tempering effect of Lake Erie.

Heineman Winery produces all types of wine from native grapes on the island, such as the Labrusca grape. They produce all types of wines, from red to white, and their most famous wine, Pink Catawba.

The Heineman Winery parcel consists of a gorgeous wine garden and the Crystal Cave Gift Shop, which are both open at the same hours as the Crystal Cave. Appreciate some fine wine along with cheese plates, and bring home bottles of wine and gifts after your summer vacation on Put-in-Bay

978 Catawba Ave, Put-in-Bay, OH 43456

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Island Events

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Island Attractions

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Leslie L.

We saw this Crystal Cave and winery after trying a couple of others. Heineman's winery has a comprehensive assortment of wines to select from. The surroundings are very laid back, and you can't beat the prices, particularly if you want to test different combinations. Best of all, you can order their wine online and have it dispatched to your residence. They also offer a deal if you buy a case. The grade and flavor of the wine reminded me of the homemade wines my grandpa used to produce. We can't wait to see you again!

Wendel W.

After a great visit to the Crystal Cave, The individuals we were with requested several cases of wine & Heiniman's delivered to the ferry dock for us & had them sent over, so they were waiting for us when we got back to the other side. Their wine was quite reasonable, particularly the pink catawba. We appreciated a bottle at 1 of their tables, "outback," and a cheese, meat, and cracker tray. Their wine was reasonably priced (no tax at the winery). It is also available at some establishments in the Port Clinton area, such as Bassett's Market (a dollar or two cheaper than at the winery, but you must add tax).

Sully S.

My wife & I appreciated the expedition of the crystal cave and the winery, though I wish both could have been a bit prolonged. It was very enlightening, nonetheless, and visiting an authentic wine-making establishment in action was quite impressive! The wines we sampled afterward were all outstanding - - we even took a few bottles home with us afterward after appreciating a glass or two out on their garden terrace. Well worth a stop!

Janice M.

Okay, this is part of our combined crystal cave tour, the world's largest Geode, and then the winery. Crystal Cave Geode itself is extensive and a place to see, but it's also very muted in color, which according to the tour guide, is because people keep handling it. Speaking of the tour guide, she was terrific! She told us before we went down that if anyone touched anything, they would be asked to leave the cave. After leaving the cave, you are accompanied to the winery. It has a strange fragrance, but the tour itself was fascinating. There are numerous other wines to choose from for the tasting; each is explained before you have to choose. They have grape juice for the children, and it was scrumptious. FYI, there are some problematic, narrow stairs in the Geode, and I don't recommend them for anyone claustrophobic. There are some stairs for the winery as well, and wet bases and hoses, so watch your step.

Calia D.

We went on the crystal cave tour, which also included a tour of the winery and a complimentary drink of wine at the end of the time. The crystal cave could not have been better. We thought it would be a little bigger than it was, but it was just a hole that 25 people cram into at a time. The winery tour was neat because they showed you how they make their wine. The wine here was good, and the attendants were outstanding at moving fast to keep lines proceeding. It was a pleasant location to sit and have a couple of glasses of wine in the afternoon! There is a lot of outdoor seating as well as an abundance inside.

Jay P.

I recommend taking the Crystal Cave tour. It's the biggest geode in the world and worth the numerous stairs to get down there. It's a tight space where they put a lot of people in but let you take your time and take lots of photographs. Also, the tour incorporates a tour of their winery and a glass of wine or grape juice. I'm a beginner in wine, but I did find one I appreciated, and we bought a very well-priced bottle.

Yanna B.

My grandson and I briefly arrived hereat Crystal Cave and shared a Cheddar cheese bowl with crackers, some grape juice, and wine. I ended up buying a couple of bottles of wine to take back to the hotel. The Traminette was my favorite. It's a quiet little spot on the island to relax—lots of birds and chipmunks for the children to feed crackers. The workers were friendly enough. I saw a few households with children while I was there. Worth a stop.

Deanna S.

We saw Heineman Winery while on Put-In-Bay. Their Pink Catawba wine was rather good, but I thought the other wines we tried were just okay. Exciting history, as they uncovered the crystals, and their tourism saved the household from going under during prohibition periods. Crystal Cave is a limestone cavern and is the world's largest Geode. It's $16.00 for both expeditions, though a coupon online for $1 off each tour. It's tiny, so I don't think you'll be doing any true spelunking there. Also, you can take the Miller Boat line ferry ($7.50 each way) to get to the island to save money.

Red G.

This is for you if you like sweet wines and fresh grape juice. We did the combo wine tasting, winery, and crystal cave tours. It was fascinating to do a wine tasting with little plastic cups. The wine bar had a pleasant atmosphere. The tour of the winery was engaging and comprehensive. Crystal Cave is small; however, the huge crystals make it worth touring. They have a friendly gift shop in between the winery and cavern opening. It was effortless to tour both with little children.

Alvin R.

how much does it cost to go to crystal cave We went to Crystal Cave while waiting for a tour of the other caves and were pleased that we could get two tours and a wine tasting for only $10! It was a good amount for a taste of wine, I tried the Pink Catawba, and it was awesomely sweet. I loved it! One of our excursions was to the Geode, which was nifty and cool to see. Our tour attendant gave us about a 15-minute tour, describing the chronology and use of the Geode in the history and present, and we responded to any inquiries. The winery trek was approximately 15-20 minutes following that. It was enlightening about the entire process the wine goes through and the different components used in various wines. There is also a gift store and a wine garden on-site. Bottles of wine were about $13, which is a fantastic price! We enjoyed ourselves for the price and the occasion!

Hans D.

I would recommend going here to see the Crystal Cave. It's like standing in a giant geode. The wine isn't bad either, and they have some delicious-looking cheese plates. We took the winery tour and had sampled the last time I went. The cave is just spectacular.

Harold V.

Another charming wine winery - again, the Pink Catawba was great! A bonus - we got to meet the winemaker AND stroll directly into a massive geode of Celestine crystals - the biggest of its kind in the world called the Crystal Cave. Happy we went! Now, that's what I call happiness (and I wasn't interested at first).

Terry F,

Our family toured the Crystal Cave, which is entertaining for all groups—a nice place with a beautiful ambiance. The tour is about 7 minutes, perfect for little children. There are 42 steps to go down to get to the cavern and, of course, 42 stairs to come back up. Our boys appreciated the grape juice and cheese.

Waylon J.

Dogs are prohibited inside the facility, Crystal Cave, or in the central wine garden. However, to the side of the wine garden is another area where canines are welcome. We sat on the bench and appreciated watching the antique automobile show parade on a Sunday afternoon.

Ashley F.

My wife and I went to try wine. The wine's winery is kind of like an old saloon-style inside. The Crystak Cave was very cool to see, too, although it was small down in the cave. Great tasting wine, bounce.

Pam B.

This Crystal Cave spot is fantastic! Great for everyone. I absolutely adored both tours! Both of our tour attendants were amazing too! We learned crystal cave ohio facts Thank you for a great time!