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Dramatic lighting illuminates an underground waterfall in Chattanooga, Tennessee



With the seasons turning toward the warmer months, you might be feeling an itch to get outdoors and go exploring. And we’ve got just the destination for you – something you’ll be able to enjoy even on hotter days.

Tennessee is home to several underground wonders, some of which are even featured in the Guinness Book of World Records. Here are some of our favorites.

The Lost Sea

We guarantee you have never had an experience like this one. Touring this underground cave will lead you down a trail almost a mile long, ending at the cave’s most exciting feature: the largest underground lake in America, called “The Lost Sea.” You’ll get to join a boat tour of this amazing lake and take a close-up look at the rock formations and local inhabitants (fish!). There are amazing historical features to see, as well. This is worth the three-hour drive. Just be sure to book your tour ahead of time!

Appalachian Caverns

This is the perfect destination for a weekend camping trip. The caverns are located in the northeastern corner of the state and they feature a campground for all you hardcore outdoorspeople. Tours start at just $15 for an hour-long exploration of the caves, which maintain a cool temperature of 54 degrees, all year long. There are a variety of other tours available for those who want the full experience (rock climbing, crawling through tiny spaces, etc.), as well – just make sure you book those before you arrive!

Ruby Falls

Head over to Chattanooga to see the nation’s largest, tallest underground waterfall. This tourist attraction starts out with a 260-foot descent in a glass-front elevator into the depths of Lookout Mountain. There are a variety of tours available as well as an opportunity to explore a zip-lining adventure. Book your tour through their website – the sooner, the better, as they sell out quickly!

Cumberland Caverns

At just about an hour and a half away, this is the perfect destination for a quick adventure. It features 30 miles of underground trails, dotted with underground waterfalls and pools. With their variety of tours, you’ll find the perfect one to suit your needs – even an overnight adventure. And don’t forget to stop at the Volcano Room to hear amazing local musicians!

Get more ideas for local adventures (in and out of your home) by following the Olympus Midtown blog.