Sight Seeing in Rocky City & Chattanooga TN
The following day was one of the only sunny day we expected to have that week, so we took a motorcycle ride into town to see Rock City. We weren’t quiet sure what to expect of Rock City but we LOVED it! The garden area walking up to the top of the Rock was as quaint as could be. It felt like a magical garden tucked in-between old and majestic rock formations. The views did not disappoint once we finally reached the top of Rock City & the main attractions, like Lover’s Leap and Lookout Point. We sat in a rocking chair and just enjoyed the view from the top. While we couldn’t differentiate the states, it was pretty cool to be able to see 7 different states from one place. Coming from Florida we’re used to water, water, or more Florida. Tickets into Rock City were a bit more than we typically spend for tourist stops, but after we got inside we were happy we paid and definitely would suggest it if you’ve never been. It really was beautiful!
After Rocky City Gardens we drove back down the mountain to Ruby Falls, which is a 145 ft. underground waterfall hidden inside a cave passageway 1,120 ft. underground (that’s the same depth below ground as the empire state building is tall)! The tour size was reasonable (about 30 people), with 1 tour guide. We took an elevator down into the cave where we walked through the cave, learning a bit about the history, the caver that discovered Ruby Falls, Leo Lambert, and admiring the formations throughout the cave. When you arrive at the Falls at the very end of the tour, it’s totally dark until they turn on an LED light show (you need the lights or your in a pitch black cavern and you only hear the waterfall not see it). The wait was well worth it, the falls are spectacular! I kept telling Dennis this feels like we’re in an Indian Jones movie! It’s amazing to think this waterfall has been constantly flowing for millions of years and the sheer fact that it even exists. Scientists are unsure of where the water comes from and have found some traces of it flowing into the Tennessee river, but it takes a while to get there which means it travels to other places as well. Overall, we really enjoyed the cave, but this could be because it was our first experience going into a cave like this…ever (caves aren’t exactly popular in Florida where we are at sea level) but I would definitely recommend visiting at least once if you haven’t been before.
Ocoee River Rafting
My sister and brother-in-law arrived Thursday and were going to stay with us for 10 days. They just returned from a three month trip to Chile and Columbia, so I was very excited to see them both. They had visited Chattanooga several times before and suggested we go on a White Water Rafting trip down the Ocoee River. My sister couldn’t go with us (she’s expecting a wonderful baby girl soon), Shane, Dennis, and I geared up and got ready to raft! We found a rafting company, SunBurst Adventures, for a decent price ($20 – $30) on Groupon. When we called to verify availablity they suggest purchasing with them directly instead of buying the groupon as there are added fees and honored the discounted Groupon price when we paid. The guides were all young hippie-looking guys that clearly lived for rafting. Our tour guide Mac, took just us three on our own raft which meant more paddeling but also a lighter load and hopefully a more adventorous ride. Mac did an AMAZING job getting us into spots most rafts and tour guides don’t get to “ride”. It was like surfing in freezing cold water where you almost flip over. Sunburst took their time going down the river. Other raft tours quickly passed us skipping all of the fun dips, and rides we took. We also saw several newbies with other guides hit rocks, get stuck, or tip over. It was obvious we were with experienced guides.