Lookout Mountain Things to Do

  • east brow road station
    east brow road station
    by doug48
  • ruby falls
    ruby falls
    by doug48
  • garitt's alabama battery
    garitt's alabama battery
    by doug48

Best Rated Things to Do in Lookout Mountain

  • goingsolo's Profile Photo

    Lookout Mountain Cave

    by goingsolo Updated Aug 13, 2005

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Lookout Mountain

    Lookout Mountain Cave has an interesting history. The cave had a natural entrance at the bank of the Tennessee river and was used by Native Americans, outlaws and as a civil was hospital. In the early 1900's, the natural entrance of the cave was closed off during construction of a railroad. In the 1920's Leo Lambert, a cave explorer and entrepreneur, decided to open the cave to the public. While drilling an elevator shaft, Lambert discovered an opening. Being a spelunker, he decided to go in and explore.
    Nearly 17 hours later, Lambert emerged with tales of elaborate rock formations and an underground waterfall whose source, to this day, is unknown. He named the waterfall after his wife, Ruby. The photo shows the original narrow passageway that Lambert crawled through for 17 hours during his exploration.

    Tours of Lookout Mountain Cave are offered as part of a visit to Ruby Falls. There is no way to get to the falls without taking the tour. Although time consuming, it is an interesting walk past some spectacular rock formations, many of which bear resemblance to common and ordinary objects.

    The falls are about a half mile from the elevator, but the entire tour takes over an hour. Because the cave is so narrow and so popular, tour groups stop frequently to allow exiting groups to pass by. Its a bit of a frustrating experience, and the most disappointing part is that you only get a couple of minutes to view the waterfall. But enduring the tour and its many stops is the only way to see the falls. For those who always wanted to visit an underground cave, this is a good bet.

    Related to:
    • Family Travel
    • Hiking and Walking

    Was this review helpful?

  • goingsolo's Profile Photo

    Grand Corridor

    by goingsolo Updated Aug 14, 2005

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Lookout Mountain

    The first portion of Rock City is known as the Grand Corridor. Here, a path leads you through a garden of sorts where you'll find hundreds of different plants and, of course, the rocks. The path leads past an area known as Deer Park, which is actually a large moat with white tail deer inside. The deer didn't look to happy about their surroundings, and I wasn't too keen on this, so I pretty much skipped it. The path leads to a narrow passageway called the Needle's Eye before heading to the overlook near Lover's Leap.

    Was this review helpful?

  • goingsolo's Profile Photo

    Rock City

    by goingsolo Updated Aug 13, 2005

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Lookout Mountain

    The famous "See Rock City" signs still line the highways but are nothing like the former advertisements for this attraction. The park used to paint barns for free in exchange for the right to place huge signs on the sides, imploring travelers to, well, "See Rock City." Some sort of law was passed making it illegal for such large signs to be placed alongside the highway. Nowadays, the signs are much smaller, requiring that drivers strain to see them, which would seem to create a more dangerous condition than painted barns, but that is another matter.

    Rock City doesn't sound very appealing, but the pretty park is much more than a collection of rocks. There are gardens and caves, suspension bridges and a pretty impressive waterfall known as Lover's Leap. A paved path leads through the rock formations and gardens and to the overlooks where you can see into 7 states on a clear day. Saving the best for last, the fairy caverns is a disney-esque walk through of lights and fairytale characters that is so well done that adults seem to like it too. There's also a children's village and some souvenier and concession stands.

    Admission to Rock City is about $15, but there are packages that allow you to see several of the area attractions and spend even more money.

    Related to:
    • Road Trip
    • Family Travel

    Was this review helpful?

  • goingsolo's Profile Photo

    Lovers Leap

    by goingsolo Updated Apr 4, 2011

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Lookout Mountain

    The 100 plus foot falls known as Lover's Leap are one of the most striking natural attractions you'll find in Rock City. There are platforms in front and in back of the falls to allow you to get different views. The backside of the falls also forms a natural cave, offering shade and welcome relief from summer humidity.

    Related to:
    • Family Travel
    • Road Trip

    Was this review helpful?

  • goingsolo's Profile Photo

    Fat Man's Squeeze

    by goingsolo Updated Aug 14, 2005

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Fat Man's Squeeze is a narrow passageway between the rocks, which is a pretty tight fit for anyone, whether obese or not. The squeeze is part of the path leading through rock city. I didn't see any way around it, so visitors pretty much have to squeeze through. While it is narrow and tight, I didn't see anyone having a problem with it.

    Was this review helpful?

  • Stephen-KarenConn's Profile Photo

    Point Park

    by Stephen-KarenConn Updated Sep 22, 2004

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Entrance to Point Park

    Point Park is a part of the Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park, which has sections throughout the Chattanooga area in both Tennessee and Georgia. It was established in 1890 and is America's first and largest National Military Park.

    The Entrance Gate to Point Park was constructed in 1905 by the U.S. Corps of Engineers and is the largest replica of the Corp's insignia in the world. A small user fee ($3.00) is charged to take the walking tour inside the park. Here you will see three Confederate artillery positions which mark a very small segment of the siege lines that encircled Chattanooga during the Civil War.

    Point Park is also the site of the famous "Battle Above the Clouds, November 23, 1863. Inside the park are monuments, an observatory with stunning views, a small museum and the trialheads to miles of hiking trails which crisscross Lookout Mountain.

    Related to:
    • Museum Visits
    • Hiking and Walking
    • Historical Travel

    Was this review helpful?

  • Stephen-KarenConn's Profile Photo

    Napoleon Cannons

    by Stephen-KarenConn Updated Sep 22, 2004

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Napoleon Cannon Overlooking Chattanooga

    On taking the walking tour of Point Park the first Confederate siege line one will come upon features two 12-pounder Napoleon Cannons, named for Emperor Napoleon III of France. This type of smooth-bore cannon was one of the standard weapons used by both sides during the Civil War. The guns could fire a 12-pound projectile 1,700 yards. They were ideal for close range fighting on level open ground but were less effective at long-range fighting in mountainous areas, where rifled cannons were preferfed.

    Related to:
    • National/State Park
    • Historical Travel
    • Budget Travel

    Was this review helpful?

  • Stephen-KarenConn's Profile Photo

    New York Peace Memorial

    by Stephen-KarenConn Updated Sep 22, 2004

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    New York Peace Memorial

    A large momument in the center of Point Park, the New York Peace Memorial, stands 95 feet high and is 50 feet wide at the base. It is constructed of Tennessee marble and pink Massachusetts granite. On top of the shaft, a Union and a Confederate soldier shake hands under one flag, signifying peace and brotherly love.

    Related to:
    • Historical Travel
    • National/State Park

    Was this review helpful?

  • Stephen-KarenConn's Profile Photo

    Ochs Memorial Observatory

    by Stephen-KarenConn Updated Sep 22, 2004

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Dad (Charles W. Conn) at Ochs Memorial Observatory

    The Ochs Memorial Observatory, high above the Tennessee River, offers spectacular views of the Chattanooga area. It was dedicated November 12, 1940, and named in honor of Alolph S. Ochs (1858-1935), onetime Chattanooga resident and later owner-publisher of the New York Times. Adolph Ochs and his brother Milton were leaders in creating the Chattanooga-Lookout Mountain Park, which was donated to the National Military Park in 1934, adding nearly 3.000 acres. There is a small museum at the observatory with items of interest to Civil War buffs.

    Visible from the terrace of the Ochs Observatory is Lookout Rock, one of the favorite spots for federal officers and enlisted men who had fought in the battles around Chattanooga to pose for photographs to send home to family and friends.

    Related to:
    • National/State Park
    • Historical Travel
    • Museum Visits

    Was this review helpful?

  • goingsolo's Profile Photo

    Fairyland Caverns

    by goingsolo Updated Aug 13, 2005

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Lookout Mountain

    The fairyland caverns would be a tacky attempt to capture the attention of children but for the fact that it is so well done. The underground cave has a series of displays of fairy tale characters and lights but the main attraction is a large model of a fairy castle complete with hundreds of figures that most recognize from well known fairy tales. Its a very pretty sight, and, much like Walt Disney World, seems to amuse both children and adults.

    Related to:
    • Family Travel
    • Road Trip

    Was this review helpful?

  • goingsolo's Profile Photo

    Ruby Falls

    by goingsolo Updated Aug 13, 2005

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Lookout Mountain

    Ruby Falls are another highly commercial attraction centered around a unique and beautiful natural occurence. In the 1920's, an underground waterfall was discovered in Lookout Mountain Cave and has been turned into a popular tourist attraction. In order to visit the falls, you must pay the admission fee and take the cave tour. Due to damage to the cave, no one is allowed in unless on a guided tour.

    Related to:
    • Family Travel

    Was this review helpful?

  • goingsolo's Profile Photo

    Lookout Mountain Battlefield

    by goingsolo Updated Aug 14, 2005

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Lookout Mountain

    This battlefield was the site of the infamous "Battle of the Clouds". The battle was part of the larger scale battle for Chattanooga eventually won by the Union, but not before a Confederate victory at Chickamauga and an estimated 34,000 deaths. The Union forces captured the Confederate brigade on Lookout Mountain in November, 1863. Today, a memorial stands atop Lookout Mountain, in addition to a series of markers depicting the battle.

    Related to:
    • Historical Travel
    • Road Trip

    Was this review helpful?

  • Stephen-KarenConn's Profile Photo

    Ruby Falls

    by Stephen-KarenConn Updated Nov 16, 2004

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Ruby Falls

    The entrance to Ruby Falls Caverns is in a very scenic setting, half way up the side of Lookout Mountain, overlooking the city of Chattanooga. The cave itself is interesting but not overly impressive. However, when you reach Ruby Falls I guarantee that you will gasp in amazement. Making a sheer drop of 145 feet from the cave ceiling and plunging into a dark pool, Ruby Falls the the highest known underground waterfall in the world. Our photo doesn't begin to do it justice.

    Ruby Falls was discovered more than 70 years ago when a 420-foot deep elevator shaft was being dug to the original Lookout Mountain Cave. A small opening was found at the 260-foot level and explorers spent 17 hours crawling on their hands and knees through the tight passages. As they pushed deeper into the cave, they began to hear the sound of water flowing in the distance. They were awestruck by the magnificent beauty of the waterfall they had discovered. Leo Lambert, owner of the falls, named it for his wife, Ruby.

    Tours begin every few minutes and take about an hour to complete. This is a very popular attraction and often crowded, especially on holidays and weekends.

    Hours:
    8 A.M. - 8 P.M.
    Open Year-round
    Closed Christmas Day

    Related to:
    • Road Trip
    • Adventure Travel
    • Family Travel

    Was this review helpful?

  • goingsolo's Profile Photo

    Balanced Rock

    by goingsolo Updated Aug 14, 2005

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Rock City

    Balanced Rock is a 1,000 ton rock balanced atop a smaller rock. I'm assuming they are guessing at the weight and are a bit off, but, either way, its an interesting sight, and one you'll see on your journey along the paths and through the passageways of rock city.

    Was this review helpful?

  • doug48's Profile Photo

    incline railway

    by doug48 Written Sep 20, 2009

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    east brow road station

    the historic incline railway connects chattanooga with the top of lookout mountain. the railway was built in 1895 by john cross. the lookout mountain incline railway is the steepest in the world. the incline begins at st. elmo ave. in chattanooga and ends on east brow road near point park. half way up lookout mountain the incline railway makes a stop at ruby falls.

    Related to:
    • Architecture
    • Historical Travel

    Was this review helpful?

Instant Answers: Lookout Mountain

Get an instant answer from local experts and frequent travelers

95 travelers online now

Comments

Lookout Mountain Things to Do

Reviews and photos of Lookout Mountain things to do posted by real travelers and locals. The best tips for Lookout Mountain sightseeing.

View all Lookout Mountain hotels