Discover the awe-inspiring beauty of Ruby Falls in Chattanooga. Delve into the heart of Lookout Mountain, where this underground waterfall captivates with its natural wonder. Explore the breathtaking caverns and witness nature’s artistry. We visited the iconic falls and want to share information with you so that you can plan your own visit.
Ruby Falls, the majestic 145-foot waterfall nestled inside Lookout Mountain, is an awe-inspiring sight. Discovered by Leo Lambert in 1929 and named after his beloved wife Ruby, this natural wonder has been enchanting visitors ever since!
Facts About Ruby Falls
- Ruby Falls is not only the deepest underground waterfall in the United States, but it is also the highest waterfall underground. The falls total 145 feet.
- The entrance to the popular tourist attraction is located in a 15th-century Irish castle replica.
- It’s the first attraction in the United States to earn certification from Green Globe because of its commitment to cave conservation and environmental sustainability.
- The Lookout Mountain caverns had been used for shelter during the Civil War and possibly earlier.
Ruby Falls Tours
To see the falls, purchase a ticket inside the gift shop for a guided tour. Be sure to visit the restroom before you embark on the journey inside the mountain – there are no restrooms in the caverns. Be sure to wear good shoes, too, because the ground may be naturally slippery in spots.
While you are waiting to go on your tour and after you have used the facility’s restroom, you can spend a little time looking at souvenirs in the gift shop.
The Falls are 26 stories deep inside Lookout Mountain. There is a glass-front elevator that transports guests down to the cavern trail. The path is about a mile walk roundtrip.
At Ruby Falls, you can view the wonders of nature in a unique way. As you make your way along the path, you might notice unusual rock formations on the walls and ceiling. These are stalagmites and stalactites. Some of the unique formations have been given fun names to identify them, such as Dragons Foot, Donkey, and Potato Chip.
Stalagmites can be identified by their upward-growing shape. They form when water dripping from the ceiling of a cave accumulates on the floor and hardens over time.
Stalactites grow in the opposite direction, downward from the ceiling of a cave. They form when mineral-rich water drips from the ceiling, leaving behind tiny deposits that build up over time.
If you like the temperature on the cool side, then you’re in luck. The temperature inside the cave is around 60 degrees all year long. Bring a sweater or jacket if that is too cool for your liking.
The path can be wet and/or narrow at times. Understandably, it is not wheelchair friendly.
Once you have finished your tour, have a look around Chattanooga while on the observation deck of the castle.
It is a great spot for viewing the city of Chattanooga.
High Point Zip Adventure
If you’re looking for an even more exciting experience at Ruby Falls, check out the High Point Zip Adventure. This thrilling zipline adventure will take your breath away as you sail over the treetops at Ruby Falls. There’s also a 40-foot-tall climbing tower at the zipline for those who want to test their limits.
Participants must weigh between 60 and 275 pounds. Tickets are $21.95 per person, and advance reservations are recommended.
Ruby Falls Tickets and Hours
Advanced tickets are required to view Ruby Falls and they are only sold online. The cost is $22.95 for adults and $13.95 for ages 3 – 11. Plan on spending at least 2 hours when you visit. Ruby Falls is open year-round from 8 AM until 8 PM Eastern time every day except Christmas.
If you are traveling with Fido in tow, he won’t be allowed to see the falls, but you might be able to secure him at one of the 4 shaded fenced-in kennels at no charge while you check them out.
Parking is free.
Ruby Falls is located at 1720 South Scenic Highway in Chattanooga.
- Incline Railway – 2.2 miles
- Rock City – 4.1 miles
- Downtown Chattanooga – 4.3 miles
- Tennessee Aquarium – 5.5 miles
Ruby Falls is a must-see destination for anyone visiting Chattanooga. With its breathtaking waterfall, unique rock formations, and thrilling zip adventure, Ruby Falls is sure to be an unforgettable experience!
Exploring Ruby Falls can work up an appetite. Check out this post with some of my favorite places to eat in Chattanooga.