Sometimes the journey is the best part, which is why I love road trips. You get to see places you otherwise wouldn't have if you just arrived at your destination. We took a little road trip on our way to my best friends wedding and stopped at some pretty iconic places. Take a look at where we ventured off to!
Providence Canyon State Park
We have the Grand Canyon on our bucket list so when I saw that this was on the way to where we were going, I had to make a stop. They call this Georgia's "little Grand Canyon" and I'm sure you can see why. You can view the canyons from the top or take a short hike down to see them up close. We decided to do both. The canyons were caused by poor farming practices in the 1800's. It's crazy to think this was caused by an accident because it looks like nature intentionally placed this here for us to appreciate. I will say that it's in the middle-of-nowhere Georgia. We drove all the way to Lumpkin to view these beauties which is about two hours away from Atlanta. There's not really much to do in that town except this. There were about four hotels nearby and a lot of military stores. I wouldn't stay there for more than a day but the canyons alone are worth the detour. It doesn't cost anything to enter but parking is $5 per vehicle.
I came here for the first time on a girls trip in 2017. It wasn't part of the plan but we were driving back home and decided to make one last spontaneous pit stop. I loved it so much that I had to bring Duncan and my family. To get to this point, you walk through gardens with colorful flowers and weird little gnomes. The views from up here are quite impressive because you can see seven states. You're able to see Georgia, Tennessee, Kentucky, South Carolina, North Carolina and Virginia! It was extremely busy when we went so it was hard to get a photo with no one in it. I suggest going on their less busy days to enjoy this view all to yourself.
It costs $21.95 to enter but we paid a little more because we wanted to see Ruby Falls as well. Ruby falls is $21.95 and Incline Railway is $15.00. All of these things are on the same mountain but different locations and if you pay for them all together it comes out to be $56.90.
How beautiful is this waterfall!? They call it Lover's Leap. It gets its name from a Cherokee legend of two lovers whose tribes were feuding. Sautee and Nacoochee were in love but forbidden to be together. When Sautee was captured and thrown off the top of Lover's Leap, Nacoochee jumped to her death after him. It's a tragic Romeo and Juliet story.
To get to this waterfall was the real challenge. We had to squeeze through a narrow opening between two rocks called the "fat man squeeze" that makes you feel a little claustrophobic. One woman saw it and turned right back around. You have to go through it sideways and in single file to be able to get to the other side. My mom was almost too scared to do it but we pushed her and this view alone was worth it. "The cave you fear to enter holds the treasures you seek." There's something so majestic about a waterfall. It's a movement in the stillness of nature that reminds us that this earth is just as alive as we are. You'll also find Fairyland Caverns on this side of the mountain which is a dark cave that's only light comes from the gnomes reenacting fairytales like Humpty Dumpty and The Three Little Pigs.
This part of the trip was one of my favorites. The waterfall you see in the first picture is about 1,120 feet beneath the mountains surface. You watch though a glass elevator as you descend 26 stories down and then walk with a guided tour that takes you deeper into the cave. The tour guide explains all of the different formations and how some of them resemble a dragons foot or leaning tower. Not gonna lie, it's a little scary when you think about how far down you are but again, we overcame our fears and it was worth it. When you first enter the room with the waterfall it's dark and all you can hear is the water hitting the pool below. A few seconds later music starts playing and it lights up, leaving you in awe. The waterfall is 145 feet high and we still have no idea where it comes from. It's a mystery that's been impressing people for years.
Leo Lambert discovered this cave in 1928. It took him SEVEN HOURS of crawling through an opening that was only 18 inches high and 5 feet wide to get to a point where he could stand. He must've been out of his mind to do something like that but I guess most discoverers are. We have him to thank for this beautiful, natural wonder that's been open to the public since 1930.
This was one of my favorite trips this year. I got to spend some quality time with my parents, see some of natures beauties and watch my best friend walk down the aisle to the love of her life. We highly recommend visiting these spots and taking a road trip next time you're traveling in the states.