After driving two hours (120 miles) on Highway 75, we arrived in Chattanooga, Tennessee.
Driving in the US is easy. I like the American system of rest areas on the highways. It makes driving easy, and they are just reasonable distances to visit restrooms, grab a bottle of soda, or stretch their legs. Usually, there is also a possibility to get some tourist information from those rest areas. At this bit of the highway, we were very interested in coupon brochures for motels.
In Chattanooga, we visited Rock City Gardens and Ruby Falls. Rock City is a large walk-through garden between cliffs that have been open to the public since 1932. Fantastic rock formations, lovely flowers, trees, shrubs, and spectacular views make Rock City a beautiful place to visit. It seems to be a popular family attraction. We met many families with children of different ages, and all of them seemed to have fun, and so did we.
At the Enchanted Trail, we passed Mushroom Rock and the 1000-ton balanced rock, and we hiked through tunnels and narrow crevices like Needle’s Eye. Over 400 varieties of evergreen and deciduous trees, shrubs, and wildflowers are in and around these natural wonders. From Lover’s Leap, there is a Seven States Flag Court, and there is a beautiful view of Alabama, Georgia, Kentucky, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, and Tennessee. We also checked out this famous view from the top of Lookout Mountain.
Another exciting attraction was Fat Man’s Squeeze. At first, it seems impossible to go through this path between two stones. The pathway is only about two feet wide in some places, making it a unique and challenging feature of the gardens. The name “Fat Man’s Squeeze” comes from the fact that the pathway is so narrow that it can be difficult for larger individuals to navigate.
The pathway is also known for its beautiful views of the surrounding gardens, making it a popular spot for photography. Towering rock formations and beautiful flora will surround you as you make your way through the squeeze. It’s a great spot to take a break and admire the natural beauty of Rock City Gardens.
However, some visitors may find the Fat Man’s Squeeze a bit claustrophobic or challenging, especially those who have difficulty with tight spaces. If this is the case, alternate routes can be taken to bypass the squeeze and still enjoy the rest of the gardens.
It’s worth noting that the pathway is accessible to all visitors, but some may find it challenging, especially for those with limited mobility. It’s essential to take it slow and be aware of your surroundings, as the pathway can be slippery and uneven in places. Overall, the Fat Man’s Squeeze is a unique and exciting feature of Rock City Gardens that adds to the overall experience of visiting the gardens.
We also went inside Lookout Mountain, where the natural phenomena of Ruby Falls can be seen. The elevator took our group down into the mountain from the Governs Castle. The guide led us along the cave path and pointed out many geological wonders. At the end of the cave path, there was a voice of thundering water, and then the light was put on, and we saw breathtaking Ruby Falls. The majestic 145-foot Ruby Falls is the largest underground waterfall open to the public in the United States. The tour took about one hour.
Visiting more than one attraction here is worth buying combo tickets. For example, Rock City and Ruby Falls cost $24, while buying them separately costs $13.
By the evening, we drove to the Howard Johnson Express Inn in Murfreesboro and had a delicious Mexican dinner in the restaurant Don Pablo’s Mexican Kitchen around the corner.
The story continues in Nashville, the Music City
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