In North Carolina there is no shortage of stunning natural wonders you can experience. Among these fascinating sights are the more than 900 caves and caverns dotted throughout the state. The best part? Several of these NC caves and caverns are open to the public and located near Chimney Rock! If you’re ready to see these unique formations and other hidden treasures, download our free Vacation Guide. Inside you’ll find details about Western North Carolina’s best-kept secrets, including beautiful gardens, tranquil hiking trails, rushing waterfalls, and more!
You Need to See These 5 NC Caves and Caverns on Your Next Visit
Linville Caverns | Marion, NC
The Linville Caverns are one of North Carolina’s most mysterious attractions. The unique subterranean world is located inside Humpback Mountain, a 4,245-foot peak in the Pisgah National Forest. This magnificent work of nature can be seen up close with a guided tour. During the tour, visitors will learn the history of the caverns while observing its intricacies and even taking photographs.
Pro-tip: The temperature inside these caverns stays at about 52 degrees throughout the year, so we suggest wearing a jacket or sweater. The Linville Caverns are open at different times during each season, and they are only a 60-minute, scenic drive away from our bed and breakfast!
Boone’s Cave | Lexington, NC
Boone’s Cave is named after Daniel Boone, a legendary pioneer whose family settled on the Yadkin River banks in 1730. During his teenage years, Daniel would even use the cave as a secret hideout! Now, the cave is a part of the 110-acre Boone’s Cave Park. You will also find hiking trails, river access, a picnic area, a 1700s-style cabin, and the state’s tallest cottonwood tree!
Tory’s Den | Walnut Cove, NC
It’s no secret that North Carolina’s mountains boast magnificent views, but Hanging Rock State Park is truly one-of-a-kind. This park is the site of Tory’s Den, a cave that is rumored to have been used by the Tories as a hideout during the American Revolution. When you visit, make sure you bring a flashlight because very little light makes its way into Tory’s Den, and it is very dark! The cave and four nearby waterfalls are easily accessible from the 2.7-mile Tory’s Den Trail.
Rumbling Bald Caves | Lake Lure, NC
Rumbling Bald Mountain in Chimney Rock is a popular hiking, camping, and spelunking destination. The caves at this mountain are easily accessible to park visitors. Inside, there are many fun spots to explore and unique rock climbing opportunities, too. As a bonus, take a walk through the shaded oak forests and enormous cliff faces to reach overlooks with breathtaking views of the area.
Asheville Salt Cave | Asheville, NC
Though not one of the naturally formed caverns in North Carolina, the Asheville Salt Cave is a sustainable cave-like structure focused on rejuvenation. This spa in downtown Asheville uses salt rock crystals for therapeutic purposes. These crystals have helped heal respiratory ailments, skin problems, arthritis, digestive issues, and more. Breathe in the salty air and let the cave work its magic! The beautiful city of Asheville is only a 30-minute, scenic drive away from our bed and breakfast.
Discover the Best of North Carolina at The Esmeralda
After exploring these fascinating NC caves and caverns, head home to The Esmeralda Inn; surrounded by Western North Carolina’s natural beauty, our boutique bed and breakfast is the perfect place to enjoy everything the Blue Ridge foothills have to offer. Our inn is perched on the Rocky Broad River banks and even features a dedicated picnic area for our guests to enjoy the sights and sound of the river. When you stay with us, you’ll enjoy complimentary breakfast, relaxing spa services, an onsite restaurant, and proximity to the best attractions in Western North Carolina.
The perfect accommodation for your next North Carolina nature adventure is the Rocky Broad River Cabin! This beautiful mountain cabin features stunning views of Chimney Rock, the Rocky Broad River, extraordinarily comfortable beds with luxury linens, and plenty of space for the entire family!
If you are ready to plan your next getaway, check our availability and book your stay. We look forward to hosting you soon!