Rock City with Kids | Things to Do in Chattanooga

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 Rock City with Kids | Things to Do in Chattanooga 

This summer we made our summer vacation trip to Chattanooga, Tennesse! One of our stops was Rock City. I wasn't sure what to expect because the little that I knew was it was a hike. It is a hike, a very easy one but it does cost admission. Which I did not realize prior to arriving. However, we were not disappointed at all! The hike is extremely easy. The views made the trip completely worth it & were just amazing!



Where is Rock City?

Technically it is in Georgia on Lookout Mountain. But it is just a short 6-mile drive from Chattanooga. You really can't miss it as there are actually signed EVERYWHERE for this place. Truly. Every.Where.

Parking is Free!


How much does it cost?

I mentioned that there is an admission price for Rock City. You will need to purchase tickets to hike the trail & see the amazing views.

Adults: $21.95-$24.95
Children {ages 3-12}:  $12.95-$13.95
Children under the age of 2 are FREE.



WHAT TO BRING TO ROCK CITY

As I said, the hike is extremely easy. Like you could do it in flip-flops if you wanted. Though some areas were slick when we were there so I am not sure I recommend it! I wore my Teva sandals, the girls wore their keens & Brandon wore his Murells! Basic tennis shoes work perfectly! 

Dress-wise depending on the weather would be just something comfortable for walking!

While the trail is, from what I  can recall, all paved the trail itself is not stroller friendly. There are some incredibly tight squeezes {one is actually called "Fat Mans Squeeze"} so there is no way to fit even the smaller stroller in areas. We wore Bo, 6 months at the time, in a hiking carrier. Brandon did have to take him off in some tight spaces and carry the pack.

There are vending machines & even little shops to grab food along the way but I would recommend water bottles &/or snacks if you have young ones! Mommas there is a Starbucks right across the street if you need a pick me up!




WHAT TO EXPECT AT ROCKING CITY WITH KIDS

I would plan on being there anywhere from 1.5 hours to 3 hours to not feel rushed & see everything!

I think any age would be great to come to Rock City, however, there are some tight spaces, bridges & heights. You know your kiddo best, but staying on the trail will be important! 

The first trail is so fun for kiddos. You look for gnomes throughout the gardens & get to see some awesome rock formations & plants! You will get a feel for the first narrow passage in the first half. If you have little ones they may be a little nervous, holding hands or having an adult or older sibling go first may help during these tight squeezes!





The paths signs are kinda confusing. The arrows of where to go don't actually point anywhere & it's confusing on which trail to choose. Families around were having the same issue as us. Let me take the confusion away from you & let you know it really doesn't matter which way you take. They all lead to the same place. ha! Definitely grab a map on your way in!

 My favorite thing about hiking Rock City is there is something everywhere along the way to look for kids! It was never boring! My favorite thing was this Rainbow Hall where they put colored stained-glass into this walkthrough & the sun coming through makes a rainbow!







LOVER'S LEAP & 7 STATES LOOKOUT POINT


The ultimate destination at Rock City is seeing Lover's Leap waterfall & the lookout point where you can see 7 states! & holy cow was it amazing! The waterfall has so much power you can feel it. Seeing 7 states was so so neat! They have all of the state flags flying at point, too! They have lots of seating & even a place to eat up here so it is a great place to take a break!










Near the end of the path, you will come across the Fairyland Caverns & Mother Goose Village. I am going, to be honest here & say I thought this place was creepy. But the girls absolutely loved it. There are handmade scenes from fairytales along the way & you eventually make it Mother Goose Village which is a black light lit room where it has more scenes from all of the old nursery rhymes. This area is underground & a little stuffy but a nice break from the sun if you go on a summer day!



Rock City was so much fun with Kids!

Rock City was one of the main highlights of our trip. We had such a blast. It was such a leisure hike with the most incredible views, the girls haven't stopped talking about. We really enjoyed ourselves & it was for sure a stop we won't forget!



Summer Getaway to French Lick Resort with Kids | 8 Family Fun Activities to do at French Lick Resort

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We want to thank French Lick Resort for hosting our family during our stay. We had such an amazing time & made lifelong memories. You made ending summer so perfect!

 Summer Getaway to French Lick Resort with Kids

French Lick Resort



We were invited back to French Lick for a Back to School, Goodbye to Summer getaway!

If you missed it we had the most enchanting visit during Christmas time in 2019, you can view that HERE. We were so excited to be back & experience the resort during a new season. It was truly the best getaway. Just as it did during Christmas there were endless things to do as a family. We enjoyed ourselves more than words can say. 

One thing I love about French Lick Resort is you almost feel like you go back in time. It's good ole fashion family fun. It simple & timeless time together with the most gorgeous atmosphere. During our time we met so many families that had been coming every summer for years! Grandparents visiting with their children & their grandkids. It was so heartwarming & magical to watch! While showing our visit on Instagram stories {you can follow me HERE} someone said it reminded them of Kellerman's from Dirty Dancing & I totally agree!

As a refresher so you aren't confused throughout this post French Lick Resort is made of 2 hotels. West Baden & French Lick. You can do visit & do any activities at either hotel as it is all on property & part of French Lick Resort as a whole.

First, we stayed in West Baden this trip! A lot of people have asked which they should stay at. Truly, you can not go wrong with either French Lick or West Baden. I will say, I enjoyed the West Baden room so much more, however, I felt as though French Lick had more families running around & a family atmosphere! I was able to go to both Spas at each & they are equally as amazing. Whichever you choose you will have a wonderful stay. 

French Lick Resort

We got room service for breakfast one morning & oh my goodness. It was DECLIOUS.

French Lick Resort

French Lick Resort

Headed to French Lick for Christmas?

Read about the Polar Express HERE

Check out all there is to do at the resort during Christmas HERE


Here are 8 Family Fun Activities to do at French Lick Resort:


1. Swimming

What's summer without swimming in the pool? Between the two hotels, there are 5 pools! At French Lick, they have 2 outdoor pools. One for families & one for adults only! We spent our time at the French Lick pools! They are large & have plenty of chairs to relax on! There is a bar right by the pool, as well as food trucks & a small restaurant for food & snacks! The pools are fantastic & the kids & you will have a great time!

French Lick Resort




2. Horse Back Riding at French Lick Resort

Just the girls & I went on a horse trail ride. Oh my goodness did we enjoy ourselves. Every single person that was working at the stables was so incredibly kind! The ride up to the stables is beautiful & the ride itself so relaxing. You can one of the resort trolleys right up to the stables. Don't forget to met Pepsi!

Trail rides are reservation only & for ages 8+ and you can expect the ride to last anywhere from 45-90 minutes. 

Ride happen daily at:
10am, 11am, 1pm, 2pm & 3pm
Price:  

$65 per person for 45 minutes

$110 per person for 90 minutes

There are pony rides for younger children as well!

$25 per child

$35 per child with a keepsake photo

*All rides at The Stables are subject to availability, favorable weather, and trail conditions.






French Lick Resort Stables


3. FootGolf

Head over the Valley Links golf course right on property {again you can take the trolley} & play FootGolf! I had never heard of it prior to our trip & after we left I googled places near home to play! The girls & Brandon had such a great time! It's a mix of golf & soccer! Using traditional golf rules and etiquette, a soccer ball replaces the golf ball and your feet are used instead of clubs — no prior experience needed. Play a traditional round of 9 or 18 holes, or try the 14-hole Short Course with unlimited play all day. Soccer balls are provided. Call ahead to reserve a tee time! When we were there I want to say it had to be after 4 PM to play!

Price:

9 Holes
Adult (walking): $20
Adult (with cart): $25
Youth (16 and under): $15


18 Holes
Adult (walking): $25
Adult (with cart): $35
Youth (16 and under): $20


Short Course (14 Holes)
$15 unlimited play per day for all ages (first-come, first-serve).
No tee time required — simply sign in at Valley Links golf shop to begin play.












4. Surrey Cart Ride

This is what I am talking about when it comes to good ole fashion family fun! Now listen, this wasn't as picturesque as it looks. It's actually much more difficult than it appears! But we sure had fun! Memories were made! You have to try it out! They also have lots of bikes for rent & have helmets in all different sizes for everyone in the family! 





5. Grab Some Ice Cream & Sit in a Rocking Chair

My absolute favorite part about French Lick is the porches on the hotels. They are massive & wrap around the fronts of them. They are lined with rocking chairs both adult AND child-sized, couches & tables. They almost beg you to sit & relax! There is a little window on the French Lick porch where you can order Ice Cream! Grab some & relax on a rocking chair!





6. Check Out the Kids Club

Since COVID, kids club is no longer "Kids Fest" but still offers lots of fun things for kids to do! They have coloring & other free activities as well as a kid's movie playing all the time. There are also great activities that you can pay to do as well! Make sure you stop in when you first arrive, they have fun scavenger hunts you can do around the property for a prize! We loved doing this on our last trip, too! Don't forget there is a bowling alley in the basement of French Lick with an arcade, too! You can see the bowling alley in my Christmas post HERE.



7. Take Trolley Ride

Just as we did in the winter, the trolley streetcar was ridden over & over again! This thing is so just neat & if you are in a rush to get to the other hotel or simply just want to ride it for fun it's so relaxing. The route is scenic & we always see a ton of deer on the way! 

8. Just Relax

One thing you can not, not do at the French Lick Resort is relax. This is one of my favorite places to go as a family for a reason. Time slows down, you get to spend good quality time together & relax & just be. 




We can't wait to get back to French Lick already! We've done Christmas & now summer, when should we go next? 

Where to stay in Chattanooga Tennessee | The Read House

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 Where to stay in Chattanooga Tennessee | The Read House


If you are new here, when we travel with our kids we love to find places to stay that have history to them. Collectively as a family we are total history buffs so if we can, instead of staying at a chain hotel we like to find something that is more unique or with history! The kicker is it has to be family-friendly!  Boy did we find that at the Read House!



The historic Read House is absolutely breathtaking! You are transported back into the 1920's the moment you arrive. The bellmen down to the waitress at the bar wear time-appropriate clothing! The girls loved our waitress's flapper dress! The Read House went through a 28 million dollar renovation in 2018, & holy crap did they do amazing.

I think I IG storied the lobby 500 times It is so breathtaking!
{you can follow me on IG HERE}





 

Location

The location of the Read House is perfect. We were able to walk to almost all of the activities we had planned. It was a short walk to the children's museum, the aquarium & lots of restaurants. 
 
For the full list of everything, we did while in Chattanooga CLICK HERE!

Yeah, there's a Starbucks.


There is dining right on site. They have a Starbucks, yes FULL Starbucks right off the lobby! We went every morning!

A more upscale restaurant called "Bridgeman's Chophouse" & a Bar & Billards room. We ate here one night & it was delicious. We were able to order pretty much anything on the chophouses menu. I got the crab cakes & I highly recommend them! 


Haunted?

This made our stay just a little bit more fun! There are stories of a hotel room in the Read House being haunted. The infamous, Room 311. According to the website “There are many who believe Room 311 is haunted by the ghost of Annalisa Netherly – a guest who was allegedly beheaded in the bathtub by a jealous lover in 1927. Over the years, a number of guests have reported paranormal activity in the room, including unexplained noises, flickering lights, running water, shadowy figures, and more. The haunted room is well-known by many locals who have experienced paranormal activity of their own. “ Guests who have stayed in Room 311 swear to have felt Annalisa’s presence, and some say they have even seen her. Room 311 was restored to its original 1920s state during the hotel’s latest renovation. Many of the original elements from Annalisa Netherly’s time remain, including a vintage clawfoot tub and an AM radio. A manual lock on the door requires the use of a physical key, just like hotel guests would have used in 1927.”

We took a walk by the door, it is the only original hotel door & can only be unlocked with a physical key rather than key cards like the others. We got a call asking if we would like to tour the room & the girls were thrilled! The room is a time warp taking you back to the 1920s! You can request a tour of your own for you to check out yourself & see if you think it's haunted!

*PRO TIP: We did the tour around bedtime, the girls went down in their jammies. Made it a little bit more spooky & fun*





Our stay was so amazing. If you are looking for a place with kids or without in Chattanooga The Read House is the best place to stay!

IG @MRSMUMAW