A little while back Michael and I took leave of our children for a weekend. We left the kids with the grandparents, loaded up the van and headed to the Pine Mountain State Park in Eastern Kentucky. We were so far east in the state that we actually visited three different states during the trip! This was the first time just the two of us had gone on a vacation since our honeymoon. The problem was that with our work schedule neither one of us had a lot of time to get away, so we decided to visit a Kentucky State Park for a long weekend. I cannot say enough good things about the Kentucky State Parks. We truly have some beautiful places to visit, stay and play in the Bluegrass state! We chose to stay at Pine Mountain State Park for two reasons. One, we had never been there before. And two, they had a cabin available on short notice. Had we had more time to plan our vacation, we probably would have got some more info on some cabins near the Smoky Mountains as I’ve heard the trails there give you some great views. Nonetheless, I had a great vacation.
We had a wonderful weekend away, exploring the area and spending time having uninterrupted conversations. Plus, we had some fun doing the local attractions too! I did not do too much research about the area before our trip, so we did not know what to expect. We would have been fine hanging out in our cabin and the lodge. We brought plenty of board games and reading materials along with our canoe. I think we really could get used to cabin living! But to our delight, there was ALOT to do around Pine Mountain State Park, despite some attractions being closed due to nearby forest fires. We walked in the woods, took the canoe for a spin, went on a cave tour and still left some things to do on our next trip! I would recommend the Pine Mountain State Park for a weekend getaway or a week long vacation for just the two of you or for the whole family! Let my pictures convince you….
A Weekend Away at Pine Mountain State Park
Pine Mountain State Park was the first state park in Kentucky and the Herndon J. Evans Lodge is a mixture of old and new. The original lodge has been added on to, and the end result is just lovely. The lodge has a large welcoming living room for all to enjoy, a dining area with gorgeous views, and many places outdoors to sit and take in the scenery.
The view from the dining room:
The view from the back patio:
Hemlock Garden Trail:
Some trails were closed due to fire, so we took a short hike behind the lodge on the Hemlock Garden Trail, which is beautiful!
Canoe Trip on Canon Creek Lake:
At the Cumberland Gap State Park you can stand high atop the Pinnacle Overlook and look over Kentucky, Tennessee and Virginia all at once. The views are breath-taking!
If you are in the Cumberland Gap area, I recommend making reservations for a tour of Gap Cave. It was a really interesting tour and the cave is very impressive!
The Pineapple Tea Room:
We stopped by the Pineapple Tea Room in Cumberland Gap, Tennessee for a light bite to eat and some pineapple tea. The tea was new to us and very good. I loved the whole feel of the Pineapple Tea Room, there were knick knacks and antiques everywhere!
I picked one of their rustic cabins, and it was so charming and comfortable. I loved our little cabin in the woods. We even had a little deck.
The scene outside our cabin (note the heavy smoke from nearby fires):
I think that we will definitely be going back to the Pine Mountain State Park in the future, with the kids. There’s still so much to explore in this area, and so much history about our state and surrounding states to learn about!