Mammoth Cave Adventures is located just outside of Mammoth Cave National Park in Cave City, Kentucky. The adventure attraction offers several ways to explore the outdoors on over 60 acres of rolling hills. Two zip-lines, a Tower Drop, a Tarzan Swing, and horseback riding adventures introduce guests to the scenic Mammoth Cave Hills. The hillside offers a diverse community of plant life, mainly oak-hickory forests and a Mesophytic forest closer to the adventure park. Over 84 species of trees are found in the region, which is famous for the world’s largest known cave system, underground beneath the forest floor.
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Mammoth Cave’s zip line tours are Kentucky’s first. The eco-friendly rides take guests up to 40 miles per hour above the forest canopy at heights of 100 feet. Five lines connect seven different treetop platforms and three sky bridges. Guests who choose not to zip line can enjoy the views from the sky bridges high above the trees. Decks range in height from 20 to 44 feet. The shortest zip line is 300 feet long, while the longest ride spans 900 feet. A smaller zip-line is specifically engineered for guests under 100 pounds and also offers a climbing ladder for young adventurers. The zip-line tour takes approximately 90 minutes.
Guests looking to extend their adventure may add the Tarzan Swing or Drop Tower to their Zip Line experience. The park’s Tarzan Swing is a giant 40-foot pendulum swing strung between two 80-foot tall hickory trees. Guests are harnessed to the swing, winched to the top of a 40-foot pole, then swing freely back and forth high above the forest floor. A Drop Tower at the adventure park is the newest attraction. The tower offers a 70-foot controlled freefall. Unlike a bungee jump, guests don’t bounce, but slowly fall towards the ground feet first enjoying a view of the Mammoth Cave Hills on the descent.
Horseback riding adventures are hour-long trail rides through the wooded park. The all-levels rides take place on scenic trails with trained, knowledgeable guides.
History: The Mammoth Cave area was inhabited by humans as far back as 6,000 years ago. Several mummified remains of Native Americans have been found, indicating the area was a place of intentional burial. Archeological research of the area began in the 1950’s. Evidence and artifacts found reveal that Native Americans used the caves and explored and mined the area up through the Archaic Period then stopped. One of the cave’s great remaining mysteries is, why. According to legend, the cave system was first discovered by Europeans in the late 1700’s when a hunter chased a wounded bear to the cave’s Green River entrance. The land passed through private hands throughout the 1800’s. The caves were mined for Salt Peter throughout the War of 1812 and later mined for calcium nitrate. An African-American slave, Stephen Bishop, was one of the first to make an extensive map of the caves between 1840 and 1850. The popularity of the caves grew and by the 1900’s several groups sought control over the caves in order to claim income from cave-related tours. The ‘Kentucky Cave Wars’ as they were know, would continue through the 1920’s when the Mammoth Cave National Park was established. Privately held land was purchased through donated funds or taken via eminent domain. The park officially opened in 1941. The caves are home to many species of bats, including the endangered Indiana bat and grey bat species, cave salamander and two types of eyeless cave fish.
Ongoing Programs and Education: All attractions at Mammoth Cave Adventures are suitable for children and adults between 40 and 275 pounds, and guests should be aware of the health and physical fitness requirements listed on the website. Groups of up to eight people can be accommodated on one tour.
What’s Nearby: Several campsites are located nearby on the ridgeline surrounding the adventure park, many of which are in Mammoth Cave National Park itself. The National Park is adjacent to the adventure park. Mammoth Cave National Park is known for its vast underground system of caves and tunnels, which may be toured with park ranger guides. Over 400 miles of underground caves make it the largest known cave system in the world. Also nearby is Mammoth Cave Canoe and Kayak, which takes guests on water adventures along the Green River. A variety of trips are available, lasting from three hours to three days.
1994 Roy Hunter Road Cave City, KY 42127, Phone: 270-773-6087