455 Blowing Cave Rd
Sevierville, TN 37876
Latitude: 35.904199 Longitude: -83.346804
This Sevier County attraction is about 20 miles east of downtown Sevierville, but it's definitely worth the drive. Dating back to 1967, Forbidden Caverns is actually one of the area's longest-operating tourist sites.
The massive underground cave, which stretches a half-mile into the heart of English Mountain, is a geologist's dream, chock full of formations like stalactites, stalagmites, towering chimneys and grottos. Guests can see all the sights firsthand on the cavern's 55-minute guided tour, which is embellished by special lighting effects and a stereophonic sound presentation. Along the way, the trails are well lighted, and handrails are in place here and there for extra security.
In addition to the rock formations, there's a running stream that is believed to originate from a lake lying deep within the mountain. Because of the stream and its underground location, the temperature within Forbidden Caverns remains a steady 58 degrees all year long, which makes it a good vacation stop no matter what the season or the weather conditions.
While its primary interest is as a geological wonder, Forbidden Caverns has a fascinating history. Hundreds of years ago, the Eastern Woodland Indians used these caves as a winter shelter and a source of water. The flint found inside was also used to fashion arrowheads and knives. In the early to mid 20th century, moonshiners used the cavern for making moonshine, thanks to its isolated location and constant water supply.