Visit the Grand Canyon of the South at Breaks Interstate Park
Covering 4,500 acres of southeast Kentucky and southwest Virginia, Breaks Interstate Park offers an almost Grand Canyon-like landscape of gorges, rivers, and forests in an area rich in history and diverse ecosystems. Choose between the active life, with rafting and hiking, or gentler pursuits like camping or wildlife watching, for your family getaway in the wilderness.
Best Hiking Trails in Breaks Interstate Park
There's a range of options for walking at Breaks Interstate Park, with many trails radiating off from the Visitor Center and Breaks Interstate Park cabins, near Laurel Lake. Whether you want a gentle stroll by the water or more challenging hiking, there will be a trail to suit you. Pick up a map, which clearly shows all trails, from the Visitor Center.
Starting at the lake and heading north along the river, this trail brings you up to the state border and some of the best views in the park. Return the way you came, or make the hike longer by heading toward Russell Fork River to create a circular walk.
A perfect, short walk for littler hikers, take the trail from the Visitor Center up past the Breaks Interstate Park cabins and around Beaver Pond. It's a great spot for a picnic, or just trying to spot some of the park's wildlife.
A half mile trail which leads off the main Laurel Branch trail, it's worth the diversion to the viewpoint, which offers some of the best photo opportunities in the whole park.
Best Family Activities in Breaks Interstate Park
There's so much to do in the area for active families, that it's worth looking into Breaks Interstate Park hotels to spread the fun over a few days. Whatever the season, there are options for enjoying the great outdoors, on foot, wheels, or on the water.
One of the park's newest attractions is a zip-line course, featuring three different lines and a total of 2,000ft. Fly like a bird over the gorge, hundreds of feet above the river. It's suitable for kids over the age of four and is truly an experience to remember.
If you prefer to be on the water rather than flying above it, book one of the organized whitewater rafting trips along the Russell Fork River. It's some of the wildest white water in the country, and you're guaranteed to get wet as well as have a lot of fun.
During the summer, Breaks Interstate Park's waterpark welcomes guests of all ages, with slides, flumes, and play areas. Snacks, changing facilities, and shops are located close by, so why not stay for the day?
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