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Natural Tunnel, which was once labeled the "Eighth Wonder of the World" by William Jennings Bryan, has long been drawing amazed visitors to southwestern Virginia — and it's pretty easy to see why. Tucked away in the Appalachian Mountains near Duffield, this 850-foot-long, ten-story-high tunnel is truly spectacular.
The area is also home to Natural Tunnel State Park, a 909-acre park that boasts stunning geological scenery, two campgrounds, an Olympic-sized swimming pool, and plenty of great outdoor activities. So if you're looking for a beautiful and fascinating place to camp in an RV in southwestern Virginia, Natural Tunnel State Park is well worth a visit.
As you'd expect, the tunnel itself is the main attraction in Natural Tunnel State Park and one that every camper should explore. To get to the tunnel, you'll need to park at the visitors' center at the top of the valley and then choose one of two options:
Once you get there, a 500-foot boardwalk and observation deck give you a close-up view of this magnificent natural tunnel. It's quite a breathtaking sight, and one of those attractions you really do need to see in person to get a better sense of the sheer scale of the place.
If you're fascinated by the underground scenery, you might want to take a tour of one of the park's other caves. Wild cave tours are offered in the park and certainly aren't for the faint-hearted, but the two-hour Bowling Cave tour will give you a caving experience you'll never forget.
If you'd prefer to stay above ground, you might like to explore the myriad hiking trails that wind their way through the park. The short Lover's Leap Trail rewards hikers with lovely views, while those looking for more of a challenge might like to tackle the two-mile Purchase Ridge Trail.
Finally, the other main attraction in Natural Tunnel State Park is its swimming pool. Covering 5,400 square feet, this pool is open from Memorial Day weekend until Labor Day. It's the perfect place to cool off when the mercury starts to rise, while the inclusion of a 100-foot slide ensures it's a favorite with kids.
Planning on staying a while in Natural Tunnel State Park? If you want to camp in an RV, you can search for a rental RV in Scott County and then find the perfect place to park your rig in one of two beautiful campgrounds:
Finally, for those visitors who don't fancy motorhome camping, the park also boasts cabins, a lodge, and four yurts.
When your Natural Tunnel State Park RV camping adventure is coming to an end, there's no need to head home straight away. With plenty of other great attractions nearby, who not take the scenic route?
For example, if more spectacular natural scenery is what you crave, you might want to tackle the two-hour drive to Breaks Interstate Park, which is known as the "Grand Canyon of the South."
If history is more your thing, steer your rental RV towards Big Stone Gap and make a beeline for the Southwest Virginia Historical Museum. Located just 20 minutes away, it offers an insight into the early development of the area and the mining boom of the late 1800s.
Or if you'd rather head for a major center, the Tennessee city of Kingsport is roughly half an hour's drive to the southeast. While you're there, visit Bays Mountain Park and Planetarium for a fascinating experience for any nature lover.
There's so much to see and do when you rent an RV near Natural Tunnel State Park, and a wide variety of travel experiences to enjoy. You might need to extend your itinerary by a few days or more just to make the most of what the region has to offer.