Cumberland Gap National Historical Park is located along the borders of Kentucky, Tennessee and Virginia. There are plenty of activities to get into while enjoying the beauty of nature here. "Gap Cave" has bats and stalagmites. There is also a plethora of trails and natural phenomena that will capture the adventurous spirit of all who come.


  • A map of Cumberland Gap National Park and all the highlights within.
    A map of Cumberland Gap National Park and all the highlights within.
  • The historic Hensley Settlement within the National Park
    The historic Hensley Settlement within the National Park
  • The view from inside Gap Cave.
    The view from inside Gap Cave.

The Cumberland Gap is an eroded gap between the Appalachian Mountain range that occurs over three hundred million years ago from a collision of continental plates that pushed present day North America below sea level. The Cumberland Gap was then formed by water flowing (erosion) and also from a meteor that struck Earth and helped form the gap.

Cumberland Gap National Historical Park is a piece of land spanning more than twenty square miles, and over 20,000 acres with 14,000 of the 20,000 untouched, natural wildernesses. On the property there are caves, over sixty species of plant life, wild life, and historic buildings. Make sure you get the most of your visit!

One activity is the guided tours that take people through the Cumberland Gap cave known as Gap Cave. This two hours long, one mile walk of an adventure that will introduce you to many wildlife that have adapted uniquely to the cave. There are also pools within the cave, cave formations, and history. With children prices of four dollars and adults of just eight dollars, you can’t turn down this experience.

Another activity is the Hensley Settlement Tour. The Hensley Settlement was established in 1903 and was occupied until 1951 by Sherman Hensley himself.  Located on the top of Brush Mountain, you will get the experience to tour the blacksmiths shop and the schoolhouse.  You will get the experience of what the community was like back in the day when people settled here.

From the vast lands untouched to the guided tours to the depths below, Cumberland Gap National Park is a natural site that encourages adventure, learning, and conservation all at the same time. It is a gateway into a time in history where natural beauty was never ending – a truly magical place.

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“Video (U.S. National Park Service).” National Parks Service, U.S. Department of the Interior, www.nps.gov/media/video/view.htm?id=CA5EB109-1DD8-B71B-0B2FDE552C45EEEF.

Mahaney, Erin. “History of the Cumberland Gap: America's Gateway to the West.” ThoughtCo, www.thoughtco.com/cumberland-gap-geography-1435717.

“Gap Caverns in Cumberland Gap National Historical Park.” Gap Caverns in Cumberland Gap National Historical Park - Virginia Is For Lovers, www.Virginia.org/Listings/OutdoorsAndSports/GapCavernsinCumberlandGapNationalHistoricalPark/.

“The Hensley Settlement - Picture of Cumberland Gap National Historical Park, Middlesboro.” TripAdvisor, www.tripadvisor.com/LocationPhotoDirectLink-g60782-d264839-i32718004-.

“Cumberland Gap National Historical Park (Middlesboro) - All You Need to Know Before You Go (with Photos).” TripAdvisor, www.tripadvisor.com/Attraction_Review-g60782-d264839-Reviews-Cumberland_Gap_National_Historical_Park

“Going Into These 7 Caves In Kentucky Are Like Entering Another World.” Pinterest, 9 Nov. 2015, www.pinterest.com/pin/436567757608754849/.

Shields, Lottie. “Cumberland Gap.” Pinterest, 5 May 2017, www.pinterest.com/pin/409968372319537644/.