family on natural bridge lookin ut on colorful terrain

Natural Bridge

Natural Bridge State Resort Park

King lodge room with fridge

Park Activities

  • Pedal Boating
  • Camping
  • Paddling
  • Swimming
  • Fishing
  • Geocaching
  • Trails
  • Nature Center
  • Playgrounds
  • Miniature Golf
Natural Bridge State Resort Park
Natural Bridge State Resort Park
2135 Natural Bridge Rd.
Slade, KY 40376
Slade, KY
Daniel Boone Country


Top Five Things to Do
  1. Hike the scenic trail to Natural Bride or ride the skylift.
  2. Explore the Red River Gorge area.
  3. Enjoy square dancing at Hoedown Island.
  4. Hike Henson’s Arch or tour Natural Bridge Cave.
  5. Reserve a private cottage or lodge room to view fall foliage.

ALERT: Pets are not permitted on the Natural Bridge State Resort Park hiking trails – except for the Henson Arch Trail and Whittleton Trail. Most trails at Natural Bridge are within a dedicated Kentucky State Nature Preserve, and pets are not permitted as a part of the management guidelines. However, all trails are open to pets in the Red River Gorge area.

Lodging & Camping
Make the most of your trip to the Red River Gorge in Kentucky with Natural Bridge cottage rentals or delight in the mountainside beauty of Hemlock Lodge, one of 17 state park lodges in Kentucky. The 35 rooms of Hemlock Lodge have private balconies. Open year-round. Rooms are available by late afternoon. Lodge room check-out by 11 a.m., local time. We are now pet friendly. No more than two pets are allowed per room/cottage. The park also has two campgrounds with both improved and primitive sites and two service buildings with showers and restrooms.

CLICK HERE for seasonal hours.

Sandstone Arches Restaurant Hours

Restaurant Sat-Sun Breakfast 7:00 a.m. -10:00 a.m.
Fri-Sun Lunch 11:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Fri-Sun Dinner 4:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.

Tavern Mon-Sat 2:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m.

The restaurant will close between 10 a.m. and 11 a.m. and between 3 p.m. and 4 p.m. for proper cleaning and preparation between meals.
Closed Monday-Thursday.

For more information about hosting a group or wedding CLICK HERE.

Things to Do
Natural Bridge Hoedown
The famous Natural Bridge Hoedowns have been a popular tradition at Natural Bridge for over 45 years! Natural Bridge State Resort Park and square dance caller, Jane Bolin, invite you on Saturdays from May through October to Hoedown Island for some easy to learn Appalachian square dancing, line dancing, two-stepping, polka’s, waltzes and other couple and individual dances. The warm-up dance starts at 6:30 pm and the regular dance program begins at 7:30 pm. Admission is $3.00/person (ages 12 & under are free). As an outdoor event, there is the possibility of cancellation if inclement weather is forecast or occurs.

The best time to bird watch is in May and June when the woodland warblers (and other neotropical birds) return and are most vocal and active. The Fall migration is also good, in late September. Winter bird watching at the park can be fun because many of the leaves have dropped, making it easier to view various species of woodpeckers, kinglets, nuthatches, wrens, and sparrows. Year-round residents inlcude northern cardinal, American goldfinch, indigo bunting, song sparrow, belted kingfisher, American crow, great blue heron, wild turkey, pileated woodpecker, Carolina chickadee, tufted titmouse, white-breasted nuthatch, and Carolina wren. Best places to spot our feathered friends: Hood’s Branch Trail, Rock Garden Trail, Whittleton Branch Trail, Lakeside Trail, Mill Creek Lake, Picnic Shelter 3 & 4 area.

Canoes are available for rental Memorial Day through Labor Day.


Mill Creek Lake is a small peaceful lake surrounded by beautiful forest and towering sandstone cliffs. Bass, bluegill, black crappie, longear sunfish, green sunfish, rainbow trout, channel catfish and black bullhead are found here. The lake is also perfect for paddling canoes and kayaks and a launch ramp is available for fishing boats (only electric trolling motors may be operated). A Kentucky Fishing License is required. Click here to purchase a license online at KY Dept. of Fish and Wildlife Resources. Don't have a fishing pole? No problem! Ask at the park about their fishing loaner program where you can check out FREE equipment. Plan your fishing trip and improve your success with the KY Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources fishing forecast. Click here to view.

Click here for a map of Mill Creek Lake. Special fishing regulations for Mill Creek Lake include: 
  • Large Mouth Bass – 15” minimum size limit, 3 fish daily creel
  • No trotlines, jug lines, or limb lines
  • Use of shad as bait is prohibited

Gift Shop
For the perfect memento of your visit, browse the lodge gift shop featuring a large selection of Kentucky handcrafts and souvenirs.

The ten hiking trails range from one-half mile to seven-and-one-half miles. Trail maps are available at the Hemlock Lodge. Due to its Nature Preserve status, dogs are not allowed on hiking trails at this park except for the Whittleton Trail (managed by the U.S. Forest Service). It is pet friendly and can be accessed via the Park’s Whittleton Campground.

Kayak rentals available Memorial Day through Labor Day.

Miniature Golf
Adults and children can enjoy playing 18 holes of mini golf located at picnic shelter #2 near the skylift parking area. Mini golf balls and putters can be rented at the Mini Golf Snack Bar, or if closed, at the front desk of the Hemlock Lodge. ($) Open seasonally.

Pedal Boating
Pedal boats are no longer available until further notice.

Four picnic shelters with rest rooms, tables, grills, and a playground are located throughout the park. Shelters available for rental up to one year in advance. Fee charged for shelter rental.

Sky Lift
For a more relaxing climb to natural bridge, enjoy a ride on the sky lift. The ascent begins one-half mile from the park entrance and ends within 600 feet of Natural Bridge. Open daily first weekend of April through the last weekend in October. For pricing call: (606) 663-2922.

The pool complex is tucked between the lake and the cliff beneath Hemlock Lodge. The complex includes a spacious stone bathhouse, and a zero-depth (one can enter pool without steps) pool that holds 80,000 gallons of water. The main pool has a "river" theme with directional water jets and floor bubblers. Next to the main pool is a new fenced wading pool with floor bubbles and fountain. 

General public: $5 per adult, $3 per child ages 3-12 daily. FREE to lodge and cottage guests.
Open daily from 11:00 a.m. - 7:00 p.m.