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Cherokee Ruby & Sapphire Mine

41 Cherokee Mine Rd, Franklin, NC 28734-4127
+1 828-349-2941
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Review Highlights
Family fun

I took my daughter and grand children there last summer. It was fun getting in the mud and water... read more

Reviewed 22 January 2018
anailipo
,
Florida
Great experience at this mine, and fun people!

This mine provides only buckets of native soil, thus you won't find salted buckets of minerals from... read more

Reviewed 2 November 2017
Connie L
,
Saint Louis, Missouri
Read all 187 reviews
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Traveller Overview
  • Excellent77%
  • Very good13%
  • Average4%
  • Poor1%
  • Terrible5%
Travellers talk about
About
Cherokee Ruby & Sapphire Mine is Macon County's ONLY 100% Unsalted Mine, located in the heart of the Beautiful Cowee Valley of North Carolina's Smoky Mountains.
Closed Now
Hours Today: 12:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.
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Contact
41 Cherokee Mine Rd, Franklin, NC 28734-4127
Website
+1 828-349-2941
Write a ReviewReviews (187)
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"an umbrella"
in 9 reviews
"bring sunscreen"
in 6 reviews
"mining experience"
in 14 reviews
"rent umbrellas"
in 3 reviews
"beautiful butterflies"
in 3 reviews
"wear a hat"
in 3 reviews
"our recent visit"
in 2 reviews
"sun umbrellas"
in 2 reviews
"bug spray"
in 3 reviews
"the owner"
in 11 reviews
"bring lunch"
in 3 reviews
"be patient"
in 4 reviews
"several years"
in 4 reviews
"great memories"
in 3 reviews
"explained everything"
in 2 reviews
"five hours"
in 2 reviews
"can't wait to go back"
in 5 reviews
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1 - 10 of 187 reviews

Reviewed January 22, 2018

I took my daughter and grand children there last summer. It was fun getting in the mud and water looking for stones. The people who run it are knowledgeable and helpful. They explained not only how to sain the mud but the stones to look...More

2  Thank anailipo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed November 2, 2017

This mine provides only buckets of native soil, thus you won't find salted buckets of minerals from Brazil here! So, if you want the real North Carolina experience, this is it! We had a great time there, taking a break to eat the lunch we...More

Thank Connie L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Matthew M, Owner at Cherokee Ruby & Sapphire Mine, responded to this reviewResponded November 29, 2017

Thank you for your review! We are all very happy you had an enjoyable experience here at Cherokee Mine! Thank you for pointing out our 100% Unsalted Ore, and also pointing out that lunch is an important part of planning your trip here. Well-prepared miners...More

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Reviewed October 20, 2017 via mobile

Stan, Matt and Lisa are great! Started going to Cherokee about two years ago, first time I found a nice blue sapphire and was hooked. Most recent find was a 16 carat Ruby, but keep in mind it is an unsalted mine so there are...More

1  Thank Steve G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Matthew M, Owner at Cherokee Ruby & Sapphire Mine, responded to this reviewResponded November 29, 2017

Thank you for your review! And thank you for being a great miner! To our TripAdvisor readers: Steve is a Cherokee Mine success story. Over the last couple years, Steve has progressed from a neophyte miner to a skilled gem hunter. Through perseverance - and...More

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Reviewed September 16, 2017 via mobile

This is a small mine they only take up to 20 people maximum. They have a neat sluice box fed from a river. It costs 25 a person to get in and then you buy your dirt. The dirt is unsalted meaning they don't put...More

1  Thank Jaboy84
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Matthew M, Owner at Cherokee Ruby & Sapphire Mine, responded to this reviewResponded November 29, 2017

Thank you for your review! We do limit the attendance, so that we can devote enough time and attention to all of the miners on the sluice. (Minor correction: 25 is the upper limit, but it can at times be lower depending on conditions.) Definitely...More

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Reviewed September 11, 2017 via mobile

My wife and I have been to several mines and sluiceing troughs over the years, and this place is the best we've seen! Not only do they have great quality, completely unsalted buckets, but they are also very educational in showing you what you're looking...More

3  Thank Nick M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Matthew M, Owner at Cherokee Ruby & Sapphire Mine, responded to this reviewResponded November 29, 2017

Thank you for your review! We work very hard at providing the best possible mining experience we can, and part of that is by providing the most comprehensive information. We have tried to make Cherokee Mine educational as well as fun! We are also happy...More

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Reviewed September 9, 2017

This is the best mine I’ve ever been to (and I’ve been to quite a few). My husband and I were really happy with the quality of unsalted dirt. After mining all day, we found several different gems (thanks for helping us figure out what...More

Thank skerst1023
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Matthew M, Owner at Cherokee Ruby & Sapphire Mine, responded to this reviewResponded November 29, 2017

Thank you for your review! Lisa and I are always happy to hear of successful outings at Cherokee Mine! If possible, please post photos of your necklace here, so that others may see what a finished piece containing genuine Cowee Valley gems can look like....More

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Reviewed September 2, 2017 via mobile

My husband had gone here as a kid, and it was nothing like he remembered. We were disappointed that we were unable to dig our own dirt. The guy was very informative, but it felt kind of like a typical mining tourist trap. Their are...More

Thank Shannon D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Matthew M, Owner at Cherokee Ruby & Sapphire Mine, responded to this reviewResponded November 29, 2017

Thank you for your review! Unfortunately, Time Marches On. Many things are quite different from when we were kids. We do feel that the characterization of Cherokee Mine as "a typical tourist trap" is unfair, as we have worked very hard to keep the Cherokee...More

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Reviewed August 28, 2017

My father and I have been visiting gem mines in the Cowee Valley and surrounding area since 1983 or so. We've had good hunting days, and not so good hunting days. We've done dig-your-own. We've done native dirt. And we've done salted (for our kids)....More

4  Thank warthog
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Matthew M, Owner at Cherokee Ruby & Sapphire Mine, responded to this reviewResponded November 29, 2017

Thank you for your VERY comprehensive review!!!! Lisa and I can only add that, since the flume is not covered, it is important to check the website for daily updates regarding weather, which may impact mine operations. Thank you again, and we look forward to...More

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Reviewed August 25, 2017

The owners are knowledgeable and fun. The material is 'unsalted' or just as it came from the ground behind the sluice. It was a great adventure.More

Thank Dudette537
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Matthew M, Owner at Cherokee Ruby & Sapphire Mine, responded to this reviewResponded November 29, 2017

Thank you very much for your review! Thank you for your patience with waiting for our reply as well - connectivity and computer issues have been almost endless. We are very happy to hear you had a great visit, and look forward to seeing you...More

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Reviewed August 23, 2017

We had the friendly greeting by 'mom', Matt was very informational, but Lisa could have cared less. Neither of them did a second chance to see if we had missed anything. We went through eight buckets and didn't find a single thing. Eight buckets!!! No...More

1  Thank kahoe59
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Matthew M, Owner at Cherokee Ruby & Sapphire Mine, responded to this reviewResponded August 25, 2017

Thank you for your review! I would like to point out some inconsistencies with your review. First, upon reviewing your Liability Waiver, we found two names listed in your party. This means that your initial admission would entitle each member of your party to two...More

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Ask a question
Questions & Answers
Pam Z
March 16, 2017|
AnswerShow all 2 answers
Response from Terry G | Reviewed this property |
How long is the trailer? The road to and from the Mine is paved but a little narrow, once you turn off the main road. To get to the main parking lot you have to negotiated a left hand turn off this road. I agree a 20 foot... More
0
Votes
ladyhawk98
January 14, 2017|
AnswerShow all 3 answers
Response from ProudMom69 | Reviewed this property |
We went last year and it was $30.00 for two buckets then they got a little cheaper. We found some beautiful stones that we had cut at cowee lapidary down the road. We also found a couple large pieces of rutile and had 2... More
0
Votes
Samuel S
December 20, 2016|
AnswerShow all 6 answers
Response from TJ H | Reviewed this property |
it is an unsalted mine so the potential is there to find what your looking for unless it's a diamond. Rubies and Sapphires are pretty abundant.
0
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