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Parks & Natural Areas

Tennessee is a rich and varied place with mile-high mountains in the east, the grand Mississippi River in the west and 19,000 miles of sparkling rivers in between. Parks, forests, birding, hunting, camping and water, water everywhere--Tennessee has a mind-boggling array of natural resources.

Investigate the beauty and mystery of Reelfoot, a cypress-filled natural lake in Tennessee's northwest corner, created by a series of earthquakes, where dozens of species of fish and shore and wading birds are harbored, including golden and bald eagles. Grab your binoculars and explore the diversity of habitats, stretching 65 miles alongside the Tennessee River, on Tennessee National Wildlife Refuge which provide ample feeding, nesting and resting areas for 301 bird species. Get spritzed by the highest waterfall in the eastern United States, Fall Creek Falls, laced with cascades, gorges, streams, and lush stands of virgin hardwood timber. Stride a celebrated riverfront greenway, Chattanooga's Riverpark, and cross America's longest pedestrian bridge, the Walnut Street Bridge, spanning the Tennessee River as it flows south-southwest. World renowned for its diversity of plant and animal life, the beauty of its ancient mountains, and its remnants of Southern Appalachian mountain culture, Great Smoky Mountains National Park is the largest national park in the east and America's most visited. A tour of the Smokies, by any means of locomotion, offers panoramic views, tumbling mountain streams, weathered historic buildings and uninterrupted forest stretching to the horizon.

Green Travel Vendor

Historic Downtown Dickson
"Civil War soldiers built the railroad that now fronts the Historic Halbrook Hotel, War Memorial Building and the new city park. Just off the railroad you will find, not only the Old Train Depot., but also the birthplace of Frank Clement in the Halbrook Hotel. See the War Memorial Building that is one of only two Depression-era War Memorial Buildings in ...more

City:  Dickson, TN
Phone:  877-718-4967

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Historic Downtown Franklin
"Fifteen block National Register Historic District with more than 70 unique shops, restaurants and ...more

City:  Franklin, TN
Phone:  615-591-8500

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Historic Elmwood Cemetery
"Under the shade of 1,000 trees. Established in 1852. More than 70,000 people who make up the colorful history of Memphis are buried here, including 14 Confederate generals, two Union generals, and 1100 soldiers who fell in different ...more

City:  Memphis, TN
Phone:  901-774-3212

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Historic Gainesboro
"Gainesboro's entire square is on the National Register of Historic Places. A second district was designated including a residential ...more

City:  Gainesboro, TN
Phone:  931-268-9877

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Historic Lairdland Farm House and Civil War Museum
"Tour historic home filled with antiques and Visit their Civil War Museum containing an extensive and comprehensive collection of both Union and Confederate artifacts. Luncheons for groups of 8 or more may be served upon 2 weeks confirmed ...more

City:  Cornersville, TN
Phone:  (931) 363-2205

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Historic Maplewood Cemetery
"Established as the City of Pulaski's second cemetery. The resting place for many prominent citizens such as Thomas Martin, founder of Martin Methodist College; Governor John C. Brown and many Civil War veterans, including over 40 Union U. S. Infantry. The cemetery is lighted for night time ...more

City:  Pulaski, TN
Phone:  931-424-4044

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Historic Old Hickory Village
"Over 300 homes on the National Register of Historic Places. A beautifully restored "company town" built in 1918 by the DuPont Company. Located on Old Hickory Lake with beach, nature trails, boat ramps, marina. 20 minutes from downtown ...more

City:  Old Hickory, TN
Phone:  (615) 847-8255

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Historic Rock Castle
"General Daniel and Sarah Smith's circa 1784 home. Smith acted as surveyor for the frontier, produced the state's first map and is credited with naming the state of Tennessee. The home features late eighteenth-century antiques and original pieces that belonged to the Smith family. The 18-acre site overlooks beautiful Old Hickory Lake. Daily guided tours are offered of Rock Castle. ...more

City:  Hendersonville, TN
Phone:  615-824-0502

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Historic Rugby Commissary
"Restored 1880 utopian village founded by famous British author, Thomas Hughes. 17 Victorian-era buildings remain unchanged, including a 7,000 volume Hughes Library & Christ Church Episcopal. Daily tours, museum shop, dining and lodging in historic buildings. Enjoy shopping at the shops of Rugby--The Commissary and the Spirit of Red Hill in the Board of Aid Historic ...more

City:  Rugby, TN
Phone:  (888) 214-3400

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Historic Speedwell Academy
"Restored 1827 building. Retains much of its original aesthetics. Site of much activity during Civil War, it was used as both a hospital and headquarters for both sides. Grounds were called Campground Bluff during the war, and Confederate soldiers used the building's weathervane for target practice. The large "Long Tom" brass cannon was kept at the ...more

City:  Speedwell, TN
Phone:  423-869-3414

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Historic Town of Cumberland Gap
"The Historic Town of Cumberland Gap is nestled at the foot of Cumberland Mountains inside Cumberland Gap National Historical Park. Breathtaking beauty and charming "Mayberry" atmosphere will greet you as you come into town. First known as the "Gateway to the West", then as the strong hold during the Civil War, Cumberland Gap is now known for everything from ...more

City:  Cumberland Gap, TN
Phone:  423-869-3860

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Hiwassee/Ocoee Scenic River State Park
"The Hiwassee/Ocoee Scenic River State Park is a 23-mile stretch of river, the first such to be designated by the State Scenic River Program. This stretch of river offers canoeing, rafting, fishing, hiking and nature photography. A scenic portion of the John Muir trail winds through the river gorge. Numerous public access sites provide boat-launching ramps. At the Gee Creek ...more

City:  Delano, TN
Phone:  423-263-0050

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Hundred Oaks Castle
"1800s historic structure. Former home of Governor Albert Marks. Several gardens, one designed by Rosemary Verey of ...more

City:  Winchester, TN
Phone:  931-967-8583

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Indian Mountain State Park
"Indian Mountain State Park is a multi-use facility in Campbell County near Tennessee's northern border. In addition to providing camping and recreation opportunities, the 200-acre park is unique in that it was developed on reclaimed strip mine land. Park visitors can enjoy fishing at the two small lakes, picnicking, camping, and two walking trails. Park visitors have the opportunity to ...more

City:  Jellico, TN
Phone:  423-784-7958

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International Friendship Bell
"The first monument between a U.S. Manhattan Project city and Japan, it serves as an expression of hope for everlasting peace and friendship. Stop by and ring the bell and pause to remember those who have sacrificed so much for the ...more

City:  Oak Ridge, TN
Phone:  800-887-3429

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Andrew Johnson National Historic Site
Site marks the home of the 17th president, who succeeded Lincoln and oversaw Reconstruction. Contains a ...more

City:  Greeneville, TN
Phone:  423-638-3551

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Appalachian National Scenic Trail
Great Smoky Mountains National Park offers access to the Tennessee portion of the Appalachian Trail, or ...more

City:  Gatlinburg, TN
Phone:  (865) 436-1200

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Big South Fork National River and Recreation Area
The Big South Fork of the Cumberland River passes through 90 miles of scenic gorges and valleys containin ...more

City:  Oneida, TN
Phone:  423-286-7275

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Cedars of Lebanon State Park
Cedars of Lebanon State Park is named for the dense cedar forest that existed in the biblical lands of Le ...more

City:  Lebanon, TN
Phone:  800-713-5180

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Cherokee National Forest
Tennessee's Cherokee National Forest stretches from Chattanooga to Bristol. The 640,000-acre Cherokee ...more

City:  Cleveland, TN
Phone:  (423) 476-9700

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Chickasaw National Wildlife Refuge
Chickasaw National Wildlife Refuge lies in the Lower Mississippi River floodplain along the Chickasaw Blu ...more

City:  Ripley, TN
Phone:  (731) 635-7621

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Cross Creeks National Wildlife Refuge
Cross Creeks National Wildlife Refuge is located four miles east of Dover, in Stewart County, Tennessee, ...more

City:  Dover, TN
Phone:  931-232-7477

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Fort Donelson National Battlefield
The site of the first decisive Union victory of the Civil War. A visitor center explains the importance o ...more

City:  Dover, TN
Phone:  931-232-5706

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Hatchie National Wildlife Refuge
This refuge along the Hatchie River puts wildlife first. A drive around O'Neal Lake features wetland hab ...more

City:  Stanton, TN
Phone:  731-772-0501

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Hiwassee Wildlife Refuge
Wildlife viewing and nature walks available. Hiwassee Refuge is closed from Nov. 1-Feb. 28, except at des ...more

City:  Birchwood, TN
Phone:  800-262-6704

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Kyker Bottoms Refuge
Kyker Bottoms Refuge is a 350-acre area in southern Blount County owned and managed by the Tennessee Wild ...more

City:  Maryville, TN
Phone:  865-856-8691

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Lake Isom National Wildlife Refuge
Lake Isom National Wildlife Refuge was established as an inviolate sanctuary for wintering waterfowl in 1 ...more

City:  Union City, TN
Phone:  731-538-2481

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Land Between The Lakes National Recreation Area
Nestled between Kentucky Lake and Lake Barkley. Native wildlife abounds as well as a maintained herd of e ...more

City:  Golden Pond, TN
Phone:  800-525-7077

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Laurel-Snow Pocket Wilderness and Buzzard Point
Natural wilderness area with waterfalls, forests, unique rock formations, deep gorges and trails for hiki ...more

City:  Dayton, TN
Phone:  423-566-2229

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Lower Hatchie Wildlife Refuge
Lower Hatchie National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) sits along the lower 17 miles of the Hatchie River in wester ...more

City:  Henning, TN
Phone:  731-738-2296

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Lucius Burch Natural Area
The natural area is a remnant of historic river meanders, bald cypress-water tupelo swamps, bottomland ha ...more

City:  Ellendale, TN
Phone:  901-382-0235

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Manus Road Cedar Glade
Manus Road is a 15-acre natural area in Rutherford County about 10 miles east of Murfreesboro. It support ...more

City:  Rutherford County, TN

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May Prairie
May Prairie boasts one of Tennessee's most diverse plant communities, with more than 300 species, 25 of ...more

City:  Manchester, TN

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Meeman-Shelby Forest State Park
Bordering on the mighty Mississippi River, two-thirds of this 13,467-acre park are bottomland hardwood fo ...more

City:  Millington, TN
Phone:  800-471-5293

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Natchez Trace Parkway
The 444-mile Parkway commemorates the "Old" Natchez Trace, beginning as an animal path and progressing ...more

City:  Pasquo, TN
Phone:  800-305-7417

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Obed Wild & Scenic River
Recreation includes whitewater kayaking, canoeing, rock climbing, hiking, fishing and picnicking. A sceni ...more

City:  Wartburg, TN
Phone:  423-346-6294

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Overmountain Victory National Historic Trail
The Overmountain Victory National Historic Trail follows the Revolutionary War route of Patriot militia m ...more

Phone:  864-936-3477

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Reelfoot National Wildlife Refuge
Reelfoot National Wildlife Refuge was established in 1941 to manage the northern third of Reelfoot Lake a ...more

City:  Union City, TN
Phone:  731-538-2481

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Savage Gulf State Natural Area
Savage Gulf, a 15,590-acre natural area, is carved into the western edge of the Cumberland Plateau in Gru ...more

City:  Palmer, TN
Phone:  931-779-3532

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Sequatchie Cave State Natural Area
Sequatchie Cave is a 10-acre, biologically significant, natural area where Owen Spring Branch flows from ...more

City:  Jasper, TN
Phone:  423-942-2552

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Seven Islands Wildlife Refuge
Seven Islands Wildlife Refuge is a wildlife sanctuary with recreational use by the general public. The 31 ...more

City:  Knoxville, TN
Phone:  865-525-9400

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Shiloh National Military Park
Established in 1894 to preserve the scene of the first major battle in the Western theater of the Civil W ...more

City:  Shiloh, TN
Phone:  731-689-5696

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Short Springs Natural Area
Beautiful, peaceful nature preserve with wildlife and walking trails located on the edge of the city. ...more

City:  Tullahoma, TN
Phone:  931-455-5497

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Stillhouse Hollow Falls State Natural Area
Stillhouse Hollow Falls is a 90-acre state natural area named for its most significant feature, 75-feet S ...more

City:  Summertown, TN

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Stinging Fork Pocket Wilderness
Natural wilderness area with forests, unique rock formations, deep gorges and trails for hiking. ...more

City:  Spring City, TN
Phone:  423-566-2229

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Stones River National Battlefield
The Battle of Stones River was one of the bloodiest and most significant battles of the Civil War. ...more

City:  Murfreesboro, TN
Phone:  615-893-9501

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Tennessee National Wildlife Refuge
Tennessee National Wildlife Refuge has more than 50,000 acres on Kentucky Lake in Northwest Tennessee and ...more

City:  Paris, TN
Phone:  731-642-2091

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Tennessee National Wildlife Refuge
Nature walks, lakeside areas, open horseback riding, hunting, boat ramps, migratory bird sanctuary, eagle ...more

City:  Camden, TN
Phone:  800-225-7469

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The Tennessee Civil War National Heritage Area
Partners with organizations and individuals across the state to tell the whole story of America's greate ...more

City:  Murfreesboro, TN
Phone:  615-898-2947

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Trail of Tears National Historic Trail
The Trail of Tears National Historic Trail commemorates the removal of the Cherokee and the paths that 17 ...more

City:  Multi-city, TN
Phone:  (505) 988-6888

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Twin Arches State Natural Area
Twin Arches state natural area is approximately 1,500 acres located in parts of Fentress, Scott, and Pick ...more

City:  Oneida, TN
Phone:  865-569-9778

Green Travel Vendor

Virgin Falls Pocket Wilderness Area
Trail features a 317-acre natural area, 110-foot falls, two lesser falls and cave, eight mile round trip, ...more

City:  Sparta, TN
Phone:  931-836-3552

Green Travel Vendor

Walker Branch Natural Area
Walker Branch is a 225-acre natural area located just miles south of Savannah in Hardin County. The prope ...more

City:  Pittsburg Landing, TN

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Walls of Jericho
The Walls of Jericho is a 750-acre natural area that is within the 8,943-acre Bear Hollow Mountain Wildli ...more

City:  Pitcher Ridge, TN
Phone:  (615) 532-0431

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Walterhill Floodplain
Walterhill Floodplain State Natural Area is a 34-acre natural area located in Rutherford County. It is un ...more

City:  Walterhill, TN
Phone:  615-898-2523

Green Travel Vendor

Washmorgan Hollow
Washmorgan Hollow, a sheltered ravine on the Eastern Highland Rim in Jackson County, is an excellent habi ...more

City:  Gainesboro, TN
Phone:  (615) 383-9909

Green Travel Vendor

Watauga River
Watauga River Bluffs is a 50-acre natural area located in Carter County along the Watauga River. Its most ...more

City:  Johnson City, TN
Phone:  (800) 238-2264

Green Travel Vendor

William B. Clark Conservation Area
William B. Clark Conservation Area is a 460-acre natural area along the Wolf River in Fayette County loca ...more

City:  Rossville, TN
Phone:  731-512-1369

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William R. Davenport Refuge
William Davenport Refuge is 120-acre natural area located in Polk County. It was named after the previous ...more

City:  Ducktown, TN
Phone:  931-484-9571

Green Travel Vendor

Sunk Lake
Sunk Lake supports excellent examples of bald cypress swamp, bottomland hardwood forest, and emergent marsh aquatic habitat. The diversity of wetland and upland communities offer a wide range of habitat for waterfowl and other birds, fish, reptiles, amphibians and rare plant species ...more

City:  Lauderdale, TN

Green Travel Vendor

Mount Roosevelt Wildlife Management Area

City:  Rockwood, TN
Phone:  800-262-6704

Green Travel Vendor

Mud Island River Park
"Experience the river on the river. Recreational and educational facility showcasing the Mississippi River with museum. Riverwalk model. Canoe, kayak, bike rentals. Gift shop, restaurants, 5,000-seat amphitheatre. Banquet facilities. Special ...more

City:  Memphis, TN
Phone:  800-507-6507

Green Travel Vendor

Nashville Zoo at Grassmere
"Add some exotic to the everyday with Nashville Zoo. Wander through a lush canopy of bamboo, come face to face with a clouded leopard, feed some Australian parrots, and delve into the far reaches of the Amazon. Nashville Zoo is your ticket to African elephants, giraffes, poison arrow frogs, zebras, red pandas, Bengal tigers, gibbons, meerkats and much more! In ...more

City:  Nashville, TN
Phone:  615-833-1534

Green Travel Vendor

Natchez Trace State Park
"Along with vast scenic woodlands, the Natchez Trace State Park includes four lakes, a swimming beach, a 47 room inn and conference center with over 3000 square feet of meeting/banquet space, a restaurant, 17 cabins and 10 villas, a group lodge, 208 campsites, 5 air conditioned camping cabins, picnicking sites, playgrounds, a ball field, a regulation pistol firing range, picturesque ...more

City:  Wildersville, TN
Phone:  800-250-8616

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National Wildlife Refuge
"Reelfoot National Wildlife Refuge was established in 1941 to manage the northern third of Reelfoot Lake as a refuge for migratory ...more

City:  Union City, TN

Green Travel Vendor

Normandy Dam and Fish Hatchery
"Awarded "National First Place - Award of Excellence" by the Association of Conservation Engineers. Approximately 200 ...more

City:  Normandy, TN
Phone:  800-624-7406

Green Travel Vendor

Norris Watershed Hiking & Biking Trail
"Hike, horseback, or bike ride the many miles of woodland trails that meander through the watershed and the adjacent Norris Dam State Park. Experience spectacular views of Norris Lake and its surrounding hills and valleys. Maps available at the Welcome ...more

City:  Norris, TN
Phone:  865-494-7645

Green Travel Vendor

North Chickamauga Pocket Wilderness
"This 1,100-acre pocket wilderness is named for a major watershed for the Chattanooga area. Overlooks, waterfalls, hiking trails and picnic ...more

City:  Chattanooga, TN
Phone:  423-336-7205

Green Travel Vendor

Oaklawn Gardens
"Painted across six acres, discover the lush greenery that makes up the beautiful gardens of Oaklawn Garden. People of all ages and interests will delight in the carpets of yellow daffodils, the brilliant pinks and reds of the blooming azaleas, and the spring colors of blossoming dogwoods. Watch the Master Gardeners as they care for these beautiful plants and shrubs ...more

City:  Germantown, TN
Phone:  901-757-7375

Green Travel Vendor

Obed Wild & Scenic River
"Recreation includes whitewater kayaking, canoeing, rock climbing, hiking, fishing and picnicking. A scenic overlook is located at Lilly Bluff. The Lilly Arch near the end of the Point Trail is one of the most unique rock features of the Obed. The history of the Obed Wild and Scenic River traces back many centuries. Even so, the scenery still looks much ...more

City:  Wartburg, TN
Phone:  423-346-6294

Green Travel Vendor

Ocoee Mist Farm Llama Hikes
"Hike Cherokee National Forest in comfort and style. Rest your backs and let Ocoee Mist llamas carry your gear. Custom-designed hikes. Lunch and llamas provided. Easy to moderate level hike. Fall through spring. All ages and groups ...more

City:  Benton, TN
Phone:  888-541-9583

Green Travel Vendor

Ozone Falls
"This scenic waterfall, managed by the Tennessee State Parks System, offers an array of hiking and naturalist activities. Ozone Falls is a 43-acre natural area in Cumberland County. Ozone Falls plunges 110 feet over a sandstone cap rock into a deep blue, rock-strewn pool. Fall Creek then disappears underground until it reemerges several feet downstream. An impressive rock house “amphitheater” can ...more

City:  Crossville, TN
Phone:  931-484-6138

Green Travel Vendor

Percy Warner Park
"Edwin and Percy Warner Parks, collectively known as The Warner Parks, are managed by the Metropolitan Board of Parks and Recreation of Nashville and Davidson County. The Warner Parks are the largest municipally administered parks in Tennessee and together span 2684 acres of forest and field, 9 miles from downtown Nashville. Over 500,000 people visit the Parks annually to utilize ...more

City:  Nashville, TN
Phone:  (615) 352-6299

Green Travel Vendor

Pickett State Park
"Dramatic sandstone cliffs, stone arches, rock shelters and rushing mountain streams make Pickett State Park on the Cumberland Plateau a scenic wonderland. Unique microclimates form around these geologic formations, creating havens where diverse flora and fauna thrive. In Tennessee, Pickett is second only to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park in biodiversity. Rare plants, such as Cumberland sandwort, Lucy Braun’s snakeroot, ...more

City:  Jamestown, TN
Phone:  877-260-0010

Green Travel Vendor

Pilot Knob/Nathan Bedford Forest State Park
"Tennessee River Folklife Museum sits atop the highest point in West Tennessee. Displays, exhibits and programs offered. Wildlife ...more

City:  Eva, TN
Phone:  800-714-7305

Upcoming events

Date: Oct 25, 2014
38th Annual Harvest Days
Location: Murfreesboro, TN

Date: Oct 25, 2014
Halloween Event
Location: Rock Island, TN

Date: Oct 25, 2014
Halloween Event
Location: Rock Island, TN

See more October events »

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