Engage Tennessee’s Rich History at These 5 State Parks

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photo: Tennessee State Parks

From Tennessee State Parks

A quick getaway can be just what’s needed to get back into the rhythms of everyday life. Even two days spent in nature can reset our minds and bodies.

Engage with Tennessee’s rich history while enjoying the outdoors. From east to west, you’ll find state parks that allow you to step into the past and experience the history that shaped Tennessee.

1Old Stone Fort State Archeological Park – Middle, TN

Overnight Accommodations: Camping

This park is filled with 2,000 years worth of history, incredible hiking, and a campground! It preserves a prehistoric Native American ceremonial site. The mounds at the park were created by Woodland Native Americans to celebrate events like the Summer Solstice. The park is also home to some beautiful waterfalls and rivers that provide incredible opportunities for hiking and fishing.

Book here.

2Pinson Mounds State Archeological Park – West, TN

Overnight Accommodations: Camping at nearby Chickasaw State Park

Make a home base at Chickasaw State Park where you can paddle, ride horses, hike, fish, and explore nearby forestry lands. Then venture out to explore nearby Pinson Mounds, State Park. This archeological site contains at least 17 mounds created by Woodland Native Americans, including Saul’s Mound which stands 70 feet tall. You can climb to the top of Saul’s Mound and explore the park’s museum.

Book here.

3David Crockett Birthplace – East, TN

Overnight Accommodations: Camping

Step back in time and experience the life of pioneer, soldier, and politician David Crockett. The park commemorates his birthplace and includes an 18th-century living farmstead and replica cabin. Fish and paddle on the Nolichucky River, hike, and explore nearby Johnson City.

Book here.

4David Crockett State Park – Middle, TN

Overnight Accommodations: Cabins and Camping

From the Nashville area, hop on the parkway and head south towards David Crockett State Park where you can grab a cabin on the lake or campsite tucked in the woods. Enjoy the beautiful drive and stop along the way to check out points of interest. David Crockett offers a lake for fishing and paddling, creeks for exploring, paved bike trails, multiple waterfalls, and a museum depicting Crockett’s life.

Book here.

5Pickwick Landing State Park – West, TN

Overnight Accommodations: Lodge, Cabins, and Camping

Those who are looking to extend their trek down the Natchez Trace Parkway can set their destination for Pickwick Landing State Park. This park offers a newly renovated lodge and restaurant on the shores of Pickwick Lake. This is an ideal destination for anyone who loves fishing, boating, or water sports.

Book here.

While you’re planning, keep these things in mind:

  • All Tennessee State Parks are free to enter.
  • Cabins at Tennessee State Parks have a two-night minimum (and may have additional minimums at peak times).
  • Campsites must be reserved at least one day in advance. Reservations can be made online or by calling the park.
  • All parks with cabins offer camping as well.
  • All of the campgrounds are pet-friendly and all parks with lodging have a number of pet-friendly cabins and lodge rooms.
  • If cabins are full at a park you’re interested in, consider camping there instead. We’ve also noted which parks offer overnight accommodations so if a park you’re looking into is full you have options.
  • You don’t have to own gear to go camping. We have a partnership that helps you rent outdoor gear online such as camping, backpacking, and hiking gear.
  • When you’re visiting our parks, please remember to practice responsible recreation to reduce your impact.
  • Additional resources for trip planning can be found on the TN State Parks website.

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