Top 12 National Parks in Tennessee

    Tennessee is a beautiful state with plenty of adventure.

    Tennessee is a state in the US that offers many things for tourists. You can see beautiful places and scenery, like the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. There are also popular landmarks such as Graceland and Dollywood. Tennessee has many adventures. There are places to hike and whitewater rafts. There are also some malls where you can go shopping.

    There is a lot of amazing things to do in Tennessee. It’s different from other places. Come see what it has to offer!

    1. Andrew Johnson National Historic Site

     Andrew Johnson National Historic Site

    This is a place for people to go. It is about Andrew Johnson, who was president of America. He had a hard life because he grew up poor in Tennessee. He also did important things during the time after the war called Reconstruction.

    The visitor center has original things from when President Johnson was alive. There are clothes and furniture. There is also an exhibit that shows people how it was to live in the 19th century. It might seem like you are living in that time because of the exhibit!

    Pets: Pets are not allowed at the National Historic Site. Exceptions include those who have been trained to help disabled people.

    Camping: There is no hotel or campsite near the Andrew Johnson National Historical Park. You will need to find a campground before you visit.

    Tour: Explore Andrew Johnson’s story. You can visit the Visitor Center, Homestead, Cemetery, or learn more about him by looking at different exhibits.

    Entrance Fee: Andrew Johnson National Historic Site is a place where you can visit for free. You can see the legacy of our nation’s first southern-born president. There are many things to do there, including petting zoos with over 100 animals and picnic areas that are great for families.

    2. Big South Fork National River and Recreation Area

    Big South Fork National River and Recreation Area

    Andrew Johnson National Historic Site is a place about the American Civil War. It has an informative tour that takes about 30 minutes and talks about Tennessee during this time period, as well as President Andrew Johnson’s presidency. There are also other things you can do in this park. You can take pictures of people who are dressed up or explore on your own to find waterfalls, streams, mountain trails, and even something called an “archaeological remain” from the Native Americans who once lived here before Europeans came.

    A visit to Andy Jonson National Park will show you how families coped with events like wartime and poverty. They had to deal with the sudden death of loved ones.

    Pets: Big South Fork National River and Recreation Area is a great place to bring your best friend. Your dog will be able to explore the beautiful scenery with you as they are on a leash at all times when in Big south fork, even if you’re riding horses!

    Camping: The park offers many campsites with things you might need like electricity and fire pits. There are many different types of campsites such as tent camping and cabin rentals.

    Tour: Our National Park is a world of fun for the whole family. You can go horseback riding or fishing. You can also camp in the park. When you picnic, leave no trace of your food or trash. There are many beautiful places to see.

    Entrance Fee: When you visit Big South Fork National River and Recreation, you will not have to pay a fee.

    3. Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park

    Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park

    Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park is a big site in two states. It preserves sites of America’s past, successes as well as failures.

    When you visit Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park, you will see beautiful scenery and learn about history. We hope that when you visit, you will enjoy it too!

    Pets: Pets are welcome in the park and you can bring them into visitor centers while they are on a leash. But only service animals can go inside the visitor center.

    Camping: Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park is a good place to go camping. They don’t have any accommodations or camping facilities, but there are lots of campgrounds nearby that have RV hookups and tent sites.

    Tour: Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park have a lot of things to do. You can take a tour or you can have a more adventurous time. There are lots of options for everyone!

    Entrance Fee: To visit Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park, you must pay $10 per person aged 16 or older. Children 15 years old or younger are free!

    4. Cumberland Gap National Historical Park

    Cumberland Gap National Historical Park

    The Cumberland Gap National Historical Park is a beautiful and diverse place. If you go on the trails, you can find the Kentucky-Virginia-Tennessee tripoint.

    The park provides many ways for people with different levels of fitness. There are hills and mountains nearby.

    Pets: The Cumberland Gap National Historical Park lets you walk on trails. Your dog can go with you as long as they are on a leash. But if there are animals in the area, then your dog must be leashed.

    Camping: The Cumberland Gap National Historical Park Campsites are a place where you can have a vacation. There are more than 100 campsites and they will be perfect for what your family wants.

    Tour: The Cumberland Gap National Historical Park is a big area with a rich history and beautiful views. Visitors can find many unique rock formations, waterfalls, and trails to explore. There is 24 million acres worth of land!

    Entrance Fee: The Cumberland Gap National Park does not charge entrance fees and reservations are recommended. You can make a reservation up to a month in advance to have the best experience!

    5. Fort Donelson National Battlefield

    Fort Donelson National Battlefield

    In 1862, Ulysses S. Grant and Flag Officer Andrew Hull Foote captured three Confederate forts. They were able to open two rivers that the Union Navy could control. This fort is the place where a battle happened. People can go to see it and look at what happened there. It was a fight between two groups of people who wanted land in Kentucky and Tennessee. It was very important because many people died in this battle, but no one won.

    Fort Donelson National Battlefield is a place where Union Army Brigadier General Ulysses S. Grant and Flag Officer Andrew Hull Foote captured three Confederate forts, opening two rivers to be controlled by the Union Navy.

    Pets: It’s your responsibility to protect both the wildlife and your pet when traveling through Fort Donelson. Pets must be on a leash no longer than 6 feet at all times, so you can keep track of them and make sure they do not get hurt or bother other animals in their territory.

    Camping: Visitors can’t camp at Fort Donelson National Battlefield, but visitors can search the internet for nearby campsites.

    Tour: Fort Donelson National Battlefield is a historic place. The park offers many things to explore. You can take a tour of the Confederate Fort Water Batteries Dover Hotel (Surrender House) Tour Stop #10. General Grant told his men they could go home after their victory at Vicksburg. You can also take in 18 different activities such as hiking and camping with your family.

    Entrance Fee: The Fort Donelson National Battlefield entrance fee is not for people who are afraid. Prepare to pay $80 when you go in, but if you are up for a challenge then this should be right up your alley!

    6. The Great Smoky Mountains National Park

    The Great Smoky Mountains National Park

    The Great Smoky Mountains National Park is one of the most beautiful places in America. It is located on the border between North Carolina and Tennessee. There are a lot of flowers that bloom all year long.

    Along hiking routes, there are waterfalls. There are also views of mountains. It can be foggy and the waterfalls will fall down.

    Pets: In Great Smoky Mountain National Park, all dogs can spend time with their owners without a leash! Dogs are allowed to be off-leash on campgrounds, picnic areas, and roads.

    Camping: A campsite is where you can camp. You are not allowed to camp in parking lots or pullouts.

    Tour: If you are looking for a vacation that is filled with nature and outdoor activities, then the Great Smoky Mountains National Park Auto Touring area will be perfect. This region in Tennessee has mountains with views of the cities below. There are also a lot of waterfalls and flowers, and there are a lot of hiking trails.

    You can go fishing with your friends on one of the lakes here. There is also horseback riding through forests where old-growth trees tower above vernal pools alive with tinkling streams. You will see the beautiful fall colors changing leaves throughout the autumn season!

    Entrance Fee: The free entrance fee makes this park accessible and easy to get into. Lots of people go there to escape from life.

    7. Manhattan Project National Historical Park

    Manhattan Project National Historical Park

    The Manhattan Project National Historical Park is a government-run museum of the Manhattan Project. They built nuclear bombs and detonated them.

    This facility has displays how weapons were made here during World War II. You can see what they look like. There is also information about their impact since, including the destruction of Nagasaki and Hiroshima.

    Pets: If you want to bring your pets to the Manhattan Project National Historical Park, you can. They will be allowed in with a leash or if they are being held by their pet guardian. And if you are going on a tour of the Los Alamos Visitor Center, there is no limit on how short the leash can be!

    Camping: In the Manhattan Project National Historical Park, there are no public campgrounds. There are other campgrounds nearby to enjoy while visiting this historical landmark.

    Tour: Manhattan Project National Historical Park has boats, hiking trails, bike paths, and tables. You can also take a tour with a ranger or go to the programs that are offered to learn about nature or history.

    Entrance Fee: You do not need to pay an entrance fee if you visit the three National Park units that are in Manhattan.

    8. Natchez Trace Parkway

    Natchez Trace Parkway

    The Natchez Trace is a long trail that links the Cumberland River to the Mississippi and stretches across 440 miles. The first time it was known by this name was in 1802 when American soldiers traveled down south to fight them on their land because they were being mean to us.

    The story of how these two rivers became linked together is very old. In Native American times, people would travel to other villages by foot to trade with them when they did not have access to the same goods. They had no connection like water between their village and the one they were trading with.

    Pets: Leashed pets are always welcome on trails, as long as they’re under 6 feet.

    Camping: Camping is not allowed on the trail unless you have a campsite reservation.

    Tour: The Natchez Trace Parkway is full of natural beauty and historical significance. You can hike, explore the riverside bluffs that overlook waterfalls or visit historic sites such as Natchez Point where Meriwether Lewis died.

    Entrance Fee: The Natchez Trace Parkway is a free road to drive on. You can camp and park for free. It is also great for outdoor types who want to escape from cars, history buffs who want to learn about Native American trails and travelers who are on a long trip.

    9. Natchez Trace National Scenic Trail

    Natchez Trace National Scenic Trail

    The Natchez Trace Trail is a national trail that goes through Tennessee, Alabama, and Mississippi. It follows the 444-mile Natchez Trace Parkway. Towns are along the way and you can enjoy them by going there or exploring them from your car.

    A scenic route is a route that was made in the old days by people going from town to town. It was named “Natchez Trace” because it went from Nashville (a place in Tennessee) to Louisiana, which is also in Tennessee.

    Pets: The Natchez Trace Trail allows pets as long as they are on a leash that is shorter than 6 feet.

    Camping: People can’t camp anywhere they want. They must camp in the places that are for camping. This is to keep natural things from being damaged or ruined. 

    Tour: Natchez Trace National Scenic Trail is a place for hiking. You can hike on the Highland Rim Section of Natchez Trace National Park in Tennessee. It has beautiful hills and will not be too hard on your body.

    Entrance fee: The Natchez Trace Parkway is free. There are no entrance fees.

    10. Obed Wild and Scenic River

    Obed Wild and Scenic River

    The Obed River is a stream in Tennessee. It drains the Cumberland Plateau. The water is fast and there are many rapids. The tributaries of this river are important because they join with other streams from lower elevations to create turbulent waterfalls.

    The Union troops from the Civil War would escape the Battle of Turtletown Gap by going down the river. People could travel on the river all year round when they first came to America.

    Pets: You can let your pets run free on the Obed Wild and Scenic River, but you need to keep them on a leash all the time.

    Camping: Rock Creek Campground is a place with 11 campsites. The campsites are for people who walk there. You can explore the Obed Wild and Scenic River in any season when you camp here.

    Tour: Obed is a place for outside adventurers. You can do lots of things like bird watching, bouldering, Leave No Trace principles, paddling, and rock climbing. But you could also do some indoor things like coffee with a ranger or joining the annual photo contest.

    Entrance Fee: The Obed Wild and Scenic River is a special place. You can swim in the water, go down it in a tube or just walk around and look at all the beautiful things here.

    11. Shiloh National Military Park

    Shiloh National Military Park

    Shiloh National Military Park is a place where people can find honor. It was the site of a battle during the Civil War, and many people died.

    Nowadays, it is like you are walking through someone’s front yard. There are monuments to heroes who died protecting the country. On each monument, there is their name and the date they died.

    Pets: At Shiloh National Military Park, people and dogs can enjoy it together. But please make sure that you keep your dog on a leash so that they do not get in the way of others.

    Camping: Campers cannot camp on the grounds of Shiloh National Military Park. They need to find a campsite first, but it is worth it!

    Tour: The Shiloh National Military Park has lots of things to do. You can watch movies about the war, you can walk around the battlefield by yourself, or, if you want to do something more adventurous, you could take a ranger programme!

    Entrance Fee: Shiloh National Military Park is free to visit. You do not need a pass to enter. The park is large and you will be able to explore without any problems.

    12. Stones River National Battlefield

    Stones River National Battlefield

    This is a place where people can learn about the Civil War. There are cannons, rifle pits, and earthworks from the battle of Stones River. People can see how soldiers built their trenches for fighting. The park also has daily presentations with things like cooking demonstrations or children’s games that were played 150 years ago.

    The Battle of Stones River was a very important Civil War event. More than 25 thousand soldiers lost their lives fighting for control of this small piece of land along the border between Tennessee and Kentucky.

    Pets: Stones River National Battlefield is a place where many animals live. You can see them at the park. Dogs, cats, and even llamas will be happy after exploring the park.

    Camping: Stone’s River National Battlefield is a great place to visit for people who like history. It is very far away from any hotels, so if you want to stay in one of the many campsites they have, you will have to go into town.

    Tour: Explore the Stones River National Battlefield, Murfreesboro Greenway System, Guided Tours, and Staff Rides. Learn about Interpretive Programs at Hallowed Ground Lantern Tours of Stones River National Cemetery. Observe Living History with Ranger Programs in Special Events!

    Entrance Fee: There is no fee to visit Stones River National Battlefield. You can wear out your shoes walking around and not have to pay, but then you will probably need new shoes!

    Tennessee is a beautiful place. It has many things to do like going to school, playing outside, and seeing different shows.

    People in this state are friendly and welcoming. They love the state with an enthusiasm that is matched only by the residents themselves!

    This place is for everyone. If you want to take your kids on a family outing, this can be a good place too. If you need time away from the city, this is also a good place for that.