Best Campgrounds Within Two Hours Of Nashville
As much as we love Americas music city and its fast pace of life and sound, its pretty great to head out of town sometimes to experience a quieter pace of living. Listed here are 25 campgrounds within two hours of Nashville so that you can hear the sweet music nature has to offer without having to go too far for a little rest and relaxation. On the menu of activities within this list are plenty of hiking, fishing, swimming, and boating. Whatever you are into, there are some great places to unwind and get outdoors in campgrounds within two hours of Nashville.
Leconte Lodge Sevierville Tennessee
If youre looking for a glamping experience, youll love LeConte Lodge!
Located high up on the slopes of Mt. LeConte in the Great Smokey Mountains National Park, LeConte Lodge offers an authentic 1920s hiking experience as youve never seen it before! The site sits at 6,400 feet above sea level, and, as there are no roads up here, the beautiful wooden cabins can only be reached by hiking, ensuring that this place stays as pristine and untouched as it was way back when the lodges were built.
To get here, youll need to follow five trails up the mountain, ranging from 5.5 to 8 miles long. Youll enjoy a few nights relaxing in a cozy, characterful hand-built log cabin. Where youll sit out on your private porch in a rocking chair to marvel at the glory of the sunset, listen to a silence thats interrupted only by birdsong, and enjoy delicious, home-cooked food in the family-style dining room.
As youd expect from the highest guest lodge in the eastern U.S., the views over the Smokies from here are incredible! However, you must know that theres no electricity up here. Kerosene lamps provide lighting, and propane heaters are used to warm the cabins. Needless to say, theres no Wi-Fi, and the cell reception is pretty non-existent!
Great Smoky Mountains National Park
Great Smoky Mountains National Park is the most popular national park in the United States and it is adored by locals and guests. It boasts abundant wildlife, stunning waterfalls, and unique trails.
The park usually has several weeks of remarkable fall displays before winter makes its arrival.
Start your trip from Clingmans Dome, a 6,643-foot scenic road and hike offering vibrant fall vistas. The park is home to more than 100 tree species, making leaf-peeping one of the best fall activities.
To enjoy the vibrant fall foliage, take a drive on the Blue Ridge Parkway or the Foothills Parkway. For kayaking, paddleboarding, canoeing, visit Fontana Lake but beware that this is best done in early fall!
If youre interested in learning more about the parks history, head to Oconaluftee to tour the Mountain Farm Museum or visit nearby Mingus Mill or Cataloochee where youll find an old school, church, and more.
Visitors can also walk along the Appalachian Trail, stay in a gorgeous rustic cabin, and enjoy various cascades and waterfalls hidden in the mountains.
If youre planning a romantic getaway in Tennessee and choose this park, there are plenty of beautiful cabins you can stay in including many with hot tubs and stunning views!
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Joshua Tree National Park California
There are a number of campsites located in this park, including Jumbo Rocks Campground, known for its big boulder rocks that shelter sites from the wind. But you can also choose between the park’s 100+ sites among its 800,000 acres, which are all first-come, first-serve right now. Campsites are currently open at the park, but all programs are canceled.
Eastern Highland Rim Adventure
Just one hour from Nashville, located in the lower Appalachians at the Upper Cumberland Plateau, this campsite is where primitive camping gets a new makeover. This family-run campsite surrounds you with 360-degree views of relaxing forests, spring-fed creeks and streams, a ledge waterfall with a 20-foot drop, and a rock shelter formation. You are also within close reach of some incredible hiking opportunities, like the Appalachian Trail.
This campsite has marketed itself perfectly to the person visiting from the city. One of the things that these people search for when getting out into nature, is to finally be able to stargaze, a long way away from the pollution and smog of the city. The Eastern Highland Rim Adventure campground has wide open pastures for stargazing, meaning you can truly be humbled by the magnitude of nature.
There are also many activities to be enjoyed at this campsite. You can go fishing in the nearby Centre Hill Lake for largemouth bass, striped bass, white bass, spotted bass, and the list goes on. You can also head off on one of the designated miles of trails in the familys acreage and beyond. They keep a couple of well-maintained hiking trails that go past natural destinations such as a ledge waterfall with a natural oak shelter, creek exploring and cascades.
- 2 sites
- Restrooms and showering facilities
- Only two small campsites, so you can avoid the crowds, and really get in touch with nature
- Kitchen facilities
- No RV sites
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Pine Mountain Rv Park: Pigeon Forge
Scenic views, rolling hills of dense forest and plenty of amenities and facilities welcome you at Pine Mountain RV Park. Pine Mountain RV Park sites come equipped with full utility hookups, picnic table, fire ring and cable TV all on a concrete pad.
All the bathrooms, showers and laundry facilities are bright, new and clean. Grab a bite to eat at the snack bar, or gather supplies at the camp store.
You are only two blocks away from the lovely Pigeon Forge Parkway for charming shops, dining, and other attractions. Outdoors types are only a few minutes away from Great Smoky Mountain National Park or the hikes and zip lines of the Pigeon Forge wilderness.
Pigeon Forge is also home to Dollywood, a great amusement park for the whole family. The gigantic Titanic museum is in Pigeon Forge as well.
Tennessee Points Of Interest: Clingmans Dome
Reaching an impressive 6,643 feet, Clingmans Dome is both the highest point in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and in the whole of Tennessee State. You can admire the wonderful views by taking a drive along Clingmans Dome Road, which has several pull-outs where you can just sit and drink in the vistas, before you proceed to the parking area at the end of the road.
From here you can follow a paved trail for about half a mile to reach the lookout tower, which offers 360° views of the magnificent hills and valley that make up the area. It is also possible to hike up to the lookout point or join one of several hiking trails that start at the parking area, including a section of the Appalachian Trail that crosses Clingmans Dome.
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The Walls Of Jericho Primitive Camping
Trek in the same footsteps as Tennessee folk hero Davy Crockett on the Tennessee-side of the Walls of Jericho. But to walk amongst the legend, youre going to have to rough it. Only primitive camping is available along The Walls of Jericho. The name comes from a 17th century preacher who was so in awe of the place that he gave it a biblical title, and performed baptisms in the water. Spend a day walking along the rugged seven mile trail of canyon, river, and waterfalls, and you might get a little inspired too.
Its a bit of a lengthy walk to get back to the campsite from the trailhead, but its absolutely worth it. The campground is flat & has enough room for a couple tents. There are also good trees for hanging hammocks & clotheslines. There are two fire pits so you can have your pick depending on where you set up camp. The Dyrt camper Emily B.
Natchez Trace State Park
Enjoy a winter excursion into thegreat outdoors at Natchez Trace State Park.
This state park has three campgroundsplus a backcountry camping area. However, only two of the campgrounds remainopen year-round. These are Pine Oak Campground and Wrangler Campground, offeringa mix of tent and RV sites.
Like most state park campgrounds in Tennessee, you also have the option for winter cabin rentals. Natchez Trace State Park even has an inn for those that prefer the most comfortable lodging possible.
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Best Camping In Tennessee Locations
They call Tennessee the Volunteer state. They should call it the mountain, rivers, and waterfalls state. From the Great Smoky Mountains National Park to Memphis on the Mississippi River, there are mountains and hollows, rivers and streams and creeks, and crystalline waterfalls, sparkling in the sun. Forests grow over the hills, populated by a great variety of wildlife. And trails run through the woods and meadows and past gentle brooks, trails that are waiting for you to explore.
Tennessee is a wonderful place for camping. Weve picked out 15 sites of the best camping in Tennessee, but there are a lot more beautiful camping grounds and trails as well.
Roan Mountain State Park
Roan Mountain State Park is highamong the most beautiful places to camp in Tennessee during the winter.
Located at the base of soaring RoanMountain , the state park is a forested wonderland spanning fornearly 2,000 acres. In the winter, most of the trees lose their leaves, openingup already breathtaking views to even great distances.
Roan Mountain State Park has 107total campsites open for winter. 87 of these are RV sites with RV hookups whilethe remaining 20 are primitive tent sites. Modern cabin rentals are anotherpopular way to enjoy this Tennessee paradise.
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Best Lakes In Tennessee
Written by Catherine HawkinsJan 5, 2022
Tennessee is blessed by an abundance of lakes. Many of them are also known as reservoirsthe result of dams built on rivers, but the result is the same. Whether it’s a lake or a reservoir, locals and visitors alike flock to these larger bodies of water for recreational activities, from boating to fishing and swimming.
Although many of the state’s lakes are in remote locations, several are clustered around cities. Percy Priest, Old Hickory, and Radnor are some of the main lakes near Nashville. The first two have multiple campgrounds and day use areas, while Radnor is more of a nature preserve that is only accessible for day use. Closer to Knoxville, enjoy camping at Cherokee Lake, Douglas Lake, and Norris Dam State Park.
In Tennessee, you’ll find picturesque places where you can launch your kayak, enjoy a refreshing dip on a hot day, and lounge on the dock of the bay. From Reelfoot Lake in the northwest to Watauga Lake in the east and Tims Ford Lake in the south, discover some of the top places to visit for aquatic fun with our list of the best lakes in Tennessee.
Note: Some businesses may be temporarily closed due to recent global health and safety issues.
Savage Gulf State Natural Area
Savage Gulf covers over 15,000 acres of hills, canyons rimmed by limestone cliffs, rivers, and a multitude of waterfalls. It is some of the best camping in Tennessee. Many isolated camping areas are located within the Savage Gulf State Natural Area. Campsites are primitive without electricity or water but the sites are close to areas of incredible natural beauty.
Hiking and biking trails from novice to expert meander through the recreational area. Besides spectacular waterfalls, the Stone Door is a breath-taking geological feature. A crack, 10 feet high, opens into a limestone cavern running 100 feet into the cliff.
- Picnic tables near parking
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Smoky Bear Campground: Gatlinburg
A perfect rating of 10s across the board from Good Sam RV Club and tons of area attractions make Smoky Bear Campground a great RV park. Sites are shaded, roomy and come with full utility hookups for all your creature comforts sites also include picnic tables, fire rings, and Wi-Fi access. All dirty after a day on the trail? No worries as Smoky Bear has plenty of hot showers and laundry facilities.
The clubhouse has a full kitchen available for public use, an RV and camp store for supplies as well as group pavilions.
Gatlinburg is a great city for the outdoorsy types. Americas most visited National Park, Great Smoky Mountain National Park is right around the corner along with charming Gatlinburg itself, full of unique attractions.
Take a drive down to see the splendid Tennessee Aquarium in Chattanooga or relax in Smoky Bears hot tubs after a long day.
Tennessee is known for three things: Music, nature, and history. The Volunteer State is filled with adventure for solo travelers, families, or anyone looking to get a taste of everything the south has to offer. Consider RVing to one of the above five RV parks and get a taste of what Tennessee offers travelers year-round.
Looking For The Best Places To Camp In Tennessee
Youre in the right place! In this guide, we will be covering the following:
- The 10 best TN campsites
- Run-down of the amenities available at each campground
- From State Parks to hiking trails What activities you should try when camping in Tenn.
Tennessee is a southeastern U.S. state that is often referred to as the birthplace of country music. The Volunteer State is landlocked and bordered by eight other states. The climate here is mainly humid and subtropical, although if you travel up into the Appalachian Mountains, youll find cooler, fresher temperatures.
As well as lovely year-round weather, theres natural beauty in staggering amounts here. Camping devotees can choose from spending their vacation in a primitive tent under the stars or relaxing in an RV on a campground with full amenities. There are also free dispersed camping sites scattered right across state parks and other areas of the state.
You can head to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park to get back to nature or enjoy some fantastic fishing along the mighty Mississippi River. If you love culture and history, check out the historic town of Nashville, and if backpacking is your bag, why not go hiking along the Appalachian Trail?
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Great Smoky Mountain National Park
Straddling the border of Tennessee and North Carolina is the Great Smoky Mountain National Park, which is the most visited national park in the States. Biking, hiking, fishing and camping are among the many leisure activities available within the grounds of the park, while Cades Cove which we will come to later in this list is the single most frequented destination in the national park. Horseback Riding and picnicking are among the most popular activities in the park, which has two main visitors centers: Sugarlands Visitors Center and Oconaluftee Visitor Center.
Great Destinations For Fall Camping
Michael De Young/Getty
Fall is one of the absolute best times to go camping. Not only is the summer heat quickly fading from memory, but the landscapes are painted with vibrant colors as the leaves make their annual change from green to gold, crimson, and orange. The crisp autumn nights are perfect for gathering around a campfire and then later snuggling inside a warm sleeping bag. Best of all, many of the trails and campsite are far less crowded than they are during the warmer months of the year, making the backcountry a bit quieter and more enjoyable.
If you’re planning a camping trip this autumn, we have some suggestions on where you should go, no matter which part of the country you live in. Read on for our selections of the best camping destinations in the U.S. for the coming fall.
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Badlands National Park South Dakota
Don’t underestimate the beauty of the Badlands. The climate may be rough, but it’s still gorgeous. Between the many rock formations you’ll see there, you’ll also find prairies and places to peek at ancient fossils. There are two choices of campgrounds: Cedar Pass , and Sage Creek . Trails and campgrounds in the north unit of the park are open, but the visitor center and the south unit of the park remain closed.
Rock Island State Park
Rock Island State Park is great toexplore at any time of the year, but its a truly special place for wintercamping in Tennessee.
It has two campgrounds but just 20 total campsites in the main campground are open year-round. The year-round campsites all have full RV hookups, although they can also be used by intrepid tent campers. Several cabin rentals are also available for those that prefer glamping in the winter.
One of the best reasons to camp atRock Island State Park in the winter is for the silence and solitude. In thecoldest part of the winter, theres even the chance to see frozen waterfalls.
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The 10 Best Weekend Backpacking Trips In Tennessee
Surrounded by no fewer than three national forests to the south and east Tennessee is a backpackers paradise, with a backcountry trip to suit every experience level. From the well-traveled trails of the most popular park in the nation to the lesser-known pathways of state parks and beyond, the home of country music seems to know what its singing about. After all, when it comes to natural spaces vast enough to explore for days on end, country is one thing the Volunteer State has in spades.