With its beautiful scenery and vibrant culture, Chattanooga is a great vacation destination! In this Tennessee vacation guide, we’ve listed these state parks near Chattanooga, TN, that you will truly enjoy, especially if you’re looking for an adventurous escape from city life.
State parks offer an exciting and unique way to explore the outdoors, with plenty of activities you and your family can enjoy. South Cumberland State Park is a great option for camping trips or day hikes, but if you prefer water-based fun, head to Hiwassee State Scenic River State Park, where you can canoe or kayak down the Hiwassee River.
Whether you’re looking for an adrenaline-filled mountain biking trip, a peaceful camping experience, or something in between, there’s sure to be a State Park that fits your needs.
Check out our top picks for state parks near Chattanooga, TN.
What Is Tennessee’s Newest State Park?
Savage Gulf State Park is Tennessee’s newest state park, and not only does it offer a variety of activities for adventurers, but it is also Tennessee’s most scenic wilderness area.
The park contains nearly 19,000 acres of rugged terrain, majestic waterfalls, breathtaking vistas, and historical locations, such as the Stage Coach Road.
Hiking is a popular activity, with over 50 miles of trail ranging from easy walks to strenuous off-trail scrambles.
It has four trailhead parking lots – the Stone Door trailhead being the one that offers restroom facilities, a picnic area, a picnic pavilion, and a ranger station.
The scenic overlooks offer stunning views of the surrounding area, including one with a view over 100 miles across the state.
Are state parks in TN free?
Yes, all 57 state parks in Tennessee are completely free to enter and enjoy. While there may be certain activities within the parks that require permits or reservations, general access to the parks is always free.
This means that visitors can go hiking, have a picnic, or simply enjoy the natural environment without having to pay an entrance fee.
So while there is no mandatory fee for visiting a state park in TN, your donation can make a difference in maintaining and preserving these natural spaces for future generations.
Smoky Mountains 7-Day Itinerary
I understand how difficult it can be to plan a trip, especially if it’s your first time going. That’s why I created this 7-day itinerary for the Smoky Mountains. It outlines all of the best places to go in the area and comes with insider tips that will save you a lot of stress–trust me, they saved me when I was planning my own trip!
- Our 7-day itinerary takes you to the best places in the Smoky Mountains.
- You’ll get to see all the best sights and attractions with driving directions
- The itinerary is designed to show you the most scenic routes.
- Packing Checklist for every season.
- You’ll have everything you need to make the most of your trip.
- Insider Tips!
Here’s a quick overview of our Smoky Mountains 7-Day Itinerary.
- Day 1: Cades Cove Loop
- Day 2: Rich Mountain Road
- Day 3: Cataloochee Valley
- Day 4: Newfound Gap Road
- Day 5: Roaring Fork Motor Trail
- Day 6: Little River Road
- Day6: Foothills Parkway
Download This FREE Smoky Mountains Checklist
- Pigeon Forge Vacation Guide
- Gatlinburg Vacation Guide
- 125+ Things to Do in the Smoky Mountains
- Great Smoky Mountains Family Vacations Facebook Group
MORE RELATED RESOURCES
Want to travel around Chattanooga but don’t want to bring your RV? Here are the top RV rentals in Chattanooga for a more convenient trip.
Also, you might want to check out these National Park scavenger hunt printables and let the children explore nature and teach them about the environment.