Get Out & Play: In our state parks

Carol EvansUncategorized

Does it get any better than having America’s most visited National Park in our backyard and 54 state parks in Tennessee? Even more inspiring, there are five state parks located within a one-hour drive of Knoxville! When you make your weekend plans, stay close to home and take advantage of the breathtaking outdoors that East Tennessee offers and add a visit to one of these beautiful state parks.


Norris Dam State Park is located on the shores of Norris Lake and features 19 historic cabins that are available for overnight rental. Or you can hike along the 15 miles of trails ranging from easy to difficult. You can be a frequent visitor with only a 29-minute drive from downtown!

Big Ridge State Park, also on the banks of Norris Lake is just 35 minutes from Knoxville. The heavily forested 3,687-acre park on the Appalachian Ridge is a great place to hike along the lake and ridgelines. This weekend, you can join the Saturday morning run at Big Ridge State Park at 9a.m. Hosted by the Big Ridge Run Club, it’s a run for all ages and levels of ability.

Frozen Head State Park is most well-known for its uncut, frontier land and giant sandstone rock formations. The 24,000-acre park of wilderness has over 50 miles or trails to explore on the Cumberland Plateau, just one hour and two minutes from Knoxville.

An hour outside of Knoxville, Panther Creek State Park has a little bit of everything with 30-plus miles of hiking and biking trails, dedicated horse trails, and a view of Cherokee Lake that will not disappoint.

Right in Knoxville’s backyard, Seven Islands State Birding Park is the epitome of natural beauty. The peninsula features eight miles of trails, gorgeous views of the Smoky Mountains and a birding habitat like nowhere else you will encounter in Tennessee.

Get out and play at our Tennessee State Parks this weekend and you’ll be in for some incredible experiences and memories!

Visit Outdoor Knoxville for a full calendar of upcoming events and for more information on these state parks.

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