Local’s Guide to the Best Hiking Near Nashville. When considering things to do in Nashville, hiking might not be the first thing that comes to mind, but there are plenty of opportunities to get some exercise and stretch your legs in and around the city.
Percy and Edwin Warner Parks (also known as Warner Parks), which are located just a few miles outside of the city center, are home to some of the most well-known and easily accessible green spaces for hiking paths.
Under the umbrella term “greenways,” the city’s extensive trail system can be found grouped into a network. Shelby Bottoms, Stones River, and Richland Creek are among the greenways that are included on our list of the top hiking paths.
Consider getting away to one of the parks immediately outside of the city, such as Beaman Park or Bells Bend Park, for a non-urban hiking experience.
The four state parks that are on our list may be reached within a half-hour to an hour’s drive of Nashville.
These parks offer additional opportunities for hiking and connecting with nature. Take in the breathtaking landscape, which features limestone cliffs and sinkholes, as well as the glistening waterways (lakes, rivers, and creeks).
Whenever human activities are kept to a minimal, wild animals and birds will always be more abundant. Embrace every opportunity you get to interact with these magnificent beings.
Local’s Guide to the Best Hiking Near Nashville 2023
8. Radnor Lake Trail
Locals in the Nashville area consider Radnor Lake to be one of the best places to go hiking. This walk by the water is only a short drive from Nashville and it features breathtaking scenery.
In addition to that, there is a large amount of local fauna to look at. The path is level and not too difficult to follow.
It is an excellent option for households that contain children as well as for individuals who intend to take their canine companions on a stroll.
Because of the popularity of this hiking trail in Nashville, it can be challenging to find a parking spot there.
If you want to secure a seat, you should either get there as soon as the doors open in the morning or wait until the early morning mob has dispersed.
7. Burgess Falls Trail
Although this hike is not very long and it is necessary to drive more than an hour outside of Nashville to get there, it is well worth the time and effort.
Visitors will get to see four different waterfalls along the River Trail. Each succeeding one is even more remarkable than the one that came before it. The most impressive falls are those that drop from a height of more than 135 feet.
There are a number of waterfall treks in the vicinity of Nashville, but this one is unique in that it offers a view of four different waterfalls.
The region sees an increase in foot traffic, particularly on weekends and during the summer months. If you want to have the trail and Burgess Falls all to yourself, you should make your hiking plans for the morning.
6. Narrows of the Harpeth
This hike is a great way to experience both the natural beauty and cultural significance of the area around Nashville, given it is only a short drive away.
Walk along the banks of the Harpeth River by way of the Narrows Trails. The highlight of this hike is a waterfall that can be found at the end of a tunnel that was constructed specifically for it.
In 1819, the tunnel was constructed so that an ironworks activity could make use of the power of water.
The iron forge has been gone for quite some time, but the area with the waterfall and pool that was created by the tunnel is rather popular.
5. Shelby Bottoms Greenway
The Shelby Bottoms Greenway is a trail that can be found in East Nashville. It starts at the Shelby Bottoms Nature Center and continues along the Cumberland River.
This hike is suitable for hikers of varying levels due to the paved pathway. The shaded region is home to a variety of wildlife, some of which you may be able to spot if you deviate from the main trail and travel a little distance along the more rudimentary paths.
If you want to spend time in nature without leaving the city, this hike is an excellent choice for you to consider. Local’s Guide to the Best Hiking Near Nashville
It is highly recommended that you pay a visit to the Nature Center, which features an excellent natural play area for children. In point of fact, it is included in our list of the top activities that are appropriate for families in Nashville.
4. Cummins Falls
You should go to Cummins Falls park in Cookeville if you are interested in going on an exciting hike through some lovely scenery. You may get to the base of a stunning waterfall by taking the Downstream Trail.
The landscape shifts frequently, and you’ll have to negotiate rough riverbeds, stones, and several other obstacles along the way.
The Cummins Falls walk is not an appropriate outing for younger hikers, and you should come prepared with robust footwear that can get wet.
The vista from the base of the waterfall, though, makes this journey through terrain that is sometimes hazardous and sometimes rocky more than worthwhile. If you intend to swim in the deep pools that are located at the base of the waterfall, the park strongly advises that you use a life jacket.
3. Mossy Ridge Trail
Try out the Mossy Ridge Trail at Percy Warner Park if you want to go on a real hike without having to leave the city.
You’ll have a hard time believing that you’re still in Nashville as you hike through the dense hardwood forest and up and down the hills. You should be prepared for a hike that is not very difficult but does feature some varied terrain.
It’s a doable hike for most ability levels. During your time in Nashville, this is not only a fun activity but also an excellent opportunity to escape the hustle and bustle of the city.
2. Twin Falls and Down River Trail
You’ve certainly noticed that there isn’t a shortage of stunning waterfall hikes in the area around Nashville, but you should know that each one offers a very different and distinctive experience.
At Rock Island State Park, the Downstream Trail travels over relatively flat terrain before arriving at a pair of waterfalls.
Although Twin Falls is the primary reason people visit the park, visitors may enjoy many activities besides simply the hiking paths.
It is the ideal location to begin the day with a leisurely stroll to the waterfalls, followed by an afternoon of swimming, kayaking, or fishing in the surrounding area.
1. Volunteer Trail Day Loop
This hike along the shoreline of Percy Priest Lake is rated as easy to intermediate and begins and ends at Long Hunter State Park, which is a short drive away.
The beautiful landscape features dense hardwood trees, rugged bluffs, and a secluded cove. This is an excellent hike that can be completed in under an hour from Nashville.
This hike is perfect for those looking for a way to spend the morning or afternoon in the great outdoors.
Be sure to keep an eye out for and follow the markers that indicate the day loop trail. In such case, you run the risk of spending the night at the overnight site, from which it is a 5.5-mile journey back to the beginning.
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