Last Updated on January 14, 2023 by Allison Lancaster
Fall is coming soon and with that comes cooler temperatures and the beautiful color-changing fall foliage. Tennessee offers lots of awe-inspiring scenery during the fall months, as well as fun family adventures. Here are 12 things to do this Fall in Tennessee with your loved ones.
12 Things to Do This Fall in Tennessee
Cades Cove is one of the most visited national parks in the United States and particularly if you visit in the fall you will know why. From late October through November the park is bursting with color. Not only is Cades Cove full of natural beauty but there are many historic landmarks to explore as well. The best way to see Cades Cove is to take Cades Cove Loop Road, keep an eye out for places to stop along the way including historical cabins, churches, and mills.
Anakeesta & AnaVista Observation Tower
The Annakeesta and AnnaVista Observation Tower in Gatlinburg, Tennessee is the perfect place to spend a fall day with the family. Treetop skywalks, ziplining, a multi-story tree house, a mountain coaster, and gem mining are just a few of the activities that you can participate in, all while enjoying the views of the Great Smoky Mountains.
Prentice Cooper State Park
Prentice Cooper State Park in Chattanooga is not as popular as some of the other parks in the state which can make it a great place to see the fall foliage while avoiding the larger crowds. You can explore the park also known as the Grand Canyon of Tennessee by hiking, or horseback riding.
Dollywood is a 150-acre theme park, located in Pigeon Forge with more than 50 rides including 9 roller coasters, and an authentic coal-fired steam train that travels around the park. In addition to great rides, food, and music you will also find lots of crafts and learn more about Tennessee’s rich cultural traditions, and the life and history of the park’s namesake Dolly Parton.
Nashville is the home of country music, bright lights, and friendly people. There are plenty of attractions to see here from the Grand Ole Opry House, the Ryman Auditorium, and the Country Music Hall of Fame. You’ll also find amazing food, and shops, and who knows you may even spot a country music star!
Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum
Looking for a fall adventure that you won’t find just anywhere? Then make sure that you head over to the Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum in Chattanooga. Tennessee has a rich history of train travel and you can still experience it today, from a short 65-minute round trip to an extended five to six-hour ride. This is a perfect fall excursion to see the beautiful colors of fall out of the windows. Make sure that you check out the museum while you are here as well.
Lookout Mountain in Chattanooga is home to the Incline Railway, Ruby Falls, Rock City, and some gorgeous views. No matter what attraction you decide to see, you and the family are sure to have an amazing time in the cool crisp fall air. Note, that the Ruby Falls attraction does require advance reservations.
Clingman’s Dome is the highest point of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and the highest point in Tennessee at 6,643 feet which makes it the perfect place to take in the scenic fall views. The Appalachian Trail crosses Clingman’s Dome so make sure to keep your eyes peeled for hikers!
Cherokee National Forest
Cherokee National forest at the foot of the Appalachian Mountains spans North Carolina and Tennessee, and it is the perfect place to take in the fall colors and cooler temperatures. There are campgrounds available and activities include hiking, fishing, rock climbing, and bird watching.
Fall Creek Falls State Park
If you would like to see some waterfalls alongside all of the beautiful fall colors then head on over to Fall Creek Falls State Park. Home to the 256-foot Fall Creek Falls in addition to three other waterfalls the Cane Creek Falls, Cane Creek Cascades, and the Piney Creek Falls. With more than 50 miles of hiking trails available this park is the perfect place for some fall exploration.
Newfound Gap Road
Newfound Gap Road is the 31-mile main thoroughfare that goes through the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The road climbs in elevation with lots of different types of trees and colorful foliage. There are lots of pull-offs where you can park to take in the scenery and take pictures. In addition to the beautiful fall colors, be on the lookout for wildlife too. You just might see turkey, deer, and black bears. Keep a healthy distance from the bears!
Roan Mountain State Park
Roan Mountain State Park is a peaceful place to enjoy the wonderful colors that fall in Tennessee has to offer without a lot of crowds. There are more than 12 miles of hiking trails and ranger-led hikes, and if you venture a little way outside of the park you can walk up the Appalachian Trail for a bit.
Tennessee has something to offer everyone. If you just want to check out the amazing fall foliage and colors there is lots of natural beauty to be found, if you are looking for attractions to keep the family entertained there are plenty of those as well.