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Where to View the Leaves in Tennessee

September 1, 2020  |  Permalink

Leaf change is one of our favorite times of the year. It’s the last burst of energy before a deep, wintry sleep. Many of our visitors share this passion. We receive phone calls and emails every year from guests trying to plan their visits around the peak viewing times. That’s why we thought this map from was so great. It shows the projected time in each area of the United States for viewing the changing foliage. While it is just an estimate based on historic data, you can use this map to plan your trips to some of the parks below:

Click the image to view the interactive map at


Fall foliage map 2020

East Tennessee

Roan Mountain photo from James Tinch

Roan Mountain State Park

Seeing the fall colors splashed across the Blue Ridge Mountains is the pinnacle experience for leaf viewing in Tennessee. Cabins nestled in the woods of Roan Mountain State Park provide a great home base for fall leaf viewing. (Photo Credit: James Tinch)


Other Notable Parks:

Cumberland Plateau

Cumberland Mountain State Park

This park is one of the oldest in our system, and boasts an architecture and layout that is perfect for enjoying the fall. Located just minutes off I-40 in Crossville, visitors can enjoy a weekend by the lake in one of the cabins or a round of golf at our Jack Nicklaus-designed course. The park’s best-known landmark is a stone dam/bridge that is the largest masonry structure ever built by the CCC. This bridge, and Byrd Lake in the middle of the park, make for some inspiring fall photography.


Other Notable Parks:

•        Fall Creek Falls State Park

•        Frozen Head State Park

•        Standing Stone State Park

Middle Tennessee

Montgomery Bell State Park

Located just 40 minutes west of Nashville, this densely wooded park has hiking, golfing, lake access and mountain bike trails to support a wide variety of outdoor interests. There are campsites, cabins, and lodge rooms that make it an ideal destination for every type of traveler.


Other Notable Parks:

•          Radnor Lake State Park

•          Tims Ford State Park

West Tennessee

Natchez Trace State Park

Located almost directly between Nashville and Memphis along I-40, this park sits within a 48,000-acre state forest. There are 13 miles of hiking trails within the park, and a 40-mile overnight trail that weaves through the state forest. Visitors can stay at the park Lodge, but there are also cabins and campsites. There are a wide range of activities to do, including fishing in the park lakes, mountain biking and horseback riding on more than 250 miles of public trails. If you’re looking for a wilderness adventure this fall, Natchez Trace is the park for you.


Other Notable Park:

•          Meeman-Shelby Forest State Park

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