Updated: Jul 26
Whether you’re a fan of water recreation or just enjoy hiking and nature, the Tennessee River offers abundant opportunities like boating, kayaking, fishing, swimming, hiking, bird watching and wildlife photography. Starting near Knoxville, where the Holston and French Broad rivers merge, the Tennessee River ends at the Ohio River in Paducah, Kentucky. Also flowing in Alabama and Mississippi, the Tennessee River has an eastern and a western section in Tennessee.
Photo: Odinn Media
When you’re ready for a day trip, weekend, or a longer vacation, check out these places to visit on the Tennessee River.
Chattanooga Riverwalk in Hamilton County
The Chattanooga Riverwalk is a must-visit along the eastern section of the Tennessee River. The paved path spans 16.1 miles along the river, with additional trails reaching into Chattanooga. The Riverwalk includes two boat ramps for exploring the river. Not only does the Tennessee Riverwalk bring you close to nature and let you enjoy the beautiful scenery, but it gives you the perfect opportunities to try local cuisine and immerse yourself in culture. Take a stroll toward the Hunter Museum of American Art and the Bluff View Art District.
Clifton Marina in Wayne County
Clifton Marina and RV Park is among the places to visit on the Tennessee River in its western section, located in Clifton. Launch your boat, pack your fishing pole and bring your camper along to the RV park, just off the shoreline with 17 spots, full amenities and a view of the river. The marina also offers pontoon rentals.
Photo: Clifton Marina & RV Park
Have a meal on the riverfront and enjoy the sunset at Clifton Marina Bar and Grill, with a full breakfast, lunch and dinner menus. The dinner menu features rack of lamb with mint jelly, shrimp skewers and red snapper platter. Clifton Marina and RV Park has packed its schedule with events, so check the calendar when planning your trip. While you’re in the area, visit the Stribling Museum, home of Clifton native T.S. Stribling, Pulitzer Prize winner.
Mousetail Landing State Park, Perry County, Tennessee
Just north of Wayne County, Perry County makes the list of places to visit on the Tennessee River. The 1,247-acre Mousetail Landing State Park sits on the east banks of the Tennessee River, providing opportunities for hiking and biking, as well as enjoying the river swimming, paddling, boating and fishing. Fishing is one of the most popular activities on the river and is permitted anywhere you can reach water. You can expect to catch bass, catfish, crappie, stripe and bream along the banks.
Photo: Town of Linden
Mousetail Landing Park boasts a 21-site primitive campground on the banks of the Tennessee River as well as a campground with a modern bathhouse, laundromat and electricity and water hookups. Take advantage of visiting the area and explore Linden, just about 20 minutes from Mousetail Landing Park. The peaceful, art-loving town teems with shopping, arts and music experiences.