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profile member asked on Jun 6, 2014

Bus tour to a national park

I don´t drive but would like to visit one of the national parks in Tennessee, close to Nashville. Will be staying at a hotel in Nashville a few days in late July.

Are there any single day bus tour to any of these state parks? [original link]

Which park are the most notable and the one that you would recomend?

Nashville

10 Answers


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answered on 6/6/14 by
a VT member from Long Island

There are no National Parks fully in Tennessee. Mammoth Caves is in Kentucky Great Smokey Mountains is partially in the state. There are 2 entry points on the Tennessee side. Townsend and the more popular Gatlinburg entrance.
I don't drive either, so you would need to get there and then take one of the local operators into the park proper. They run 2 tours, including Cades Cove.


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answered on 6/6/14 by
a VT member from Franklin

And, the Great Smoky Mountains National Park is not exactly close - it's a 3.5-4 hour drive from Nashville. Totally worth the drive, and beautiful, but plan on spending the night, since I'm sure you don't want to just drive there, look at it, and turn back around...

Mammoth Caves is more do-able as it is about 1.5 hours away from Nashville - I have done it as a day trip many times.


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answered on 6/6/14 by
a VT member from Long Island

But remember, the key factor is Johan doesn't drive. So this has to be taken into account.


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answered on 6/6/14 by
a VT member from Franklin

That's right. I saw an advert flyer for a shuttle service that included sightseeing. Give a call to "Say Where..." shuttle service. It mentioned trips to Jack Daniels Distillery, so they may have something going to Mammoth Caves. (859) 221-5328


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answered on 6/6/14 by
a VT member from Franklin

The link Johan provided shows Radnor Lake State Park - that is a beautiful area for hiking and bird watching - my husband and I go there often. Highly recommended. :-)


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answered on 6/6/14 by
a VT member from Atlanta

Unfortunately here in the U.S. unless you are in a major city the public transportation options are very few and far between . This is mostly a 'drive yourself' culture.


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answered on 6/6/14 by
a VT member from Long Island

You've got that right Dave.


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answered on 6/6/14 by
a VT member from Stockholm

Thank´s for your answers. That's what I was afraid of, that you have to drive a car to get somewhere outside the cities. In Europe it is wery common that you can take a guided tour outside a big city and see more of the surrondings, like Lisbon, which I visited earlier this year.

So I guess I will be stuck in Nashville, which is not necessarily a bad thing :)


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answered on 6/12/14 by
a VT member from Franklin

hello, johan --

altho the title of your Q asked about NATIONAL parks, the text asked about both national AND state parks, so i'm offering some info below on STATE and CITY parks in or near nashville.

i'm not sure where you are staying in nashville, but if you can get downtown, you can reserve a guided tour thru the bicentennial mall state park, [original link], or simply wander thru it by yourself.

radnor lake state park, [original link], is less than half an hour south of nashville and might be worth a cab ride.

long hunter state park, [original link], is in hermitage, about half an hour east of nashville, and might also be worth a cab ride.

you might call these three parks directly to see if they know of any regular bus tours that go there. also take a look at this web page, [original link], to estimate taxi fares.

there are also many city parks in davidson county, where nashville is. if you can locate on a map where you are staying, take a look at [original link], and you can find parks that are within walking distance or that might be worth a cab ride (click on the little circles near you, and a popup will show you which park it is and how to get there).

the buses might also run near some of these parks; take a look at this interesting web page, [original link], that will give you explicit instructions on what buses to take once you have an address for where you want to go!

i hope you have a wonderful time!

-- susie margaret


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answered on 6/16/14 by
a VT member from Franklin

hello again, johan --

i've discovered two other ways you might be able to visit parks and to get around nashville in general -- for short errands, a rental bike-share program called "B-cycle," [original link]; for longer rides, a free bike-share program called "greenBikes," [original link].

check these out!

-- susie margaret

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