Between Nashville, Pigeon Forge, and Gatlinburg, Tennessee has a ton of touristy hotspots. While hitting up the tourist town attractions can be fun, it isn't always fun for your wallet. But you don't have to spend an arm and a leg to have a good time and see some incredible sights. You might be happy to hear that there are plenty of free things to do in Tennessee that are just as exciting.

What some might not know is that all 56 state parks in Tennessee are free to visit and explore. Bringing a picnic and hiking to a scenic overlook will give you a relaxing way to soak up the state's natural beauty, while also keeping things affordable.

Aside from the state parks, these seven activities are sure to bring you some joy and adventure, whether you're planning a whole vacation or a quick little weekend getaway.

Knoxville Market Square 

Address: 600 James Robertson Pkwy., Nashville, TN

Why You Need To Go: This is a great way to get outdoors and see the town of Knox and window-shop. If you have a little cash to spend, there are farmers markets, boutiques and little eateries here that won't disappoint. 

Gatlinburg Scenic Overlook 

Address: Directions — Gatlinburg Scenic Overlook

Why You Need To Go: You'll get some of the best views of Gatlinburg at this overlook. The best time to visit might be during the fall season because the trees will be vibrantly colored orange and red, making for an even more scenic view. 


Walnut Street Bridge 

Address: 1 Walnut St, Chattanooga, TN

Why You Need To Go: A great place for a scenic stroll, you'll have stunning views of the Tennessee River and plenty of opportunities to up your Instagram feed game.


Blue Hole Falls

Address: Bluehole Falls, TN

Why You Need To Go: This hike will lead you to a waterfall and a pool of shimmering turquoise water. The trail is a short and sweet half-mile loop, great for all skill levels.


Stones River National Park and Cemetery 

Address: 3501 Old Nashville Hwy., Murfreesboro, TN

Why You Need To Go: This one's for you history buffs. Wander through rows of gravestones and admire monuments that honor the fallen from the Battle of Stones River. Located within the national battlefield, you'll literally be walking on a piece of history. Beautiful trails wind through here as well.


Crystal Shrine Grotto 

Address: 5668 Poplar Ave., Memphis, TN

Why You Need To Go: This memorial garden and man-made all crystal cave will mesmerize you, you won't believe it's free.


Backyard Terror's Dinosaur Park 

Address: 1065 Walnut Grove Rd., Bluff City, TN

Why You Need To Go: For all those pre-historic lovers out there, this mountain attraction has over 40 life-sized replicas of dinosaurs and even informational posts to go with each one.

With these fun and free activities, your wallet will be thanking you — and you might just find that you can have the time of your life without spending a dime.


We strongly advise that before you go swimming or visit any location, you check the most recent updates on potential hazards, security, water quality, and closures. If you do plan to visit a location, respect the environment.


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