From a bustling downtown to relaxing country drives framed by extravagant fall color, Clarksville, Tenn. is a favorite mid-south fall road trip. If your getaway wish-list includes off-the-beaten-path but convenient, affordable with plenty to do, natural beauty and not too crowded, Clarksville checks all your boxes.

Let these ideas inspire you to start planning today.

  1. The rural Historic Collinsville Pioneer Settlement is spread over 40 expansive acres. The 16 log structures are filled with authentic furnishings from 1840-1880. Open Friday–Sunday, May–October, tours at the site are self-guided.  Random benches and picnic tables invite you to relax and appreciate the timeless surroundings.
  2. Cooler temperatures and lower humidity mean dining outdoors becomes a pleasant experience again! Try Strawberry Alley Ale Works with a main floor balcony overlooking the Cumberland River. The vista from the patio at Liberty Park Grille includes the marina and is another favorite spot to enjoy a magnificent river sunset.
  3. Founded on the river, the city of Clarksville thrived early because of river trade. Residents and visitors alike still love the Cumberland and the many amenities it affords.  The paved Cumberland RiverWalk meanders along the rivers curves and bends and connects directly to downtown via the Upland Trail. Enjoy restaurants, a playground, swings and benches, public art and picnic areas alongside scenic river views.
  4. Follow the African American Legacy Trail, a 19-point walking and driving trail to historic sites such as the Mount Olive Cemetery and the Port Royal Benevolent Society. Learn about Olympic Gold Medalist Wilma Rudolph and others who contributed significantly to the city’s and nation’s history.
  5. Soak up the splendor of fall color along the nine-mile Clarksville Greenway. The paved trail is ideal for walking, running, biking (bring your equipment or rent on site), or skating. Hop on the converted railbed at multiple access points. Enjoy creek and river views, open fields and dense woods, bluffs, hills and long straightaways — nature at its finest! Dogs are welcome too, just make sure to keep them on a leash.
  6. Even Tennessee’s fifth-largest city still offers plenty of rural highways and country backroads. Fields are being harvested and tobacco barns can still be found firing the crop that made Clarksville one of the wealthiest cities in the nation in the mid-19th century. You can learn about how the tobacco trade influenced Clarksville’s history at the Customs House Museum and Fort Defiance Civil War Park. 
  7. Clarksville’s 34-year-old winery, six craft breweries, distillery, and meadery will all unveil new seasonal offerings in time for fall. Tennessee Valley Brewing’s fall favorite Bastogne Brown, a pecan nutbrown with a hint of vanilla and Old Glory Distilling’s Cinnamon Roll Smooth Shine are samples of what tasters can enjoy this autumn.
  8. From beginning to advanced, find your cycling thrill along one of Clarksville’s designed mountain biking trails. Rotary Park and North Ford Mountain Bike Trail offer exhilarating hills, jumps and tight switchbacks.
  9. Dunbar Cave State Park is one of Clarksville’s most popular natural wonders. The cave is settled among 144 acres with hiking trails, wildlife, and a fascinating visitor center. With a seasonal guided cave tour where it’s 58 degrees year around, you can see 14th century Mississippian art.
  10. Clarksville’s diverse population brings a surprisingly global flair to the city and its food scene. Savor authentic dishes from the Asian realm, the Mediterranean, and Europe, as well as your Southern favorites like BBQ and catfish.

Read Also: The Best Way to Choose the Right Mountain Retreat for Your Relaxing Getaway

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