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4 Ways to Enjoy Nature Within Minutes of Downtown Knoxville

scenic view of knoxville

As the temperatures outside head steadily upward and the trees begin to bud and blossom, your family is ready to shake off the semi-hibernation of winter and get outside. Fortunately, you have many options when it comes to activities in Knoxville.

Here’s a small sampling of memory-making places to go and things to do in Knoxville that are a short distance away from downtown.

Sequoyah Park

Savor the season at Sequoyah Park, with 87 acres of natural beauty to enjoy. Follow the bike route that rolls around Cherokee Boulevard and connects to the Third Creek Greenway, or go on a hike on the many miles of trails along the river and through open meadows.

Another relaxing, yet physical, activity is paddling the almost four miles up the Tennessee River to the downtown riverfront. You can also squeeze in a walk down memory lane while at the park by viewing the charming historic homes that date back as far as the 1920s.

Ijams Nature Center

If you think you need to travel far from Knoxville to become immersed in the great outdoors, think again. At the 275-acre Ijams Nature Center (part of the Knoxville Urban Wilderness), you’ll think you’re worlds away from it all while being just a short distance from downtown.

There are almost four miles of paved trails and nearly 12 miles of natural trails, where you can stay fit through hiking and bicycling. If you’re looking for an aquatic adventure, take a canoe or kayak and head to beautiful and serene Mead’s Quarry Lake.

Discover more activities for your family to enjoy during your next trip to Knoxville.

Marble Springs Historic Site and Farmers Market

The Knoxville area is brimming with history and natural beauty, and Marble Springs Historic Site is the perfect spot to absorb both. This was a home of John Sevier, the first governor of Tennessee and a hero of the Battle of Kings Mountain during the Revolutionary War.

While visiting this beautiful area, you can tour historic buildings such as a tavern, cabin, loom house, spring house and smoke house. Marble Springs is much more than a historic spot, though. It’s also home to a spring farmers market that sells fresh food and other items from local vendors.

The South Loop

Get ready for adventure less than three miles from downtown when you head over to Knoxville’s Urban Wilderness. Within this local gem is the South Loop, made up of around 50 miles of natural trails that are perfect for bicycling or hiking along riversides or through parks, forests, meadows and quarries. Whether you and your family are beginners or experts at hiking or cycling, you’ll find a path that matches your level of ability.

These are just a few of the many exciting spring activities in Knoxville you can do with your family. The area is home to many additional options, so you’ll never run out of unusual ways to stay fit and healthy.

Have you spent some time exploring Knoxville? What else would you add to this list?

Judy Wilson

Judy Wilson is a writer and editor specializing in varied content areas, including health, wellness, food, cooking and nutrition. She enjoys educating others and enabling them to lead fulfilling lives of vibrant health. You can follow Judy on Twitter @EvergreenWords.

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