10 Places in Chattanooga to See Fall Foliage

Lumberjacks Tree Service

It’s the time of year when the days are getting a little shorter, the nights a bit cooler, and the leaves are changing color. Lucky for us, we don’t have to travel far to see the beauty of nature since Chattanooga is surrounded by mountains, plateaus, and foothills. So, here are the best photo-worthy spots in the area for fantastic Fall foliage:

1. Stringers Ridge. This is a popular trail for runners, bikers, and hikers, right in the heart of Northshore. You may not see much from the road, but going through the woods on the trails is beautiful. If you choose this location, make sure you’re physically fit to handle hilly terrain, as the elevation can go north of 600 feet depending on the route you take.

2. Prentice Cooper State Forest Park. Traveling along Suck Creek Road with the river on one side and the mountain on the other is a great start to this Fall foliage journey. Driving through this state forest is beautiful, and getting out to hike it is even better. It can be extremely hilly in spots and challenging to navigate, so make sure you have proper equipment and hydration with you.

3. North Chickamauga Creek. This trail is known for is its infamous steps at the end. Once you get up there though, you can see trees for miles upon miles, all of which are coming from the view of mountains.

4. South Chickamauga Creek. The unique thing about this trail is that it’s directly off a river walk, which also has sections of trees that change colors in mid-Fall. This paved trail goes along the Tennessee River, where you can you can walk, run, bike, or skate your way through the Fall colors.

5. Enterprise South Nature Park. If you work for Volkswagen, this one will be extremely convenient for you as it is right by the plant and is another place that is also popular for those that enjoy trail running and hiking. You can also mountain bike and horseback ride on designated trails to enjoy the Fall foliage.

6. Ana Ruby Falls Recreation Area. Fair warning, if you go here on a weekend, you may be battling for parking, as the parking lot for the trail is the same as the Ruby Falls tourist attraction. However, once you get into the actual forest, not only will you see nature’s beauty in the trail itself, you’ll also enjoy viewing twin waterfalls that plunge more than 150 feet.

7. Cravens House. This site is directly above Ruby Falls, so you will see some of the same views but even more of the beauty of outdoor Chattanooga. It begins with a historical context, with Civil War cannons on site and signs that explain the significance of this location during the Battle of Lookout Mountain. You’ll be able to pull into a parking lot and tour the outside of the home, enjoy the overlook of downtown Chattanooga, and stroll the historic grounds.

8. Chickamauga Battlefield. With fifty miles of trails, this is a great spot, especially if you are a history buff. Part of the Chickamauga Battlefield includes trails and country style roads that will give you pretty foliage to look at for miles with or without getting out of your vehicle.

9. Snoopers Rock. Located within Prentice Cooper State Forest Park, you can hike or drive to this amazing Tennessee River Gorge overlook. It is a 5.9 mile out and back hike, or you can drive to the parking lot and enjoy a short walk to the overlook. Many famous Chattanooga photos are taken in this spot.

10. Coolidge Park. The difference between Coolidge Park and the rest of these options is that Coolidge Park isn’t in the woods. It is a public space in the heart of downtown Chattanooga, in the Northshore area. It runs adjacent to the Tennessee River and offers bluff views of the Hunter Museum of American Art, Bluff View Art District, and the Tennessee Aquarium. This park is directly below a half-mile long pedestrian bridge that takes you across the river. If you’re hungry, this is also a great spot to grab food as there are many nearby restaurants (and several with outdoor seating).

We hope this will help you make a plan to see the beautiful outdoors of Chattanooga while the Fall colors are in their prime.

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