Happy Tuesday, y’all!
I could not be more thrilled that school is out for the summer! Even though finals are done, I’m lucky enough to stay in Nashville for an extra week before heading home to Wisconsin. With no school to speak about, it was time for some exploring. And what better place for a pair of explorers than the Natchez Trace Parkway?
Natchez Trace is a historic road that spans from Nashville to Tupelo, Missisippi. It was used by the Native Americans as a trade route and later by settlers, slaves, traders, and soldiers. Nowadays, the 444 mile road is an incredibly beautiful drive with dozens of historic sites and attractions that are a perfect day’s adventure.
We started off the day by grabbing some doughnuts at Fox’s Donut Den. While this is not on Natchez, it is a historic and monumental in its own right because they had CRONUTS! For those of you who don’t know, this hybrid between a croissant and a doughnut is an actual piece of heaven. What a way to start the day!
Our first stop was in the historic Lieper’s Fork district which is just south of Franklin, TN. It was the epitome of a quaint Southern town and is home to the original Puckett’s Grocery, a Nashville favorite for Southern cooking.
Another stop in our journey along Natchez was Jackson Falls. Although not as big as some other waterfalls I’ve been to in Tennessee, it was really pretty and a nice break to stretch our legs.
After another hour or so, we reached the TN-AL State Line. This was significant simply because being in two states at once is a weird concept. I tried my best to pull out some artsy jump moved and halfway succeeded.
We only drove through Alabama for a short time, but had enough time to stop at a few overlooks and see some beautiful country.
After we crossed from Alabama to Mississippi, it was time for some food and some fun! We stopped in the TINY town of Tishomingo (when I mean tiny, I mean a population of 316, and home to one gas station, where is where we had lunch and also learned everything there was to know about Tishomingo). After chatting with some locals about fishing spots, we got some gear and headed out to the lakes.
Honesty hour: we didn’t catch any fish. Our fishing pole was broken about 5 minutes in. :( BUT, if you can’t catch a fish, be a fish! (I’m sure that is a saying somewhere, right?)
Mississippi has some extraordinarily beautiful lakes. The water was cold, but not too cold for a quick dip. After that it was a great drive back, and we crossed the Natchez Trace Bridge back to Nashville just as the sun was setting.
All in all, the Natchez Trace is a great day trip. It was only about a 3 hour drive on our end, with a lot of opportunities to stop and explore. The drive itself is full of winding roads and I’m sure it would be beautiful any time of year. If you’re a fan of nice drives and finding hidden gems as you go, Natchez is definitely for you.
Thanks to my fellow explorer KB for sharing this adventure with me.