Natchez Trace Parkway Planning

natchez trace brochure cover

The table below have my planned stops when I was still researching my trip south down the Trace.  As of October 27, 2014, I’m there!  Here’s the link to the index page on the website where I’ll be posting lots of pictures and details of this journey.

Malia’s Miles – Natchez Trace Parkway

Comments below and tips would still be most welcome and appreciated!  I’m starting to get emails with suggestions, but if I could get them in Comments below, that would be more helpful to have everything in one place.

Stop Milepost Notes
Nashville  444 Start of Parkway heading south
Birdsong Hollow and Double Arch Bridge 438 Views of the nation’s first double arch bridge spans 1,648 feet and stands 155 feet tall.
Leiper’s Fork – TN 428 Stop at Puckett’s Grocery for country style meal.
Gordon House and Duck River Ferry 408 Built in 1818, the Gordon House is one of only two surviving historic buildings on the Parkway
Jackson Falls 405 The short but steep trail  to views of Jackson Falls, making it one of the most popular walks along the parkway.
Fall Hollow Waterfall 392 Just off the Parkway, a path and a set of wooden bridges take you across the small creeks before they begin their tumbling descent. The easy part of the path ends at an observation deck where you can look down at the largest waterfall.
Meriwether Lewis – TN  386 57 miles from start – Info center, National Monument and NP Campground – primitive, first-come, first served
Shiloh Nat’l Military Park – TN/MS 370 32 miles from Parkway on US-72.  Site of the bloody April 1862 battle.
Wichahpi Commemorative Stone Wall – AL 338 The largest memorial to a Native American woman in the United States, in memory of a Yuchi Indian who was part of the American Indian Removal to Oklahoma.
Rock Spring Nature Trail – AL 330 A short half mile loop trail past Colbert Creek to explore a small natural spring as it bubbles forth from the ground.
Colbert Ferry – AL 327 A ferry operated from 1800 to 1819, famous for charging Andrew Jackson $75,000 to ferry his Tennessee Army across the river.
Tuscumbia – AL 320 Settled in 1816. Helen Keller birthplace. Spring Park looks wonderful – waterfall downtown.  Nearby city park (McFarland) with CG in Florence (205-760-6416)
Freedom Hills Overlook – AL 317 Highest point on the Trace.
Tishomingo State Park – MS 304 Per RV Wanderlust, stay here and don’t miss the swinging bridge.
Pharr Mounds – MS 287 Ceremonial site and burial grounds built between 1 and 200 A.D.
Brice’s Cross Roads National Battlefield – MS 282 A Confederate victory, also called the Battle of Tishomingo Creek. Side trip about 15 miles from the Trace.  Visitor Center at US 45 and MS 370.
Confederate soldiers grave 269 Short walk to graves of 13 Confederate soldiers.
Tupelo Visitors Center 266 Parkway headquarters – Orientation program, 20 min. self-guided trail, side trip to Brices Crossroads National Battlefield.  MP 259.7 is exit to Tupelo to explore town (Elvis birthplace, Tupelo National Battlefield)
Chickasaw Village Site 262 Describes daily live at village.
Bynum Mounds 232 Built 2,000 years ago, exhibits describe life & culture of prehistoric people who once lived here.
Jeff Busby NP CG 193 18 sites – free, first-come, first served (no hookups)
French Camp 181 Discover how early American life used to be in this quaint log cabin village.  Eat at Council House Cafe.
Cypress Swamp 122 Beautiful short walk.
Boyd Mounds 106 There was a house here around 500 A.D. – 100’ long mound, remains of 41 burials found.
Brasher’s Stand and Old Trace 104 In 1806 the stand was advertised as “a house of entertainment in the wilderness.”
Timberlake CG 102 On the Ross Barnett Reservoir – recommended by MS RV group on FB.
Cowles Mead Cemetery 88 Only a small cemetery remains of large estate that burned during the Civil War.
Lower Choctaw Boundary 61 This line divided lands taken by new settlers of the MS country from lands of the Choctaw Nation.
Rocky Springs NP CG 55 22 sites – free, first-come, first served (no hookups).  A short trail from the upper parking area leads to the old town site. Settled in the late 1790s, the town grew from a watering place along the Natchez Trace – by 1860, over 2500 people lived in this area. Civil War, yellow fever, destructive crop insects and poor land management brought an end to this rural community.
Sunken Trace 42 One of the most photographed stops – walk along original Natchez Trace.
Windsor Ruins 40 About 10 miles SW of Port Gibson. If heading south, leave Trace at about MM 40, take loop to the ruins and then return at about MM 30. Built just before the Civil War, it was one of the largest plantations in the area but it burned down in 1890 – 23 of the columns, balustrades and iron stairs still remain.
Old Country Store Restaurant 30 18801 Highway 61 South, Lorman, MS – just a bit off the Trace at about MM 30. Per Jan, a Not to Be Missed eatin’ place!
Mount Locust 15 Built about 1780, one of the oldest buildings in Mississippi. It was both a working plantation and an inn and is the only surviving inn of the more than 50 once on the Trace.
Natchez State Park 10 10 miles from downtown Natchez
Emerald Mound 10 Second largest mound in North America built and used during the Mississippian period between 1250 and 1600 A.D

Natchez Attractions:

Natchez Mansions:

Following four recommended by Jan Waggoner:

Longwood – started in 1861 – six-story 30,000 square foot mansion – never finished – octagonal shape.  Per Natchez Ghosts, haunted.

Magnolia Hall (1858) Greek Revival architecture – in town mansion.  Per Ghost in My Suitcase, haunted.

Stanton Hall (1857) also Greek Revival style – quite elegant for its time period.

Auburn Antebellum Home (1812) has unusual floating spiral staircase between the first and second floors.

Rosalie Mansion – Interesting love story.

Nearby Sights:

Old paddlewheeler Mamie S. Barrett – Per Darrell Goza on FB, see his post on December 28, 2012 about it – wonderful!  In Deer Park, LA, about 20 miles from Natchez.

Eats/Drinks:

Pig Out BBQ on Canal is a local hangout with good pulled pork BBQ (Jan).

Under the Hill Saloon on Silver Street by the river is worth a visit just for its quirkiness – it’s a bar and upstairs in a small hotel (Jan).

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Malia’s Miles.com full coverage of the Trace trip.

  • Email from my buddy, Grant: You may want to program in a stop at the
    Pickwick Lake area. There is a great CORE park below the dam and from that location you can easily visit the Shiloh Battlefield and Corinth, MS. This area has some similarities to the Townsend area from which you depart. The State of Mississippi has some wonderful camping parks and one comes to mind just before Natchez, not far from the Parkway. Oh, and do not miss the Battle of Atlanta Cyclorama while in Atlanta.

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  • Marianne

    Natchez state park is a great park and close to the town of Natchez. We spent Christmas at the park 2 yrs. ago and it was beautiful. Actually we were the only campers in the park besides two darling feral cats. And they have great laundry facilities! We loved the town of Natchez and the food! Lol!

    • Hey Marianne, I just got to Natchez area yesterday and opted for Riverview RV Park in Vidalia for a couple of reasons, but intend to go check out the state park anyway. It really has been wonderful traveling the Trace this season since I’ve found it to be uncrowded everywhere I’ve been since October – and I heard it was really crowded during leaf changing season, but that certainly hasn’t been the case for me. Not complaining! 🙂