October 27, 2014: The Natchez Trace Parkway trek begins today!
Here’s the planning page on my blog where I compiled all the things that looked good from my research and recommended must-sees from other folks who went before me, broken down by milepost. My trip is southbound from Tennessee. I’m going to try to see all that’s listed and hopefully more tips will come my way since I intend to take my time and not rush this much-anticipated experience.
Just like I did on the Blue Ridge Parkway, I was determined to see every single milepost possible of the 444 miles going south from Tennessee, though Alabama and into Mississippi. Whenever I had to get off for camping, gas or supplies, I came right back to where I left off so I had complete bragging rights.
I totally love feedback by Comments below, or other suggestions always welcome!
My article about my time on the Trace was published in the October, 2015 edition of MotorHome Magazine: Fall Favorites – A leaf-peeping tour takes a backseat to the beauty and wonder of the Natchez Trace Parkway. “A drive along the Natchez Trace is exactly the kind of trip I envisioned when I first started RVing – a well-maintained road with no billboards or advertisements to distract from the natural beauty of the countryside. This 444 mile long drive is something that every motorhome owner should experience at least once.”
Natchez Trace (NPS) – The Natchez Trace Parkway is a 444-mile drive through exceptional scenery and 10,000 years of North American history.
Current Conditions – Weather, construction and road advisories will be posted to this page when appropriate.
Visitor Center: 800-305-7417 (Milepost 266, Tupelo, MS). They are open every day except Christmas from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
What’s the Speed Limit? Usually 40 mph, max of 50 mph. And yes, they do write tickets here and it comes from the feds, so they’re pretty steep. But take your time and enjoy – it’s not a race track!
Parkway Maps (NPS) – Four maps that can be printed by sections of mileposts.
Natchez Trace Travel.com – I found this website really helpful for info on attractions on the Trace.
The Modern Natchez Trace Parkway (Scenic Pathways)
NPS – Plan Your Visit (RVs) – The length restriction for RVs is 55 feet, including a tow vehicle, and the height restriction is 14 feet. Most stops along the Natchez Trace Parkway are accessible to RVs, with the exception of those marked “no circular drive”. I’ve also seen signs like the one on the right to warn about this. Click link for more info on these.
Take A Long, Slow, Ride Along The Natchez Trace (National Parks Traveler)
Natchez Trace – TN – The northern part of the original Natchez Trace and the Natchez Trace Parkway travel through Middle Tennessee from Nashville to the Alabama state line.
Natchez Trace Travel.com – A travel guide for the Natchez Trace Parkway and the towns and areas nearby. Pictures, videos and maps for each of the 90+ interpretive stops maintained by the National Park Service as well as many of the major attractions located near the Trace throughout Mississippi, Alabama and Tennessee.
Natchez Trace Parkway Guide (The Fun Times Guide) – Lots of into if you have only an hour or several days.
ScenicTrace.com – Download current visitor’s guide, watch video, view interactive map, media photos.
Legends of America – Recap of all mileposts.
A Quieter Ride Through Fall Along the Natchez Trace Parkway (National Parks Traveler) – Lists best views, times.
Camping (NPS) – There are more than a dozen campgrounds along the Natchez Trace Parkway corridor, three in the park, and many others just outside the park. The three Parkway campgrounds are free, primitive, and available on a first come, first serve basis:
Natchez State Park (Scott & Jackie’s Travels review)
Others Who Have Gone Before:
Add This Great American RV Road Trip To Your Bucket List – Eric and Brittany Highland of RVWanderlust drove it all in their 40′ motorhome.
Camping Road Trip.com – The Natchez Trace was featured in their Feb./March 2012 Newsletter. Nice and detailed with attractions, campgrounds, etc.
Nick Russell – Gypsy Journal – An RVer friend’s highlights of their journey from south to north.
Reflections From the Fence – My RVer friend Carol shares info on their trip from north to south in November, 2012.
Travels Without Charley – Another RVer who went from south to north in November, 2012
Where’s Liz – An RVer who traveled the Trace from north to south in January 2012.
Watsons Wander – Tim and Amanda didn’t have a lot of time, but saw and shared a lot about their trip on the Trace.
Do It Yourself RV – Lots of info and links to other RVers who have written about this amazing drive.
The Mysterious Death of Meriwether Lewis Along the Natchez Trace (Roadtrek blog)