Find adventurous possibilities on The Promised Land Trail
Explore the land that was once home to pioneers, pearlers and politicians.
The Promised Land Trail, one of the 16 Discover Tennessee Trails & Byways, is an eclectic blend of old and new. Big, vibrant cities with their flashing lights and even flashier attractions are coupled with small towns set in a rural landscape surrounded by Century Farms, working farms passed down from family generations for more than 100 years, where the only sounds you’ll hear for miles are birds chirping. State parks are historical and adventurous troves, offering up active excursions for every age. Travel the state’s first road, dine at tucked-away cafes that offer scrumptious food, and shop for made-in-Tennessee products that celebrate the past and present. Whatever you fancy, you’ll find a bevy of it on The Promised Land Trail.
Begin your journey in downtown Nashville where you can learn more about the area, pick up brochures of surrounding attractions, and grab a Promised Land map. Explore the Tennessee Central Railroad Museum as it’s full of historical information and even offers excursions through Middle Tennessee.
Walk where President Andrew Jackson lived at The Hermitage, one of the nation’s most authentically preserved early presidential home sites and one of the oldest and largest historic site museums in the U.S. It was even recently named third in “Best Presidential Attractions” by 10Best and USAToday readers and no wonder, as approx. 16 million people from around the world have visited the Hermitage mansion. See original furniture, family possessions and even wallpaper that will enhance the already authentic experience you’ll have as you learn about the Jackson family’s lives.
Wind through Wilson County and stop off in Granville to see the T.B. Sutton General Store and the Sutton Homestead, an 1800s homestead with a blacksmith, weaving, and grist mill shops as well as a museum and pioneer village on site. Breathe in fresh Tennessee air at numerous state parks like Cedars of Lebanon State Park in Lebanon; Virgin Falls State Natural Area in Sparta; and Edgar Evins State Park in Silver Point.
Find traditional American music, types of buildings only found 100 years ago in Cumberland country towns and attend a festival focused on traditional American music at Fiddler’s Grove Historic Village in Lebanon. Learn more about the area you’re traveling through with historic stop offs like Sellars Farm State Archaeological Area where you can learn about Sellars Farm, inhabited from 1000 A.D. to 1300 A.D. Take a walking tour and learn about the community of fortified towns. Visit Liberty, the oldest town in DeKalb County which has a plethora of historic houses and buildings you can see via an impromptu driving tour.
Arts and culture can also be found on this trail, too. Swig and sample at DelMonaco Winery & Vineyards for tastings of the award-winning wines in Baxter, Tenn.; catch a show at the Cumberland County Playhouse, one of the 10 largest professional theaters in rural America, in Crossville, Tenn.; and browse Stella Luna Art Gallery where a showcase of award-winning local and national artist-craftsmen can be found in Smithville, Tenn.
Make your way along the trail with a shopping trip to Antique Archaeology, located in Nashville, which is owned by Mike Wolf of the popular History Channel’s “American Pickers.” A wealth of treasures can be found in the early 1900s car factory in historic Marathon Village.