Going on a Detroit to Atlanta RV road trip can be a lot of fun. As you cross the United States from the north to the south, you will have the opportunity to see national parks, such as the Cuyahoga Valley, Mammoth Cave, and the Great Smoky Mountains. You will also find outstanding opportunities to hike, fish, bike, and more in state parks. You will want to stop and see many points of interest as you travel across Ohio, Kentucky, Tennessee, and Georgia. You can camp in cities like Toledo, Ohio; Louisville, Kentucky; and Knoxville, Tennessee. Consider this road trip itinerary from Detroit to Atlanta for the vacation of a lifetime!
Cuyahoga Valley National Park
You can find many exciting things to do at Cuyahoga Valley National Park near Brecksville, Ohio, as it is a wonderful place to visit throughout the year. Hike through woodlands, wetlands, and old fields along 125 miles of paths. Consider riding your bike along the Towbridge Trail and flagging down the park’s train for a ride back. This park’s East Rim Trail System is a wonderful place to go mountain biking with many obstacles to conquer. Excited anglers regularly catch steelhead trout and bullheads in the river while bluegill, bass, and crappie are harvested from the park’s six ponds and three lakes. The Oak Hill Picnic Area along with many other areas in the park make wonderful places to go stargazing. If you are going on a wintertime road trip from Detroit to Atlanta, consider stopping at this park to go snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, and ice fishing.
Mammoth Cave National Park
Mammoth Cave National Park near Mammoth Cave, Kentucky, is home to the world’s longest known cave system. The World Heritage Committee has recognized this location because of its wide variety of cave ecosystems and the fact that over 130 forms of wildlife are known to live in them. You can explore many of the caves on self-guided tours, or ranger-led tours may be available. UNESCO recognized this park as a biosphere reserve because of its unique flora and fauna. Eighteen miles of easily accessible hiking trails running through forests and along creek beds are available, or challenge yourself on the 64 miles of backcountry paths. You can also go horseback riding on the backcountry trails. Jump in a canoe for a paddling adventure on the Green and Nolin Rivers. These rivers also make ideal places to go game fishing.
Great Smoky Mountains National Park
A road trip from Detroit to Atlanta is the perfect time to explore the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The closest entrance to the park on your route is the Townsend, Tennessee, entrance. If you find yourself pressed for time, then consider doing park activities near this entrance. Entering this way gives you great access to Cades Cove, where you can often see white-tail deer, turkeys, bears, and other wildlife. The Cades Cove Nature Trail is a short trail to follow where you can see many plants and animals. The more adventurous will want to follow the Rocky Top trail that was made popular from the song. This area of the park also offers the largest number of historic buildings to see.
John Bryan State Park
One of the most scenic spots in Ohio is the 752-acre John Bryan State Park near Yellow Springs, Ohio. You will not want to miss the opportunity to see the gorge that the Little Miami River cut into the limestone. If you love rappelling and climbing, then head to the dedicated spot along the North Rim Trail. Discover steep rock cliffs, towering sycamores, and many historic sites by going on a river canoeing adventure. Catch a bass or another panfish in the river and prepare it for supper. Ramps, log jumps, and creek crossings make this an excellent place to go mountain biking. See if you have the most accurate throw on the 18-hole disc golf course. Once the snow starts falling, you can go cross-country skiing and sledding at this park. You may also want to consider visiting other Ohio state parks nearby.
John James Audubon State Park
As you drive through Kentucky on your Detroit to Atlanta road trip, you will want to stop at John James Audubon State Park near Henderson, Kentucky. Start your visit by visiting the museum where you can learn more about John James Audubon’s life, especially during the time that he spent in Henderson. The museum has a complete set of his Birds of America masterpieces on display. Then, head to the nature center in the same building to learn more about animals and plants that live in Kentucky. Several hiking trails start near the building, so set out on your adventure where you are likely to see many different bird species. The 27-acre lake is the perfect place to go fishing. The number of trees on the nine-hole golf course challenges players of all ability levels. Play tennis on the court while your children are exploring the four playgrounds.
Booker T. Washington State Park
Chickamauga Lake’s shores, near Chattanooga, Tennessee, is home to Booker T. Washington State Park. The 35,000-acre lake is a beautiful place to go boating and fishing. Leave time on your road trip from Detroit to Atlanta to swim in the Olympic-size swimming pool. Challenge yourself with a bike ride to see if you can complete the long, uphill climbs. This park is a popular stopping spot for migratory birds, and the fishing pier is a wonderful spot to watch for them. There are other outstanding Tennessee state parks that you may want to consider visiting.
My Old Kentucky Home State Park
You may want to practice signing Stephen F. Foster’s "My Old Kentucky Home" on your Detroit to Atlanta road trip before stopping to visit this state park near Bardstown, Kentucky. View the mansion, which was Kentucky’s first historic shrine. Watch a performance featuring over 50 Foster songs in the outdoor amphitheater during the summer. Find out how good a golfer you are by playing the Kenny Rapier Golf Course, an 18-hole, regulation golf course. You may also want to check out other Kentucky state parks.
Sweetwater Creek State Park
The Sweetwater Creek State Park near Lithia Springs, Georgia, is a fantastic place to enjoy nature while sitting by the George Sparks Reservoir. In addition to being able to fish, you can also rent boats, standup paddleboards, and pedal boats on this reservoir’s shores. Despite being just a few minutes from downtown Atlanta, the hiking trails at this state park will leave you feeling like you are miles away. Stroll by the historic New Manchester Manufacturing Company’s textile mill or arrange to go inside on a private tour.
Franklin Park Conservatory and Botanical Gardens
Since 1895, people have been coming to the Franklin Park Conservatory and Botanical Gardens to see over 400 plants from around the world. Unique events often occur here, such as fall festivals, and the facility offers special visiting hours for those with special needs. Art exhibits are often held here.
Kentucky Horse Park
You will not want to miss seeing the four museums at the Kentucky Horse Park, found in Louisville, Kentucky. Check the daily schedule to see equestrian events throughout the park. Visit the barns and learn more about many breeds that you have never seen before. Beautiful statues throughout this park display horses and riders who have historic significance.
Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area
The Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area near Sandy Springs, Georgia, offers float trips that can last from one to 12 hours. You can also go fishing in the river. Easy and moderate bike trails are available, with many offering scenic river views.
You will find many campgrounds in Toledo, Ohio, and the surrounding area, like Big Sandy Campground, which features two ponds and a beach, or Twin Acres Campground where you can go fishing and swimming in the pond. Toledo RV dump station options include Maumee Bay State Park and Twin Acres Campground.
You will be delighted with the campgrounds in the Cincinnati, Ohio, area when you choose options like Steamboat Bend Campground, where the fish are often biting, and East Fork State Park, where you can go hunting, fishing, and swimming. RV dump stations in Cincinnati are available at Kincaid Lake State Park and Big Bone Lick State Park.
Make your visit to Kentucky Horse Park even better by staying in the Kentucky Horse Park Campground or enjoy stunning views by opting to stay at Chimney Rock RV Park. You may also want to consider other Lexington campgrounds. RV dump stations in Lexington are available at Kentucky Horse Park or other nearby locations.
Knoxville, Tennessee, campgrounds are often set in very scenic locations with easy access to the downtown area. Consider staying at Southlake RV Park on the Tennessee River’s shores or at Big Ridge State Park, which sits on a peninsula. RV dump stations in Knoxville are available at Escapees Raccoon Valley RV Park and Southlake RV Park.