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10 Best Beaches In Tennessee To Relax In 2022

10 Best Beaches In Tennessee To Relax In 2022

10 Best Beaches In Tennessee To Relax In 2022

A beach is any place where a body of

A beach is any place where a body of water meets sand or larger rock fragments, so even though Tennessee is a landlocked state, beautiful lakes with fine sand still abound.

Even Tennessee’s lakes offer the usual water activities like swimming, boating, kayaking, fishing, and water skiing. And since most of these lakes are in state parks, you can also go hiking, biking, and camping.

If you’re a Tennessee family in need of a sea of ​​vitamins right away, look no further. We’ve put together a list of the best beaches in Tennessee just for you.


  • 1. Cordell Hull Lake–Carthage
  • 2. Big Ridge Lake–Maynardville
  • 3. Cheatham–Ashland Lake
  • 4. Cherokee Lake–Moorseburg
  • 5. Lake Chickamauga–Chattanooga
  • 6. Center Hill Lake–Rock Island
  • 7. J. Percy Priest Lake – Nashville
  • 8. Grundy Lakes–Monteagle
  • 9. Dale Hollow Lake – Celina
  • 10. Kentucky Lake–Buchanan
  • Tennessee Beach Questions
    • Are there sandy beaches in Tennessee?
    • What are the best boating lakes in Tennessee?
    • What are the best family beaches in Tennessee?

Cordell Hull Lake–Carthage

71 Corps Lane

Carthage, TN 37030

(615) 735-1034

Built and managed by the US Army Corps of Engineers, Lake Cordell Hull offers many recreational activities for families.

Why we recommend this beach

Millions of visitors flock to Lake Cordell Hull for its scenery and outdoor recreation opportunities, including swimming, fishing, boating, picnicking, camping, hiking, and horse riding. You also have to be careful with the fauna that walks through the parks.

The two campsites on the lake are pretty popular, and both have the necessary amenities for families. There are more than 150 camping sites. Meanwhile, the lake’s parks have playgrounds and tracks for practicing various sports.

Since this lake is close to the state’s metropolitan area, Tennessee’s best family hotels are half an hour away.

expert advice

Nearby Cordell Hull Reservoir has a family-friendly day-use area with a playground, grills, and a volleyball court. Animals roam in this area, so you may want to check the location of the prey.

The US Army Corps of Engineers takes care of its visitors to ensure that each of its beaches is the safest in the city. They have a life jacket loan program to avoid accidents, so make sure you stop by their offices to get a life jacket first.

Recommended hotel: Comfort Suites Lebanon

10 Best Beaches In Tennessee To Relax In 2022
10 Best Beaches In Tennessee To Relax In 2022

Big Ridge Lake–Maynardville

1015 Big Ridge Rd

Maynardville, TN 37807

(865) 992-5523

Big Ridge’s name comes from the topography of the area. Characterized by three ridge systems, Big Ridge State Park offers beautiful scenery across 3,687 acres.

Why we recommend this beach

If you’re looking for a nearby beach in the summer, Big Ridge Lake opens its sandy beach for swimming every summer, and families can enjoy a game of sand volleyball in the area. Other exciting activities are softball, basketball, tennis, and horseshoes.

And what’s better, there are 50 campsites, 20 cabins, 18 mosquito net bunks, and 24 km of hiking trails around the park. Open picnic areas also offer free tables and grills—a cheap vacation for the whole family.

expert advice

There is an Easter Egg Hunt during the spring and a Bluegrass music festival in August for fun and exciting activities. For a unique Halloween experience, there are night tours, ghost storytelling sessions, and a medieval tournament in October.

Recommended Hotel: La Quinta by Wyndham Knoxville North I-75

Cheatham–Ashland Lake

1798 Cheatham Dam Rd

City of Ashland, TN 37015

(615) 254-3734

Built by the US Army Corps of Engineers in 1950, Cheatham Lake boasts 320 miles of shoreline.

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Why we recommend this beach

With nearly a hundred picnic areas, 14 playgrounds, 18 boat ramps, and two marinas, Cheatham Lake is one of the best beaches in Tennessee for young children.

You’ll find plenty of fun things to do in Tennessee with the kids right here at Cheatham Lake. This kid-friendly beach destination is famous for waterskiing, windsurfing, wakeboarding, and kayaking.

If you are a family of campers and hunters, Cheatham Lake also has areas. The trails near the lake are also popular with nature lovers such as bird watchers, wildflower enthusiasts, and horseback riders.

expert advice

To discover small coves and secret sandy areas, let yourself be carried around the lake by kayak!

Recommended hotel: The Hotel Hermitage

Cherokee Lake–Moorseburg


Marina 9499 Hwy 11 W

Merseburg, TN 38380

Named for the Native American tribe that once settled around the lake, Lake Cherokee is now famous for bass fishing and the surrounding slopes and farmland.

Why we recommend this beach

Cherokee Lake is one of the most extensive beaches in Tennessee and is popular with anglers, children, paddlers, and campers. With several boat docks, parks, picnic areas, campgrounds, and resorts along its shoreline, families can enjoy various activities for all ages during their time here.

Cherokee Park, for example, hosts fireworks, parties, and concerts. Teens may want to attend these events.

expert advice

The best park for hiking is Panther Creek, State Park. This park also has a playground, horseback riding trails, a swimming pool, and basketball courts. To play soccer, frisbee, and disc golf, visit Cherokee Park. For a 9-mile sailing cruise, go to Cardinal Cove Resort.

Recommended hotel: General Morgan Inn

10 Best Beaches In Tennessee To Relax In 2022
10 Best Beaches In Tennessee To Relax In 2022

Lake Chickamauga–Chattanooga

4601 Amnicola Hwy

Chattanooga, TN 37424

Named for the Chickamauga Tribe of Cherokees who lived here, this reservoir is now a popular destination for family vacations in Tennessee.

Why we recommend this beach

Your family will love exploring nature with Lake Chickamauga’s popular beach activities. With 1,300 kilometers of coastline, the area is home to eight parks, a museum, and two wildlife centers.

Around the lake, you can enjoy camping and nature walks. On the other hand, swimming, water skiing, paddle boarding, jet skiing, fishing, and boating are the most popular water activities.

Beyond the lake area, there are exciting tours and rentals and parks featuring animal encounters and play areas.

expert advice

For more than just water activities on your beach vacation, stop by the nearby 5ive Points Museum Center or look for wildlife at Prentice Cooper State Forest or Harrison Bay State Park.

Recommended Hotel: Moxy Chattanooga Downtown

Center Hill Lake–Rock Island

82 Beach Rd

Rock Island, TN 38581

(931) 837-4770

Rock Island State Park is located at the meeting point of the Caney Fork River, the Collins River, and the Great Falls Dam. It runs downstream to beautiful Center Hill Lake.

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Why we recommend this beach

Enjoy 400 miles of shoreline at Center Hill Lake, two picturesque waterfalls, and three historic structures at Rock Island State Park.

Only the Caney Fork River Gorge boasts picturesque lookouts, deep pools, and limestone trails. Along the Caney Fork is the Great Falls Dam, built between 1915 and 1916.

Great Falls is a waterfall that sits below the 100-year-old cotton mill and flows into the Caney Fork River, while Twin Falls is the waterfall that descends from Caney Fork because of the Great Falls Dam. An 1890 spring castle can also be found next to the said cotton mill.

The family activities you can enjoy here will make a trip to this park one of Tennessee’s best family beach vacations. The Caney Fork River is perfect for hiking, swimming, fishing, boating, and kayaking. Center Hill Lake is also a family favorite for swimming and fishing.

The place offers two camping areas with 60 different campsites, and there are ten cabins in the entire area.

expert advice

Near the rocky shore by the Great Falls, you can find a couple of swimming holes that you can have all to yourself.

Recommended hotel: Bethel Inn and Suites

10 Best Beaches In Tennessee To Relax In 2022
10 Best Beaches In Tennessee To Relax In 2022

J. Percy Priest Lake – Nashville

3737 Bell Rd

Nashville, TN 37076

(615) 889-1975

Are you looking for family weekend getaways in Tennessee? If you’re around Nashville, J. Percy Priest Lake is just a stone’s throw from downtown.

Why we recommend this beach

Perfect for swimming, boating, fishing, wakeboarding, water skiing, hiking, biking, horseback riding, camping, wildlife viewing, and picnicking, J. Percy Priest Lake is also managed and supervised by the Corps of Engineers personnel.

There are three campsites, 11 picnic areas, 12 boat ramps, and six marinas along the 26-mile-long lake. There’s a rustic playground on the lakefront beach in the Bryant Cove section of Long Hunter State Park, and visitors can also join in a game of beach volleyball.

expert advice

Nashville Shores is across the lake for families looking for a private beach. Enjoy the water park, adventure park, lake rentals, and cabins there. All that exclusive fun makes this nearby private beach one of the best beaches in Tennessee for kids.

Recommended hotel: Comfort Suites Nashville

Grundy Lakes–Monteagle

11745 US 41

Monteagle, TN 37356

(931) 924-2980

The Grundy Lakes area is home to the best hiking trails on this list and a fascinating historical site.

Why we recommend this beach

Bask in the sun or spread out your picnic blankets by the water in the Grundy Lakes area. Families who have been here having also liked the ruins of 19th-century coke ovens near the lake.

The surrounding state park is the second largest on this list. At 30,845 acres, South Cumberland State Park spans four different Tennessee counties. It also includes the best views along its trails.

Rock formations, streams, waterfalls, forests, scenic views, a cliff, a plateau, a cave, and deep gulfs can take your Grundy Lakes beach vacation to the next level.

It may interest you: 25 best zoos in the United States

expert advice

If you decide to camp in the park, be prepared for possible bear encounters. Take the necessary precautions when storing food, and bring bear deterrents.

Recommended hotel: Best Western Kimball Inn

10 Best Beaches In Tennessee To Relax In 2022

Dale Hollow Lake – Celina

540 Dale Hollow Dam Rd

Celina, TN 38551

(931) 243-3136

Located on the Kentucky-Tennessee border, the Dale Hollow Reservoir was also completed by the US Army Corps of Engineers.

Why we recommend this beach

Swimming, fishing, boating, and water sports are as popular as nature walks at Dale Hollow Lake. The reservoir, a picturesque and quiet beach, can be enjoyed on a houseboat, cabin, cottage, or campsite.

Kids can also enjoy the park at the nearby First Christian Church or the occasional putt-putt course next to the Methodist Church. Sergeant Alvin C. York State Historic Park also has a playground.

There are also a couple of museums to visit and plays at nearby theaters.

expert advice

If you have time after your swim, you can explore the nearby Victorian town of Rugby or the Mennonite settlement of Muddy Pond.

Recommended hotel: Bethel Inn and Suites

Kentucky Lake–Buchanan

16055 Hwy 79 N

Buchanan, TN 38222

(731) 641-4465

Kentucky Lake is so vast that its view resembles that of an ocean. This lake was created in the 1930s due to the construction of the Kentucky Dam on the Tennessee River.

10 Best Beaches In Tennessee To Relax In 2022

Why we recommend this beach

The largest artificial lake on this list (and in the United States), Kentucky Lake, covers 160,300 acres. This vast area constantly attracts tourists, anglers, group campers, and more, making it one of the most family-friendly beaches in Tennessee.

The beauty of the lake and its fun activities resemble that of a children’s coast, with its nearby water parks, its fauna and flora reserve, and its 2,064 kilometers of coastline. There are also attractions, nature trails, campgrounds, events, and historical sites, so a trip to this beach would be a day well spent.

Many families say it is one of the best family beaches in Tennessee.

expert advice

Another nearby lake called Barkley Lake runs parallel to Kentucky Lake. The Land between the two is a famous destination to explore.

Known as the Land Between the Lakes, five significant attractions can be found in this area: a living history farm, the Woodlands Nature Station, the Elk & Bison Prairie, the Golden Pond Planetarium & Observatory, and the Turkey Bay OHV Area.

Recommended Hotel: Best Western University Inn

If you’ve been left wanting more, check out America’s Best Beaches. Pretty! By the way… What do you think of the best beaches in Tennessee? Do not forget to leave your impressions in the comments. We read!

Tennessee Beach Questions

  • Are there sandy beaches in Tennessee?
  • What are the best boating lakes in Tennessee?
  • What are the best family beaches in Tennessee?

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10 Best Beaches In Tennessee To Relax In 2022

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