Your Guide to Greenways

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Guide to Greenways

# All Outdoors

# Greenways

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Your Guide to Greenways

Knoxville is home to miles upon miles of greenways connecting all over the city. This city is essentially a biker, hiker, and runner’s dream – or in our case, extreme amateur bikers, hikers, and runners.

Before we get too far into this, two things are helpful to know:

1.) Greenways are wide trails (often paved) free to use for full-on adventures, pleasant strolls, or – at their most functional – getting from one part of Knoxville to another. (We’re not kidding. You can find them in north, south, east, west, downtown, and everywhere in between.)

2.) Any greenway that doesn’t technically connect to another greenway uses sidewalks and bike lanes to supplement.

Knoxville is a biker, hiker, and runner’s dream!

Now for the fun stuff: one of our favorite routes starts on the Third Creek Greenway.

We like to initially access the Third Creek Greenway in Bearden. You can start your greenway experience by parking in the shopping center near El Mezcal Mexican Restaurant where Kingston Pike crosses Forest Park Blvd. You’ll see the paved trail running right beside the parking lot on the El Mezcal side.

You can run down Third Creek Greenway for a mile or so, experience the beautiful trees, hop over a cute bridge, and then run back – feeling quite good about yourself and ending your excursion with some chips and queso at El Mezcal or continuing your run just a bit longer and ending across Kingston Pike at the Bearden Beer Market. Because you earned it, gosh darn it!

greenway view in knoxville tennessee

Want to push yourself further though? Keep going!

Third Creek Greenway will take you from Bearden to Fort Sanders, passing through Tyson Park, and by the UT veterinary campus. From there, you’ll hit Neyland Greenway. Neyland Greenway will lead you past the Thompson-Boling Arena and the famed Neyland Stadium before landing you right by Calhoun’s on the river. You’ve made it downtown, friends!

You’ve specifically made it to the skinny but beautiful Volunteer Landing Park. Enjoy the Tennessee River views, or cool off from your run by heading out onto the river itself! You can do so by checking out the Knoxville Adventure Collective. Not only is that the one-stop shop for tons of information about Knoxville’s outdoor scene, but you can rent a paddle board or a kayak right there on the spot. (We highly recommend renting a paddle board here because Tennessee River views of downtown just don’t quit.)

Image from Pinterest

Want to push yourself further though? Keep going!

You can hit the big ole shoulder of James White Parkway to get to South Knoxville. (This is a good example of greenways being supplemented by bike lanes in some places.) From there, follow the signs leading you to Ijams Nature Center. There are plenty of trails to explore from Ijams, or you can – you guessed it – keep going! Will Skelton Greenway can take you from Ijams all the way over to the Forks of the River Wildlife Management area. For a few weeks in the summer, a field of sunflowers makes its gorgeous debut – but if you miss it, don’t worry! This trail is full of beautiful nature and views of the river all year round.

south knoxville sunflowers

If you are one of the expert athletes who’s explored all the way from El Mezcal in Bearden to the sunflowers in South Knoxville, we applaud you. Maybe hit up a SoKno fave like Alliance Brewing Co. or South Coast Pizza before starting the trek back west.

Or for us extreme amateurs there’s, you know, Uber.

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Want to learn more?

1.) Check out the various neighborhoods on this site to see what greenways are near you!

2.) OutdoorKnoxville.com is a great resource to learn about the over 100 miles of greenways and Urban Wilderness in Knoxville!

Publish date: 7 March.

Images by: Emilie Stooksbury

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