When looking for things to do in Clarksville, Tennessee, it is hard to ignore its deep root in history. Much of the area has a story to tell. Therefore, many of the items on the compiled list of things to do in Clarksville, Tennessee, have historical significance.
Dunbar Cave State Natural Area is the 75th longest cave in the United States. Rare cave drawings have been discovered in the cave and are available for the public to view. The cave is named after Thomas Dunbar who was the first person to inhabit the land in the area. The cave became a natural entertainment hot spot for locals when radio shows, concerts, and dances were held in the cave during the 1940's. Today, it is the perfect location to experience nature. Swan Lake is a popular fishing spot and there are nature trails and picnic areas as well as guided tours of the cave. However, it was last heard that the cave was suspending tours due to a bat testing positive for White Nose Syndrome. Still a beautiful location to check out even if the cave is not open.
Our next recommended location is in Downtown Clarksville, the Custom House Museum, and Cultural Center. As the 2nd largest general museum in Tennessee, it offers a wide range of displays. With over 35,000 square feet, the museum houses 3 classrooms, a dining room, a board room, a themed café, an auditorium, and a gift shop. Definitely a fun place to explore art, science, and history.
The L&N Train Station is a fun stop. It is said to be the location the Monkees sang about in their hit, "The Last Train to Clarksville" in 1966. It was scheduled to be demolished but was restored to preserve its historical significance to Montgomery County. Now it houses the Montgomery Historical Society and volunteers from the society keep it open 3 days a week. Enjoy the red locomotive that sits outside.
If spooky places are what you enjoy, check out the Bell Witch Cave. The 2005 movie, "An American Haunting" was based on the Bell Witch. The cave is actually in Adams, 25 miles east of Clarksville, but still worth mentioning for those seeking a paranormal experience. However, the cave is closed during the winter months so check to make sure it is open before making the trek.
There are several Forts around Clarksville worth visiting because of the history attached. Fort Defiance in New Providence has a well preserved example of a Civil War fort. The site includes a walking trail with informational signs and picnic areas. Fort Donelson in Dover, about 30 miles west of Clarksville, is the location where Confederate Gen. Simon B. Buckner surrendered to Ulysses S. Grant. The national battlefield includes Fort Donelson National Cemetery, a visitor center, the Dover Hotel (Surrender House), and earthen rifle pits and river batteries. Although not a fort, Historic Collinsville is an 1870's restored pioneer settlement 10 miles south of Clarksville in Montgomery County.
One of only a few dirt tracks in the country with a red clay surface, the Clarksville Speedway has launched the career of Clarksville native Jeff Purvis. As well as bragging rights to having NASCAR drivers Kenny Wallace and Ken Schrader race there in past years. A favorite hangout for teenagers is the drag strip right next to the track that allows cars to race every Friday from midnight to 3 a.m.
There are lots of things to do in Clarksville, Tennessee. Take a walk in McGregor Park on the Cumberland RiverWalk. Or make sure to check out the many outlets to hike, bike, climb and canoe. Get out and explore all thatClarksville, Tennessee, has to offer.
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