Rus Tourism News
Tennessee

Go Green and Travel Sustainably in Tennessee

Known for its natural beauty, unique culture and southern hospitality, Tennessee strives to be at the forefront of sustainability efforts to preserve its wonder and charm for future generations to come. This Earth Day, be clean and go green with Tennessee Department of Tourist Development by sustainably eating, exploring and lodging across the state.

Where to Stay

Eco-friendly lodging options help play a significant part in reducing water, plastic and energy waste every day. Below are a few lodging options that will have guests snoozing smart and more carefree all night long:

The Crash Pad – Chattanooga 

Located in Chattanooga, this eco-friendly, LEED-certified glamping spot is unlike any other. Offering 24 bunk beds or five private rooms, complimentary DIY breakfast and walking distance to some of the area’s restaurants and bars, this classic, yet charming hostel provides visitors with a blend of reclaimed and renewable resources to ensure the best of energy efficiency while supporting local sustainable businesses.

Hutton Hotel – Nashville

Known for its four-star, four-diamond service, the Hutton Hotel goes above and beyond to provide its guests with an eco-friendly stay. From the time guests arrive, they are greeted by bamboo floors and furniture made from reclaimed wood. The rooms are equipped with automatic, motion detection lights, and to cut back on the use of plastic guests can find soap, shampoo and conditioner all in dispensers. To reduce the use of carbon-emissions and air pollution, the hotel is within walking distance to several popular attractions, restaurants and bars.

David Crockett State Park Cabins – Lawrenceburg

The David Crockett State Park Cabins are the perfect, family weekend getaway. Equipped with geothermal-powered HVAC units and gas fireplaces, these LEED-certified vacation homes are ahead of the curve on energy conservation. The state park also has the Tennessee Naturalist Program which serves as an educational training program to provide service and outreach efforts to help preserve Tennessee’s natural beauty and resources.

For other eco-friendly lodging options, look for the Tennessee Green Hospitality certification on business’ websites.

Where to Eat & Drink

People come to Tennessee from all over to try its award-wining restaurants and signature dishes whether it’s a southern comfort dish or a night out at one of the many farm-to-table establishments across the state. Dive into these local, sustainable-friendly restaurants, bars and wineries that play a part in reducing waste and greenhouse gas emissions.

Husk – Nashville

Known for their ever-changing menu of fresh ingredients all from the south, Husk takes Southern cuisine to the next level. This farm-to-table approach provides a menu full of seasonal food and drinks all while saving the environment and promoting a healthy lifestyle.

Local Goat – Pigeon Forge

Located in Pigeon Forge, the Local Goat specializes in locally sourced and sustainable foods. Customers can enjoy a selection of craft food and drinks such as “bhaahhbu” back ribs, ahi tuna steak, a buckberry old fashioned and much more.

Belly Acres – Memphis

With two locations at Overton Square and Regalia, Belly Acres prides itself on bringing their customers the best food “from our acres to your belly.” They have a wide selection of signature burgers, salads and beef-less burgers. They are so passionate about inspiring others and future generations to eat clean that on Wednesdays kids eat free.

2021 New Harvest Farmers’ Market – Knoxville

Opening April 22, the 2021 New Harvest Farmers’ Market offers a wide range of seasonal products including fruits, vegetables, plants, meats and much more. Open every Thursday until Sept. 30, guests cannot only shop for fresh produce but also enjoy the park’s children’s play area, covered pavilion and walking trails.

Winery at Seven Springs Farm – Maynardville

Wander down the historic “Thunder Road” to the charming Winery at Seven Springs Farm. This winery like many others across the state makes its wine on-site which helps to cut back on long-haul delivery and greenhouse gas emissions. They offer tours across the vineyard for their visitors to learn about how they make their wine and take in the picturesque views.

East Nashville Beer Works – Nashville

Make a toast to Earth Day with friends and family at East Nashville Beer Works by sipping away on its locally brewed beer. A member of the Tennessee Sustainable Spirits program, the brewery aims to reduce their environmental impact and energy footprint through practices such as using tankless water heaters and implementing temperature controls.

Where to Explore

Whether you are looking to explore Tennessee’s great outdoors or wander down the cities charming neighborhoods, these unique attractions offer environmentally friendly fun all while stressing the importance of being sustainably responsible.

Mirimichi Lakes Golf – Millington

Bring your “A-game” this Earth Day at Mirimichi Lakes Golf. This award-winning course of more than 7,400 yards provides its visitors with an eco-friendly experience. From integrated pest management and water conservation, Mirimichi offers championship-worthy views and environmentally friendly practices for both amateur and professional level players.

Tennessee Aquarium – Chattanooga 

Make a splash by visiting the Tennessee Aquarium to learn more about the Tennessee Aquarium Conservation Institute, their scientific studies and what they are doing to restore and conserve the earth’s ecosystems. Through their Global Passport Program, guests can learn more about different species from around the world and the role they play in their environment.

Able – Nashville

While in Nashville, stop by Able, an ethical fashion brand dedicated to sustainability. The company strives to make a positive impact on the environment by using recycled packaging and mailers, repurposing discarded hides for their leather products, creating all their jewelry by hand without the harsh chemicals needed from a manufacturer and picking clothes that are made from all-natural fibers.

Tannery Knobs Mountain Bike Park – Johnson City

Guests can cycle their way through Earth Day at the Tannery Knobs Mountain Bike Park. With over 40 acres of terrain and trails, bicyclists and hikers of all ages can spend the day in the great outdoors enjoying the beauty of Johnson City.

Hike MoCo – Wartburg

Established in 2017, Hike Morgan County is a network designed to encourage hikes on Morgan County trails and promote a health lifestyle. Throughout the network’s organized hikes, hikers are encouraged to pick up trash along the way to help preserve the beauty of Morgan County’s trails and surrounding areas,

Check out these Earth Day celebrations happening across the state:

April 17-18, 24-25

EarthDayz at Rock City Gardens – Lookout Mountain

Celebrate all weekend long with Rock City’s 12th annual EarthDayz. The event will host four animal shows in partnership with the Chattanooga Zoo, live music, living ground walker character and much more.

April 22:

Earth Day Hike at Sycamore Shoals State Park – Elizabethton

Kick-off Earth Day 2021 with a guided hike around Sycamore Shoals. Throughout the guided tour, learn about the different trees in the area, how our ancestors used them and the best tips and tricks for a hiking trip.

April 23:

Family Nights at the Museum: Exploring the Arboretum! – Smyrna

Join the historic Sam Davis Home as they commemorate Earth Day with the Tennessee Urban Forestry Council to learn about the site’s arboretum and its many collections of trees.

April 24:

Nashville Earth Day at Centennial Park – Nashville

Connect with the Nashville community and discover ways to make a positive impact on our environment with local sustainable small businesses, government agencies and nonprofits. The event will take place in Centennial Park where attendees can learn and engage with a wide range of activities and exhibits.

Spread the Mulch Volunteer Work Day at Shelby Farms Park – Memphis

Shelby Farms Park will host multiple volunteer workdays to spread the love this Earth Day. During this socially distanced event, volunteers will help lay mulch throughout the park to help trees retain water, prevent future erosion and provide the proper nutrients needed for them to continue to grow.

Iuliia Tore