Why a Road Trip Through Tennessee Is the Most Idyllic Fall Vacation

Tennessee Fall Road Trip
Photo: Beall + Thomas photographyBeall + Thomas photography

There’s a lot of travel buzz around Tennessee these days, and it’s not just Nashville that is attracting all the attention. The state is rich with gorgeous terrain, mountain retreats, and winding hilly paths that are begging for a road trip. And as we pop into leaf peeping season once again, there’s no better time of the year to give it a whirl.

The idyllic Smoky Mountains are an Instagrammer’s dream canvas, and there’s a world-renowned resort nestled perfectly in the foothills that serves as the perfect lens.

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Blackberry Farm is a 4,200-acre luxury resort just north of Knoxville that takes the idea of “farm chic” to a whole new level. From cute-as-can-be cottages that are dripping in luxury amenities to must-see Bourbon cellars, horse trails, and acres upon acres of pure white picket fences, it’s one of the most charming places in the world.

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The resort clearly speaks for itself, but getting there (and venturing off into the mountains while you’re there) is half the fun. It’s an easy drive from the Knoxville airport, and it’s a surprisingly enjoyable road trip experience from Atlanta, GA. when you’ve got the right wheels. The 2018 Buick Enclave Avenir SUV, which quite literally seems like the vehicle version of Blackberry Farm itself, makes the experience seamless with its perfect combination of luxury and comfort. A 3.5-hour drive through the country takes you through sleepy little towns like historic Blue Ridge (where a stop for lunch at Harvest on Main serves up a crisp glass of rose and a satisfying array of southern farm-to-table fare to fuel up for the second half of the trip), and creates an extravagant take on road trips of yore.

Once you arrive, lounging and enjoying the resort is a must, but leave room in the schedule for a drive around the countryside. Clay shooting (a short 20-minute drive from the farm) is a must, as is the unique Truffle Hunting experience back on the property with legendary truffle expert Jim Sanford and his Truffle-hunting dogs. The spa, as you wouldn’t be surprised to learn, is all that and more (no surprise there!)

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As one would imagine, the trip is well worth it any time of the year (we hear Christmas is absolutely charming), but a road trip with ribbons of red, orange and yellow leaves at each and every winding turn? Can’t get more idyllic than that.

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