The Holston River Park has it all when it comes to a family-friendly, activity-packed park close to downtown Knoxville. From soccer fields to a playground, a canoe launch to two fishing piers, there is something for everyone. The Holston River is one of East Tennessee's better warm water sport fisheries and provides a home to all species of black bass. Smallmouth bass and rock bass are the primary gamefish in the Holston. Flat water kayakers or canoeists and paddleboarders can go either upstream or downstream from the park; in both directions there are plenty of small inlets worth exploring. If heading downstream, paddlers will merge with the Tennessee River and bend towards downtown for a great riverfront tour.
What Makes It Great
Being only several miles from downtown Knoxville, this park is one of the go-to's for many locals with an urge to get outside. The park itself is a typical urban green space, but the water access is what is really great here. The city of Knoxville sits just west of the starting point for the 600+ mile long Tennessee River, where the Holston River and French Broad meet. The Holston is an iconic and historic part of Knoxville's history, providing an age old transportation route for the area. So, when you paddle from the Holson to the Tennessee River you are exploring a vital point in America's vast system of waterways.
The Holston River Park itself is comprised of 44 acres. Within the park there are 2 large picnic shelters and a lot of open space that you can reserve for outdoor parties simply by calling 3-1-1. There is also a reservation form if you would rather make your plans online.
If you're looking for some trails, the Holston River Greenway boarders the park providing a paved path for walkers, runners and bicyclists. The perimeter trail winds through the forest on natural surface terrain, forming a loop along the southern edge of the park.
Who is Going to Love It
Anyone! Like most of Knoxville's parks, this one is open to anyone wanting to get out. Families will enjoy the playgrounds, fields, and picnic tables while runners and bikers enjoy the loops of paved greenways.
Directions, Parking, & Regulations
Parking for the main park is found with the coordinates on this page, taking you to the only parking area for the park. This area is where all runners, bikers, and families will unload. For paddlers looking to get on the river, continue past this initial parking lot down Holston Hills Road for another half mile and park along the river at the lot just north of the park.
The dog park can be found near the main parking lot (on the southern end).
Hours for the park are dawn to dusk unless otherwise posted.