Bridgestone Firestone Centennial Wilderness WMA
Known as the “Grand Canyon of the South,” full of wild wonders, waterfalls and worry- free fun, the Bridgestone Firestone Centennial Wilderness WMA offers breathtaking vistas and awe-inspiring landscape. Enjoy hiking and primitive camping all overlooking gorgeous gorges and waterfalls. Trail maps are available from the Sparta - White County Chamber of Commerce. Open year-round; closed only for non-hunting activities during Big Game hunting season. East of Sparta, turn south onto Eastland Road, then right onto Scott’s Gulf Road, Sparta. 931-836-3552. Sparta-chamber.net.
Virgin Falls State Natural Area [adjacent to the Bridgestone Firestone Centennial Wilderness WMA], with its crown jewel being a spectacular and unique waterfall that comes from a cave, falls 130 feet and disappears into an underground cave. Although considered a moderately difficult hike, the 4-mile hike in its pristine setting offers a reward at the final turn that is unparalleled. Open year-round. East of Sparta, turn south onto Eastland Road, then right onto Scott’s Gulf Road, Sparta
What a spectacular view – enjoy miles and miles of breathtaking views of Tennessee from high. 5047 Crossville Hwy, Sparta
Burgess Falls State Park and Natural Area
Enjoy the beauty of three majestic waterfalls, and a series of cascades. Named as one of the Top Five Places to Cool Off in Tennessee by Southern Living, Burgess Falls Park is located on the northwest portion of the county at the Putnam County border, approximately 3 miles west of the Hwy 135 [Burgess Falls Road] / Hwy 136 [Old Kentucky Road] intersection. 4000 Burgess Falls Drive, Sparta, TN (931) 432-5312
Rock Island State Park
Rock Island offers more than 880 acres where you can play, fish, kayak, swim or hike. Cabins are available for rental to suit many group sizes. Located on the southwest portion of White County at the Warren County border. Travel south from the intersection of US 70 and Hwy 136 [Old Kentucky Road] approximately eight miles, turn right onto Hwy 1, then right into the park. 82 Beach Road, Rock Island, TN (931) 686-2471
Other State Parks within a 30 minute drive of Sparta:
South Carter Street Park
Enjoy fishing, walking paths, woodland trails, a playground area and more.
From Hwy 70, just west of the bridge at the Calfkiller River, turn onto South Carter Street.
We are also just minutes away from Cumberland Caverns in Warren County, a US National Landmark displaying some of the most spectacular cave formations in Eastern America, including an historic 1812 saltpeter mine, pools and waterfalls. To our north, Putnam County is home to the Bryan Symphony Orchestra and Tennessee Technological University. Cumberland County is known as the ‘Golf Capital of Tennessee’ and DeKalb County is home to the Fiddlers Jamboree. There is something for everyone in the Upper Cumberland region of Tennessee. (we just happen to think Sparta and White County is the best one to call home!)
Museums and More
Coal Miner Railroad Section House Museum
Discover the rich history of coal, the ‘Black Gold’ found deep within the earth at a very unique museum in possibly the last remaining section house within the state of Tennessee. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the Nashville, Chattanooga, and St. Louis Railway Section House is impressive before you even step through the doors. The history of coal mining in Tennessee has been preserved with a treasure trove of artifacts and memorabilia. Hours, open 9 a.m. - 4 p.m. on Saturday Free admission.
The Rock House Famous Stage Stop
The Rock House Shrine a famous stage coach stop and early American frontier home is located on scenic Hwy 70E 4-miles from Sparta along the old wilderness trail and historic “Broadway of America”. Built in 1835-1838 by Barlow Fiske, the Rock House served as a stopover for travelers going from frontier settlements in the West to more “civilized” areas along the Atlantic coast, Fiske operated the stagecoach inn and stables. Some famous visitors to the Rock House include Andrew Jackson and James K. Polk, Presidents of the United States stopping on their way to Washington D.C., as well as other notable visitors including Sam Houston and Frank Clement, former governors of Tennessee. East of Sparta, just off Hwy 70 at Country Club Road (the Old Highway).
Historic Downtown Sparta Liberty Square
Quaint, historic buildings and shops, restaurants, antiques and art with a yesterday flavor of hometown. Visit beautiful Historic Liberty Square in Sparta. Lester Flatt Memorial – This unique monument pays homage to Lester Flatt, the “Granddaddy of Bluegrass.” American Legion Building serves as home to the White County Military Museum, and have your photo made in front of the historic Oldham Theater with its classic Art Deco styling.
Walking Tour of Historic District
Take a walk through time as you meander around the streets of the Historic District listed on the National Registry of Historic Places. Discover architectural jewels in beautiful Sparta Tennessee. Brochure available at the Chamber.
White County Heritage Museum
Come discover the White County Heritage Museum Hours: 10 a.m. - 4 p.m., Thursday; 9 a.m. - 4 p.m., Friday; and 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. Saturday. Free Admission. From the White County Courthouse and Liberty Square, travel south of the courthouse onto South Main. 144 S. Main Street, Sparta. 931-837-3900.
Located in the American Legion Building on the square. Beautifully restored historic building on Liberty Square, downtown Sparta, with a banquet room available for rental, the museum houses a rich display of America’s military history. 5 Maple Street. 931-836-3595.
Civil War Trail
As part of the multi-state Civil War Trail System, Tennessee is remembering the sesquicentennial of the Civil War. Two markers interpret some of the local action. The White County Gateway marker is located on the southwest corner of the Courthouse grounds and notes the location of battles, skirmishes and other Civil War era places of interest. Another marker is located approximately 10 miles north of the Square on Highway 84 at France Cemetery and tells the story of Champ Ferguson, a notorious guerilla during the Civil War, who was hung after being convicted of 53 murders during wartime.
Upper Cumberland Quilt Trail - Sparta-White County
Take a tour of the county and you will notice large colorful quilt blocks adorning many country barns. All different and unique, with many colors and styles of blocks. The stories about some of the quilt pattern histories can be found in the Quilt Trail brochure. What started as a way to honor a grandmother has become a new tradition. More than 400 of these blocks are scattered across the Upper Cumberland, with more being ‘stitched’ together every week.
Sparta Drive In Movie Theater
Drive on into yesteryear, pull up facing the big screen and enjoy the latest Hollywood blockbusters in the family atmosphere of a classic Drive-In Theater. Bring a blanket, or relax in the comfort of your vehicle, before the show stretch your legs, throw around a Frisbee or enjoy a great big “Full Moon Burger” at the Sparta Drive In concession stand - anyway you want.