Summertime is finally here, and all the beautiful weather and warm temperatures probably have you itching to get outside. Northeastern Mississippi is surrounded by scenic natural areas both big and small, from massive lakefronts to small-town parks.
Are you looking for an outdoor adventure? Check out a few of our favorite natural areas to hit up around the region, and soak up that summer sunshine!
Want more information on the best local stops? Take a look at our Live Like a Local page!
Trace State Park
Located just a few minutes from Pontotoc, New Albany, and Tupelo, Trace State Park packs everything you need in a park into one stop. Whether you want to wander along the scenic trails, play at little disc golf, cast off for the catch of the day, or head to the nearby 18-hole golf course, you can do it all.
The park also offers a 556-acre lake, but it’s currently drained for renovations and closed to the public. There’s still plenty more to do, though, from mountain biking to horse-back riding, so check it out!
Holly Springs National Forest
The Holly Springs National Forest is huge, covering over 500,000 acres of privately owned land and 155,000 acres of national forest. Within the area, you’ll find sparkling lakes, dense hardwood and pine forests, and a vibrant array of local flora and fauna. If you’re looking to camp for a day or two, check out the Puskus Lake Recreation Area.
Although Davis Lake is on the smaller side—covering just 200 acres—it’s located near the scenic Natchez Trace Parkway, a renowned drive that winds over 400 miles through the historic Old Natchez Trace corridor.
Around the lake, you’ll find grassy beaches and campsites, as well as a mixture of hardwood and pine forests. The lake boasts excellent fishing, with a few piers and a variety of fish, including largemouth bass, hybrid striped bass, crappie, catfish and bream. If you’re up for a little exploring, there are several trails that wind through or near the area. Check out stops like the Chickasaw OHV Trail and the Tanglefoot Trail.
Covering almost 100,000 acres in surface area, Sardis Lake is surrounded by parks, like the John W. Kyle State Park, and public use areas, like Thompson Creek Landing, Moccasin Point, Hayes Crossing, Hurricane Landing, and Redmans Bluff.
Around the lake, you’ll find prime fishing spots (crappie, white bass, largemouth bass, catfish, etc.), swimming beaches, boat launches, bird watching hideaways, and hiking trails.
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