Chewalla Lake & Holly Springs National Forest

Groups of nature loving historians exploring Memphis and the surrounding area will truly enjoy a rest stop at Northern Mississippi’s premier family recreation area in Holly Springs National Forest – “Lands of Many Uses” – a wonderfully quiet and inviting woodland wonder split asunder by deep gullies marked by old split-rail fences, dotted with dozens of sparkling lakes, forested with loblolly and shortleaf pines, dogwood, magnolia, sweet gum and oak and sprinkled with flowering native shrubs, all twined about in the Summertime with grape-scented Kudzu. The park is a breathtaking feast for the eyes year-round: in Spring, when the dogwood blooms and again, when the hills are ablaze with splendiferous Autumnal color; the woods and wetlands provide all manner of resident and migratory wildlife ample habitat and excellent spotting and bird-watching opportunities abound. Holly Springs National Forest is the perfect place to bring a picnic lunch and break from a hectic travel agenda – revel in the beautiful surroundings and enjoy magnificent views of 260-acre Chewalla Lake from the day use/campground area – once an Indian Burial site – threaded with miles of well-marked, peaceful and scenic hiking trails. Kick back on the beach, grab a handful of sweet berries to fortify you along the way as you head for the hills, hunt the elusive wild mushroom, do a little bird watching, explore the tiny island on Chewalla’s western shore, fish for your lunch, jump in a kayak or go for a refreshing swim. Get out of the lake and hop in the shower – (bathhouses are available ) just a few miles away, the historic and colorful plantation town of Holly Springs awaits, offering visitors a fascinating look at the old South when cotton was king; explore well-preserved antebellum homes, slave dwellings, museums, churches and other intriguing points of interest – there are hundreds in the area – then sit down to some tasty Southern cuisine at one of the great eateries in Holly Spring, “Mississippi’s Best Kept Secret!”

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