We at The River Club have always enjoyed the charms of country living. Now, with the current coronavirus situation, a lot of other people are starting to rethink life in the big city and search for low density population places to live. Here are ten reason why we think Sparta, Tennessee is the best remote place to live in the US.
1– The weather is excellent
Who says the best remote place to live has to be uncomfortable? A moderate climate makes a big difference in terms of quality of life. This is particularly noticeable for people that come from cold northern cities, like Chicago. Tennessee isn’t a southern state- it is actually a border state. This means that you still get seasons (who wants Christmas in Los Angeles?), but the temperatures are not too extreme.
2– It is close to major cities like Nashville
If you are accustomed to living in a big city but want to take a step back, you probably want to be relatively close to a city with a large variety of restaurants, museums and cultural things to do. Or, you might want to be able to go to live sporting events. Sparta is only an hour and a half drive from Nashville, with its country music, shopping, restaurants and bars. And if sports are your thing, Nashville has ten professional sports teams, including the NFL’s Tennessee Titans.
3– It has some of the most beautiful fall foliage in the US
Everyone thinks of New England when they are asked about beautiful fall foliage (or those from the Midwest may think of Brown County, IN), but Tennessee has some of the most beautiful fall foliage in the US. One of the best places to see it is to drive a piece of The Natchez Trace. Starting in Nashville, it roughly follows the Old Natchez Trace, a historic travel corridor used by American Indians, European settlers, slave traders, soldiers and future presidents. If you want a real road trip, you can drive the whole thing. It is 444 miles long and runs through three states, ending in Natchez, Mississippi- a beautiful city to visit for a long weekend. Or, you can drive it an hour or so out of Nashville, have lunch and return home before sunset. It makes for a beautiful, relaxing day.
4– There is excellent hiking
If you like the out of doors, you will love Middle Tennessee. Spring is an especially beautiful time to hike in the area. For those of us stuck in a big city lockdown, the idea of an afternoon alone spent strolling through wildflowers and waterfalls seems idyllic. Tennessee State Parks have a number of “Happy Spring Hikes,” ranging from leisurely walks outdoors to strenuous all day hikes. Many of them are family friendly.
5– World class golf
The Tennessee Golf Trail has some of the best golf in Tennessee. It has eight traditional golf courses and 4 Bear Trace golf courses, including three of the original Bear Trace, Jack Nicklaus Signature courses. Its epicenter is Crossville, an easy half hour drive from Sparta. All of the courses, including the other two Bear Trace courses, are located in Tennessee State Parks, which means that all can be played for less than $60, even on weekends (most can be played for $35 Monday through Friday). Tennessee green fees are such a good value that they are one of the reasons we think Tennessee is the perfect place for golf.
6– Great water sports
Middle Tennessee also has some excellent boating and fishing. For example, Percy Priest Lake (which is actually a reservoir), east of Nashville, is surrounded by beautiful public lands. It has many marinas and is home to several boating clubs. It hosts hundreds of fishing tournaments because it consistently produces great numbers and sizes of fish. In fact, it is home to almost all of Tennessee’s native fish.
7– Exciting motorcycle rides
Are you a biker? Cookeville, Tennessee is the hub of a thrilling motorcycle region. The Cumberland Plateau is filled with picturesque landscapes and switchbacks guaranteed to take your breath away. Along the way you will experience rolling hills and charming small town shops. If you need to catch your breath, take the time to slow down and enjoy the state’s famous hospitality.
If you want to slow it down even more, you can do one of Tennesse’s “bike-n-hikes” and immerse yourself in the beautiful views available from the Cumberland Plateau.
Alternatively, you can explore the Cumberland Plateau’s stunning waterfalls on the 178-mile “Famous Falls” ride. This route’s first stop is Burgess Falls, a gushing 250-foot waterfall set amid a lush forest. Next you will visit the Great Falls of the Caney Fork River followed by the widely known Fall Creek Falls State Park. The route finishes at Crossville’s Ozone Falls.
8– Visit beautiful waterfalls
You don’t need a motorcycle to experience the beautiful waterfalls around Cookeville. There are more than 150 documented waterfalls surrounding downtown Cookeville.
At 256 feet, Fall Creek Falls is the highest free-fall waterfall east of the Mississippi River. A short trail leads from the top of the plateau down to the base of the gorge, where you will see waterfall’s plungepool. But Fall Creek Falls is just the beginning. If you live at The River Club, you can visit a different waterfall each weekend for the next three years!
9– Go camping or RVing
Because Middle Tennessee is one of the most remote places to live, it is filled with campgrounds and RV parks.
If you want a campground filled with things to do, you can visit Loretta Lynn’s Ranch- a destination filled with outdoor sporting activities such as horseback riding, kayaking and canoeing. It is spread over 3,000 acres of rural Tennessee and offers cabin rentals, RV hookups and primitive camping.
Country music lovers can tour replica’s of Loretta’s Butcher Hollar childhood home, a coal mine and her plantation home featured in the movie Coal Miners Daughter. You can also visit Loretta’s famous Coal Miners Daughter Museum and see artifacts spanning her six decade career. The property itself is also of historical note with many landmarks dating from the 1800’s, including a famous grist mill.
You can buy your provisions at two authentic country stores located on the property. They have all the essentials, plus hot food options are available for breakfast and lunch.
10– You can live at The River Club
Maybe we are biased, but we think The River Club is the best remote place to live in the world! Situated in beautiful rural Tennessee, nestled in rolling hills and bordered by a small stream, you can take a morning nature walk before breakfast or after lunch. In the summer you can go for a swim in the beautiful pool, or play a little billiards in the clubhouse. It’s remove living at its most luxurious.