Best Parks In Northeast Alabama and Lookout Mountain Area-Hiking, Camping, Picnic Areas

View high-atop Lookout Mountain in Mentone Alabama
View high-atop Lookout Mountain in Mentone Alabama

Discover the Parks On Lookout Mountain

Lookout Mountain is located in Northeast Alabama and has some of the most breathtaking scenery in the nation. There are literally thousands of acres of parks both State and National located on Lookout Mountain in Northeast Alabama..

If you want to go hiking, camping, rappel sheer rock cliffs, kayak a raging river, or just have a great place to get away from it all with a relaxing picnic, then you have found the place, Lookout Mountain Alabama!

Now Lookout Mountain Alabama is comprised of many small towns and communities,and covers an area located in Northeast Alabama.

Visit the Best Parks On Lookout Mountain Alabama

show route and directions
A markerLookout Mountain Alabama -
Lookout Mountain Pkwy, Fort Payne, AL 35967, USA
[get directions]

Lookout Mountain Parkway is a beautiful Scenic Drive through the Mountains of Alabama.

B markerDesoto State Park -Lookout Mountain Alabama -
Desoto State Park, Fort Payne, AL 35967, USA
[get directions]

Desoto State Park-Take the opportunity to commune with nature in DeSoto State Park. We offer overnight accommodations such as rustic cabins, modern ch

C markerLittle River Canyon National Preserve, Lookout Mountain Alabama -
Little River Canyon National Preserve, Fort Payne, AL 35967, USA
[get directions]

Enjoy scenic vistas and waterfalls along the beautiful Little River Canyon National Preserve. Bring lots of film, you will want to capture the beauty

We often overlook what is right in front of us, as it can be with our local Parks. They can have so much to offer but over time we sometimes take it for granted. So writing these hubs about our local area has re-awakened my senses to some of the beautiful pictures of nature we have in our own backyard... I hope you will see it as well.

Desoto State Park-Lookout Mountain Northeast Alabama
Desoto State Park-Lookout Mountain Northeast Alabama
104 Feet of Rushing Water-Desoto Falls at Desoto State Park-Lookout Mountain
104 Feet of Rushing Water-Desoto Falls at Desoto State Park-Lookout Mountain

Desoto State Park

You will find Desoto State Park nestled away on top of Lookout Mountain overlooking the valley below, you feel somewhat removed from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. The Civilian Conservation Corps or CCC was what helped to take this already breathtaking scenery and turn it into what we know today as Desoto State Park.

Depending on the time of year you visit, you may smell the fragrant wildflowers or you may see the golden turning of the leaves but it is always beautiful and is accented by rushing waterfalls and mountain rocks.

Desoto State Park gives you more than just atmosphere, there is a lodge for both business and pleasure, a restaurant, Mountain Chalets, and rustic log cabins tucked into the woods for your enjoyment. The park encompasses jut over 3,500 acres along the winding Little River .

There is a playground area for kids, an Olympic-sized swimming pool, a nature center with interpretive programs and multiple picnic areas for your enjoyment. If camping is what you are looking for, they have both improved and primitive campgrounds available. During your stay you will have access to over 20 miles of hiking and biking trails, of course which could be for day use as well.

Desoto Falls Dam area of Desoto State Park
Desoto Falls Dam area of Desoto State Park
Desoto Falls at Desoto State Park Lookout Mountain
Desoto Falls at Desoto State Park Lookout Mountain
Private Boat Dock on Little River at Desoto Falls
Private Boat Dock on Little River at Desoto Falls
Boating at Desoto Falls- Desoto State Park
Boating at Desoto Falls- Desoto State Park
Rock Formations at Desoto State Park
Rock Formations at Desoto State Park
Kian floating his boat at Desoto State Park
Kian floating his boat at Desoto State Park
Overlooking the Falls at Desoto Falls Dam- Lookout Moutain
Overlooking the Falls at Desoto Falls Dam- Lookout Moutain
Little River Canyon National Preserve Lookout Mountain Alabama
Little River Canyon National Preserve Lookout Mountain Alabama
Fall View of Little River Canyon National Preserve Lookout Mountain Alabama
Fall View of Little River Canyon National Preserve Lookout Mountain Alabama
Click thumbnail to view full-size
Falls at Little River Canyon National Preserve Lookout Mountain AlabamaFalls at Little River Canyon National Preserve Lookout Mountain AlabamaGushing Falls-Little River Canyon National Preserve Lookout Mountain AlabamaOne of the many Pools of water at Little River Canyon National Preserve Unique Scaffolding for New Bridge at Little River Canyon National Preserve Lookout Mountain AlabamaUnique Scaffolding for New Bridge at Little River Canyon National Preserve Lookout Mountain AlabamaUnique Scaffolding for New Bridge at Little River Canyon National Preserve Lookout Mountain AlabamaUnique Scaffolding for New Bridge at Little River Canyon National Preserve Lookout Mountain AlabamaLittle River Falls at Little River Canyon National PreserveMushroom Rock at Little River Canyon Lookout MountainCrow Point- Little River Canyon Lookout MountainOverlook along the Canyon Rim of Little River CanyonLittle River Canyon National PreserveLittle River Falls at Little River Canyon National Preserve
Falls at Little River Canyon National Preserve Lookout Mountain Alabama
Falls at Little River Canyon National Preserve Lookout Mountain Alabama
Falls at Little River Canyon National Preserve Lookout Mountain Alabama
Falls at Little River Canyon National Preserve Lookout Mountain Alabama
Gushing Falls-Little River Canyon National Preserve Lookout Mountain Alabama
Gushing Falls-Little River Canyon National Preserve Lookout Mountain Alabama
One of the many Pools of water at Little River Canyon National Preserve
One of the many Pools of water at Little River Canyon National Preserve
Unique Scaffolding for New Bridge at Little River Canyon National Preserve Lookout Mountain Alabama
Unique Scaffolding for New Bridge at Little River Canyon National Preserve Lookout Mountain Alabama
Unique Scaffolding for New Bridge at Little River Canyon National Preserve Lookout Mountain Alabama
Unique Scaffolding for New Bridge at Little River Canyon National Preserve Lookout Mountain Alabama
Unique Scaffolding for New Bridge at Little River Canyon National Preserve Lookout Mountain Alabama
Unique Scaffolding for New Bridge at Little River Canyon National Preserve Lookout Mountain Alabama
Unique Scaffolding for New Bridge at Little River Canyon National Preserve Lookout Mountain Alabama
Unique Scaffolding for New Bridge at Little River Canyon National Preserve Lookout Mountain Alabama
Little River Falls at Little River Canyon National Preserve
Little River Falls at Little River Canyon National Preserve
Mushroom Rock at Little River Canyon Lookout Mountain
Mushroom Rock at Little River Canyon Lookout Mountain
Crow Point- Little River Canyon Lookout Mountain
Crow Point- Little River Canyon Lookout Mountain
Overlook along the Canyon Rim of Little River Canyon
Overlook along the Canyon Rim of Little River Canyon
Little River Canyon National Preserve
Little River Canyon National Preserve
Little River Falls at Little River Canyon National Preserve
Little River Falls at Little River Canyon National Preserve

Jumping At Little River National Preserve

Little River Canyon National Preserve

Little River Canyon is a National Preserve that will take your breath away when you see it for the first time in its raw, pristine, natural environment. There are awesome views all along Little River including the Little River Falls as well as the stunning rock formations stretching from the north rim of the canyon to the south rim.

What makes Little River so unique is that it flows for most of its length atop Lookout Mountain which is part of the Southern Appalachians located in northeast Alabama. It is forested uplands, with waterfalls, canyon rims featuring bluffs, boulders, and sandstone cliffs with pools of water scattered along the way. This National Preserve with its rich cultural heritage and natural resources feature settings perfect for all forms of recreational activities.

The scenic drive along the rim of the canyon goes for 11 miles along a winding, hilly paved road with various overlooks and picnic tables along the way. There are also restroom facilities located at Little River Falls, Eberhart Point and the Canyon Mouth Picnic Area.

The area of Little River referred to as the Backcountry Area is designated for horseback riders, hikers, 4-wheel drive vehicles (no more ATV's since 9-1-2010) and primitive camping. Camping is free and allowed from Feb 1-Sept. 30. It is limited to three sites, Slant Rock, Billy's Ford and Hartline Ford and is available on a first come, first serve basis. Hunting is allowed on designated dates, times and places with a valid hunting license. Fishing is also allowed anywhere on Little River within the Preserve with a valid fishing license.

The Canyon Mouth Picnic Area offers a perfect place for a day of picnicking along the river.There are picnic tables, grills, a water fountain, a foot-wash station, and restrooms are available for your convenience. However there is a $3 user fee per vehicle for this area with a seasonal pass available for $10.

If hiking is your game, you are in luck, just don't expect to be able to go the the whole canyon in one day, because of the rough terrain and lack of a designated trail.

Kayaking is available at Little River Canyon but these rapids are for experts, we do not recommend that beginners try this river. You must bring your own equipment, there are no rentals available at this time.

I am sure I have missed something, there is just so much to do at Little River Canyon National Preserve on Lookout Mountain and the natural beauty can leave you speechless.

Little River Canyon National Preserve

Cherokee Princess Noccalula Statue
Cherokee Princess Noccalula Statue
Noccalula Falls Park Northeast Alabama
Noccalula Falls Park Northeast Alabama
Beautiful Old Trees at Noccalula Falls Park
Beautiful Old Trees at Noccalula Falls Park
Noccalula Falls Park Northeast Alabama
Noccalula Falls Park Northeast Alabama

Noccalula Falls Park-Northeast Alabama

Noccalula Falls Park is not only is a beautiful park but it comes with a legendary love story that gives it is charm (and name) and draws thousands of visitors a year.

The falls were originally known as Black Creek Falls but after many legendary tales of the beautiful Cherokee princess Noccalula jumping to her death, in her memory the falls became, Noccalula Falls. The land was once privately owned and donated to the city so everyone could enjoy the falls in all of its splendor.

As for the legend, the Cherokee Princess Noccalula had fallen in love with and wished to marry a young brave from her own tribe. Her Father, a Cherokee Indian Chief, refused to grant permission or his blessing, insisting she marry a brave from a neighboring tribe whose father promised many riches in return for his daughters hand. Noccalula's father banished the love of her life and prepared his the exchange of his daughter for goods with the brave from the neighboring tribe. Noccalula never spoke but went along with the festivities and then quietly slipped away to plunge to her death over the falls.

There is a bronze statue of Noccalula created in the mid 1960's from pennies collected from local school children. This statue of the Cherokee Princess Noccalula is the first of its kind to portray someone jumping off a cliff.

When visiting Noccalula Falls Park in northeast Alabama, you can see the falls cascading 90 feet over a Lookout Mountain ledge into lush ravine. The park and campground is operated by both the City of Gadsden as well as the State of Alabama.

Besides being able to view the beautiful cascading falls, the 250 acre park also features several hiking trails, a botanical gardens and swimming spot. There are also tours available of pioneer village which is constructed of log cabins, the Gilliland-Reese Covered Bridge (built 1899) a petting zoo, miniature golf and a ride on the replica 1863 C. P. Huntington train.

Camping is available to visitors of the park that offers both tent and RV sites as well as cabin rentals.

It is definetly worth the visit if you get the chance, even for just a day. Noccalula Falls Park in Northeast Alabama is full of natural beauty and charm.

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Bridge overlooking the Falls Noccalula Falls ParkNoccalula Falls ParkSpinning Wheels Inside Pioneer Village Noccalula Falls ParkCountry Store in Pioneer Village Noccalula Falls ParkOverlooking the Falls Noccalula Falls ParkInside Pioneer Village Noccalula Falls ParkUnder the Falls Noccalula Falls ParkNoccalula Falls Park inside the Covered BridgeDucks at Noccalula Falls ParkWedding Chapel Noccalula Falls ParkNoccalula Falls Park Wedding ChapelSwimming Ducks Noccalula Falls ParkFeeding the Ducks Noccalula Falls ParkBeautiful Grounds at Noccalula Falls Park Northeast AlabamaCaves underneath the Falls Noccalula Falls ParkNoccalula Falls Park Northeast Alabama-low water levels, less fallsRide the Train at Noccalula Falls ParkNoccalula Falls Park sign
Bridge overlooking the Falls Noccalula Falls Park
Bridge overlooking the Falls Noccalula Falls Park
Noccalula Falls Park
Noccalula Falls Park
Spinning Wheels Inside Pioneer Village Noccalula Falls Park
Spinning Wheels Inside Pioneer Village Noccalula Falls Park
Country Store in Pioneer Village Noccalula Falls Park
Country Store in Pioneer Village Noccalula Falls Park
Overlooking the Falls Noccalula Falls Park
Overlooking the Falls Noccalula Falls Park
Inside Pioneer Village Noccalula Falls Park
Inside Pioneer Village Noccalula Falls Park
Under the Falls Noccalula Falls Park
Under the Falls Noccalula Falls Park
Noccalula Falls Park inside the Covered Bridge
Noccalula Falls Park inside the Covered Bridge
Ducks at Noccalula Falls Park
Ducks at Noccalula Falls Park
Wedding Chapel Noccalula Falls Park
Wedding Chapel Noccalula Falls Park
Noccalula Falls Park Wedding Chapel
Noccalula Falls Park Wedding Chapel
Swimming Ducks Noccalula Falls Park
Swimming Ducks Noccalula Falls Park
Feeding the Ducks Noccalula Falls Park
Feeding the Ducks Noccalula Falls Park
Beautiful Grounds at Noccalula Falls Park Northeast Alabama
Beautiful Grounds at Noccalula Falls Park Northeast Alabama
Caves underneath the Falls Noccalula Falls Park
Caves underneath the Falls Noccalula Falls Park
Noccalula Falls Park Northeast Alabama-low water levels, less falls
Noccalula Falls Park Northeast Alabama-low water levels, less falls
Ride the Train at Noccalula Falls Park
Ride the Train at Noccalula Falls Park
Noccalula Falls Park sign
Noccalula Falls Park sign

Visit Noccalula Falls Park and Campground

A markerNoccalula Falls Park-Northeast Alabama -
1600 Noccalula Rd, Gadsden, AL 35904, USA
[get directions]

Noccalula Falls Park and Campground in Gadsden Alabama. Come experience the legend of the Cherokee Princess and the beautiful cascading falls...

Favorite Park Activities

What is your favorite park recreational activity?

  • Hiking
  • Camping
  • Having a Picnic
  • Boating
  • Horseback Riding
  • Swimming
  • Kayaking
  • Biking
  • Other
See results without voting

More by this Author


Where is Your Favorite Park? 17 comments

stephhicks68 profile image

stephhicks68 6 years ago from Bend, Oregon

Oh wow - I knew from the title that I was going to love this hub! Gorgeous photographs and descriptions. I just have to get to this corner of the U.S. sometime. Our favorite activity is hiking, but picnicking (and photography) are right up there too. Beautiful hub.


MyMastiffPuppies profile image

MyMastiffPuppies 6 years ago Author

Thank you for your kind comments! Yes it is a very scenic part of the U.S. and with all 4 seasons, it gives a different look over the year. Wish there was some kind of exchange program to visit other states, cause I was thinking the same about your corner of the world! I knew Oregon had some beautiful areas but the pictures you had are just awesome! Thanks again!


akirchner profile image

akirchner 6 years ago from Central Oregon

Those are some awesome parks and great pictures! Wish I could visit all of them!!


MyMastiffPuppies profile image

MyMastiffPuppies 6 years ago Author

Thanks so much akirchner,

I forget sometimes how scenic our part of the world is and it was so much fun digging out old pictures and taking new ones. They offer some really good outdoor recreation and most of it all for free! We all should take more advantage of what nature has to offer us.


Peggy W profile image

Peggy W 6 years ago from Houston, Texas

I love nature and our state and national parks. These look gorgeous in your "neck of the woods." Thanks so much for introducing them to the rest of us! Rating this beautiful.


MyMastiffPuppies profile image

MyMastiffPuppies 6 years ago Author

Thanks Peggy W,

You are more than welcome! We all need to take the time to visit our parks and share them with our kids. I have seen so many other state and national parks through the eyes of other hubbers, it has been a real joy to share mine.


butterfly Tattoo profile image

butterfly Tattoo 6 years ago from Dallas Texas

Wow never thought of Alabama as being so lovely. Thank you for showing me this, Someday I hope to visit


MyMastiffPuppies profile image

MyMastiffPuppies 6 years ago Author

Thank you for visiting butterfly Tattoo!

It amazes me how little we know about the states around us if we don't get to see them first hand. I think this has been a great way to share with others, glad you liked it!


Simone Smith profile image

Simone Smith 6 years ago from San Francisco

Gosh, I'm dying to visit Little River Canyon National Preserve now, what gorgeous photos! All of these places sound great though- so many wonderful outdoor opportunities!


MyMastiffPuppies profile image

MyMastiffPuppies 6 years ago Author

SimoneSmith,

If you ever get the chance, Little River Canyon is such a wonderful place to visit. You can get lost in the moment and totally forget what part of the world you are in. Every time we go, we see something new. Thanks for stopping by!


coachb51 profile image

coachb51 6 years ago from West Point, MS

Awesome Hub. We travel Alabama a lot. Enjoyed reading your hub. We love the bluff at Chehaw State park and the mountains in north Alabama. I can't remember the community we stayed in but there was a really great community up around Fort Payne area.


MyMastiffPuppies profile image

MyMastiffPuppies 6 years ago Author

Thanks for sharing! I have not visited Chehaw State park but I hear it is beautiful. We have such natural beauty all around us, and it is so easy to take for granted. I had a lot of fun writing this hub.


RocketCityWriter profile image

RocketCityWriter 6 years ago from Alabama

Nice hub! I have only been to Little River Canyon, but it was great. You might also check out the Walls of Jericho, it's in Jackson county almost at the AL/TN border - a rough hike on the way back up, but it's worth it!


MyMastiffPuppies profile image

MyMastiffPuppies 6 years ago Author

Thanks RocketCityWriter! We love visiting Little River and Desoto Falls. We took a drive last fall that went by the Walls of Jericho but we weren't equipped to get out and walk around. We have been meaning to go back but have not made it yet. Thanks for the reminder though, we might just make that hike soon.


eclecticeducation profile image

eclecticeducation 5 years ago

How beautiful!!!! I have never been to Alabama, but if I get out there, I will have to check this out. Voted up! :)


UhOhChongo profile image

UhOhChongo 5 years ago from Philadelphia, PA

Great pics there!


John Hanners profile image

John Hanners 3 years ago from Lineville, Alabama

Great Hub. Also if you have never been to Cheaha Mountain, I highly recommend the trip to Clay County, Alabama.

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