Bicentennial Capitol Mall State Park
600 James Robertson Parkway
Nashville, Tennessee 37243
In October 2016, I visited the Bicentennial Park in Nashville, TN. I arrived around 10am. I was able to find a free parking spot on the street. I will admit that I was a bit blown away by the park. It was beautiful.
With just a simple walk in the 19-acre park visitors can experience many facets of Tennessee’s history including a 200-foot granite map of the state, a World War II Memorial, a 95-Bell Carillon, a Pathway of History and the Rivers of Tennessee Fountains. The 11 planters along the Walkway of Counties show native plant species from different regions of the state. The park features a 2,000-seat amphitheater that provides dramatic views of the Nashville skyline. Composed of terraced lawns, the amphitheater was designed after the Greek theater at Epidaurus.
What the snippet neglected to mention was the walking path between each of the “facets”. I visited each of these by walking the path. There were a few people walking the trail for fitness, some sightseers and some walking to get to their office. I was fortunate enough to hear the bells go off twice- each time with a different sound. The grounds were nicely manicured / clean and the sights were spectacular. It didn’t matter the direction, each way had a view. Although the park is located downtown, there were no safety concerns. However, I may have felt differently if it was after dark. There was also plenty of flat, grassy areas for picnics and lawn chairs.
There were only a couple of downfalls to this state park. First is the parking situation. There was not a lot of free parking spots for a state ran park. The TN emblem colors embedded on the ground at the bells seemed faded. The fading isn’t a big deal. The park could use more seating, whether benches or large rocks. It’s a large park and I counted maybe 5 benches. There were a couple of other spots you could sit, but considering some people can not sit on the ground, carry lawn chairs or sit on hard granite, more benches should be considered.
All in all, this was a nice state park and pleasantly different than most. If you’re in the Nashville area, stop and enjoy the views.