Who needs Paris when you have the whole of Humphreys County to explore with your significant other? This gorgeous area of Middle Tennessee offers a wide variety of activities, food, and lodging for every type of couple—from the adventurous to the cuddlebugs.
Active Couple Activities
Canoeing and kayaking on one of the several bodies of water in Humphreys County is sure to satisfy the adventurer in both of you. If you don’t already have your own canoe, make your way to Bone’s Canoe Rental on the Buffalo River in Hurricane Mills.
Be careful, too. They tell you right there on the website not to follow the directions your GPS gives you if you’re coming from the north. You’re better off following their exact instructions or using the GPS coordinates 35.919236, -87.842381 to make sure you don’t get lost in the, admittedly beautiful, countryside. That can really ruin a date.
If you and your partner are more into hiking, Humphreys County has you covered there, too. Johnsonville State Historic Park features three separate hiking trails ranging from easy to difficult, so couples of all abilities can enjoy the outdoors.
For the extra active, canoe and kayak launch sites are also available at Johnsonville State Historic Park. You and your love can spend some time on the lake after a quick hike.
For Those Who Prefer a Stroll
Hiking may not be your thing, either, and that’s okay. There are several spots to walk along the Tennessee River for some breathtaking views. Strolling the grounds of the park will also bring you face to face with Civil War history, including some replica cannons and soldier huts.
If you’re looking for something a little different, The Walls Art Park in Waverly will absolutely delight. You can wander through the park and marvel at other artists’ work, or you can bring your own paint and share your sweet talent with the world. Don’t forget to wander over the Love Lock bridge with your padlock so you and your love can symbolize your love…just as they do in Paris!
Downtown Waverly is an absolute charmer, packed with locally owned shops and cafés for every taste. Even if you don’t plan to buy, a bit of window shopping can go a long way here. Indulge in vintage antiques, boutique buys for the whole family, art and crafts at the Waverly Café. If you’re musically inclined, stop into Bud’s Music and serenade your sweetheart on one of the instruments.
When you’re ready to enjoy a cozy dinner, stop into Loyce’s to get dolled up in formal wear. Or, hey, maybe you’re planning for something bigger down the road…like a wedding. You can scope out the eveningwear and start making some plans together.
Romantic Dining Spots
What’s more romantic than a picnic? Johnsonville State Historic Park offers several picnic tables, and many grills are available on a first-come, first-served basis. You don’t have to stick to the tables and grills, though. Pick up a delicious meal or pack your own, along with a colorful quilt, and prepare a spread under a shade tree for some real romantic flavor.
If you prefer indoor dining, quite a few spots in Humphreys County will meet your desires. At once homey and romantic, Samuel’s on the Square in downtown Waverly is a great place to start. The menu features some down-home favorites like fried chicken, prime rib, and pork chops, or you can choose from their elevated dishes like Capon Florentine, Pollo Marsala, and Lampuga con le Olive.
Jen’s Steak and Seafood is another popular choice for those seeking an intimate evening meal. Located in Hurricane Mills, Jen’s Steak and Seafood serves up many dishes you’d expect from a steakhouse in Tennessee—ribeye, filet mignon, sirloin, and prime rib—as well as a few surprises. Consider Jen’s Cheesy Chicken Medley, the swordfish, or the Seafood Alfredo when you visit. And of course, save some room for a slice of southern pecan pie!
Dinner isn’t the only meal you’ll eat during a romantic weekend. Fortunately, the restaurants of Humphreys County don’t disappoint when it comes to breakfast and lunch, either. Loretta Lynn’s Kitchen serves up a delicious country breakfast and then a delightful meat-and-three lunch. The Log Cabin restaurant is also a must for those who crave a bit of down-home cooking.
Bella Blak in Downtown Waverly is perfect for those who love a unique New York-style pizza. Try the Chicken Bacon Ranch, the Pulled Pork, or even the Garbage Pie, which may not sound terribly romantic, but with every ingredient in the place on each pie, it does sound delicious.
Finally, for something sweet to share with your sweet, there’s The Milkshakery, also in Waverly. The absolutely decadent creations involve all sorts of ingredients—on top of the already delicious ice cream, of course. One of the Ultimate Shakedowns is rolled in Fruity Pebbles and features pieces of Pop Tarts, sugar wafers, strawberry syrup, and a potential mess if you don’t drink it quickly enough! Another is piled with S’mores toppings. If ice cream isn’t your thing, try one of their homemade sodas…with two straws, of course.
If you prefer something of the nightcap variety, take a trip over to Gutter Bound Distillery. This family-owned operation offers tastings and tours, as well a wide range of cocktails. You’ll find the inside to be cozy and quaint—perfect for settling in for a couple of drinks before you head back to your bed for the evening. If you get a chance to take the tour, you’ll be delighted to learn the ins and outs of moonshine from the master distiller.
Lodging for Lovers
Humphreys County has no shortage of beautiful lodging options perfect for romance. Whether you prefer quirky and comfy or something out under the stars, you have your pick.
Perhaps the most obvious option for couples is the Honeymoon Cabin at Rock ‘N Refuge. This quaint, cozy log home is just right for two and features beautiful finishes that give a touch of luxury in an otherwise rustic setting. Rock ‘N Refuge also offers a treehouse that’s perfect for two, or their Hobbit house, the Wee Nook. Each of these stays includes the wide, open spaces of the property, perfect for romantic strolls or cuddling up by a campfire.
If you spent some time at Loretta Lynn’s Ranch and don’t want to travel much farther, book a cabin at Stagecoach Hill or Boone Hill. You can enjoy some of the hiking trails on the property, cook dinner on one of the charcoal grills, or huddle next to a fire pit.
Enoch’s Farm Bed and Breakfast is the perfect mix of peaceful and rustic. The Civil War-era farmhouse is nestled next to a creek, where you can sit and watch the horses roaming the fields. At night, crickets and owls will sing you to sleep.
And if you’re looking for something even more rustic, reach out to The Flying Ham. This Nashville-based company will bring their impeccably decorated vintage camper to you at one of the campgrounds located throughout the area. Choose from Loretta Lynn’s Ranch, New Johnsonville Harbor, or Mason’s Dock Marina and Campground.
The Flying Ham will also set up glamping tents, complete with air conditioners in the summer, for a truly outdoorsy feel.
As you can see, Humphreys County offers up plenty of beauty and excitement for a perfect romantic weekend. Start making your plans today, because some of the lodging options book quickly and often, as you might imagine!
ITINERARY POINTS OF INTEREST
Bone’s is a family-run primitive camping and canoe rental business that would be a prime spot for a fun and active family camping trip.
This 1000+ acre park was named after then-governor of Tennessee to commemorate the site of the Johnsonville Depot and the Battle of Johnsonville as well as the site of the historic town of Johnsonville itself before it was submerged during the creation of Kentucky Lake.
Created as a safe haven for those who need to express themselves and prefer not to get cited for it, The Walls Art Park was inspired by train graffiti art that the park’s creator found to be truly beautiful. It’s become a multi-surface art park that begs to be covered with the art of new talent.
Known in Waverly for being “more than just a cup of coffee,” Waverly Café is a casual, relaxed spot serving up breakfast, lunch, baked goods, and a full espresso bar. While you’re there, check out the café’s local arts and crafts gallery, collection of new and used books, and display of historical photographs of Humphreys County.
Bud’s Music features new and used music, instruments, books, art, and more. Stop in and see what treasures they have at any given time, from guitars and banjos to drum sets and more.
The local prom and pageant headquarters, Loyce’s carries more than 500 prom and pageant gowns. They also have all the latest ladies’ fashion trends in boutique clothing, shoes, and jewelry.
Specializing in upscale Italian cuisine and American grill favorites, Samuel’s guarantees only the best quality beef, chicken, and seafood in Middle Tennessee. Try the Capon Florentine, their signature dish, or choose from specialties like prime rib, homemade meatballs, cheesy chicken marinara, and more.
With two different locations in Humphreys County to serve you, Jen’s is a small-town American, family-style restaurant where you’re invited to “sit long, talk much, and laugh often.” Enjoy USDA certified steaks cut and trimmed right in the kitchen as well as seafood favorites like jumbo shrimp, lobster tail, snow crab legs, swordfish, catfish, and much more.
Featuring good ol’ country cooking and a friendly, casual environment, Loretta Lynn’s Kitchen serves up down-home dishes like country fried steak, pot roast, potatoes, greens, creamed corn, mac ‘n cheese, and southern style biscuits. Although the buffet is currently closed due to Covid-19, they are still offering their same delicious home style cooking for a nice sit-down family dinner.
Housed in a rustic log building that was built as a private home nearly one hundred years ago, Log Cabin’s mission is “to provide our guests with a genuine atmosphere, good service, and a meal that reminds them of home.” The restaurant is proud of its history and the authentic country-style menu that covers breakfast to dinner and everything in between.
Bringing the Big Apple taste to small town life, the daily menu at Bella Blak offers up New York-style pizzas, hot wings, subs, pastas, salads, and more while their Thursday through Sunday specialty menu includes savory dishes like steak au poivre, shrimp scampi, and chicken marsala.
A sweet shop for your sweetheart, The Milkshakery specializes in truly decadent dessert treats while also offering sandwiches and other sweet treats.
Gutter Bound is the first legal distillery in Humphreys County and offers locally crafted, never outsourced, small batch spirits that include moonshine, whiskey and bourbon, spiced rum, and vodka. Stillroom tours and tastings cost just $10 and begin at the top of every hour.
As you travel Bold Springs Road toward McEwen, you may just catch a glimpse of Rock ‘N Refuge, a family-owned farm and lodging operation with unique options like a treehouse and even a hobbit house!
One of the largest tourist spots in the state, Loretta Lynn’s Ranch caters to the lovers of the outdoors with hundreds of camping spots and hosts several events and concerts on over 6000 acres.
This restored Civil War farmhouse is now providing a serene atmosphere and country setting for an overnight stay that also offers the opportunity to get a hands-on farm life experience.
For a more unique camping experience, The Flying Ham offers 3 vintage-style campers as well as glamping bell tents for rent that they would be more than happy to come setup for you at your favorite Humphreys County camping spot.
In addition to the easy water access thanks to their spacious ramps that can accommodate small and large boats, the New Johnsonville Harbor also has camping spots available for short- or long-term rental.
This Waverly marina offers primitive camping, rustic cabins, and lake access that would be perfect for an “unplugged” trip with the kids.