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Parks and Recreation

Nature Centers and Natural Areas

About Nature Centers

Bird Camp kids with binoculars, Kim Bailey, and an Amercian Goldfinch

Get outside, explore Nashville’s nature and have fun! Nature Centers are gateways to the Parks and great places to begin your visit and exploration outdoors. Nature Centers are open year-round and offer programs, special events, field trips, natural history information and literature, maps and naturalists to answer your questions.

The Nature Center program is a system of four nature centers that work together with a mission:

  • to provide quality environmental education and responsible recreation.
  • to help protect, preserve, restore and manage the park ecosystem and all natural resources.
  • to raise awareness, foster respect and share enthusiasm for the natural environment.

Our Locations

The Nature Centers are located in each of the four largest Metro Parks-- Warner Parks, Shelby Bottoms, Beaman Park, and Bells Bend Park.

Metro Parks Participants Code of Conduct

Beaman Park Nature Center

Beaman Park Nature Center

Beaman Park Nature Center opened in 2009 and is located in a wild and rugged forested natural area in northwest Davidson County near Joelton.

5911 Old Hickory Blvd.
Ashland City, TN 37015

Bells Bend Outdoor Center

Bells Bend Outdoor Center

Bells Bend Outdoor Center was opened in 2008 and is located in the rural Scottsboro area in a pastoral bend of the Cumberland River.

4187 Old Hickory Blvd
Nashville, TN 37218

Shelby Bottoms Nature Center

Shelby Bottoms Nature Center

Shelby Bottoms Nature Center opened in 2007 and is located in East Nashville along the Cumberland River in Shelby Bottoms Nature Park and Greenway and adjacent to Shelby Park.

1900 Davidson Street
Nashville, TN 37206

Warner Park Nature Center

Warner Park Nature Center

Warner Park Nature Center, established in 1973, is located in Nashville's largest park and is the hub of the system of Metro Parks nature centers.

7311 Highway 100
Nashville, TN 37221

Hill Forest, Big Beech and Blue Sky

Natural Areas

Natural areas are unique parks that protect natural resources and biodiversity and are popular destinations for environmental education, outdoor recreation, and healthy lifestyle activities.


Nature Links

  • Every Child Outdoors Tennessee (ECO-TN) is a coalition of more than 100 supporting organizations including local, state and national organizations and agencies, governments, non-profits and businesses representing health, natural resource, education, hunting and fishing, recreation and youth stakeholders.
  • Leave No Trace teaches people of all ages how to enjoy the outdoors responsibly, and is the most widely accepted outdoor ethics program used on public lands.
  • A Parent's Guide to Nature Play is a great guide to encourage parents how to get outside with their children.
  • Tennessee Watchable Wildlife provides a list of sites throughout the state for observation of our diverse wildlife.
  • Tennessee Exotic Pest Plant Council provides information to businesses and homeowners about invasive plants.