This year has been a challenge for many people on so many levels. One way to escape the onslaught of bad news these days is to get outdoors. As Jane Austen once wrote, “To sit in the shade on a fine day and look upon the verdant green hills is the most perfect refreshment.” And what better way to do that than on a hike to visit some of the most gorgeous waterfalls in Tennessee?

Anyone who enjoys the breathtaking beauty of waterfalls will find many of the best throughout Tennessee. Every one of them is something that must be seen to be believed. Of the many waterfalls throughout the state, here are the top five.

For those who don’t mind embarking on a hike, Burgess Falls is a choice loved equally by locals and tourists. To get there, hikers must make their way through the Service Loop’s River Trail. The falls are located within Burgess Falls State Park, which boasts three other waterfalls as well. Each waterfall is 250 feet from the top of the mountain to the surface of the river below. Though it is a physically demanding hike to get back from Burgess Falls, it can be navigated safely.

A trip to the Foster Falls starts at Sequatche’s Foster Falls Visitor Center. After a two-mile hike, which begins in the visitors center’s parking lot, this 60-foot waterfall is instantly visible. Many that visit to see Foster Falls also camp out at Cumberland State Park. Swimming and rock climbing are two activities many visitors engage in when coming to see the falls.

Located between Warren County and White County, Rock Island State Park is home to many waterfalls, with the largest and most notable being the 80-foot Twin Falls. The one-mile hike to Twin Falls is not physically demanding, making it an excellent choice for almost anyone. In addition to the waterfall, Rock Island State Park allows visitors to see where the Caney River meets the Collins River.

Some of the most distinct waterfalls in Tennessee are found at Old Stone Fort State Park. This includes Little Duck River’s Step Falls. It gets its name from the fact that each step is shorter than the previous one. As a result, this is one waterfall that does not flow from dozens of feet in the air but much closer to the ground.

By embarking on the Panther Branch Trailhead, hikers can make the trip to EmoryGap Falls. It is one of the easiest to see with a 3.2 mile round trip between the park and the waterfall. Along the way, hikers will see the Debord Falls as well.

These five falls are just a few of the gorgeous waterfalls found in Tennessee. The state has numerous waterfall trails worth hiking for those who enjoy getting out in nature.