Are you a fan of national parks, battlefields, and historical sites? If you’re passing through Tennessee near the Mississippi Valley, you’ll want to add a day to your itinerary to visit Shiloh National Military Park.
Shiloh National Military Park spans over 5,000 acres and is home to the historic Civil War battlefield, Shiloh National Cemetery, and Shiloh Indian Mounds National Historic Landmark. Because of its size, you’ll want to spend at least half a day if you want to visit most of the significant points of interest inside the park.
The Battle of Shiloh
The Battle of Shiloh (also called the Battle at Pittsburg Landing) took place on April 6 and 7, 1862. Until that date, no other battle fought on American soil ended with as many casualties as the Battle of Shiloh. The two-day conflict resulted in more than 23,000 Confederate and Union deaths. Although the death toll marked the conflict as historically significant, the battle was also a major turning point in the Civil War because the Union, led by Ulysses S. Grant, penetrated the Confederate interior.
Before You Go — Download the Official App
The National Park Service recently upped its technology game. The NPS App is the all-inclusive, one-stop shop for every national park, monument, historic site, memorial, recreation area, and more. This app, made for both Apple and Android users, was developed to be informative and interactive, and, best of all, used offline. The app, developed with the help of park rangers, has maps, points of interest, passport stamp sites, event information, park alerts, and much more.
Tip — the NPS App contains the content for the self-guided Shiloh Battlefield Auto Tour.
The cell service isn’t great once you get to Shiloh, so before you leave your campground, download the app and search for Shiloh National Military Park. Once you find the park, mark it to be available for offline use. The app will download the selected park’s content, so when you are inside the park and away from cell service, you can access all the features just by opening the app to Shiloh National Military Park.
Want more digital information about Shiloh National Military Park? Check out the Shiloh Battle App, created by American Battlefield Trust.
Things to Do
If you have a half day or more to visit Shiloh, you should be able to explore most of the park. The majority of the stops along the auto tour are easy to access from your car or RV without much walking. Some stops have large pull-off areas and can fit bigger vehicles or several cars at a time. If you plan to take your Class A motorhome or a larger towable, consider parking it in an RV space near the Visitor Center while you take part in one of the park’s guided tours.
- Drive 12.7 miles through the park and visit the 22 tour stops along the self-guided auto driving tour. The tour stops include significant battle locations, monuments, mass gravesites, and artillery cannons.
- Visit the bookstore to buy souvenirs and get your passport stamp.
- Watch the film Shiloh: Fiery Trial at the Visitor Center.
- Honor the fallen at the cemetery.
- Visit the seven tour stops and 13 interpretive exhibits along the Shiloh Indian Mounds Interpretive Trail.
- Attend a special event, living history presentation, or a ranger-led tour.
- Stop by the Corinth Civil War Interpretive Center in Corinth, Mississippi.
- Sit along the Tennessee River near Pittsburg Landing and watch for wildlife.
- Pack a picnic lunch to eat at the picnic pavilion. Forget your lunch? The park has a vending machine near the bookstore to purchase little munchies.
- Help the kids earn a Junior Ranger badge.
- Take your dogs on a BARK Ranger hike and help your furry friends earn a BARK Ranger certificate.
Places to Stay
Bringing your RV? Several RV campgrounds aren’t far from Shiloh National Military Park. Local favorite campgrounds include Pickwick Landing State Park, Chickasaw State Park, Big Hill Pond State Park, and J.P. Coleman State Park.
|Meagan Butler is an RV enthusiast and an advocate for solo female RVing. She and her husband RV together, but when Pat can’t hit the road, Meg travels alone with her two Cavalier King Charles Spaniels, Teddy and Pippa. When Meg isn’t creating RV content for RVezy, she’s sharing her love of RVing on her travel blog, Her Fine Mess.|