Welcome to Bristol, Kingsport Sullivan County


Living in Northeast Tennessee yields benefits that transcend the loftiest expectations.

Known for its spectacular natural beauty, comfortable pace of life and numerous cultural and recreational opportunities, the region has a rich history that is deeply appreciated by the friendly people here. There’s plenty to do in Sullivan County, including recreational opportunities for hiking, hunting and trout-fishing on mountain lakes in a climate with all four seasons and only a few annual snow days. Both Bristol and Kingsport have Certified TN Main Streets, and the walkability, the proximity to the mountains, five sparkling TVA lakes, Bristol Motor Speedway and the area’s heritage and year-round music make for a rich and robust lifestyle.

Within the county’s borders are two national protected areas, the Appalachian Trali and Cherokee National Forest. Adding to those recreational springboards are four state protected areas: Bays Mountain and Morrell Cave state natural areas, Rocky Mount State Historic Site and Warriors’ Path State Park. Bays Mountain is a 3,550-acre nature park and planetarium in Kingsport. Warriors’ Path is a 950-acre state park, named for the Great Indian Warpath that was used by the Iroquois in war raids with the Cherokee and other tribes. The park offers a variety of trails. Hiking trails, from paved, accessible paths to strenuous climbs, wander through forests and wetlands. Along with eight miles of mountain biking trails, horseback riding trails are available to independent riders, and also for guided walks. Riding horses and ponies are avalable at the stables, and owners may board horses there. Riding the trails, you will be able to see historic settlements and houses.

If your golf swing is your passion, play Sullivan County at the course of your choice: Cattails at Meadowview, Crockett’s Ridge Golf Club, Clear Creek Golf Club, Tri-Cities Golf Club or Warriors’ Path State Park. Discover recreational pursuits at South Holston Lake, Steele Creek Park, Muddy Creek Sports, Kingsport Aquatic Center, and through paddle and racquet sports, regional collegiate games and gardening,

Engage in community activities such as dance, theater, historical groups, youth leagues, church groups, educational opportunities and more. In and around Kingsport, discover new friends and good times at FunFest, Kingsport Senior Center, Aquatic Center, Kingsport Cultural Arts Division, Carousel project, Kingsport Theatre Guild and Symphony of the Mountains Orchestra. A regional high point is the Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion, a three-day music experiencel held the third weekend in September, celebrating Bristol’s musical heritage and featuring country, gospel, bluegrass and roots.


In Sullivan County, you’re on top of the world at 6,285 feet with breathtaking views of the Appalachian Mountains. Visit Bays Mountain Park for a hike, barge ride on a mountaintop lake or observe wildlife habitats.

Examples of 200k Homes

image description Beautiful View $210,000 2,200 square feet
image description Spacious Yard $200,000 2,000 square feet

This is where country music was born and bluegrass thrives among next-generation musicians. Congress declared Bristol to be the “Birthplace of Country Music,” which was the launching pad for musicians such as the Stanley Brothers, Tennessee Ernie Ford and Kenny Chesney.

You’ll find nationally recognized physicians and medical centers in Northwest Tennessee. In Bristol, high-quality patient care is available at Wellmont, Mountain States Health Alliance. Kingsport offers excellent patient care at Holston Valley Medical Center, Indian Path Medical Center, Associated Orthopedics of Kingsport, Frontier Health and Holston Medical Group.

Tax & Living Expenses

Recently, Tennessee earned a number-one spot among states considered prime retirement locations in a Bankrate.com study. Ranked by data such as climate, tax rates, cost of living and access to healthcare, Tennessee has a cost of living 9.6% below the national average.

Our state and local tax burden is the third lowest in the nation, with residents enjoying no income tax except on interest and dividends. State sales tax is 7%; 5% for food.

Tennessee has no state property tax. Property taxes are locally determined and collected.

The median home value of the Sullivan County region is approximately $105,000 for Bristol, and $150,000 for Kingsport.

Higher Education

In the Bristol area, retirees may advance their education through opportunities at Northeast State Community College, King University and Slater Senior Center. Around Kingsport, pursue educational interests through Kingsport Higher Education Center, combining East Tennessee State University, King University, Lincoln Memorial University, Milligan College, Northeast State Community College, Tusculum College and the University of Tennessee.

Experience Living in Sullivan County

We moved to Bristol for the outdoor recreation available and the senior resources. The housing was affordable and the people friendly. We also love the music and downtown area. - Brenda Thomas
Kingsport appreciates its veterans. This area has excellent facilities for veterans, such as a major VA hospital just a few miles from here. We also have several associations for veterans to stay active. Kingsport has one of the finest K-12 education schools in Tennessee. Our college, East Tennessee State University, has an outstanding ROTC program—one that has produced more flag officers than any other college in the nation. I live in Kingsport, I love Kingsport, and I retired to Kingsport. - Admiral John McKinley


Sullivan County can take some of the hassle out of your lifestyle visit. We have arranged discounts with select hotels and have coordinated VIP treatment for our visitors with participating development partners (subject to availability).

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Discover Tennessee Tour

Tennessee’s array of amenities will please any interest. Whether you enjoy a active lifestyle or prefer a more leisurely pace, Tennessee provides natural beauty, a mild climate, urban conveniences and rural peacefulness.

Contact us for your personal tour of a Retire TN county.

Download the Discover (Sullivan Co.) TN Tour PDF »