Mill Mountain Park

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One of the most underrated and free activities you can try in Roanoke, VA, is going to a nature park. Not only will the magnificent views refresh your spirit, but the astounding beauty of trees and wildlife will spark your interest to reconnect with nature.

With an elevation of around 1,700 feet and over 500 acres of land, Mill Mountain Park is incredibly near to Roanoke, Virginia, so a quick escape is very possible. The park is rich with striking flora and fauna. Bird enthusiasts will find the presence of migratory birds captivating, especially during the spring and fall seasons.

Mill Mountain Park offers diverse recreational spots. You can find a zoo, areas for picnics, many restaurants, paths for hikes, and venues for overlooking the amazing Roanoke vistas.

While meandering the interesting Star Trail, you will encounter invigorating forest areas to bathe your spirit. You’re likely to find lovely pine, oak, and maple trees in this area along with a field of mosses and ferns.

Aside from the amazing sight of bluebirds, woodpeckers, and wild turkeys, you will also catch sight of the park regulars– chipmunks, deer, and squirrels. Keep reading this article to learn more!


History of Mill Mountain Park

Initially, developments in the Mill Mountain Park summit started in 1892. A hotel and observatory was constructed. Within that decade, an area was transformed into a park, which provided various recreational choices for residents. 

Mill Mountain Park was owned privately until 1941. The owner, J.B. Fishburne gave the city a hundred acres until it became vast with a lot of support from civic organizations. The additions were a wildflower garden, hiking trails, organic-inspired landscaping, a visitor center, and a venue for concerts.

Distance of Mill Mountain Park

In under five minutes from the downtown area of Roanoke,  you can reach the top trails of Mill Mountain Park. The highest peak of the mountain and the popular Roanoke Star can easily be accessed through the trails.

Amenities Found in Mill Mountain Park

The park encompasses 900 acres of space sitting at the top of Mill Mountain. One can also find scenic overlooks, the Mill Mountain Zoo, and the Mill Mountain Discovery Center, aside from the usual picnic spots and numerous trails.


Things to Do In Mill Mountain Park

If you have an off-day, you can easily spend a fun time the entire day in Mill Mountain Park with its well-designed trail systems that attract a lot of hikers and bikers. Whether you are planning a solo time, or are out with kids or your partner, Mill Mountain Park has something to offer.




Visit the Mill Mountain Zoo

You can start your day by visiting endangered animals and appreciating over 170 different types of animals, including mammals, reptiles, and birds.

Part of the impressive Mill Mountain Park, the Mill Mountain Zoo is run by the City of Roanoke. You can find black bears, hogs, goats, turkeys, and plenty of animals in this zoo. You can also take part in goat and pig feeding.  

Drop by the Mill Mountain Discovery Center

As part of Mill Mountain Park’s attractions, the Mill Mountain Discovery Center is a new place created for Nature Education programs. You can participate in classes and workshops for more outdoor appreciation.

Walk around this exquisite space, be mesmerized by the lovely wildflower garden, and enjoy the fantastic interactive educational exhibits on display. Prepare to be amazed by the live creatures in the vicinity. The Mill Mountain Discovery Center showcases an interesting beehive, and the reptiles, turtles, and snakes. 

Check out the Roanoke Star

Also known as Mill Mountain Star, the Roanoke Star can be seen at the top of Mill Mountain and is a sight to behold as a huge illuminated man-made star. It was built in 1949 to attract the townspeople to trade and was supposed to shine brightly only during the Christmas season. However, it appealed to many people and became so iconic that it is now lit up every night.


Its visibility reaches 60 miles from the air. The star can shine in different shades depending on the occasion. It glows in red to commemorate a tragic event, and red, white, and blue to celebrate patriotism. The Roanoke Star became so closely associated with the City of Roanoke that it earned the nickname Star City of the South.

Hike the Mill Mountain Park Trails

Mill Mountain Park is famous for its outstanding views and amazing park trails. Nature enthusiasts are likely to enjoy its numerous trails, such as the

  • Star Trail: an 8.4 km loop that is labeled as a moderate challenge for hikers. It will take an average of 2 hours and 35 minutes to finish this trail. It is a perfect fit for those who enjoy watching our feathered friends, hiking, and running. For people who enjoy more tranquil moments, this trail also provides a sense of serenity when you head out early.
  • The other popular trails are Monument, Big Sunny, and Wood Thrush at varying distances. Those who are seeking a great challenge can also do the Mill Mountain Full MTB Loop, which roughly takes an estimated 6 hours and 15 minutes with its length of 22.5 kilometers.

So whip up your mountain bikes and speed through these enjoyable trails that lead you to enjoyable vistas.


As we’ve taken a closer look at Mountain Mill Park, it’s evident that each part of the area has its own unique charm and character. The sense of community here truly enhances the attractiveness of any property.

For landlords in Mountain Mill Park aiming to lease their spaces close to this wonderful space, working with a property management company like JMAX Property Management can be a great idea. 

JMAX Property Management focuses on helping you get the most out of your property and keeping everything running smoothly. With their help, you can fully enjoy the buzz and customer draw that these coffee shops bring. Contact JMAX today and make the most of your property investment in the lively Mountain Hills Park.