Permits & Reservations

Permits

Certain activities within the boundary of the Natchez Trace National Scenic Trail may require a permit. The Natchez Trace implemented a new cost recovery program for the issuance of Commercial Use Authorizations (CUA). Filming within the park may also require a permit, depending the nature of, and the extent of the filming. If your filming activity involves multiple vehicles, it may be considered a large filming activity and require a more extensive application. For questions and permit applications, please contact the Ranger Activities Assistant by calling (662) 680-4014 or email us.

Special Use Permits - A special park use is an activity that takes place on park land or waters that meets the following criteria:

  • Provides a benefit to an individual, group, or organization, rather than the public at large,
  • Requires written authorization and some degree of National Park Service (NPS) management to protect park resources and public interests,
  • Is not prohibited by law,
  • Not initiated, sponsored, or conducted by the NPS,
  • Is not managed under a concession contract and,
  • Is not managed through a lease.

The following are some of the activities that may require a Special Use Permit. Please contact the Ranger Activities Assistant for questions and permit applications by calling (662) 680-4014 or email us.

  • Weddings
  • Religious Ceremonies
  • Walk/Run
  • 1st Amendment
  • Scattering Ashes
  • Miscellaneous

Commercial Use Authorization - The NPS, upon request, can issue commercial use authorizations (CUAs) to persons (referring to individuals, corporations, and other entities) to provide commercial services to park area visitors in limited circumstances. There are two general types of commercial services that may be authorized by a CUA:

1. In-park services. "In-park services" refers to an operation with annual gross receipts of not more than $25,000 from commercial services originating and provided within park area.
2. Out-of-park services. "Out-of-park services" refers to the incidental use of park area resources by operations that provide commercial services originating and terminating outside of the park area (or within an inholding).

Some of the activities that may require a Commercial Use Authorization (CUA)

  • Wrecker/Towing
  • Charter Bus (See Below)
  • Other

Please note- New guidance is forthcoming on the issuance of CUA’s. For a road based commercial tour (charter bus), the company who owns the bus needs to obtain the CUA. If you are a travel company that coordinates and schedules a tour through a charter company, you do not need to obtain the CUA.

Commercial Filming

Changes to Commercial Filming Permits on Park Land

On January 22, 2021, the US District Court for the District of Columbia issued a decision in Price v. Barr determining the permit and fee requirements applying to commercial filming under 54 USC 100905, 43 CFR Part 5, and 36 CFR Part 5 are unconstitutional. The National Park Service is currently determining how this decision will be implemented.Following the recent court decision, the National Park Service will not be implementing or enforcing the commercial filming portions of 43 CFR Part 5 until further notice, including accepting applications, issuing permits, enforcing the terms and conditions of permits, issuing citations related to permits, or collecting cost recovery and location fees for commercial filming activities.As regulations regarding commercial filming permits are being reassessed, those interested in commercial filming activities on land managed by the National Park Service are encouraged to contact the park directly for more information about filming in the park and to discuss how to minimize potential impacts to visitors and sensitive park resources.

Do I need a permit to film?

Currently, the National Park Service is not issuing commercial filming permits, but is in the process of evaluating how best to regulate filming activities that affect visitors and park resources. All applicable laws and regulations governing activities and public use in parks still apply, including park hours and areas open and closed to the public. Videographers, filmers, producers, directors, and other staff associated with commercial filming are reminded that rules and regulations that apply to all park visitors still apply to filming activities even if no permit is needed for their activity. Check with the park staff for more information on closures, sensitive resources, and other safety tips.

Are filmers still required to pay fees to film in parks?

As of January 22, 2021, the National Park Service is no longer collecting application or location fees, or cost recovery for filming.

Still Photography

When is a permit needed?

Price v. Barr had no impact on how the National Park Service regulates still photography, so there are no changes in how the National Park Service regulates that activity. Still photographers require a permit only when:
  1. the activity takes place at location(s) where or when members of the public are generally not allowed; or
  2. the activity uses model(s), sets(s), or prop(s) that are not a part of the location's natural or cultural resources or administrative facilities; or
  3. a park would incur additional administrative costs to monitor the activity.

All permits are issued from the Chief Ranger's Office, located in Tupelo, Mississippi. If you have questions about permits or want a permit application, please call Monday thru Friday 8 am-4:30 pm (662) 680-4014 or email us. Applications can be faxed to (662) 680-4034. Applications may be mailed to:

Natchez Trace Parkway
Chief Ranger's Office - Permit Application
2680 Natchez Trace Parkway
Tupelo, MS 38804

Last updated: February 4, 2021

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

2680 Natchez Trace Parkway
Tupelo, MS 38804

Phone:

18003057417
The visitor center is open 7 days a week during normal business hours. The visitor center is closed Thanksgiving, December 25th and January 1st.

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