The Best Sites and Attractions in Chattanooga, Tennessee
Chattanooga, Tennessee might not be what comes to mind when you think of an outdoor oasis or entertainment hub, but it’s full of hidden surprises. Whether you’re looking for untapped natural beauty or world-class museums, this overlooked city in southeastern Tennessee is full of historical significance and top-rated attractions.
Chattanooga: An Outdoor Oasis
Chattanooga is tucked away in the Appalachian Mountains. Located along the Tennessee River, it is home to premier recreational areas, breathtaking views, and endless photo ops.
If you’re in the mood for sightseeing, head over to Lookout Mountain for an unparalleled view of some of the country’s greatest natural wonders. Though it’s only minutes from downtown, this premier tourist attraction showcases the best scenery in Chattanooga Valley. Once you’ve gotten a lay of the land, pack some snacks and head in for a closer look.
Chattanooga is home to America’s largest underground waterfall, known as “Ruby Falls” in honor of Ruby Lambert, whose husband discovered the falls in 1928. Ruby Falls is open for daytime exploration year-round with special evening lantern tours offered from January to November.
The Marvels of Rock City
Rock City, located on top of Lookout Mountain, is another natural marvel that needs to be checked off the bucket list. It is so beautiful that the pathway along Rock City has been named the “Enchanted Trail” to emphasize how magical of an experience it offers. Rock City features hundreds of plants indigenous to Chattanooga, gigantic rock formations, and a wonderland that is perfect for kids and dogs.
Inside the caverns of Rock City, you will find handmade tributes to some of the world’s most beloved fairytales. Fairyland Caverns is a piece of history dating back to foundation of the attraction and the passion of its founders.
With this experience you’ll also take in the history of Chattanooga, like the heartbreaking story behind a rock called “Lover’s Leap.” Lover’s Leap offers a piece of history that dates back to Civil War diary entries. Over the course of many years, this rock has been a viewing point for seven states: Alabama, Georgia, Kentucky, the Carolinas, Virginia, and, of course, Tennessee.
A Journey to the Top
Looking for a little adrenaline rush? Head over to Incline Railway to ride one of the world’s steepest passenger railways. This railway system is over one-hundred years old and takes you right to the top of Lookout Mountain. You’ll experience nearly an entire mile of uninterrupted natural beauty, making this journey to the top a historical experience you won’t forget.
When you’re ready to come back down, there are a variety of unique food and retail options waiting for you. Many are a welcome surprise in comparison to your average tourist shop. Visitors have their choice of various boutiques, galleries, and local restaurants featuring specialty menu items.
Chattanooga is a destination location and an overlooked paradise that offers something for everyone. Whether you’re a history buff, thrill seeker, or outdoor adventurer, this city will exceed your expectations and leave you with an experience you’ll treasure for years to come.