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Things To Do In Chattanooga This Year

by Pankaj Upreti
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Things To Do In Chattanooga

Beautiful view of Chattanooga
Beautiful view of Chattanooga| Photo Credit – Jeff Gunn

Looking for places to visit in Hamilton Country, Tennessee? Chattanooga is the option that you must consider. The city with its river and museums has a lot to offer to its visitors.

If you are taking the trip as a couple or traveling with your family, there are a host of activities that are waiting for you in this beautiful city. Here is a guide to places that you must consider visiting in Chattanooga.

Must Visit Attractions In Chattanooga

To explore the city and understand its culture in all its facets, you must make sure that you travel to a variety of places. The following list has been curated keeping in mind some of the places that are central to the identity of the city of Chattanooga and must not be missed out when you are looking for things to do in Chattanooga.

1.Tennessee Riverpark

Take a walk in Tennessee Riverpark.
Chattanooga Riverwalk
Take a walk in Tennessee Riverpark | Photo Credit – Shannon McGee

Looking for things to do in Tennessee as a couple? One of the best ways to spend your time is to visit the Tennessee Riverpark. The park starts at Chickamauga Dam and goes all the way up to downtown Chattanooga. Here you can spend some quiet hours by the river and watch the sun go down.

You can try your hand on some outdoor activities like boating in the magnificent river or try fishing. The park is famous for its waterbirds which will certainly make you fall in love with the place.

2.Tennessee Aquarium

A must-visit place Tennessee Aquarium Chattanooga
A must-visit place Tennessee Aquarium Chattanooga | Photo Credit – Ron Cogswell

One of the most popular tourist locations in Chattanooga, the Tennessee Aquarium is a must-visit place. It is one of the world’s largest freshwater aquariums and will leave you astounded. Here you’d be able to see animals that dwell above and below sea level.

The aquarium has a number of interactive exhibits, one of them being ‘River Journey’ where you’d be able to travel through Appalachian Cove Forest to the Tennessee River or, you could also opt for ‘The Ocean Journey’. In both these tours, you’d be able to experience the underwater like never before. 

The Tennessee Aquarium will revolutionize your relationship with the underwater world, and we highly recommend you visit it. To know more about the various exhibits and to book your tickets, visit their official website.

3.Gallery 1401

Established in the year 1998, Gallery 1401 is as unique as its name. This is the places to where you’d be able to find artwork from artists from all over the world. This is your one-stop destination for buying jewelry, sculptures, canvases, photographs, etc.

The pieces here have been carefully handpicked by the curators keeping in mind a diverse range of taste so you are bound to find something that will steal your heart. Even if you do not end up buying anything, the Gallery 1401 is worthy of visit simply because it will leave you inspired and astounded.

4.Chattanooga Market

A visit to Chattanooga would be incomplete without shopping at the Chattanooga Market. Famous for being the farmer’s market, this is the place where you can buy fresh vegetables. You will also find craftsmen selling their handmade products.

The Chattanooga Market comes with a great opportunity of mixing with the local population and it will make for a rich experience. There are over 300 vendors in the market so you can easily spend an entire day at the market, without running out things to do.

5.Chattanooga Zoo

Chattanooga Zoo
Chattanooga Zoo | Photo Credit – Charles Barilleaux

On a trip to Chattanooga with your family and looking for things to do at the weekend? Head straight to Chattanooga Zoo, this is one of the most loved tourists sites. The zoo is over an area of 13 acres in the Warner Park. This is the home to over 300 animals that belong to 200 different species. 

The zoo is dedicated to conserving wildlife and to help bridge the gap between humans and animals by facilitating interaction. To achieve its purpose, the zoo organizes a number of exhibits, where visitors have the chance to not just lay back and observe but rather interact with the animals from close-quarters. To learn about their various events, check out their website.

6.Chickamauga & Chattanooga National Military Park

Chickamauga & Chattanooga National Military Park
Chickamauga & Chattanooga National Military Park | Photo Credit – Gary Todd

Are you interested in history and looking to do things in Chattanooga that involve a peek back in time? If yes, then this place is just where you need to be. Known to be the largest and the oldest park dedicated to the American Civil War, the Chickamauga & Chattanooga National Military Park is quite a place in itself.

You can opt for a guided tour of the park in order to understand its significance in a better manner. The park also organizes several events throughout the year, so make sure that you keep an eye out for interesting events at their website.

 In order to connect with the space in a better manner, you can enroll for one of the many volunteer opportunities at the military park. A visit to this place will surge your nationalistic feelings and this can prove to be quite a fun thing to do in Tennessee.

7.Highpoint Climbing Gym

What use is a vacation that does not involve some thrilling sports? Make the best of your time at Chattanooga by partaking in this adrenaline-filled sport. The Highpoint Climbing Gym is a space that has over 30,000 square feet of both indoor and outdoor climbing space. 

No matter what your age or level or expertise you are welcome to this place. Here you have the opportunity to try out sports like climbing and bouldering under expert supervision. If you have kids along with you, you can drop them off at the Kid Zone where activities designed especially for them, and can try your hand at some of these sports. So what are you waiting for? Check out their location and get ready for some adventure.

8.Ruby Falls

Ruby Falls | Photo Credit – joevare

Located at the Lookout Mountain, the Ruby Falls is a 145-foot high underground waterfall. It gives you the opportunity to experience what it feels like in the insides of a cave and will become once-in-a-lifetime experience. This is a perfect place to visit along with your friends and will definitely thrill you to the core. 

There are a number of tours that are organized by Ruby Falls like ‘Lantern Tour: Ghost Walk’ where tourists are able to discover the place which is lit only by the aid of hand-held lanterns. This can be only one of the best things that you do at night in Chattanooga.

9. Bridgeman’s Chophouse

A visit to Chattanooga would be incomplete without tasting the food at the famous restaurant Bridgeman’s Chophouse. The place is famous for its extensive menu, where you can find a number of seafood options to feast on. If you love seafood, you must surely visit the restaurant and try out their delicious pan-seared salmon, smoked cheddar with mashed potatoes.

If you are not into seafood, you could instead try out their delicious chicken. The place makes for a perfect dinner date and the ambience of the restaurant will give you a sense of calm like never before.

Museums to visit in Chattanooga

Make the most of your time at Chattanooga with a visit to these amazing museums. The beauty of the museums of Chattanooga lies in the fact that they have been built with a specific interest in mind and explore it very minutely. A visit to these museums will leave you enthralled and will want you to keep coming back to them.

1.Creative Discovery Museum

Are you looking for things to do in Chattanooga along with your children? If yes, then you ought to take them to the famous children’s museum of Tennessee, the Creative Discovery Museum. Open to the public since the year 1995, the museum is easily one of the best places in Chattanooga. Here you will find it all, music, art, science areas, and even a water theme zoned area called RiverPlay.

The museum has been designed in a way that it comes across as a place where kids can simultaneously both learn and play. The series of activities at the museum has organized which will help kids interact with others and develop interpersonal skills. The museum is designed in a way that it also caters to the needs of specially-abled children. 

The museum is ideal for children who fall in the age group of 18 months to 12 years. To know more about the various amazing activities that await your kids in the museum, visit their website.

2.Hunter Museum of American Art

Hunter Museum Of American Art | Photo Credit – TimothyJ

If you are a lover of art and would like to understand it deeper, must visit the Hunter Museum of American Art. The museum is dedicated to exhibiting the works that belong to Hudson River School, a 19th-century genre of painting.

Apart from this, the museum also has art that belongs to the Ashcan School, modernism, regionalism, American impressionism and contemporary art. Built over the scenic Tennessee River, the museum is one of the top things to do in Tennessee if you are looking at things by yourself. 

If you are not well acquainted with art forms, you can set yourself up for one of the many educational programs that the museum has to offer to its visitors. The museum organizes exhibits from time to time which makes it an ever-evolving space.

3.Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum

Tennessee Valley Railway Museum | Photo Credit – David Brossard

Cannot get enough of locomotives? This is just the place for you. Everybody loves to ride the rail but few are well-versed with its rich history, here at Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum, you have the chance to acquaint yourself with the rich heritage of rails. The museum offers rides that are enabled by a steam locomotive.

This will take you back in time and will help you experience the life of your forefathers. At the museum’s website puts it succinctly, “it is your chance to experience the sights and sounds of yesteryear!” Some of the rides offered by the museum are: ‘Missionary Ridge Local’, ‘Chickamauga Turn’, ‘Hiwassee Loop’, and ‘North Pole Limited’.

They also offer dinner and lunch packages, to make sure that you have the most luxurious experience. This makes Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum one of the best places to visit on a weekend when you have ample time on your hand.

Please also read about things to do in Tennessee.

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