Top Things to Do When You Visit Chattanooga, Tennessee


After visiting Chattanooga, Tennessee it isn’t far-fetched to say that you will want to visit this beautiful city a second, or maybe even third time to catch another glimpse of the many attractions and sights the city as to offer. After all, it’s not nicknamed the Scenic City for nothing!

There are also tons of fun and truly unforgettable activities to enjoy, many of them slow-paced that will definitely let you take full pleasure in your visit. Did you know that Chattanooga, Tennessee was deemed the most polluted city in the US by the Environmental Protection Agency back in the late 1960s? Back then, its air and water pollution is just unparalleled! Even the broadcast journalist Walter Cronkite proudly declared Chattanooga as the dirtiest city in America.

chattanooga tennessee

However, the city started to clean up its act as soon as its reputation was tainted by both its pollution levels and hurtful nicknames. And now everyone knows it as the Scenic City, and for a good reason, that becomes more apparent to any tourist who stops by this small city with a population of fewer than 200,000 people.

Are you planning on visiting Chattanooga, Tennessee soon and wondering how to spend your stay there in the most productive and memorable manner? Here are some amazing suggestions to add to your travel itinerary:

Walk Across the Walnut Street Bridge

No trip to Chattanooga, Tennessee would be complete without stepping foot on the Walnut Street Bridge. Strolling on this lengthy pedestrian bridge (it is considered as one of the longest ones in the US) will give you a chance to really marvel at the view of the entire city as well as the Tennessee River.

Built way back in 1890, the Walnut Street Bridge also allows you to have a firsthand experience of how breathtaking its structure is – this particular bridge is one of the premium examples of Phoenix wrought-iron truss bridges.

Check Out the Tennessee Aquarium

Tennessee Aquarium

After being awed by the expanse of the Tennessee River as viewed from the Walnut Street Bridge, perhaps you might get the urge to spend some time being surrounded by aquatic creatures. Luckily, a visit to Chattanooga lets you do just that – there’s the Tennessee Aquarium that’s just a couple of blocks from the Walnut Street Bridge.

Housing more than 9,000 amazing creatures (not only swimming ones, but also those that crawl and fly), a lot of its visitors dub the Tennessee Aquarium as one of the best aquariums in the US.

Explore the Raccoon Mountain Caverns and Campground

raccoon mountain caverns chattanooga tennessee

If you still have creature fever after paying the Tennessee Aquarium a visit, you may proceed with exploring the Raccoon Mountain Caverns and Campground, which is about a 10-minute drive away from downtown Chattanooga.

Clearly, this very popular tourist spot in Chattanooga, Tennessee is perfect for you if you love marveling at some of the most awesome things that the great outdoors have to offer, from stalactites, natural bridges, rimstone pools to underground waterfalls – the Raccoon Mountain Caverns and Campground houses the famous Waterfall Dome.

Take a Look at the Lookout Mountain

lookout mountain

No matter if you are on a date with your future spouse, taking a trip with the kids or voyaging as a solo backpacker, your visit to Chattanooga, Tennessee won’t be absolute without spending some time at the Lookout Mountain.

Just a few minutes away from the booming life of downtown Chattanooga, the Lookout Mountain lets you enjoy up to three different kinds of tours, each one undeniably world-class. While you’re there, don’t forget to ride the Incline Railways (the steepest passenger railway on the face of the planet) and check out Ruby Falls (the largest underground waterfall in the US that is accessible to tourists).

Have a Truly Horrifying Haunted History Tour

Did you know that Chattanooga, Tennessee had a dark past? It’s for this reason why there are various sites in the Scenic City that are considered to have creepy backstories as well as supernaturally active ones. You can discover the city’s frightening side by experiencing the Chattanooga Murder and Mayhem Haunted History Tour.

The walking tour lasts anywhere from 1.5 to 2 hours, so be ready to have lots and lots of goose bumps. And do take snapshots if you dare – supernatural beings may make a cameo! Clearly, it’s not for the faint of heart!

Ride the Coolidge Park Antique Carousel

coolidge park antique carousel

Worry not if you like the yesteryears but not the sinister ones as you may simply pay the Coolidge Park a visit. Once there, you will surely be amazed at the sight of the picture-perfect Antique Carousel.

What makes the Antique Carousel which is the central attraction at the Coolidge Park especially interesting is the fact that it was built back in the 1890s, and was restored to keep it running like a well-oiled machine. Make sure that photographs of you get taken while seated on the various hand-carved whimsical animals and ornately-adorned benches.

Experience the Chattanooga Duck Boat Tour

If ever you want to spend a moment just seated and marveling at the beauty of the city’s waterfront, then opting for the Chattanooga Duck Boat Tour is the perfect activity for the day.

Taking this tour lets you board an actual landing craft from World War II that’s been restored and now fully-functional once again. Sit back and enjoy the sights along the way, from quaint bookstores, old-world glass blowing establishments to ice cream parlors. It’s never boring as the Chattanooga waterfront is also home to many festivals.

Visit the City’s Various Museums

Visit the Citys Various Museums

Chattanooga, Tennessee is also home to some of the most incredible specialty museums the US has to offer. There is never a shortage of museums to visit – it’s the perfect tour for you if you would like gazing at various artistic, scientific, historical and cultural objects to be incorporated into your Chattanooga tour.

Some of the most well-known and most interesting museums in the Scenic City are the International Towing and Recovery Museum, Songbirds Guitar Museum, Houston Museum of Decorative Arts, and Creative Discovery Museum.


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