Fun Things to Do In Chattanooga Tennessee
Chattanooga Tennessee is one of the best cities in the Southeast, with its many great attractions and sights. Interested in sleeping on a riverboat, check out the Delta Queen…
There are many great states in the U.S. with good times to be had in them, but one of my all time favorites is Tennessee! It has mountains, rivers, and lots of partying! A few of the big cities that are highly recommended are Memphis, Gatlinburg, Knoxville, and of course Chattanooga! Chattanooga Tennessee is a quaint little place nestled right by the Tennessee River with a variety of attractions on either side… The downtown area is very popular especially on weekends, and the whole area has a big tourist appeal to it.
One of the biggest attractions in the downtown area is the Chattanooga Aquarium, which draws many out of town visitors on a daily basis. The Aquarium offers many types of entry passes, including add ons for extra shows such as the 3D Movies, and the 4 hour boat excursion up the river. Both of these extras are well worth it, and I’d advise you to spend the day getting to know the aquarium and spending time seeing all that it has to offer. Especially the boat excursion, this is a trip not to miss! They take you up the river to some of the more secluded wilderness areas where you can see a variety of wildlife as the narrator points out the different species to you on either side of the vessel. It’s really a great trip, and you should learn some things to boot!
If you haven’t yet found a place to stay for the weekend, then top on the list is the Delta Queen Riverboat, which has only a few years ago made the Chattanooga area her home! This is one of the last wooden riverboats, and has been plying the great rivers of the U.S. for many years as a passenger cruise vessel before being retired to a permanently docked hotel on the shores of the Tennessee River in downtown Chattanooga. If you are looking to get a taste of life on the river in the old days, then check out this boat! The cabins have an 1800’s feel and look to them, and they are incredibly comfortable, if small. Experience a fantastic dinner show with great entertainers dressed for the part, or have afternoon tea and chat with Leila in her Tea Room onboard… And of course, for a great time check out the lounge with live music from the various performers, such as a Dixie land band, or maybe a singer or piano player… There are many fantastic and fun things to do here onboard the Delta Queen! Before I leave this topic I have to mention the “ghosts” which are rumored tube still onboard the boat… Ask ahead of time, and you might even get to share a room with one if you’re so inclined…
The downtown area is a happening place, with many great bars and restaurants by the riverside and folks congregating to people watch or just relax. On weekends, they sometimes show family movies at a local park that is within walking distance of the Delta Queen. You can always have a great time just by hanging out downtown in the afternoons or evenings with friends…
There is also a working riverboat in the downtown area that is available for short excursions down the river for sightseeing, or for extended fine dinner cruises. These are always nice, and you can check ahead of time when these depart and plan your visit accordingly. Whether it’s an afternoon buffet, or evening dinner cruise, you’ll find a trip on the Southern Belle Riverboat definitely worthwhile!
Other attractions in the Chattanooga area include Ruby Falls, Rock City, and the Lookout Mountain Incline Railway… Ruby Falls is probably one of the most popular attractions in the area, and includes a trip deep down into one of the mountains where you follow a dark passageway to view an incredible underground waterfall. This is amazing, and was discovered by accident long ago. Since then, they’ve built an elevator that will take you down deep into the bowels of the earth and you will get to experience this mighty sight! There is a pool of water at the base of the falls as you might expect, but it is so acidic that fish cannot live there. They also offer a great Halloween spook tour for several weeks during October every year, and if that is your thing it comes highly recommended!
Rock City is another attraction that brings visitors to the Chattanooga area in hordes, and is basically a rock garden or tour at the top of a nearby mountain that has a lot of history and a fantastic view of Tennessee and surrounding states for miles! It is very worth your time if you can squeeze it in, and try and relax and enjoy yourself… Remember you are on vacation, so don’t get all worried about time, try to spend as much time as you need here.
Lookout Mountain is a great attraction nearby that also has an incredible view of the surrounding area, and you can either get to the top by driving your vehicle, or probably as most people do by taking the Lookout Mountain Incline Railway. This is a very popular attraction, and in the peak summertime periods you may have quite a wait ahead of you! So try to get there early if you can and avoid the rush, you won’t regret it!
And of course, definitely try the Chattanooga Choo-Choo while you are here! This very famous train still plies the tracks for dinner shows and other tourist sightseeing trips from this town, so check it out… It would be a shame to visit this city by the river without a trip on the Chattanooga Choo-Choo!
I hope you’ve got a few ideas on what to do in Chattanooga when you come on vacation, this is really one of my favorite places to visit! There are still many great attractions for me to catch here, and others that I’ll be trying again and again! Remember to try something different when you come, and experience Chattanooga at its best!