Knoxville: University City with Southern Charm

Knoxville is located in the eastern United States. It is the third most populous city in the state of Tennessee. At the turn of the 18th and 19th centuries, it was the capital of Tennessee. Knoxville is often referred to as the “gateway” to the most popular national park in the United States, The Great Smoky Mountains. Literally translated, it means the Great Smoky Mountains. It takes about two hours to get from Knoxville to the park. However, it is interesting to visit the city not just as a transit point on the way to the natural attraction. All sorts of festivals and celebrations are regularly held here. The most famous in the United States is the International Cookie Festival. It’s ranked among the top ten most visited food festivals in the country. Amateur chefs compete against each other outdoors in different categories. Everyone is free to appreciate the culinary skills of the cooks and taste the cookies they make.

World’s Fair Park

The World’s Fair Park, one of Knoxville’s most popular attractions, is not only a park, but also an event and family-friendly destination. Climb the Solar Sphere, the park’s standout attraction, for a 360-degree view of the city and Smoky Mountains on a clear day. Depending on when you visit, you may find live music and festivals taking place in this park. However, even when no events are scheduled, World Fair Park is still a great place to visit as there are walking trails, water features, and even a playground for kids.

Ijams Nature Center

If you need an escape from the city, explore the Ijames Nature Center. This 300-acre park is an educational center and wildlife sanctuary. From hiking and picnicking to rock climbing and canoeing, there’s plenty to do at this nature center. Located three miles from town, the Ijames Nature Center is truly an outdoor oasis enjoyed by Knoxville locals and tourists alike.

Knoxville Zoo

A popular family destination in Knoxville is the Knoxville Zoo, which is home to nearly 1,000 animals and 30 different species. The Knoxville Zoo is more than just home to wildlife from around the world; there are other attractions at this zoo, such as Knoxville’s largest backdrop. See endangered animals, feed a giraffe or enjoy a show at the Forest Theater. In addition to viewing the animals, young guests can also check out the interactive exhibits found here. Komodo Zoo resident Halisi is a must visit.

Fort James White

History buffs visiting Knoxville should stop at Fort James White. This historical museum tells the story of what frontier life was like in the late 1700s. This historic home was the living quarters of Knoxville founder James White. Not only can you tour the space, but you can watch fascinating demonstrations of historical activities, from blacksmithing to hearth cooking. The museum also hosts a number of events throughout the year, including Halloween ghost tours.

McClung Museum of Natural History and Culture

The McClung Museum of Natural History and Culture is ideal for those of limited means, as admission is free. Operated by the Department of Anthropology at the University of Tennessee, visitors to this museum can view a variety of permanent exhibits focusing on historical artifacts. Exhibits range from dinosaur fossils to Native American artifacts and even Civil War memorabilia.

Knoxville Museum of Art

Another museum not to be missed while in Knoxville is the Knoxville Museum of Art. One of the main attractions of this art museum is not only its two permanent exhibitions inspired by the Southern Appalachians, but also the museum’s glass installation, which is the largest of its kind in the world. The Knoxville Museum of Art is not just for art lovers; families with young children will love it here, as the museum has an interactive playground for younger visitors. For the past 25 years, the Knoxville Museum of Art has showcased the work of some of the region’s most talented artists.

Old Town

If you’re looking for a vibrant urban scene in Knoxville, you need to head to Old Town. This downtown Knoxville area is teeming with eateries, cafes, concert halls, and art galleries. In this area of town, you should head to Knoxville’s nightclubs. Old Town got its name because this area is a historic district that is home to some of the city’s oldest buildings. This corner of Knoxville is steeped in culture and local authenticity that locals and tourists alike appreciate.

Market Square

Another part of downtown Knoxville that showcases the city’s charm is Market Square. There are eateries and stores in this area of town, but it is the farmers market that really draws visitors to this area of Knoxville. Shop for local produce and handmade goods at this outdoor market, which is held every week.