RIVERSIDE - Flanked on one side by Lookout Mountain, Chattanooga sits at a bend in the Tennessee River. Alongside the waterway is the 16.1-mile Riverwalk greenway system. And new this year, the long-anticipated South Chickamauga Creek Greenway adds an additional nine miles of trail that link to the Riverwalk.
PEAK VIEWS - Built in 1895, The Incline is billed as “America’s Steepest Mile” and is also wheelchair accessible. The long-range views from the upper station atop Lookout Mountain are among the best.
Thanks to a robust bicycle-share transportation system, with 400 bikes and 42 docking stations throughout the city, it’s easy to explore the entire length.
Alongside the waterway is the 16.1-mile Riverwalk greenway system. And new this year, the long-anticipated South Chickamauga Creek Greenway adds an additional nine miles of trail that link to the Riverwalk.
UNDERGROUND - At Ruby Falls, the 90-foot namesake cascade is enhanced with a dramatic sound and light display. Along the approach are numerous formations that attest to the effects of water and limestone over time.
IN BLOOM - A bloom A sprawling mountaintop garden attraction, Rock City contains over 400 native plant species, which visitors explore via a 4,100-foot stone pathway that meanders through the property. There's a fairyland cavern that will appeal to kids, and everyone will enjoy the views; on clear days, seven states are visible.
In a savvy marketing move in the mid 1930s, Garnet Carter commissioned a sign painter to travel the country, painting barns in exchange for three small words on the roof. “See Rock City” was painted on some 900 barns, though only 50 still exist today.
BLAST FROM THE PAST - Chattanooga’s oldest and longest-running hotel, The Read House, marks 150 years in 2022. It’s decked in 1920s splendor with modern amenities, though one room does stand out. Room 311 maintains its original look from the early 1900s and is rumored to be haunted.
The Tennessee Aquarium takes up three large riverfront buildings: one dedicated to freshwater species, including the largest river fish in the world, another focused on saltwater creatures, as well as an IMAX theater.
At The Hunter Museum guests can view American fine art dating back to the 1700s to the present day and stroll through an outdoor sculpture garden along the grounds.
Bridging the gap Chattanooga's architecture combines classic style with modern functionality. Pictured above are metalworks on display at the River Gallery Sculpture Garden near the banks of the Tennessee River and Veterans Memorial Bridge.
BREWS AND BITES - Made for visitors and locals alike, the Chattanooga food scene features vibrant and ecclectic restaurants with new-wave favorites and well-done classics. Also known for its libations, Chattanooga offers plenty of Tennessee whiskey straight from the source.