Only a few hours north of Atlanta, near the Smoky Mountains, is Knoxville, TN. Unlike other large cities, Knoxville has fewer tourist sites and is primarily a college town. Even though the major Knoxville attraction is UT football games, there are a few attractions besides weekends spent tailgating at Neyland Stadium and hiking in the Smoky Mountains.
A popular attraction in Knoxville and a fun place to visit is the market square in downtown. The square is full of little shops and restaurants making for a pleasant stroll and a nice outing. The square also offers a delightful farmers market that has various local vendors selling their produce and products.
The Turkey Creek area has become the prime shopping location for West Knoxville. As the city has expanded, Turkey Creek has developed into a popular shopping destination. As the closest shopping center to Micah’s parents, we stop by frequently when we are visiting. It’s rather suburban and lacks many original shops, but it does have a large variety.
While the beer scene in Knoxville is small, it is slowly growing. One of the first breweries in the area is also a restaurant, the Smoky Mountain Brewery. We tried this brewpub recently and found the food quite tasty-it serves typical American bar food. The brewery is small and makes classic styles of beer, but makes them well. We found the beer to be surprisingly tasty.
The University of Tennessee offers more than weekend football events; another attraction at the university is the McClung Museum of Natural History and Culture. The museum is small, but has informative exhibits covering several different periods of history. These eras typically align with the major research interests of the university, including the development of human history, especially in Tennessee, archaeology, and the Civil War in Tennessee.
Even though Knoxville is not packed full of activity, there are a few well done attractions that are sure to please. If you are looking for a relaxing weekend of exploring, but without the rushed feeling of constantly being on the go Knoxville is a nice destination.
Side Note: You can always head to the mountains and explore the beautiful Smoky Mountains and the incredible trails it offers!