Heading to Tennessee? We share the best places to vacation in Tennessee, perfect for all types of travelers to the state.
Why visit Tennessee?
The United States of America is filled with attractive, visit-worthy locations. And one of such locations is the landlocked state of Tennessee. However, we seldom see people visiting Tennessee. Due to the popularity of California, Florida, and such big states, people pay less attention to the beauty and absolutely thrilling culture of the relatively less popular states, such as Tennessee.
It is kind of a bummer to see that even the US residents outside Tennessee don’t really consider Tennessee as an ideal vacation state, let alone international tourists.
But if we really start listing amazing places in Tennessee and enjoyable activities that take place in this state, we can easily see how underrated this state is in terms of tourism, and how much all of us would like to be there. People who do visit Tennessee know how important and culturally significant it is in terms of music and history.
Places to visit in Tennessee
The pride of Tennessee lies in its centrally located capital, Nashville. Tennessee has always been famous for its country music scene, Nashville is the heart of that scene. Nashville contains some of the worthwhile monuments and tourists attractions, including the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum, Grand Ole Opry, and the list of legendary dance halls and honky-tonks. In fact, Nashville was the origin of many famous musicians and singers who are topping billboard charts today, including our favorite Taylor Swift, Kesha, Billy Ray Cyrus, and Dolly Parton.
Now, wouldn’t we like to drink one or two in places where Taylor Swift used to perform with her guitar before she was discovered?
In the far southwest of Tennessee is another musical heaven, Memphis, which is not only pretty popular because of its music scene, but also gets referenced a lot in pop culture projects. One of the most famous and most-visited tourist attractions in Memphis is Graceland of Elvis Presley, a globally known American singer and actor. Spend time visiting the best Memphis breweries and make sure to eat as much local food as possible.
Apart from that, Memphis is home to pioneering rock-and-roll production places, Sun Studio – singers in the 50s and 60s recorded their most hits in Memphis’s Sun Studio, including Johnny Cash and Elvis Presley. After its peak time, the studio’s building was closed. However, after a hiatus of 16 years, the studio was opened again to serve the modern country and pop singers. Now, the Sun Studio is one of the most primal destinations to visit in Tennessee for music and media fans.
Beale Street, Memphis
Another popular, enjoyable, and historically significant place in Memphis is Beale Street, a glowing stretch of blues clubs and bars that performed a vital role in the history of blues music. Beale Street is a huge part of pop culture nowadays, including an Academy Award-winning film, If Beale Street Could Talk. Today, the restaurants, bars, and clubs in Beale Street serve as an ideal nightlife for tourists and visitors. Because of its popularity in terms of music and pop culture, several festivals and concerts are held in Beale Street, which brings large crowds on the street from all over the country.
Apart from the state’s immensely influential music scene, Tennessee is no short of natural beauty, and it is surprising how a lot of people don’t see Tennessee as a place with an abundance of Mother Nature’s miracles.
Gatlinburg is a mountain town in eastern Tennessee known as a gateway to Great Smoky Mountains National Park, spread roughly over 520,000 acres. There is a lot of green and a lot of highs in Gatlinburg, which brings you close to the freshness of nature. Gatlinburg provides a lot of views of the park through different points, such as the Space Needle observation tower that is 407 feet tall and the Sky Lift cable car that takes you on a flying journey of 2.1 miles from Downtown to the ski resort in Ober Gatlinburg.
The spectacular views of the Great Smoky Mountains and enjoyable sceneries of thick green forests make a pretty convincing case about why Gatlinburg should be on your list of natural places to visit.
Apart from Gatlinburg, there is another place that brings you close to nature and offers amazing, thrilling activities. Yes, we are talking about Pigeon Forge.
Pigeon Forge is another small mountain town in eastern Tennessee, located at the feet of the Great Smoky Mountains. Pigeon Forge consists of a lot of worthwhile vacation spots and an uncountable list of memorable activities for friends and families, but Dollywood is definitely the best of Pigeon Forge attractions.
Dollywood is a name given to an Appalachian-themed amusement park tribute to the state’s famous singer-songwriter, Dolly Parton. But Dollywood is more than just a park, it’s a whole vibe and a long series of enjoyments. The park contains amusement rides, a water park; a lot of activities for adults and kids, like boating and rope climbing, theaters, and a museum of Dolly Parton’s costumes and memorabilia.
Pigeon Forge also has big music and performing arts scene going on; its major attractions include Smoky Mountain Opry and dinner theaters, like Dolly Parton’s Dixie Stampede. The amazing nightlife around Dollywood wouldn’t let you sleep, and there are always a number of restaurants, themed bars, gift shops, and outlet malls waiting to serve you.
If you visited Tennessee and didn’t visit Cades Cove, why did you even visit Tennessee? That’s right. Cades Cove is a beautiful, green-filled valley in the Tennessee section of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. It is undoubtedly one of the most scenic places in Tennessee, attracting over two million tourists a year, and being singlehandedly the most popular destination for visitors in Tennessee. The reason Cades Cove is so beautiful is that the state has played its part well to preserve the homesteads, abundant wildlife, and mountain views of the area. There is literally no industrialization or construction on a large green place, which keeps the place as natural as it should be.
There are multiple other places to visit in Tennessee, including Chattanooga and Cherokee Reservoir, and multiple beautiful lakes, such as Watauga Lake, Chickamauga Lake, Tims Ford Lake, Watts Bar Lake, Boone Lake, and much more.