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Check Out Chattanooga, Tennessee

Updated on May 24, 2011

View from Lookout Mountain

Are you looking for a great vacation spot? Want to enjoy beautiful scenery without getting too far off the beaten path? Consider planning a getaway to lovely Chattanooga, Tennessee.

Located in the southern part of Tennessee, this beautiful city is a terrific place to visit any time of the year. Chattanooga is home to many attractions that will appeal to children and adults alike, so it's a great place to visit whether you are traveling on your own, as a couple, with your family, or even with a group of friends.

There's so much to see and do in Chattanooga that you'll either need to stay for a while or plan to return several times if you want to have an opportunity to experience it all.

Chattanooga Attractions

See Rock City

Lookout Mountain's Rock City is one of the most well known tourist attractions in Chattanooga. Those who enjoy beautiful mountain vistas and plants will find the beauty of this unique place to be quite astonishing. You'll have an opportunity to view enormous ancient rock formations up close, stroll through gardens that are home to more than 400 different plant species native to the area. The highlight of a trip to Rock City is the amazing view from atop Lookout Mountain where you can actually view seven states from a single vantage point. If you're traveling with youngsters, they'll delight in the Mother Goose Village and Fairyland Caverns portion of the tour.

Ruby Falls

If you're a fan of cave tours, you'll delight in having an opportunity to visit Ruby Falls. You'll take an elevator ride to a location deep inside Lookout Mountain to the place where you can view the largest and deepest waterfall in the United States that is open for public viewing. Located more than 1120 feet below the surface, Ruby Falls is truly a spectacular sight.

Raccoon Mountain Caverns

If you enjoy cave tours, you'll also want to visit beautiful Raccoon Mountain Caverns while you are in Chattanooga. Located just outside of the city, Raccoon Mountain is ranked among the top ten show caves in the U.S. Both walking and wild cave tours are available. There are other activities on the grounds as well, including gemstone panning and go cart rides. There is also a campground at the cavern site that can accommodate both tent and RV campers.

Incline Railway

The Incline Railway is another Lookout Mountain attraction. The train travels a straight line up and down the side of Lookout Mountain. The Incline Railway is the steepest operational passenger train in the world. It has been in operation since 1895 and is recognized as both a National Historic Site and a National Historic Mechanical Engineering Landmark. While those who are afraid of heights might find this attraction to be a bit nerve wracking, others are likely to find it to be one of the best parts of their vacation. The views from the train are unlike any you'll see anywhere else and the train ride itself is an exhilarating experience.

Chattanooga Choo Choo

No trip to this lovely city would be complete without a visit to the Chattanooga Choo Choo. You may even want to book your accommodations at the historic Chattanooga Choo Choo Hotel, or on one of the facility's authentic Victorian train cars. Whether you are staying on the grounds or not, you can tour the beautiful gardens, ride the trolley, enjoy a shopping experience, or dine in style at the Choo Choo.

Tennessee Aquarium

The Tennessee Aquarium is a must-see Chattanooga attraction. According to Trip Advisor, is among the top ten U.S. tourist attractions in terms of guest satisfaction, with the highest rank of all aquarium facilities. The aquarium is home to more than 10,000 animals, providing visitors with an opportunity to see all kinds of fish, marine mammals, penguins, other birds, reptiles, amphibians, and much more. You can also catch a 3-D IMAX movie while visiting the aquarium.

River Gorge Explorer

View the sights of Chattanooga from the Tennessee River on board the River Gorge Explorer. You'll have an opportunity to view the city and surrounding mountains from the Tennessee River onboard a unique high-speed catamaran that can hold 70 passengers. You'll learn about the sights and ecosystem of the area from a trained naturalist during your cruise experience.

Ready to Visit Chattanooga?

These are just a few of the many wonderful things to see and do in and around the Chattanooga, Tennessee area. There are numerous other attractions within a short driving distance of Chattanooga, including the Southern Belle Riverboat located in the city; Lake Winnepesaukah Amusement Park in nearby Rossville, Georgia; and DeSoto State Park in nearby Mentone, Alabama. Chattanooga is also located in close proximity to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

If you're ready to plan a trip to this beautiful destination in the Southern Region of the United States, visit, the official website of the Chattanooga Convention and Visitors Bureau. You'll have an opportunity to check out additional attractions, accommodations, dining options, and much more! Have a terrific time when you visit Chattanooga!


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  • Esmeowl12 profile image

    Cindy A. Johnson 7 years ago from Sevierville, TN

    Thanks for your Chattanooga guide. It's one of our favorite places to visit. We'll have to try Raccoon Mtn. That one we haven't tried.