Chattanooga Attractions

Chattanooga tennessee on a map

Chattanooga is a historically rich city situated in a lush valley of the Cumberland Mountains in Tennessee. It goes without saying that there’s plenty to do here, whether you’re a tourist or a local. If you’re looking for suggestions, the staff at Lexus of Chattanooga are proud residents of the area, so we put together an insider’s list of the best Chattanooga, TN attractions. Check them out and then hit the road for an adventure you won’t soon forget.

Chattanooga Attractions: The Great Outdoors

Chattanooga is the kind of town where you can step out of your front door and into nature—the outdoor opportunities are endless. With some of the best rock climbing available in the south, dozens of nearby caves to spelunk, the Tennessee River, and hiking trails galore, you won’t reach the end of your vacation checklist. In particular, we recommend:

  • Tennessee River Park: This 16-mile trail starts downtown and ends in the Moccasin Bend National Archaeological District. It’s a great way to see most of the city while also exploring the surrounding environs—a perfect compromise for the urbanites and outdoorsy types in your family.
  • Bouldering at Stone Fort: Just a stone’s throw from downtown, it’s one of the best boulder fields in the south and a popular training spot for some of the nation’s elite climbers.
Lookout mountain tennessee

Chattanooga Historical Attractions

During the Civil War, Chattanooga was one of the main hubs in the Confederacy, connecting over 50% of the army’s arsenal. But there’s another dimension to Chattanooga’s history: it was settled 10,000 years ago by Paleolithic Native Americans. There are countless mounds and ruins to explore. Naturally, the opportunities are rich for American History buffs of all stripes. Above all, we recommend:

  • Chickamauga Battlefield: The oldest and largest military park in the United States, the Chickamauga is the site of the Union’s most devastating defeat. It’s also one of the most haunted places in America and a favorite among ghost hunters.
  • Bessie Smith Cultural Center: The Empress of Blues, Bessie Smith was the most popular blues singer of the 20s and 30s. Her influence on American music is incalculable, and she was raised right here in Chattanooga. In general, the center serves as an African American History Museum, but also features plenty of artifacts from the singer’s life.
  • Moccasin Bend National Park: Moccasin Bend was settled in 10,500 B.C. and sports a number of burial mounds from a prehistoric civilization during the late Archaic and Woodland periods. It also contains the remains of a house that dates back to 1335 B.C., the oldest known ruin in the U.S. Additionally, the park features two towns from the Mississippian civilization. It’s remarkable that this 956 acre blip has been the site of so much historical activity—it was even used as a strategic scouting camp during the Civil War!
Aerial shot of chattanooga tennessee

Check Out More Local Attractions on the Lexus of Chattanooga Blog

Whether you’re from Ooltewah, Lookout Mountain, Chattanooga itself, or Cincinnati, you’re sure to find plenty of Chattanooga tourist attractions that appeal to you. If you need other ideas for fun things to do in Chattanooga on your next visit, check out our Chattanooga guide for expert suggestions on hiking trails, attractions like the Smoky Mountains, and more. Have any questions or need directions to Chattanooga, Tennessee? Feel free to contact us for answers.

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