Best Places to Visit in Tennessee (United States)

Are you searching for the Best Places to Visit in Tennessee? Are you thinking of a trip to the South and wondering what to explore in Tennessee? We’ve got you covered.

Suppose you’re among the many travellers who believe that the most popular National parks in the United States are the Grand Canyon, Yellowstone, or Yosemite. Still, you’ve likely never been to Tennessee. It might surprise you that the country’s topmost frequented US National park is the Great Smoky Mountains or “Smokies.”

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This region of stunning natural beauty in The “Volunteer State” sees twice as many people each year as its closest rival, the Grand Canyon. Tennessee is so famous because of its ease of access as eight states surrounding it. Additionally, it has much due to its incredible natural beauty, rich heritage and top-quality attractions.

Also, there’s the music. From the rock and roll heritage of Elvis Presley to country stars like Johnny Cash, Tennessee was the birthplace of many of America’s most famous musicians and artists. Please find the best musical and scenic attractions, places of the Civil War, and national landmarks on our top tourist destinations in Tennessee.


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Memphis is one of the best places to visit in Tennessee. Since it is believed to be the birthplace of the blues, it ought to be no surprise to find out that music is an integral part of the Memphis soul.

On Beale Street, there are numerous vibrant nightclubs and bars that include fantastic live music to listen to. Around town, you will find numerous monuments and museums dedicated to different artists and their music, with Graceland, Elvis Presley’s former residence – being the most well-known.

The city is situated in the middle of the Mississippi River bordering Arkansas. Memphis is an exciting place to be. It attracts music enthusiasts from all over the world, and there’s plenty of entertainment.

Although it was rather shabby, In recent times there have been many excellent restaurants, bars, and brewery establishments have come up, and it is impossible to visit Memphis without tasting the city’s famous and delicious barbecue recipes.

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Alongside being the capital city of this state, Nashville is also known as the music capital of the globe. Therefore, there are a lot of incredible live music venues to visit, in addition to museums dedicated to famous artists like Willie Nelson and Johnny Cash.

Despite being referred to as the ‘Music City of USA and ‘Music City, USA, ‘ Nashville has several different aspects. It is now an important hub of commerce and culture within the region.

Some beautiful historic buildings and historical sites are scattered throughout the city to be explored, and its lively neighbourhoods are brimming with distinctive boutiques, trendy bars, cozy coffee places, and a variety of green parks.

The main reason why visitors come to Nashville is due to its music. The opportunity to watch it on the Grand Ole Opry radio program broadcast live or attending a concert at the historical Ryman Auditorium are two of the most memorable Nashville experience.

To top it off, any trip to Nashville would be complete without visiting the stunning Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum.

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Great Smoky Mountains National Park

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It is a must to see throughout the season. Great Smoky Mountains National Park is filled with breathtaking landscapes and natural views that transform before you as seasons shift.

The park is among the top frequented National park across the U.S. – once you’ve been there, it’s obvious the reason. The magnificent Great Smoky Mountains are almost entirely covered by lush forest with various beautiful trails and paths, including the Appalachian winding through the forest.

There are plenty of outdoor activities to explore, including mountain biking, hiking and fly fishing, being extremely well-known. One of the best ways to explore all of this national park you can is to stay overnight in the park and rise nice and early to visit many of the iconic site’s iconic cultural sites, as well as stunning views within its boundaries.

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Hello, Dollywood, Pigeon Forge

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Named for country music star Dolly Parton, Dollywood has been for a long time the top-rated attraction for tickets in Tennessee, drawing over three million people each year. It is among the most popular tourist attractions of Pigeon Forge.

This active theme park of 150 acres offers family-friendly fun through its mix of traditional Smoky Mountain traditions, crafts, thrilling rides, and music.

Dollywood boasts more than 50 rides, nine of which are roller coasters, including the famous Tennessee Tornado, spread across 11 themed zones.

These themes represent the rich history and culture of the east region of Tennessee and comprise Timber Canyon, Country Fair, and Jukebox Junction.

Other attractions are live performances, festivals, and an authentic steam train that is coal-fired–the Dollywood Express–that circles the park. Take a trip to this 290-acre park and add Splash Country water park.

National Museum of Civil Rights, Memphis

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National Museum of Civil Rights, Memphis is one of the best places to visit in Tennessee. The National Museum of Civil Rights, located in Memphis, is an important national treasure and is among the top captivating places to visit in Tennessee.

The museum has a variety of artifacts scattered across two buildings, which includes The Lorraine Motel–the designated historical site at which Martin Luther King Jr. was killed in April 1968.

You can stand in the room where the assassin James Earl Ray pulled the trigger that ended King’s existence. The story of these dramatic days, which includes motivational theories, will grab your interest.

Visit the museum’s exhibits and view 40 videos, oral histories, and interactive media. It would help if you planned to visit this for a minimum of 2 to three hours in this museum.

Your guided tour of the museum will take you through five centuries of civil rights history, including the history of slavery, reconstruction following the Civil War, Jim Crow segregation, the 1950s Birmingham bus boycotts, the Rosa Parks protest, and the 1960s sit-ins and marches.

The museum is informative, inspiring, inspirational, and an ongoing challenge to attain equality of race.


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The city is situated on the banks of the Tennessee River, right on the frontier of Georgia. Chattanooga has long been a central railway station. It is famous worldwide for Glenn Miller’s iconic ‘Chattanooga Choo Choo’ track.

Because of its importance and strategic role as a hub for transportation, Chattanooga was battled over in its time in the American Civil War. There are many fascinating battlefields and historical sights for you to explore in the city.

Today, the main reason why people go to Chattanooga is the city’s fantastic variety of outdoor activities. It’s not without motive that Chattanooga is referred to as the “Scenic City due to the gorgeous valleys, ridges, and mountains surrounding it.

These natural beauties make them ideal for cycling, mountain hiking and rock climbing. There are plenty of water sports available.

To top it all off, the central area of Chattanooga has a vibrant atmosphere, featuring myriad fantastic bars, restaurants, and breweries tucked away in the beautiful brick structures of its past.


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A popular tourist attraction The third-largest city in Tennessee, and the former capital city, is worth a trip if you’re looking for a good meal and drink. There are a lot of excellent bars, restaurants and breweries that have come up in recent years.

Since Knoxville has the home of Knoxville University, which is the University of Tennessee, there is a lively and youthful vibe in the city’s streets. The college football game nights constitute a significant occasion in the city, as fans crowd into Neyland Stadium, which can hold up to 102,000 fans.

Furthermore, the city’s arts and culture scene is thriving with various cultural and music festivals, and art performances are on schedule throughout the year.

In addition, the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, close to The city, is the ideal starting point if you want to discover the park’s many trails and then return each evening to enjoy tasty local cuisine and delicious craft beers.


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Gatlinburg is one of the best places to visit in Tennessee. It is located right at the base of the Great Smoky Mountains and the unique national park named for them. The resort town of Gatlinburg is located in a stunning location, with stunning mountains and beautiful nature all around.

In this way, many visitors come to the area for the variety of outdoor activities the area has to offer. The hiking trail through the Appalachian Trail is a prevalent activity, and in winter, the state’s sole ski resort, Ober Gatlinburg, is packed with crowds enjoying themselves.

There is an urban feel and a look at Gatlinburg and Gatlinburg, don’t be shocked to find a lot of mini-golf courses, arcades, souvenir shops, and go-karting venues in Gatlinburg.

Some unique attractions are scattered here and there, like those at the Museum of Salt and Pepper Shakers and the Hollywood Star Cars Museum.

While a large portion of Gatlinburg is stylish and kitsch-like in appearance, Gatlinburg isn’t without charms. Gatlinburg Arts and Crafts Community is a beautiful destination to find out details about the wealthiest heritage of Tennessee and also see all the handmade crafts in the area.


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The city is located along the Harpeth River. The small city of Franklin is just 30 kilometres away from Nashville. The town’s laidback, urban vibe is very relaxed and is home to many eateries, boutiques, and bars to pick from.

READ MORE: Bed and Breakfast in Franklin Tennessee

The most important reason to go to the city is due to its battlefields and historic places that have a connection to the bloody and violent Battle of Franklin that took place here in 1864 in the Civil War.

Suppose you’re looking to gain more understanding of and appreciate the significant events there. In that case, Carter House, Lotz House, and Carnton Plantation are all very informative places to visit.

With a charming small-town vibe that is a little rustic, Franklin is well worth visiting for a day from Nashville and can be added to a trip to nearby Arrington, where you can find a great vineyard which sells the finest local wines.

The Parthenon, Nashville

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The Parthenon, Nashville is one of the best places to visit in Tennessee. A visit to Nashville is not complete without visiting the magnificent Parthenon. It is one of Tennessee’s most impressive landmarks. It’s the center of Centennial Park, a short stroll from Nashville’s downtown center.

The impressive life-sized replica of the first Parthenon in Athens, Greece, was constructed to mark the state’s centennial celebration in 1897.

The entire structure is made of cement. The Parthenon stands out with its enormous dimensions, both inside and out.

The structure is home to the city’s permanent art gallery, which is a collection of artworks by 19th and 20th-century American painters, in addition to the stunning 42-foot gold-covered sculpture of goddess Athena Parthenos. The Parthenon is on the National Register of Historic Places.


All destinations are awesome! According to my opinion, Franklin is the best to start. I hope you have enjoyed our list about Best Places to Visit in Tennessee.

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Hi! I'm Henry. I'm a best-selling travel writer who has been teaching people how to travel on a budget for sixteen years. 

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