35 Best & Fun Things to Do in Tennessee

Tennessee is a state in the southeastern United States which has Nashville as its capital.

Other cities in the state include Memphis, Knoxville, Chattanooga, Franklin, and Gatlinburg, all of which is home to various exciting attractions.

Tennessee boasts fields like Agriculture, manufacturing, tourism, and lots more.

Among Fun things to do in Tennessee is to visit any of its many popular attractions such as the most visited park in the nation called The Great Smoky Mountains National Park, located at the state’s eastern wing.

Other famous attractions in the state include Dollywood and the Titanic museum in Pigeon Forge, Memphis Zoo and the National Civil Rights Museum in Memphis, the Tennessee Aquarium Chattanooga, the Parthenon and Country Music Hall Of Fame Museum in Nashville, and Ijams Nature Center in Knoxville among many others.

Are you planning a vacation to this state? Here are the best things to do in Tennessee.

Things to Do in Tennessee

1. Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Great Smoky Mountains National Park
Credits: Weidman Photography / Shutterstock
Great Smoky Mountains National Park

This is one of the top tourist attractions in Tennessee. A visit to Great Smoky Mountains National Park is worth adding to your list of fun things to do in Tennessee.

The Great Smoky Mountains National Park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, which boasts significant history, amazing wildlife, and geological wonders.

The park is one of the first federally funded parks in the United States, and it bestrides the Great Smoky Mountains and the Blue Ridge Mountains.

Among the many notable features of this National Park include the North Carolina-Tennessee border and the famous Appalachian Trail which cuts across the park’s middle.

The Great Smoky Mountains National Park also has several other excellent trails through which visitors can explore the Alum Cave Trail park.

You can visit the Cades Cove in the park for some historical time, which comprises of mind-blowing remnants of historic buildings.

The Great Smoky Mountains National Park is one of the most popular national parks in America, making it a remarkable place to visit while in the area.

Address: 107 Park Headquarters Rd, Gatlinburg, TN 37738, United States

2. RCA Studio B

RCA Studio B
Credits: jejim / Shutterstock
RCA Studio B

An interesting destination for music lovers, the RCA Studio B is a renowned recording studio located in Nashville which reached its heyday in the 1960s for producing a unique genre of music called the “Nashville Sound.”

Owned and operated by the country music hall of fame, the RCA Studio B has recorded songs for several famous musical stars, including Waylon Jennings, Elvis Presley, and Dolly Parton.

The studio is recognized as one of the few venues contributing to making Nashville a headquarter for international music recording.

Partly for this reason, The RCA Studio B is one of the few attractions listed in the National Registry of Historic Places.

Additionally, the studio also offers tours and is open to a variety of events and educational programs.

Address: 1611 Roy Acuff Pl, Nashville, TN 37203, United States

3. The Crystal Shrine Grotto

The Crystal Shrine Grotto
Credits: Brent Moore / Flickr
The Crystal Shrine Grotto

The Crystal Shrine Grotto is a shrine in Memphis, Tennessee, built in the 1930s using concrete.

The shrine has an odd and unique appearance comprising various religious imagery, odd-looking stones, and exceptional craftsmanship.

The Crystal Shrine Grotto has changed a bit since its creation with quite a little different atmosphere though still an amazing place to visit, just like the old times.

Having an appearance of a Christian-themed neolithic presently, the shrine was established to create a reflective and quiet environment for individuals to meditate.

The grotto is situated at the midpoint of the Memorial Park Cemetery and was created by an artist named Dionicio Rodríguez, who was assigned to make the cemetery more aesthetic.

Created by digging about 6ft down a hill, the grotto was designed using quartz and cement, giving it a unique and beautiful appearance.

The Crystal Shrine Grotto is a unique attraction worth adding to your list of places to visit in Tennessee.

Address: 5668 Poplar Ave, Memphis, TN 38119, United States

4. Belle Meade Plantation

Belle Meade Plantation
Credits: legacy1995 / Shutterstock
Belle Meade Plantation

Belle Meade Plantation is a historical attraction in Nashville, Tennessee, first established by John Harding as a log cabin that sits on 250 acres of land space.

Sometime after its inception, Belle Meade Plantation was visited by several high-class personals, including celebrities, Presidents, and other notable guests.

The plantation later grew from 250 acres to 5,400 acres of land after being financed by the region’s wealthiest family.

The plantation features during its inception include a Revival mansion, a deer park, and a horse farm with a train station nearby.

The Belle Meade Plantation also had several houses for slaves who worked in the area and took care of the land.

Presently, the plantation has only 34 acres of land left and is one of the best spots to go sightseeing while in Tennessee.

The plantation portrays a picture of the world in the old times, allowing visitors to experience the old.

Belle Meade Plantation is open for visitors to explore the area, see the mansion, go through the slaves’ quarters, and visit other interesting spots in the plantation.

Address: 110 Leake Ave, Nashville, TN 37205, United States

5. The Titanic Museum

The Titanic Museum
Credits: Aneese / Shutterstock
The Titanic Museum

The Titanic story is a significant history in ship sailing worldwide, and Tennessee has the largest permanent museum dedicated to this history.

Situated in Pigeon Forge, The Titanic Museum is one of the best attractions to visit while in the state and is worth adding to your list of things to do in TN.

The Titanic Museum was first opened in 2010, having the original RMS Titanic shape but half its size with an accurate scale percentage.

The museum comprises about 20 interesting galleries that are home to more than 400 artifacts related to the Titanic.

The museum’s construction cost about $25 million, and the galleries were expertly customized to look and feel like the real Titanic with lots of things to see and do.

Visitors are given a boarding ticket with the name of an actual passenger on the Titanic ship and the class the passenger had been on while entering the Titanic.

The ticket allows visitors to explore the Titanic as the actual passenger written on it. When they are done exploring, it brings them to the Titanic Memorial Room, where visitors get to learn more about the passengers and which of them survived, including those in the ticket given them.

This is a wonderful experience to try out while you are in Tennessee.

Address: 2134 Parkway, Pigeon Forge, TN 37863, United States

6. Ijams Nature Center

Ijams Nature Center
Credits: Ilia Krivoruk / Shutterstock
Ijams Nature Center

Located in Knoxville, Ijams Nature Center is one of the best natural attractions in Tennessee, which covers about 300-acre space.

The center is a wildlife preserve suitable for individuals of all ages, including children, and boasts several recreational outdoor activities such as biking, hiking, paddling, walking, and lots more.

Among the center’s many features include the Jo’s Grove, a safe, natural playground for kids, and the Ijams Crag, where visitors can take to climbing.

The River Sports Outfitters in the area offers canoe, bike, and paddleboard rentals to visitors who wish to explore the park through various mediums.

The center also has stores that sell everything from refreshments to locally made crafts and other gifts.

Ijams Nature Center is available for rentals for retreats, weddings, and other public or private events.

Address: 2915 Island Home Avenue, Knoxville, TN 37920.

7. Discovery Park of America

Discovery Park of America
Credits: Memphis CVB / Flickr
Discovery Park of America

Discovery Park of America is a spectacular attraction situated in Union, Tennessee, which serves as a park, museum, and garden.

This amazing park occupies about 50-acre land space that boasts activities and educative hands-on exhibits that cuts across several aspects of Tennessee, including history, art, science, military, and nature.

Among the many attractions the Discovery Park of America offers is a Discovery Center that spans over 100,000 square feet and features about ten exhibit areas. This includes a particular exhibit area that hosts temporary rotational exhibits.

Some of the exhibits featured in these areas include a 20,000-gallon aquarium, a complete replica of the human body, which spans 60-foot, and a theater earthquake simulator.

The Discovery Park of America is a place worth visiting while you are in Tennessee.

Address: 830 Everett Blvd, Union City, TN 38261, United States

8. Mud Island River Park

Mud Island River Park
Credits: Sean Pavone / Shutterstock
Mud Island River Park

For some outdoor time, visit the Mud Island River Park, a recreational park located in Memphis, home to the exceptional five-block-long River Walk.

The River Walk featured in this park gives visitors a scenic and amazing view of the Mississippi. Exploring this path is worth adding to your list of things to do in TN.

While exploring this walk, visitors get to learn about different historical events and geographical marvels.

The walk extends to the “Gulf of Mexico,” a one-acre enclosure that offers a boat ride in a 1.3 million-gallon of fine waters.

Feel free to come along with your dog as this is a dog-friendly park and there are also designated picnic areas where you can relax with your friends or family.

Mud Island River Park available for rent for events, and it is open daily from dawn to dusk.

Address: 125 N Front St, Memphis, TN 38103, United States

9. Tennessee Aquarium

Tennessee Aquarium
Credits: Karen Culp / Shutterstock
Tennessee Aquarium

Among the many excitement Tennessee has to offer, the state also has something in store for sea animal lovers.

Located in Chattanooga, the Tennessee Aquarium is a nonprofit facility made up of two buildings that serve as home to various amazing aquatic animals.

The two buildings which make up the Tennessee aquarium are namely; the River Journey exhibit and the Ocean Journey.

The River Journey exhibit is one of the best freshwater aquariums and the largest in the world, spanning about 130,000 square feet with exhibits centered on animals and fishes gotten from the river.

The Ocean Journey is newer than the River Journey exhibit and focuses on showcasing animals that live in the sea and oceans.

Some of the activities visitors can take to while in the aquarium include going on a boat ride, learning more about Southeast’s biodiversity, and seeing and learning about different kinds of sea creatures.

While in this aquarium, visitors can also understand the significance of freshwater ecosystems.

This is one of the best places to visit in Tennessee for sightseeing and if you have an interest in marine life.

Address: 1 Broad St, Chattanooga, TN 37402, United States

10. Lookout Mountain

Lookout Mountain
Credits: Sean Pavone / Shutterstock
Lookout Mountain

A visit to Lookout Mountain should be added to your list of fun things to do in Tennessee. This is one of Tennessee’s best tourist destinations.

This mountain ridge slightly covers part of the Georgia state line and Tennessee in Chattanooga.

The Lookout Mountain has its historical significance as it is the battleground where the Cherokees’ final battle took place in the time of the Nickajack Expedition.

The Mountain was also where The Battle of Lookout Mountain took place (just like its name implies) during the American Civil war.

This beautiful town is one of Tennessee’s most frequented area as it is home to different popular Tennessee attractions with lots of fun things to see and do.

Some of the attractions in this area include the Chattanooga Museum, the Incline Railway, Ruby Falls Cavern, which features a delightful waterfall, and the Rock City, where many exciting events are hosted, such as the Lover Leap and the Fat Man’s Squeeze.

Address: Chattanooga, TN 37409, United States

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11. Ryman Auditorium

Ryman Auditorium
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Ryman Auditorium

Opened in 1885, the Ryman Auditorium is a historical center known as Union gospel tabernacle and Grand Ole Opery House.

The idea of an auditorium’s location started when Sam Jones, an evangelist, used the area for hosting a tent revival.

About 5,000 individuals attended the tent revival. Amongst those who attended was a businessman from Nashville called Thomas G. Ryman.

Thomas G. Ryman later built the auditorium as the Union Gospel Tabernacle after becoming a Christian and dedicated his life and fortune to Evangelist Sam Jones’s work.

However, the venue’s name was changed from Union Gospel Tabernacle to Ryman Auditorium after Ryman died.

Currently, the auditorium is now quite much fun and is recognized as the Mother Church of Country Music, making it an exciting place to visit while in Tennessee.

The Ryman Auditorium has a seating capacity of 2,362, ensuring the comfortability of many guests. It was also hosting grounds for the Grand Old Opry.

The auditorium is a live performance venue featuring performance and celebrities from across the country.

If you are interested in country music, a visit to the Ryman Auditorium should be added to your list of things to do in Tennessee.

Address: 116 5th Ave N, Nashville, TN 37219, United States

12. Lotz House Museum

Lotz House Museum
Credits: Brent Moore / Flickr
Lotz House Museum

Tennessee has lots of historic homes, and the Lotz House Museum is worth visiting.

The Lotz House Museum is a historic two-story framed house located in Franklin, Tennessee, built in 1858.

The house is a significant attraction in Tennessee as it was used as a military field hospital during Franklin’s 1864 battle.

In 1976, the Lotz House Museum was listed on the U.S. National Registry of Historic Places, and in 2008 it was transformed into a museum open to the public.

There are several historic handcrafted exhibits housed by the museum, such as antiques, fine art, family heirlooms, and more, all of which were made by the Lotz family members, most of who were talented artists.

The Lotz museum has a gift shop where visitors can purchase souvenirs, and it is open for individual tours, group tours, and student tours.

Close to the historic Lotz house is the Carter House and the Franklin Battlefield, making this spot one of the best places to visit in Tennessee.

Address: 1111 Columbia Avenue, Franklin, TN 37064.

13. Dollywood

Dollywood
Credits: Jen / Flickr
Dollywood

Dollywood is a theme park re-created by Dolly Parton, a renowned country singer, another music-related attraction in Tennessee.

The park was first opened in 1961 as a small tourist attraction called Rebel Railroad, and after years of changing ownership and being abandoned, it was bought by Dolly Parton, remade, and reopened in 1986 as Dollywood.

Presently, Dollywood is jointly owned by Dolly Parton and Herschend Family Entertainment, boasting several attractions related to Parton’s life.

Among the many Tennessee attractions in the area is the Splash Country, which provides more diversion for visitors less interested in Dolly Parton’s life.

Dollywood is a perfect attraction for country music lovers interested in Dolly Parton. It is also suitable for individuals who have little or no interest in her music.

Additionally, Dollywood hosts several fun festivals throughout the year, which is ticketed by almost 3 million guests each season.

Address: 2700 Dollywood Parks Blvd, Pigeon Forge, TN 37863, United States

14. Grand Ole Opry

Grand Ole Opry
Credits: Joe Hendrickson / Shutterstock
Grand Ole Opry

Among the many fun things to do in Tennessee, attending the Grand Ole Opry should be added to your checklist.

Hosted in Nashville, Tennessee, the Grand Ole Opry is a famous American weekly country music stage concert that George D. Hay started in 1925.

The show is recognized to be the longest-running radio broadcast in United States history and is attended by hundreds of thousands of people worldwide.

The country music stage Concert is dedicated to honoring the history of country music and country music itself.

The show is hosted in Grand Ole Opry House most of the year. It features different celebrities who showcase various performances ranging from country music to gospel music, bluegrass music, comedy, skits, and lots more.

The Opry House in Tennessee also serves as host to several other special events all through the year.

There available backstage tours, and the opry house is open for private events like wedding reception, birthday parties, anniversary, and other programs.

Address: 2804 Opryland Dr, Nashville, TN 37214, United States

15. Memphis Zoo

Memphis Zoo
Credits: David Ellis / Flickr
Memphis Zoo

Are you looking for what to do in Tennessee with kids? If yes, a visit to the Memphis Zoo should be added to your checklist of things to do.

This zoo is one of the top attractions in Tennessee, and it houses giant pandas, which is found only in four Zoos across America, including the Memphis Zoo.

The two giant pandas in the zoo are named Le Le and Ya Ya. This zoo also housed the oldest hippopotamus that ever lived, he was named Adonis and died in 1965 after living for 54 years.

Aside from hippos and pandas, Memphis Zoo is also home to over 3,5000 animals of more than 500 species.

Additionally, the zoo features an extensive collection of exciting exhibits ranging from Animals of The Night to Primate Canyon, Northwest Passage, and Once Upon A Farm.

Each exhibit is designed like the animals’ natural habitat featured therein to ensure a conducive living system for the fauna.

This attraction is suitable for the entire family, including kids who get to see and learn more about different animals.

Address: 2000 Prentiss Pl, Memphis, TN 38112, United States

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16. The Tennessee State Capitol Building

Tennessee State Capitol Building
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Tennessee State Capitol Building

The Tennessee State Capitol Building is a historic structure in Nashville that was built between 1845 and 1859.

The building has a Greek Revival architectural pattern designed by architect William Strickland, who died while still in construction.

In 1970, the state capitol building was added to the National Register of Historic Places, and in 1971, it was designated a National Historic Landmark.

The area was the burial site for some of the state’s iconic individuals like President James Polk and William Strickland, who had designed the building.

The area also features notable monuments carved in honor of past significant people of the state, such as Sergeant Alvin York, President Andrew Jackson, Sam Davis, and President Andrew Johnson.

The Tennessee State Capitol Building offers guided tours for visitors almost every week of the year.

Address: 600 Dr. M.L.K. Jr Blvd, Nashville, TN 37243, United States

17. National Civil Rights Museum

National Civil Rights Museum
Credits: Gino Santa Maria / Shutterstock
National Civil Rights Museum

If you are a history enthusiast, add a visit to the National Civil Rights Museum to your list of things to do in Tennessee.

National Civil Rights Museum was first opened in 1991, and it is presently one of the top 10 history attractions in Tennessee.

The museum focuses on educating visitors on matters relating to America’s civil rights movement, including its legacy, history, and how it influences the modern world’s struggle for equality.

The museum has several historic buildings to its name, each of which has significant information to offer.

Among the many buildings that make up the museum is one which is situated in a lot once known as the Lorraine Motel, where the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. took place.

For this reason, the building at the lot features a variety of interactive exhibits dedicated in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

The museum is open for tours by interested visitors who wish to know more about the Civil Rights Movement of America, and it can also be rented for events.

Address: 450 Mulberry St, Memphis, TN 38103, United States

18. Bays Mountain Park & Planetarium

Bays Mountain Park
Credits: Dee Browning / Shutterstock
Bays Mountain Park

Covering about 3,550 acres of nature preserve, the Bays Mountain Park & Planetarium is a fun-filled area with lots of things to do and see.

Bays Mountain Park & Planetarium is located in Kingsport, and it is one of the top places to visit in Tennessee for outdoor time.

Among this park’s many features include a Planetarium, a 44-acre lake, and different exhibits that showcase Animal Habitats.

If you are in for an adventure, try out the Adventure Ropes Course in the area, a zip line about 300-foot long.

Additionally, the Bays Mountain Park has several trails suitable for trail running, hiking, mountain biking, and more.

During some nights of the year, Bays Mountain Park & Planetarium also host free seasonal astronomy viewings, which is beautiful to witness.

Address: 853 Bays Mountain Park Road, Kingsport, TN 37660, P

19. Shelby Farms Park

Shelby Farms Park
Credits: Memphis CVB / Flickr
Shelby Farms Park

Covering about 4,500 acres of land space, the Shelby Farms Park is a beautiful Park in Memphis, Tennessee, which boasts many recreational activities.

The park is recognized as one of the largest urban parks in America, featuring about twenty water bodies and forty miles of connected trails that cut across the area.

Some of the recreational activities that can be carried out in this park include hiking, fishing, disc golfing, horseback riding, and lots more.

Shelby Farms Park is also a dog-friendly park with about 120 acres of space where dogs can roam and have some free time.

Children can also have lots of fun while in the Woodland Discovery Park, where kids can have an enjoyable outdoor time, playing in a safe environment.

The park also features a wide paved trail called the Shelby Farm Greenline, which passes through the area connecting Memphis and Cordova.

The Shelby Farm Greenline is an ideal trail for hikers who wish to enjoy the park’s tranquility.

The park also offers bicycles, boats, and horse rentals for visitors who want to explore this large park through various mediums.

Shelby Farms Park is one of the best attractions in Tennessee for a quality outdoor experience.

Address: 6903 Great View Dr. N, Memphis, TN 38134, United States

20. Adventure Science Center

Adventure Science Center
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Adventure Science Center

If you an in for some science adventures, add a visit to the Adventure Science Center to your list of fun things to do in Tennessee.

The Adventure Science Center is a spectacular attraction with lots of fun activities suitable for individuals of all ages, including children.

The center features a variety of interactive displays which cuts across different science discipline including astronomy and biology.

Among the many activities, children can indulge in trying out the flight simulators, checking out the special photo booth which manipulates their image to look old, and learning more about astronomy.

The Adventure Science Center has friendly and knowledgeable staffs who guides visitors through various exciting demonstration in the center.

Some of the popular and notable spots in the Adventure Science Center that is definitely worth checking out include the Space Chase, the Adventure Tower, and the planetarium.

The Adventure Science Center is open on Mondays, Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays from 10am to 3pm.

Address: 800 Fort Negley Blvd, Nashville, TN 37203, United States

21. Andrew Jackson’s Hermitage

Andrew Jackson's Hermitage
Credits: Stuart Seeger / Flickr
Andrew Jackson’s Hermitage

Among the many historic homes in Tennessee, the Hermitage is worth adding to your list of places to visit while in the state.

The Hermitage is a spectacular historic home built from 1819 to 1821, which was once home to Andrew Jackson, the 7th president of America.

The house was expertly built in a Federal architectural style with a brick facade, featuring eight rooms, nine fireplaces, and a basement summer kitchen.

Hermitage’s garden was where the Late President Andrew Jackson’s was put to rest alongside his wife, who had loved the garden so much, and a tomb marks the exact burial space.

Andrew Jackson’s Hermitage has been recently carefully restored to be a museum that looks like Jackson’s residence of the old times.

The museum features lots of painstakingly preserved artifacts and documents on display.

A tour through this area is one of the best things to do in Tennessee for history enthusiasts.

Address: 4580 Rachels Ln, Hermitage, TN 37076, United States

22. Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum

Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum
Credits: f11photo / Shutterstock
Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum

If you are interested in country music, add a visit to the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum to your list of things to do in Tennessee.

This hall of fame and museum has been in existence for more than five decades now and focuses on upholding the traditions, evolution, and history of country music in the country.

The main exhibit collection of this museum was once titled Sing Me Back Home: A Journey Through Country Music

The showcase uses different interactive touchscreens, artifacts, vintage videos, and photographs that portray the history and other information relating to this particular music genre.

The Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum is also referred to as the country music’s Smithsonian.

Among the many famous country music icons featured in the hall of fame and museum include Charlie Daniels, the Zac Brown Band, Blak Shelton, and Taylor Swift.

A visit to the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum is one of the most fun things to do in Tennessee for country music lovers.

Address: 222 5th Ave S, Nashville, TN 37203, United States

23. The Parthenon

The Parthenon
Credits: Boykov / Shutterstock
The Parthenon

The Parthenon is a historic structure located in Centennial Park, Nashville, Tennessee, built in 1897.

The structure is a full replica of the original Greecian Parthenon, designed by William Crawford Smith, a notable architect. It was built as a part of the Tennessee Centennial Exposition.

The Parthenon was initially scheduled for destruction. However, the demolishing plans were changed because of how popular the structure became in Tennessee.

Currently, the Parthenon is used as an art museum in the Centennial Park and is home to about 63 paintings by renowned American artists which goes as far back as the 19th and 20th century.

The museum also features other rotating exhibitions that change from time to time all through the year.

The structure is decorated like the Greecian Parthenon and is one of the unique attractions in Tennessee, it answers what to do in Tennessee for some archeological time.

Address: 2500 West End Ave, Nashville, TN 37203, United States

24. Smoky Mountain Deer Farm & Exotic Petting Zoo

Smoky Mountain Deer Farm
Credits: Smoky Mountain Deer Farm and Exotic Petting Zoo & Deer Farm Riding Stables / Facebook
Smoky Mountain Deer Farm & Exotic Petting Zoo

For some family time, visit the Smoky Mountain Deer Farm & Exotic Petting Zoo, a unique tourist attraction in Sevierville, Tennessee, which offers several animal-related fun activities.

Spanning a whopping 140-acre of land, this deer farm creates an opportunity for visitors to face close to different species of animals from the deer family.

Some of the animals featured in the petting zoo include donkeys, kangaroos, camels, zonkeys, reindeer, zebra, emu, and lots more.

While in the zoo, visitors are allowed to feed and pet most of the domestic animals. Those who wish to try out horseback riding can go to the Deer Farm Riding Stables, which offers a horse-riding opportunity to visitors of all skill levels and ages.

Along the trails are lots of amazing views of the Smoky Mountains, and the trails are shaded to ensure comfortability while riding.

Smoky Mountain Deer Farm & Exotic Petting Zoo is one of the best family-friendly Tennessee attractions worth your list of places to visit.

Address: 478 Happy Hollow Lane, Seveirville, TN 37876.

25. Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies

Ripley's Aquarium of the Smokies
Credits: Brent Moore / Flickr
Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies

Are you interested in aquatic life? If yes, add a visit to Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies to your list of things to do in Tennessee.

The Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies is a spectacular tourist attraction site located in downtown Gatlinburg, Tennessee, which hosts a wide range of aquatic animals.

The Aquarium comprises about five hundred thousand gallons of water with over a hundred thousand aquatic animals making it one of America’s largest aquariums.

Ripley’s aquarium features one of the longest underground tunnels in the world where visitors can observe different species of fascinating marine life.

Among the many fascinating animals in the aquarium include sharks and rays, which can be seen clearly through the aquarium’s beautiful underground tunnels.

Additionally, Ripley’s aquarium also hosts a wide range of special events throughout the year, including the renowned Painting with Penguins event.

Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies is suitable for individuals of all ages, including children, and offers a variety of beautiful mind-blowing views of marine life.

Visiting this aquarium is one of the coolest things to do in Tennessee.

Address: 88 River Rd, Gatlinburg, TN 37738, United States

26. Lost Sea Cave

Lost Sea Cave
Credits: gracious_tiger / Shutterstock
Lost Sea Cave

One of the most beautiful attractions in Tennessee, the Lost Sea Cave is a unique cave extension located within Craighead Caverns(named after a Cherokee chief, Chief Craighead), which houses the largest on-subglacial lake in America called the Lost Sea.

The Lost Sea Cave takes its spot at the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains, and it offers a unique, memorable view.

This cave’s beautiful features include several crystal clusters across the walls and a stunning waterfall, which is worth seeing while in Tennessee.

The Lost Sea Cave also boasts lots of history, including that of the confederate soldiers who mined the cave for saltpeter back in the day.

This makes what to do in Tennessee  for some fun time, consider adding to your checklist of places to visit in Tennessee.

Address: 140 Lost Sea Rd, Sweetwater, TN 37874, United States

27. Tour Graceland

Graceland
Credits: Rolf_52 / Shutterstock
Graceland

If you are an Elvis Presley fan, a visit to Graceland is worth adding to your list of things to do in Tennessee.

Located on a 13.8-acre in Memphis, the Graceland is a beautiful mansion that was once home to the famous singer and actor Elvis Presley.

Graceland was opened to the public in 1982 after being transformed into a museum and has been owned by Elvis Presley’s daughter since his death in 1977.

On the 7th of November 1991, the site was listed in the National register of historic places.

The mansion offers interactive guided tours hosted by John Stamos and uses multimedia iPads, which helps explain the house exhibits.

The tour takes visitors through various rooms in the mansion, including the living room, Elvis’s father’s office, the kitchen, the TV room, and the Jungle Room, which have all been kept exactly as it was when Eris Presley lived there.

While on tour, visitors also explore the Meditation Garden and the different airplanes Elvis Presley used when he was still alive.

Graceland is the second most visited home in America after the White House being the first.

A tour of this house is one of the coolest things to do in Tennessee for music historians.

Address: Elvis Presley Blvd, Memphis, TN 38116, United States

28. Beale Street

Beale Street
Credits: f11photo / Shutterstock
Beale Street

Located in Memphis, Beale Street is a renowned street in Tennessee that starts from East Street and extends to the Mississippi River.

Beale Street is about 2 miles long and features various notable tourist attractions along its path, such as award-winning restaurants and clubs.

Not only is the street packed with lots of fun, but it also hosts a wide range of historical significance.

Beale Street played a large role in American blues music history. It still maintains its significance as various special music festivals galore and concerts are hosted on the street.

The street is packed with most of the excitement and entertainment Memphis offers and is worth visiting if you are in the area for the weekend.

Address: Memphis, TN 38103, United States

29. Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum

Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum
Credits: Brent Moore / Flickr
Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum

Tennessee has lots of museum that is suitable for some history time, but the Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum is one of the best museums in the area worth adding to your checklist of attractions to visit.

The Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum was opened in 1960 and portrayed the state’s development in relation to the railroads Connected across the state.

The museum was initially operated as a Western Union equipment display and storage center in the 1960s.

However, in 1970 a permanent facility was established in the area as a railroad museum after new vehicles were added when the Southern Railway’s passenger service was closed up.

The trains in the museum are still functional, allowing visitors to experience a steam train ride.

Additionally, the museum is among the National Railway Historical Society, an organization established by railway preservationists to preserve steam locomotives, railways, and other equipment for historical study and value.

This organization, led by Robert M Soule and Paul H Merriman, has been quite successful in this mission. They have put in so much work in making Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum one of the top attractions in Tennessee.

A visit to this museum is one of the best things to do in Tennessee, it makes what to do in Tennessee for history lovers.

Address: 4119 Cromwell Rd, Chattanooga, TN 37421, United States

30. Carnton Plantation

Carnton Plantation
Credits: KennStilger47 / Shutterstock
Carnton Plantation

If you have more interest in the American Civil War’s Battle of Franklin, visit the Carnton Plantation while in Tennessee.

The Carnton Plantation is a historic plantation and a museum located in Franklin, Tennessee, which played a significant role in Franklin’s Battle.

The Battle of Franklin Trust manages the museum. A non-profit organization focused on preserving the history of the house and educating visitors on the Civil War’s effect on the state and the country.

In 1973, the plantation was listed in the National Register Of Historic Places in the United States.

Carnton Plantation is open for visitors and takes an average of 1hour 30 minutes or 2 hours to thoroughly explore the house and the surrounding area.

Also, there is a gift shop in the area that offers books about history, collectibles, clothes, and other gifts.

Address: 1345 Eastern Flank Circle, Franklin, TN 37064.

31. Parrot Mountain and Gardens

Parrot Mountain and Gardens
Credits: khlungcenter / Shutterstock
Parrot

For bird lovers, a visit to Parrot Mountain and Gardens should be added to your list of fun things to do in Tennessee.

Parrot Mountain and Gardens is a beautiful attraction located in Pigeon Forge, which comprises four acres of gardens and numerous aviaries.

The gardens were beautifully designed in a European style by the renowned artist, Thomas Kincade, with various European elements.

The Parrot Mountain and Gardens feature an array of beautifully designed cottages that house the parrots and tropical birds flying around and resting on open perches.

Some memorable experiences the garden offers its visitors include an opportunity to feed birds from their hands, witness a variety of beautiful tropical birds, and take pictures with any choice bird.

Added to that, the Parrot Mountain and Gardens also features a baby bird nursery where visitors can purchase any bird of their choice on-site to take home.

Parrot Mountain and Gardens is one of Tennessee’s best spots to see tropical birds, and it’s worth adding to your list of things to do for a sightseeing adventure.

Address: 1471 McCarter Hollow Rd, Pigeon Forge, TN 37862, United States

32. Hatch Show Print

Hatch Show Print
Credits: Gerry Matthews / Shutterstock
Hatch Show Print

Founded by the Hatch brothers in the year 1870, the Hatch Show Print is a historic letterpress print store located in Nashville, which is recognized to be the oldest in Tennessee and America in general.

The Hatch Show Print was first called CR and HH Hatch, offering a well-done composition, carefully selected graphics, and a neat type, all of which made it grow to be one of the best of its kind in the world today.

This historic letterpress print store reached its peak during the heyday of the country music scene of Nashville.

During that period, one of the children of a co-founder called Will T. Hatch, a professional woodblocks carver, made many amazing posters for celebrities in country music. It went viral and added to the company’s success.

To date, the Hatch Show Print still produces over 150,000 posters yearly after being moved to the Country Music Hall of Fame’s lobby in 2013.

If you have an interest in the history of letterpress print, take a tour of this store where you can be educated on the process of print-making and also make a drawing of your own.

Address: 224 5th Ave S, Nashville, TN 37203, United States

33. Sun Studio

Sun Studio
Credits: Mr. Littlehand / Shutterstock
Sun Studio

Sun Studio is a remarkable studio in Tennessee that should be added to your list of cool attractions to visit in the state.

The studio was first opened in 1950 as the Memphis Recording Service and is recognized as where rock ‘n’ roll music was birthed.

The studio was tagged the birthplace of rock ‘n’ roll music in 1951 after Jackie Brenston and Delta Cats recorded the popular tune “Rocket 88” in this venue.

This wonderful studio has recorded songs for several iconic music stars, including Roy Orbison, Johnny Cash, Elvis Presley, and Carl Perkins.

The studio’s name was changed from Memphis Recording Service to Sun studios by Gary Hardy in 1987, and it is recognized to be one of the most popular recording venues today.

Additionally, Sun Studio offers guided tours to visitors and a free shuttle service that takes its passengers to Graceland and Rock N’ Soul Museum vice versa.

There is also a gift shop in the area where visitors can purchase clothes and souvenirs before leaving the studio.

Sun studio is one of the popular attractions in Tennessee to visit, it makes what to do in Tennessee for a music lover.

Address: 706 Union Ave, Memphis, TN 38103, United States

34. Creative Discovery Museum

Creative Discovery Museum
Credits: J. Stephen Conn / Flickr
Creative Discovery Museum

If you are looking for things to do in Tennessee with children, add a visit to the Creative Discovery Museum to your checklist.

The Creative Discovery Museum is a fun-filled museum located in Chattanooga, which is basically for kids, featuring about eight interactive permanent exhibits on display and one temporary exhibit on rotation throughout the year.

The various interactive exhibits are designed to bring fun into learning. The museum also boasts interesting activities for children of all ages and adults who are young at heart.

Creative Discovery Museum also has the Dino-Mite cafe, which offers beverages and food all day long for hungry or thirsty visitors.

Stop by the museum gift shop while leaving the area to purchase a souvenir of books, educational toys, and other gifts available in the shop.

Additionally, the Children’s Discovery Museum gives a discount rate on the ticket prices for families with low-income under the “Museums for All” initiative that offers EBT benefits to such families.

Address: 321 Chestnut Street, Chattanooga, TN 37402.

35. Stones River National Battlefield

Stones River National Battlefield
Credits: William C Bunce / Shutterstock
Stones River National Battlefield

Covering about 570 acres of land space, the Stones River National Battlefield was the grounds for the Battle of Stones, known to be one of the deadliest battles in Civil War history.

The battlefield is located in Murfreesboro, Tennessee, and has presently been transformed into a park that foretells the battle’s historical significance.

The National Battlefield is home to the Stones River National Cemetery, which features about 7,000 different gravesites and the oldest still standing monument in American Civil War history.

This is the best place in Tennessee to learn about the Battle of Stones and it’s significance.

Stones River National Battlefield features lots of fun activities throughout the year, including tours, talks, walks, and other programs officiated by Park Service rangers or volunteers.

Visit this spot while in Tennessee if you are a historian or wish to know more about the Battle of stone, it makes what to do in Tennessee for a fun time.

Address: 3501 Old Nashville Hwy, Murfreesboro, TN 37129, United States

Are you planning a road trip to California? Don’t miss our guide on things to do in Irvine, things to do in Santa Ana & things to do in Sunnyvale for a fun time.

Plan a Trip to Tennessee

Tennessee is an exciting state with lots of fun things to do and see.

The state has almost everything a tourist could ask for, ranging from museums to water parks, historical buildings, mountains, aquariums, battlefields, gardens, studios, and more.

Start planning your trip today, do save this article as a guide for making a list of things to do in Tennessee.