Welcome to Travel East Tennessee. Tennessee is filled with beauty from one side to the other. East Tennessee stands out with the majestic Smoky Mountains, lakes, rivers, hiking trails, old cabins, shops, museums, crafts, scenic drives, theme parks, and more.
Go in any direction and you’ll end up somewhere beautiful any time of the year.
East Tennessee consists of 33-35 counties (depending on who you ask). Those counties are filled with a rich history to explore and lots of activities. In short, East Tennessee is the perfect travel destination.
Here are just a few reasons that make East Tennessee a great place to travel.
East Tennessee has lots of parks to visit. The largest is the Great Smoky Mountain National Park. This is the most visited national park in the US. This is partially due to the fact that it’s free. It doesn’t hurt that it’s truly an amazing park.
It covers over 800 square miles and includes lots of regional culture from the Southern Appalachian Mountains. It’s the home of Cades Cove and is near many of the most popular tourists destinations including Gatlinburg, Dollywood, and more.
East Tennessee is home to lots of awesome towns of all sizes. From Knoxville and Chattanooga to Sweetwater and Tellico Plains, there’s something here for everyone.
Each of these towns has a unique history. Watch football in Knoxville. See the races in Bristol. Go white water rafting in Ducktown.
East Tennessee is home to some of the most photogenic drives in the US. Cades Cove is the most popular drive in the Smokies and is worth coming to multiple times a year to see the colors of the trees and wildlife.
Every town in East Tennessee has country food. All the major chains are here as well as many small locally-owned restaurants. Some have become large chains. One of my favorites is Buddy’s BBQ.
Things To Do
There is no shortage of things to do in East Tennessee. Here’s a look at some of our favorites. We consider these to be worth the trip by themselves.
Dollywood is the largest theme park in East Tennessee. Located in Pigeon Forge, it includes rides, concerts, country food, mountain crafts, animal shows, cabins, Splash Country water park, and more.
There are lots of outdoor activities to choose from. If you like rafting on the rapids, you’ll love East Tennessee’s rivers which include the Ocoee, Pigeon River, French Broad, and Nolichucky. The Ocoee was home to the 1996 Olympics river rafting competitions.
Other things include:
- Hiking trails
- Snow Skiing
East Tennessee is home to over 100 interesting museums that vary in size from a single cabin to large attractions with thousands of items. Just a few include:
- Museum of Appalachia
- American Museum of Science and Energy
- Titanic Museum
- Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies
About Us at Travel East Tennessee
Travel East Tennessee is a destination travel blog from Randy and Lucinda Brown. We have always loved traveling about in East TN and telling others about an interesting new place to visit or a great new restaurant to eat at.
With a little more time to travel now that our kids are in their 20s and having only gotten to explore online for about a year, we’ve realized there is a lot more to East Tennesse than even we realized.
I was born in East Tennessee and I’ve lived here for most of my life. I love nature and East Tennessee is the perfect place for me.
I’m cautious (especially when it comes to heights), but I do love to explore waterfalls, caves, cabins, trails, etc., and see the plants and wildlife.
Awesome food is high on my list and I like to cook on the grill or try new restaurants. I also love to take lots of tourists photos and share them with others. I’m always looking for a new place to visit.
I was born in California and both of my parents are from Michigan. I’ve lived in 5 different states and visited many more (some when I was too young to remember them).
Knoxville was my home through most of grade school and then I moved back to Michigan. East Tennessee has been my home now for the last 30+ years.
I love history, nature walks, handcrafted things, and experiencing new places. I’m not at fit as I’d like to be. But hopefully, the hiking and other activities we’d like to do will help with that.
I have several family members who follow specialized diets so if I find any restaurants that accommodate them I’ll be sure and let you know.
About the Website
As much as possible we will be using photos we take with our phones instead of stock photography. We don’t claim to be great photographers, but we want our photos to be what you can expect to see when you get here.
Most are candid shots without staging and setup. We will be in some of them as well as a few other of our family members when can get them to tag along with us.
Besides places, we will also review products we think will be helpful on your vacations and offer lots of travel advice based on our experience.
We want this website to be a place where all those who are coming to East Tennessee for a visit can find the information they need to make it the most enjoyable trip possible. We also want to help all our fellow East Tennesseans to fully enjoy this beautiful corner of the world we live in.
Eventually, we’ll create our own shop with shirts, mugs, hand-made greeting cards, calendars, and more.
We look forward to growing this website and building friendships both on and offline. Come along with us as we find places to go, foods to eat, things to do, and local events.
Welcome to Travel East Tennessee!