Tennessee is home to close to 6.5 million people, making it the 17th most populous state in the country. A vacation in Tennessee can potentially be your most memorable travel experience yet. The beauty of the state is incomparable. It is also where you can find music everywhere you turn. It really is a wealth of experiences that is just waiting for you to discover. So get on a bus rental in Tennessee and discover the Volunteer State this year!
Call BusRental.com at 1 866-569-2012 and reserve a bus rental in Tennessee for your trip. We can take you wherever you want to go in the state.
Tennessee is known for its hospitality, music and beauty. It won’t be surprising if you fall in love with the state. There is something here for everybody. History buffs would love the historic places, while sports lovers would love the opportunity to live their dream adventures or just watch professional athletes play. Anything from off-the-wall to traditional, experiences here are just waiting for you.
BusRental.com could help you tour this vast state. From the outdoors, state parks and various trails, to museums and theaters, to other attractions that only Tennessee has to offer. So get on a bus rental in Tennessee and explore the state today!
Amusement parks in Tennessee give you the chance to ride the latest and most thrilling attractions in the country. First up is the Go USA Fun Park. Located in Murfreesboro, this park offers you a variety of activities such as arcade games, driving ranges, mini golf, batting cages, go karts. Then you can go to NASCAR SpeedPark and try your hand at some high octane go-karts.
Dollywood, partly owned by Dolly Parton, is a theme park that welcomes at least three million guests every season. It features several thrill rides, totalling more than two dozen in all and seven roller coasters, as well as a handful of water rides. It also has music, arts and crafts features. This is the anchor park of the Dollywood amusement complex, which features Dollywood's Splash Country and the planned Dollywood's Dream More Resort.
Dollywood's Splash Country is the waterpark component that features 27 water slides, a pair of kid's areas, and several rides packed into 35 acres of space.
Lake Winnie in Chattanooga has several attractions, such as:
There is also the SOAKya Water Park, which has several water attractions like the Twist N Shout, Coke Float Cove, Zoom Flume, Crazy River, and Splish n Splash.
Furthermore, there's the Ober Gatlinburg, where you can have some fun on the snow and go snowboarding, ice skating, and skiing, and where you can enjoy amusement park rides, the Lightnin' Raft Ride and Shoot-the-Chute, Mini golf, Blue Cyclone Rapids, Chair Swing, Carousel, Amaze'n Maze, Scenic Chairlift, Wildlife Encounter, and Alpine Slide.
Other water parks and amusement parks you can go to in Tennessee include:
Tennessee's best talent is rooted in music. As such, the state has some of the best music venues you could find in the country. Fans of blues music would instantly fall in love with West Tennessee, the birthplace of the genre. But there are other top-notch venues that you could visit. In Chattanooga, you can check out the Bessie Smith Hall, which gives you a glimpse into the life of the genre's best singer and the Blue Orleans, where you can enjoy the music and creole food at the same time. And if you are in town during the Chattanooga Blues Festival, then be sure to attend that as well.
Sassy Ann's House of Blues in Knoxville is the place to be, as well as the Preservation Pub downtown. Music City has the Bourbon Street Blues and Boogie Bar, which has been awarded the "Keeping the Blues Alive" Award by the Blues Foundation. Then you have several music venues nearby where you can get top blues acts as well. Further, join the Shannon Street Blues & Heritage Festival in Jackson and then check out Downtown Tavern or the Rockabilly Hall of Fame afterwards.
In Memphis, you can also check out the venues on the Beale Street Historic District for your best blues fix. This is where you would find the best of the best venues such as BB King's, Alfred's on Beale, and Black Diamond. You can also go to Main Street where you could find the Center for Southern Folklore.
Other blues venues you can go to include:
Country music. Country music is big in Tennessee and these are the places you could check out to enjoy the best of the genre:
Moreover, go on the Cradle of Country Music Walking Tour in Knoxville and then check out the downtown area for some live shows, especially at the WDVX Blue Plate Special and the Knoxville Visitor Center. Then head out to Chattanooga, where you could check out the food, shops and music at the Chattanooga Market. Lastly, go to the Mountain Opry where you can find a mix of bluegrass and country music.
Classical music. Chamber music, symphony orchestras and opera is alive and kicking in Tennessee. You can watch some of the best classical musicians in the country. The state has a range of classical music venues, ranging from the grandest of venues to the most intimate. Check out the Memphis Opera perform a wide range of classical music from Faust to Joplin. Then you can check out the Knoxville's Symphony Orchestra and the Chattanooga Symphony and Opera as they perform at some of the best theaters in the state.
Meanwhile, Orchestra Nashville is considered one of the country's premiere chamber orchestras. The group performs both new works and masterworks created by composers all across the United States. Then you have the Knoxville Opera, which you can rely on for the classics.
You can also go to Nashville's Lipscomb University for some classical, chamber, jazz, and A cappella performances.
Other classical music venues and groups you should take note of in Tennessee are:
Rock music. Check out the rock music scene in the state. You can start in Knoxville, where you can go to the historic Market Square and check out the notable venues for good old rock and roll. Then you could visit the Johnson City area for more rock music venues, such as the Sophisticated Otter Brewing Company, which features a variety of big name and regional acts.
Downtown Chattanooga also has its share of rock venues, such as Murphy's Ale House and Rhythm & Brews, as well as the Midtown Music Hall. Be at 3rd & Lindsley Bar and Grill in Nashville and you can get your fill of rock, alternative, progressive and R&B music. There are also a lot of venues in this city as well.
Other rock music venues you should not miss include:
Jazz and gospel. The music that came out of Tennessee is in turn rooted in gospel music. Gospel music became the basis for soul, blues, bluegrass, and country, as well as other music genres. Check out the Full Gospel Tabernacle, where you could see Rev. Al Green. You can also hear the Triumphant Quartet perform live at Pigeon Forge's Miracle Theater. The Southern Gospel Music Hall of Fame and Museum at Dollywood is nearby. You could also join the National Gospel and Harvest Celebration every October. Meanwhile, the Grand Ole Opry leads other Nashville gospel music venues. You can also check out Horse Creek Gospel Barn in Chuckey, Smith Family Dinner Theater and Triumphant Southern Gospel Show in Pigeon Forge, James D. Vaughan Southern Gospel Music Museum in Lawrenceburg, and the Fisk University & Fisk Jubilee Singers in Nashville.
Meanwhile, some of the most worthwhile jazz venues here are King's Palace Cafe, Alfred's, BB King's, the Square Room, Jaguar and the Rum Boogie Bar in Memphis; Nashville Jazz Workshop, Cafe Coco, F. Scott's Restaurant & Jazz Bar, Stillwaters Cafe, Edgehill Studios Cafe in Nashville. You can also check the Memphis Jazz Foundation for concerts and other events in the city.
Knoxville has the Baker Peters Jazz Club, the Crown and Goose, Sapphire, and the Square Room. You should also see the Knoxville Jazz Orchestra perform. Also, do check out the Chattanooga Traditional Jazz Festival if you are in the state in May.
Visual arts. You can experience the arts in Tennessee through its various art museums. Your first stop may be the Hunter Museum of American Art in Chattanooga, where you have the chance to see 19th century, Hudson River School, Ashcan School, early modernism, Impressionism, regionalism and contemporary paintings. You can also check out the Frist Center, where you can view regional and global exhibits.
The Memphis Brooks Museum of Art is the oldest museum in the state. The museum is housed inside a beaux-arts structure and encompasses close to 30 galleries in its space. Meanwhile, you can have a variety of great artworks in different media at the Knoxville Museum of Art. Furthermore, you can check out the collections at the Fisk University Galleries, the Belz Museum of Asian and Judaic Art, the Vanderbilt University Fine Arts Gallery, and the Ewing Gallery of Art and Architecture.
A visit to the state's premier art museums would not be complete without going to the 17-acre Dixon Gallery and Gardens, which has post-Impressionist and Impressionist paintings, as well as a collection of porcelain from the 1700s.
You could also visit the West Tennessee Regional Art Center and view their famed Caldwell collection. Meanwhile, the Cheekwood Botanical Gardens and Museum of Art in Nashville is located inside a grand mansion that was built in the 1700s. The museum currently displays British and American art works and modern art. They also have the Woodland Sculpture Trail. The Parthenon at Centennial Park, on the other hand, gives you the chance to see 19th- and 20th-century paintings, while the Tennessee State Museum features early art and history of the state.
The Houston Museum of Decorative Arts is where you would find the ceramics and antique glass collections of Anna Safley Houston. Then you have the Frank H. McClung Museum with its exhibits that are focused on archaeology, anthropology, local history, natural history, and decorative arts.
You should also visit the Carroll Reece Museum and the African American Museum.
Art galleries & art districts. If you are not contented just seeing art and would want to bring home some of the beautiful art works that you see, then check out the wonderful art galleries that dot the state. Some of the best you could go to include the art galleries in Chattanooga's Bluff View Art District, the Emporium Center Gallery in downtown Knoxville, the African-American Appalachian Arts, Market Square, 5th Avenue in Nashville, the Arts Company, and the Great Smoky Arts and Crafts Community in Gatlinburg.
Further, you can go to the Farmhouse Gallery and Gardens in Unicoi and see the works of Johnny Lynch, or to the Johnson City Area Arts Council & Gallery.
Other art districts and galleries you should go to include James-Ben Studio and Galleries, McCullough's Art Gallery in Lebanon, the Strand Theatre & Art Gallery in Hohenwald, David Arms Gallery in Franklin, Leiper's Fork Art, Artitudes in Memphis, the Willis Gallery, and the Center for Southern Folklore.
Architecture. The state has a rich and proud architectural heritage. So be sure to go on the walking tour that explores the Bolivar Historic District and similar historic districts in the state.
Belmont is the biggest house museum in Tennessee and you can check out the oldest state capitol in the United States here. You can also visit the storied Tennessee Theatre in Knoxville. Further, visit Clingmans Dome Tower, Cumberland Homesteads, the Parthenon in Nashville and the ultra modern Memphis Pyramid. For more contemporary architectural gems, you should see the LP Field, the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum, the Tennessee Aquarium, and the Pedestrian Bridge.
Other places that architecture lovers would go gaga over include James K. Polk Ancestral Home, River Inn of Harbor Town, the Athenaeum Rectory, and Downtown Franklin.
Performance arts. If you think that Tennessee only has great musicians, then you are dead wrong. Theater, producers, actors, storytellers and all performers can find their moment in the spotlight here and audiences are guaranteed to be wowed by the variety of performance, groups and venues.
Start off with the family friendly products of the state's children's theaters, including Nashville Children's Theatre, Chattanooga Theatre Centre, Cookeville Children's Theatre, Creative Discovery Museum Science Theatre in Hixson, Smith Family Dinner Theater and Sable' Theater in Pigeon Forge, and Ripley's Moving Theater in Gatlinburg.
You can also catch a wondrous performance and pair it with a sumptuous meal at these dinner theaters:
Historic theaters also abound in Tennessee. These theaters not only give you the chance to take in an amazing performance, but also infuse you with a sense of history and significance. These theaters include:
Groups should also check out the National Storytelling Festival. The four-decades-old festival is one of the top events in the country and it helps rejuvenate the art of storytelling. Then you have Shakespeare in the Square, where you can enjoy Shakespearean comedies and tragedies out in the open. You should also catch the productions put up by the Nashville Shakespeare Festival. Speaking of Nashville, check out Nashville's Great Performances at Vanderbilt. In Clarksville, you can also get live theater shows at the Roxy Regional Theatre.
Further, catch the performances of the Jackson Theatre Guild, Playhouse on the Square, and TheatreWorks.
Festivals. Apart from the festivals we have already mentioned, Tennessee also has the following music festivals:
From shopping malls and shopping districts, to letterpress shops to antique stores, and even farmers markets, Tennessee has it all and more! You may want to start your retail therapy or shopping excursion by scouring the sidewalks of Hill Center Green Hills or by checking out the merchandise at H. Audrey and the Hatch Show Print. Or you may want to look around at the various trendy shopping malls and upscale retail places, including Colonel Littleton, Shops of Saddle Creek, and Opry Mills.
You can also see the Patricia Nash Concept Store, or perhaps find something to remember your trip by in one of the gift shops you find at museums such as the Cheekwood Botanical Garden, the Museum of Art, the Sun Studio, and the Museum of Appalachia.
The Appalachian Center for Craft in Smithville and Arrowcraft gives you the chance to buy products that are made in the state. You can also go down the different historic districts that also serve as shopping meccas, such as the Main Street in Collierville, downtown Chattanooga, the Avenue in Murfreesboro, Knoxville's Old City or the Cooper-Young District in Memphis.
If you are looking for antiques, then check out Bristol, Saltillo and Cross Plains for some of the best antique shops here. And then check out the Sweetwater Antique District. You can also find a great variety of flea markets in the state. In fact, Tennessee hosts the World's Longest Yard Sale every August.
Restaurants. Tennessee puts the epic in epicurean when it comes to food and dining. If you want to impress, check out the restaurants that are run by the most skilled and artistic chefs, or those that have superbly romantic ambiance.
Do check out upscale restaurants in the state such as Prime 108 and Capitol Grille in Nashville, Chez Philippe in Memphis, The Orangery in the east, and St. John's in Chattanooga.
Other upscale restaurants here include Knox Mason, Sapphire, and Echo Bistro & Wine Bar in Knoxville, Carnegie Hotel & Spa in Johnson City, Blackberry Farm and Farmhouse Spa in Walland, F. Scott's Restaurant & Jazz Bar, and Watermark in Nashville, and lastly Restaurant Iris in Memphis.
Then you have the no-frills diners and dives. Roadside diners and humble eateries in the state cater to those who are out on the road or are looking to get some delicious home-cooked meals without having to pay through the nose. Even the locals love them. Check out the Southern Star, Rotier's, Litton's, Chandler's, and Gus's World Famous Fried Chicken. You can also check out Alfred's on Beale, Blues City Cafe and Band Box, Jack's Bar-Be-Cue and Pizza Palace for more cheap eats that are deliciously satisfying.
And remember, always leave room for desserts and coffee when you dine in Tennessee. This way, you would not miss out on the delectable goodies that come out of Bradley's Chocolate Factory, Dutch Maid Bakery, Tellico Grains Bakery, and Magpies. You can also check out the sundaes at Wiles-Smith Drugs and the fruit pies at the Flippen Fruit Farm. Other great dessert places are Lynchburg Cake and Candy Co., or the Aurora Bakery.
And how about sampling some of the best Tennessee treats? Tennesseans have always had space in their hearts for Bush Beans, Jimmy Dean, Pictsweet, Mayfield, and Stokely. All of these brands are local favorites. Aside from these, you also have great ham, catfish and barbecue dishes.
Boyette's Dining Room has great catfish options.
Then check out the cornbreads and biscuits at the Lunch House in Knoxville, or get the best hams at Smoky Mountain Country Hams & Bacon, Clifty Farm, and Tripp Country Hams.
Thanks to the mild winters and moderate summers, golf is a great idea no matter what time of the year you visit. Go golfing anywhere in the state and enjoy a relaxing game in a beautiful setting. There are nine state parks in the state where you could enjoy a good round of golf, including Fall Creek Falls State Park in Pikeville, Henry Horton State Park Golf in Chapel Hill, Paris Landing State Park in Buchanan, Warriors' Path State Park in Kingsport, Montgomery Bell State Park in Burns, and Pickwick Landing State Park in Pickwick Dam.
Tennessee is also known for Bear Trace, a collection of four top-notch golf courses that were designed by Jack Nicklaus. The championship courses are in Cumberland Mountain, Harrison Bay, Chickasaw, and Tims Ford.
Golf.com picked Mirimichi Golf Course, Hermitage Golf Course, Gaylord Springs Golf Links, and Stonehenge Golf Club as the top courses in the state. And you can add these to your must-visit list:
Sports venues. Watch the National Football League's Tennessee Titans play at Nashville's LG Field. Or how about catching Memphis Grizzlies of the National Basketball Association play their home games at the FedExForum? Meanwhile, the National Hockey League's Nashville Predators play their home games at the Bridgestone Arena.
There are also minor league baseball teams that are found all throughout the state, including:
Other great baseball venues in the state include the West Tennessee Healthcare Sportsplex, the USA Baseball Stadium, and the WC Johnson Park.
Racing. Tennessee is home to close to four dozen raceways, making it a paradise for racing fans. Be sure to go to the Bristol Motor Speedway, perhaps the most known in the state. You can also go on ATV and motorcycles here. Also check out the Memphis Motorsports Park and the Nashville Super Speedway.
A good way to learn about the history of Tennessee is to go on the Natchez Trace or to check out the Tennessee Trails & Byways, such as the Civil War Trail, the Memphis Cotton Junction, and the Jack Trail, among others. These trails will take you to the historic sites, small cities, and towns for you to learn more about the state.
Aside from these trails, Tennessee also has several homes that are historically notable, including the houses of three US Presidents: Andrew Jackson, Andrew Johnson and James K. Polk.
When it comes to historic homes and buildings, you should make sure to include the following:
Aside from these, there are also landmarks that you should go to, including Elvis Presley's Graceland, Jubilee Hall in Nashville, Moccasin Bend National Archeological District, X-10 Graphite Reactor, and Sun Studio. You should also check out Beale St, Sgt. Alvin C. York's farm and the Wynnewood State Historic Area where you could find the biggest log structure in the state.
And sites and landmarks are just not enough to hold all the teeming history of the state. There are entire heritage towns in the state that allow you to go back in time. There's Jonesborough, Collierville, and Leiper's Fork, where you could check on the area's history, including Civil War experiences and preservationist viewpoint. You should also check out Dandridge's historic taverns.
Further, you would love the military history in Tennessee. For one, you could learn more about Gen. James White, the founder of the Revolutionary War, by visiting his home. Then there are the battlegrounds of Stones River and Shiloh.
Then you have the African American and Native American sites, too. Check out the Chucalissa Archaeological Museum, Sequoyah Birthplace Museum and Old Stone fort to know more about the Native Americans who lived in the area. Meanwhile, the National Civil Rights Museum and the Green McAdoo Cultural Center are good resources for African American history.
Lastly, do visit the state's many historical museums, including the Casey Jones Railroad Museum, the Stax Museum, the Tennessee State Museum, the East Tennessee History Center, Beck Cultural Exchange Center, and National History Museum for a sense of history for various eras in the state, as well as a variety of topics.
Other museums you can go to include:
When it comes to recreational opportunities, then you are in luck because the state is considered as a big outdoors playground. Tennessee is home to more than four dozen rivers and hundreds of lakes, making it a prime destination of water sports lovers. You can go fishing at one of the many stocked ponds in the state, or check out the following:
You can also enjoy paddle sports and extreme kayaking at Ocoee Whitewater Center, or go on a canoe trip down Wolf River or Dale Hollow Lake.
Sailing and boating aficionados will love the many boat launches and marinas in the state, such as Blue Water RV Resort & Marina, Tennessee River, Indian River Marina, Watauga Dam & Recreation Area, Melton Lake Drive Greenway and Park, Blue Springs Marina, and Mitchell Creek Marina.
Aside from that, you can go water skiing or wakeboarding at Natchez Trace State Park, Meadow Park Lake Old City Lake, Cordell Hull Lake, Watts Bar Lake, Hales Bar Marina & Resort, Center Hill Lake, and Caney Creek Marina.
You can swim at Fall Creek Falls, considered to be one of the most serene swimming spot in all the state. Or you can go to any of these: Crossville Parks & Recreation, Pickwick Landing State Park, Paris Landing State Park, David Crockett State Park, Norris Dam, Harrison Bay State Park, Fall Creek Falls State Park Inn & Conf. Center, Henry Horton State Park, Edgar Evins State Park.
Shooting. The state is also a great destination to enjoy some shooting sports. Hunt at Tims Ford State Park or Big South Fork National River and Recreation Area, as well as various wildlife refuges at Cross Creeks, Chickasaw, Reelfoot, Lake Isom, and Lower Hatchie, among others. You can also spend time with your dog and go on a field trial or perhaps you want to let your inner archer come out at Cheatham WMA Firing Range and Archery Range, David Crockett State Park, Chickasaw State Park, and Mousetail Landing State Park.
There are also rifle ranges and trap and skeet facilities in the state.
Biking. Recreational cyclists would want to check out the Mississippi River Trail, which goes on for 185 miles. Or they can try out Highland Rim, or the beautiful highways around Lake Watauga. They can also go on the bike trails at Chickasaw State Park David Crockett State Park, Booker T. Washington State Park, and Warriors' Path State Park.
For a bit of a challenge, go mountain biking at the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, or go to Cades Cove Loop and the Natchez Trace State Park.
Wildlife and plants. You can go bird watching at some of the state parks in Tennessee, especially at Chickasaw National Wildlife Refuge. Then you can enjoy the state's more than 4,000 plant species, five forest types and other plant life at the arboretum and gardens here. Check out the Crescent Bend gardens, the Belmont Mansion garden and the arboretum at Dyersburg Middle School. Other notable gardens you can go to include Cheekwood Botanical Garden and Museum of Art, Rock City & Rock City Gardens, the Hermitage: Home of President Andrew Jackson, the Dixon Gallery & Gardens, Memphis Botanic Garden, Lichterman Nature Center, The University of Tennessee Arboretum, the Reflection Riding Arboretum & Botanical Garden, and the Knoxville Botanical Garden and Arboretum.
Explore the natural beauty of Tennessee, which is home to more than 630 waterfalls, more than 260 natural rock windows, bridges and arches, as well as 8,600 caves. You have everything here from rivers and lakes (Big South Fork National River and Recreation Area, Radnor Lake State Park, Obey River Park Recreation Area, and South Fork Holston River) to mountains (Baker's Bluff, Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Lookout Mountain, Twin Arches State Natural Area, and Roan Mountain State Park) and waterfalls (Bald River Falls, Ramsey Cascades, and Coker Creek Falls).
The Chattanooga Zoo at Warner Park occupies 13 acres of space and was opened in the 1930s. An accredited member of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums, the zoo is home to around 900 animals belonging to around 150 species. The zoo welcomes more than 150,000 people every year. Check out the red panda here at the himalayan Passage, as well as the chimpanzees at the Gombe Forest. Other exhibits here include the Deserts of the World, Walkin' the Tracks, Corcovado Jungle, and Warner Park Ranch.
Another AZA accredited zoo is the Knoxville Zoo. The zoo occupies 53 acres of land and has around 800 animals. The zoo has more than 400,000 visitors every year.
You can also check out the Memphis zoo, where you can find at least 3,500 animals belonging to more than 500 species. It has 19 major exhibits in three different zones: the East, Central and West zones. This is also an Association of Zoos and Aquariums accredited zoo.
Further, visit the Nashville Zoo at Grassmere, where you can explore 200 acres of space and check out their varied exhibits, including Gibbon Island, the Elephant Savanna, the Unseen New World, and Kangaroo Kickabout among others.
Then you also have the Tennessee Aquarium in Chattanooga where you have 12,000 animals living in more than 1.1 million US gallons of water. You have two major exhibits here, the River Journey and the Ocean Journey. Lastly, visit the Ripley's Aquarium of the Smokies, where you can see penguins, sharks, sea turtles and other sea and marine life.
Home to Jack Daniel and George Dickel, is it any surprise that you would find the best microbrews, spirits, and fine wines. And if you are going down this way, then these are the distilleries, wineries and breweries that you should know:
You can visit all of these sites and attractions with a bus rental in Tennessee. In fact, if you have a limited time for your Tennessee vacation, you can see more and do more on our buses. So start planning your tours today and call us for a free online quote.