Somewhere between the Deep South and the Smoky Mountains lies a wonderful little place called Knoxville, TN. This is the place I call home, no matter where I actually live. Just writing about it makes me all teary-eyed. The city is cute and has the backdrop of the Smoky Mountains. And if you need another reason to go, it’s been compared to Austin but without the hype.
Here are the top five things (in no particular order) I love about Knoxville:
2. Among all the other things I love about this city, it has an up-and-coming design and music scene. Check out Yee Haw, the historic Tennessee Theater, and Market Square. For the Knoxville poster above, go here. Since I’m from the south, I must also give a special shout-out for bluegrass music.
3. Barbecue. I know I should convert to Texas barbecue, but I can’t deny the vinegary deliciousness that is East Tennessee pulled pork. It’s the perfect combination of Memphis and Carolina barbecue. Plus, with barbecue comes fried okra, cornbread, green beans, and if you’re lucky, fried green tomatoes!
4. The Knoxville Skyline. The Sunsphere, a giant steel truss structure stands in downtown Knoxville to commemorate the site of the 1982 World’s Fair. Knoxville is also home to the University of Tennessee (my alma mater). The Tennessee River runs through the city and the Smoky Mountains overlook it. It really is beautifu and more beautiful than Austin, if I do say so myself!
5. Tennessee Autumn. The leaves changing colors, the crisp breeze, the fresh smell, and football. (I can’t mention Knoxville without mentioning college football). Fall in Tennessee is absolutely breathtaking.
Has anyone ever been? If you haven’t and you’re planning a trip, I’d love to offer more specific recommendations!