An Adventure Paradise in Chattanooga, TN

4 min readFeb 8, 2022


Looking for a city that has it all? Excitement, outdoor adventure, great food, and entertainment. Chattanooga might be your next vacation destination.

What do you want in an outdoor paradise?

  • Hiking
  • Mountain Biking
  • Kayaking
  • Paddle-boarding
  • OHV Off-roading
  • Swimming Holes
  • Cliff Jumping
  • Hang Gliding
  • Fly Fishing
  • White Water Rafting

Check all of these boxes and more in Chattanooga, Tennessee!

In Chattanooga, you can do it all and still have amazing restaurants, breweries, and coffee shops. Chattanooga is a first-class city with first-class outdoor activities. Spend all day outside enjoying the outdoors, stop home for a break, and head back out to a foodie paradise.

Top Hiking and Mountain Biking in Chattanooga

Within a 30 minute drive from downtown, you can access more than 50 trailheads. Some of the top hikes will take you past waterfalls, along rivers and across suspension bridges.

One of the easier, yet highly rated, trails that will give you a taste of all three is the Savage Day Loop Trail. With this trail, you have a 4.9-mile loop trail in South Cumberland State Park. This trail features 2 suspension bridges, a waterfall, and it’s dog-friendly.

If you are looking for something a little more challenging, you can hike a portion of the Cumberland Trail. The North Chickamauga section of the Cumberland Trail is a rewarding 8.3-mile hike that features beautiful rock formations, creek crossings, wooden ladders, and a few overlooks to take a break. The best part is this trail is only 11.7 miles from downtown Chattanooga. rated Chattanooga as one of the top 10 cities for Mountain Biking in North America. This city has more than 100 miles of trails within 20 miles of downtown.

One of the best trails in the world and arguably the best trail in all of Tennessee is a trail in the Raccoon Mountain Trail Network. It is a highly technical trail with some awesome reviews!

Get Out on the Water: Kayaking, Paddleboarding, Swimming Holes

If you want to get out on the water, there are some great places to paddle. If you are wanting a nice date night, you can set out for a sunset paddle under the beautiful bridges down the Tennessee River, or paddle out to some river islands in the Harrison Bay near Harrison Bay State Park.

But if your paddling isn’t for relaxation and you want a little more adventure, check out Lookout Creek or the Ocoee River for some white water paddling.

To cool off in the summer, check out these great swimming holes and cliff jumping spots near downtown Chattanooga! Foster Falls and Desoto Falls offer two breathtaking spots to cool off from the summer heat. While the falls are always popular, there are several other places to cool off like North Chick Blue Hole and the Big Soddy Creek Gulf. All four of the spots are less than a 2 mile hike in total.

More Adventurous: OHV, White Water Rafting, Cliff Jumping, Hang Gliding

For the more extreme adventurers out there, Chattanooga delivers! The Ocoee River offers white water rafting and the Nantahala Outdoor Center has been delivering on this adventure for over 40 years!

The Chattanooga Skydiving Company offers opportunities to jump for less than $200. If you’d rather hang in the air for a while, check out Lookout Mountain Flight Park and learn to hang glide.

Good Eats in Chattanooga

Feed Co. Table & Tavern puts a spin on your favorite farm-to-table classics. This local favorite has a little something for everyone. With live music, an outdoor patio and a full bar menu, it is more than just a meal. It truly is a place to unwind after a long day of hiking or biking. If you don’t take advantage of one of their weekly specials, try their take on the classic Sloppy Joe.

Dubbed as a “can’t miss restaurant” in Chattanooga, the Public House is a southern fine dining experience. With artfully mouth-watering meals, you will not be disappointed. Try their Public House Fried Chicken in a sweet tea brine!

A great place to go for a vegan or vegetarian meal is the Flying Squirrel Bar. It is not just for vegans and vegetarians either. They have something for everyone in your party, plus some unique drinks. Try the Mushroom Tacos, Ahi Tuna, Beet Salad, or even an innovative drink like the Odd Couple. This is definitely worth a stop while you are in Chattanooga!

And if you’re wanting to slow down a bit, you can take your palette to Greece at Opa! For an authentic experience, Opa delivers. Opa’s customers show up for a meal and leave with so much more. It doesn’t take long for you to feel like family at this establishment. It is smart to get reservations at this restaurant and expect to take a couple hours to be fully immersed in a slower pace. I can promise you won’t be disappointed at Opa!

Chattanooga Will Have You Coming Back for More

Chattanooga is a place you will visit and not want to leave. There is an endless adventure, a great foodie scene, and an energy that will keep you coming back. With so much to explore, you won’t be able to do it all in just one visit. The only remaining advice I can offer is to be “in the moment” in this unique city, and try not to do it all in just one trip!