My humans love to go on adventures; and, Knoxville is known as a nature-loving-adventure-seeking-artsy-kinda-town, so there’s no better place to explore as a furry friend. No bones about it. Throughout the city, I found welcome signs for dogs like me, fresh bowls of water, plenty of area parks to roam free, the perfect playground on trails, sniffed out delicious cuisine, local craft breweries and got tons of exercise and zoomies exploring the walkable downtown.
We checked in at Hyatt Place Knoxville/Downtown. The staff there was very friendly, always saying hello and a few “awws” whenever I walked through the lobby. The hotel is conveniently located within a seven-minute walk from PetSafe Downtown Dog Park. The 165 rooms have ample space, views of downtown Knoxville and include blackout curtains, luxury skin and hair care amenities from KenetMD and more.
We lapped up delicious craft beer at Xul Beer Company, known for its unique taps. We sat at the dog-friendly patio outside next to the The Cave Food Truck Park. Abridged Burger Company served up smash-style burgers on potato rolls with shoestring fries. My dad makes smash burgers at home, but Abridged was something special with the beef brisket blend they grind in house.
My humans and I took a short walk to explore World’s Fair Park and took several photos in front of the famous Sunsphere. World's Fair Park is a great walk where you can see the Tennessee Amphitheater which hosts concerts and performances throughout the year, Volunteer Landing where you can enjoy fishing, biking, water sports and more, and the Performance Lawn, a large green space that provides a natural amphitheater. The space hosts a variety of festivals, concerts, parties and more of the city's special events.
We walked around Market Square where I spotted other pups on outside patios, zooming through sprinklers, popping into dog-friendly boutiques and shops and watching all the activity. My humans let me have a few bites of pizza at The Tomato Head. I was very tired, so we went back to the hotel for a snooze.
Mom dipped over to the local K Brew for lattes and brought me back a pup cup. While the hotel does offer free breakfast, we decided to savor tasty crepes at French Market Creperie. We got there right when it opened so we could snag a table outside. Then, I got the zoomies out off-leash exploring the small dog park at the Pet Safe Downtown Dog Park. I even ran into two older beagles who looked just like me.
We went inside to do some shopping at the local favorite Mast General Store. Even though I couldn’t go inside the market grounds, I walked around outside of the Market Square Farmers’ Market, where my humans took turns shopping for fresh fruits & vegetables, eggs, honey, pasture-raised meats, plants, flowers, bread, baked goods, jams, jellies, coffee and artisan crafts. I heard my mom say she wishes they could go every Wednesday and Saturday, when it’s open May through mid-November. Mom loves to read, so she took me inside to pick up a few books at the dog-friendly bookstore, Union Avenue Books. I personally loved the sniffs and smells more at the pet shop CitiFid-O.
Then it was back in the car to take in the sunshine and lounge out on the outdoor patio under the umbrella for lunch at SoKno Taco Cantina. I was a fan of the queso and specialty tacos. My humans wouldn’t stop taking photos of me while I just wanted to sniff and explore at UT Gardens. My mom said it’s the perfect spot to do watercolor painting. Then it was off for a mid-afternoon drink and snack on the outdoor patio at Last Days of Autumn Brewing, which hosts trivia nights through the week.
I was pretty tired again at this point, so I took a nap while mom went to fetch sourdough pizza for a hotel pizza party from A Dopo Sourdough Pizza. Their gelato was delicious, as was the night cap of a cone from Cruze Farm Ice Cream. You can walk by, order online or cruise up in style to pick it up with your tongue wagging out the window.
I’m looking forward to coming back to explore more of the dog-friendly patios in Knoxville. My humans talked about a few places we didn’t have time to stop this time around, like Pretentious Beer Glass Company, Print Shop Beer Company and PostModern Spirits. Dogs are also welcome at the Visitor’s Center for the lunchtime live music with WDVX Blue Plate Special at Visit Knoxville. We may check out other pet-friendly hotels and outdoor places to wag our tails, like the trails at Ijams Nature Center, next time.
Knoxville’s definitely gone to the dogs and I can’t wait to go back to visit.
Use the force to explore these Tennessee science museums and attractions that share family-friendly stories, creatures and discoveries.