My name is Hunter Lawrence and my wife Sarah and I own a photography and marketing businesses out of Austin, Texas. We had the privilege of exploring Eastern Tennessee, starting in Chattanooga and making our way up north through Knoxville and eventually arrive in Bristol.
Day 1: It all begins…Exploring Chattanooga and the Tennessee River Gorge.
Our trek to Tennessee started at 5:30a.m. The coffee was brewed, car packed, and together with our pup Aspen, we were ready to roll. There’s always this unique excitement that wells up inside us whenever we are heading out to a destination we’ve never experienced before. The navigation said it would take us 17 hours to make the trek to Eastern TN from Austin, Texas and let me tell you, every hour of that drive was worth what we were about to experience.
Day 2: Exploring the vibrant city of Knoxville and the edges of the Smoky Mountains.
The next morning we grabbed a quick breakfast and coffee at Revelator Coffee Co, and then made the 2-hour trek northeast to Knoxville. We didn’t really know what to expect from Knoxville. We had heard that it was a city currently going through some revitalization, but to be honest, we didn’t have any reference point for what it would be like.
Day 3: Southern Food for the Win and the Birthplace of Country Music.
The next morning we felt like we had only skimmed the surface on all the great food we had been hearing about in Knoxville, so we headed to a quaint breakfast spot called OliBea in the old part of the city. Ya’ll, we’re from Austin so we know what good food is, and OliBea’s breakfast is darn good. The space is has a great vibe and best of all, served some truly authentic southern cuisine sourced from local farms in the area.
Overall, what more could you want in a trip? From the amazing food of Knoxville to the natural beauty of Chattanooga, we feel like we experienced an area that is a true gem in the states. Our trip offered us everything from amazing adventurous hikes, to world-class cuisine, and everything in between. Tennessee, you were amazing… we can’t wait to return!