Tanasi Trail
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Tanasi Trail
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Tanasi Trail

General Area
Chattanooga
Stops
124
Tanasi Trail
Tanasi Trail

Up for an Adventure? Explore this amazing region through its rails, trails and roads, including early Native American footpaths, the passages of the early westbound settlers, the railroads that changed life and commerce forever, and today’s protected scenic byways and gorgeous overlooks.

Free Electric Shuttle Northern Terminal Station

Point of Interest

The Pie in the Sky Trail kicks off here at 215 Broad Street, in downtown Chattanooga. You will find the Chattanooga Visitors Center located in the free Electric Shuttle Park North Terminal breezeway across from the Tennessee Aquarium. Stop in for information on attractions, restaurants, events or fun tips before you hit the Pie In the Sky Trail. This is a great starting place for exploring downtown's world class attractions, whether you set off on foot, by bike or car, or just catch the free Electric Shuttle. Shuttles run every 5 to 10 minutes daily between the Tennessee Aquarium and the Chattanooga Choo Choo Complex with stops everywhere in between, including the restaurants in Jack's Alley (Between 4th & 5th Streets) and The Shoppes at Warehouse Row. Grab a shuttle brochure, hop on and explore! The Visitors Center is open daily – from 10:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m. EST

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215 Broad St.
TN
United States

Tennessee Aquarium / IMAX® 3D Theater

Point of Interest

Chattanooga's top attraction takes you on a remarkable journey from the mountains to the sea. You'll explore three living forests and get up close to amazing creatures like giant catfish, feisty otters, playful penguins, toothy sharks and free-flying butterflies. The IMAX® 3D Theater runs daily with movies from all over the world and under the sea.

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One Broad St.
TN
United States

The Passage: A Trail of Tears Memorial

Point of Interest

The Cherokee people are memorialized in this city park at Ross's Landing Plaza. You'll find seven doors that symbolize the seven clans of the Cherokee Nation, and six-foot disks share their history and culture. Look for the Cherokee alphabet on the plaza grounds and the sandstone carved pictures along the upper sides of the Aquarium's River Journey building.

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Ocean Journey Building
Ross’s Landing
TN
United States

River Front District, Chattanooga

Outdoor Activities

You'll find several ways to explore the river here, including Blue Moon Cruises, a luxury boat that provides a 3.5-hour ride or the River Gorge Explorer, a 1.5-hour tour on a high-speed catamaran. Both provide naturalist guides and views of the "Grand Canyon of the Tennessee", the breathtaking Tennessee River Gorge. Blue Moon Cruises: 888-993-2583 River Gorge Explorer: 423-265-0698

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One Broad Street
37402 TN
United States

(800) 262-0695

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Chattanooga Ducks, LLC

Outdoor Activities

Board a World War II military amphibious landing vehicle for a 1-hour narrated downtown tour, then splash into the river as the vehicle becomes a boat.

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503 Market St.
37402 TN
United States

423-756-3825

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Coolidge and Renaissance Parks

Point of Interest

These popular urban parks along the north river bank are two of Chattanooga's gems. In Coolidge Park, don't miss the beautifully restored 1895 Denzel Carousel, enjoy the laughter of kids playing in the interactive fountains in the summer, or try the new earthen slide in Renaissance Park--just bring your own cardboard box. Check with Outdoor Chattanooga and rent a kayak, learn to rock climb, or ask about renting a bike.

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200 River St.
TN
United States

The Read House Hotel

Hotels, Inns & Resorts

Known as the Crutchfield House in the 1840s, this was the site of Chattanooga's first major railroad hotel. Future Confederate President Jefferson Davis gave one of his secession speeches here; later, it served as a hospital during the Civil War. The building burned in 1867 and was rebuilt in 1871 by Dr. and Mrs. John T. Read. The current 1926 structure is a beautiful Georgian-style hotel, featuring white marble floors, sterling silver sconces and Waterford crystal chandeliers.

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827 Broad St.
37402 TN
United States

423-266-4121

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Audubon Acres

Nature & Parks

This natural preserve stretches 120 acres along Chickamauga Creek. A log cabin on the property known as Spring Frog Cabin is said to have been the home of Drowning Bear, a Cherokee full-blood who was removed on the Trail of Tears. Stop in the staffed visitor center to see Native American exhibits, sketches of the Brainerd Mission and visit the gift shop.

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900 North Sanctuary Rd.
37421 TN
United States

423-892-1499

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Imagination Station / Wolftever Creek Greenway

Point of Interest

Take a play break at this playground, located behind Collegedale City Hall. The trailhead for the greenway begins nearby and runs for over 2.5 miles; stop at Veterans Memorial Park, honoring armed forces veterans from the 1700s to present day with flags and sculptures.

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Collegedale City Hall
4910 Swinyar Dr.
TN
United States

Southern Adventist University

Arts & Entertainment

Started in 1892 in nearby Graysville, a move in 1916 brought 57 students to the current campus. Today, Southern is a private Seventh-Day Adventist university with over 3,000 students. Its beautiful and thriving campus adds charm and culture to the Collegedale community.

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4881 Taylor Cir.
37363 TN
United States

(800) 768-8437

Red Clay State Historic Park

Nature & Parks

From 1832 to 1837, Red Clay served as the last Eastern Council Grounds of the Cherokee Nation. It is here in October 1835 that the proposed removal treaty was unanimously rejected by Chief John Ross and the Cherokees; this is considered by many to be the starting point for the Trail of Tears. Visit the replicated Cherokee farm and council house for a glimpse into Cherokee life 175 years ago, and make a stop in the interpretive center for exhibits and artifacts. Picnic areas available.

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1140 Red Clay Park Rd. S.W.
37311 TN
United States

423-478-0339

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Cleveland Downtown Historic Walking Tour

Tours

The city of Cleveland began as a small log cabin known as Taylor's Place in the heart of the Cherokee Nation. The community came into prominence when the railroad arrived in 1851, providing the means for hauling copper from the mines in Polk County and contributing to the economic boom of the Copper Basin. Though the copper mines have long been closed, the river, railroad and road access still make Cleveland an attractive location for many industries.

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225 Keith St.
37311 TN
United States

423-472-6587

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Cleveland Downtown Historic Walking Tour

Tours

The city of Cleveland began as a small log cabin known as Taylor's Place in the heart of the Cherokee Nation. The community came into prominence when the railroad arrived in 1851, providing the means for hauling copper from the mines in Polk County and contributing to the economic boom of the Copper Basin. Though the copper mines have long been closed, the river, railroad and road access still make Cleveland an attractive location for many industries.

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225 Keith St.
37311 TN
United States

423-472-6587

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Bradley County Courthouse

Point of Interest

Located on Cleveland's Square, this modern courthouse was built in 1964 at the site of the county's first courthouse, which was made of logs.

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155 N. Ocoee St.
TN
United States

Museum Center at 5ive Points

History

Experience Southern Appalachian regional history from the Native Cherokee until today, interpreted in the permanent exhibit, "River of Time." Changing exhibits highlight topics including Cherokee pottery, Civil War history, quilts, local arts and artists and the early industrial era. Find something special in the gift store, featuring high-end arts and crafts from Southern Appalachian artists.

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200 Inman St. E.
37311 TN
United States

423-339-5745

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Cherokee Chieftain

Arts & Entertainment

Part of the "Trail of Whispering Giants," Cherokee Chieftain is a reminder of the area's heritage. Carved from a single tree by acclaimed sculptor Peter Toth, it stands as a larger-than-life art exhibit on the Museum Center lawn. There are more than 70 Whispering Giant sculptures throughout the world, with one in each of the United States, as well as Canada and Hungary.

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Museum Center at 5ive Points, 200 E. Inman St.
Inman Street
37311 TN
United States

423-472-6587

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Apple Valley Orchard

Farms & Orchards

What began in the 1960s as a hobby now occupies 40 acres with 30 varieties of apples. Take a tour of the orchard and pick your own, or buy a pre-packed bushel in the gift shop; enjoy a cup of apple cider, a delicious fritter or an unforgettable fried pie, featured in Southern Living. Closed May & June.

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351 Weese Rd. S.E.
37323 TN
United States

423-472-3044

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Tennessee Overhill

Point of Interest

A large portion of the Tanasi Trail travels through the area of Tennessee called "the Overhill". This name, coined by the British, was used to distinguish the upper Cherokee land west of the Blue Ridge Mountains (or over the hill) from the middle and lower lands to the east and south. It is also known for the four rivers that flow through: Ocoee, Hiwassee, Tellico, and Little Tennessee.

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727 Tennessee Ave. S.
37331 TN
United States

Nancy Ward Grave

Point of Interest

Nancy Ward is not only remembered as an important figure to the Cherokee people but is also considered an early pioneer for women in American politics, as she advocated for a woman's voice during a turbulent period in Cherokee history. She was designated a "Beloved Woman," which is the highest honor a Cherokee woman could claim. Visit her grave from daylight until dark at the top of the hill with a landscaped walkway for easy access.

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Old Highway 411
TN
United States

Polk County Chamber of Commerce

Visitor Services

Open Mon.-Fri., 9a.m.-3p.m.

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1697 HWY 64
PO Box 560
37307 TN
United States

423-338-5040

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Newspaper Bookshop

Point of Interest

Stop in for local arts and crafts, new and used books and historical archives. Grab a cup of gourmet coffee and stay for open mic nights on Thursdays.

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3 Main St.
TN
United States

Sugarloaf Mountain Park

Point of Interest

Stretch your legs at this serene park which features a scale model of the Ocoee Olympic Race Channel and a great view of Dam #1.

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2002, 2144 TN-40
37307 TN
United States

Parksville Lake / Lake Ocoee

Point of Interest

This 1,890-acre lake, surrounded by Cherokee National Forest, is popular for boating, waterskiing, fishing and swimming.

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3171 Hwy 64
TN
United States

Ocoee Whitewater Center

Outdoor Activities

This spot was the site of 1996 Olympic Canoe and Kayak Slalom Races; today, it's a visitor favorite known for water adventure and the Tanasi Trail's Mountain Biking System. You'll also find a restored section of the Old Copper Road, a restored fire tower, picnic areas, blue holes for wading and snorkeling, and more. This is a great place to watch river activity from the observation deck, enjoy lunch or pick up a cool t-shirt or hat at the gift shop and café. Trails and grounds open year-round during daylight hours; center hours vary, see left margin. Pt. 51 visitor center, café, & gift shop hours: Mid-March-mid-Nov., open daily, 9a.m.-5p.m. Mid-Nov.-mid-March, open Fri., Sat. & Sun., 8:30a.m.- 4:30p.m.

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4400 Hwy. 64
37326 TN
United States

423-496-0100

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Ducktown Basin Museum

Museums

Here on the grounds of the historic Burra Burra Mine Site, see restored mine structures and exhibits detailing the history of copper mining in the Great Copper Basin. Closed Sun.

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212 Burra Burra St.
37326 TN
United States

423-496-5778

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The Scenic Route/Hwy 68

Point of Interest

Drive as much or as little as you'd like of this winding high country road, popular with motorcyclists as well as those who like to explore the mountains by car. Stop off at the Coker Creek Welcome Center & Heritage Gift Shop (point 79), about 25 miles into the drive, for information about gold panning, nearby crafts galleries, hiking trails, waterfalls and the Unicoi Turnpike Trail. If you complete all 33 miles of this route, you'll be in Tellico Plains at point 70.

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TN
United States

Webb Bros. General Store

Point of Interest

Grab a soda and step back in time at this old market, filling station and river rafting company, located on the historic Vaughn-Webb Farm,* a Land Trust-protected area along Hwy 30. The 1899 Hiwassee Union Church and Masonic Lodge, now a popular spot for weddings, is located next door. Directly across the river you'll find the 1898 Watchman's House, restored as lodging accommodations.

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3708 Hwy 30
TN
United States

John Muir Trail

Tours

Find the Childers Creek Trailhead and parking area about a mile into this scenic drive. Part of a larger trail named for the famous naturalist who walked this route through the American South, the trail system follows the Hiwassee River and has several access points along Powerhouse Road (FS-108), allowing you to choose short easy walks or longer hikes.

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Forest Service Rd. 108
37369 TN
United States

423-338-3300

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L&N Depot /Railroad Museum

Point of Interest

This restored 16-room, two-story Victorian passenger station and railroad museum offers exhibits that highlight the history of the town and its relationship to the L&N Railroad. From the second story, get a great view of an active rail yard. You'll also find the Hiwassee River Rail Adventure ticket office here, as well as the Etowah Chamber of Commerce. An L&N caboose is located in the adjacent park. Chamber open Mon.-Fri., 8:30a.m.-4:30p.m.

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727 S. Tennessee Ave.
TN
United States

Hiwassee River Rail Adventures

Point of Interest

Ride vintage passenger trains along the Hiwassee Scenic River, over the famous Hiwassee Rail Loop and on to the historic copper mining town of Copperhill (point 54). The loop, along with a 19-mile section of the rail line, is listed on the National Historic Register. Trains run on scheduled dates, May-Nov.; purchase tickets at point 63.

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727 S. Tennessee Ave.
TN
United States

Gem Theater

Arts & Entertainment

This restored 1927 theater is now open for live performances and movies. It hosts the annual Cousin Jake Memorial Bluegrass Festival each March with a day-long lineup of regional and national bands. Walk next door to visit the Etowah Arts Commission Gallery and see exhibits and programs that change throughout the year.

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700 Tennessee Ave.
37331 TN
United States

423-263-2228

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Etta's Diner

Point of Interest

Local's rave about the home-style burger. If you like breakfast food, it's served all day here.

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110 Fifth Street
37331 TN
United States

Tellico Plains

Outdoor Activities

Once the site of the Overhill Cherokee town of Great Tellico, this quiet and eclectic community sits in a gorgeous valley where the Tellico River makes its way from the Unaka Mountains to its confluence with the Little Tennessee River. This is also the beginning of the Cherohala Skyway National Scenic Byway, a highly recommended drive.

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225 Cherohala Skyway
37385 TN
United States

423-253-8010

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Cherohala Skyway Visitor Center

Visitor Services

Pick up a free map of the byway here before you climb the breathtaking drive to over 5,000 feet. Also get info on Tellico Plains eateries, lodging, and galleries just a block away. Open daily, 9a.m.-5p.m. January and February open on Saturday and Sunday only; 9 am to 5 pm.

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225 Cherohala Skyway
37385 TN
United States

423-253-8010

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The Charles Hall Museum

Museums

Don't miss this huge collection of guns, Native American artifacts, local memorabilia, and thousands of historic photographs, all collected by a single man. This unique museum offers a window into the history of Tellico Plains, a town that has sat at the crossroads of history for over 10,000 years. Open Monday - Sunday, 10a.m.-5p.m.; closed Christmas.

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229 Cherohala Skyway
37385 TN
United States

423-253-8000

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Cherohala Skyway's Unicoi Crest Overlook

Point of Interest

This overlook at 4,470 feet is located just across the Tennessee-North Carolina border. It offers breathtaking views; bring a picnic and enjoy the fresh mountain air.

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Cherohala Skyway
TN
United States

Bald River Falls

Outdoor Activities

A serene drive on Tellico River Road (FS- 210) will take you through the Cherokee National Forest along the Tellico River to this breathtaking fall. The 100-foot cascade is visible from the road; you don't even have to get out of your car to experience this must-see work of nature.

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Forest Service Road 210
37385 TN
United States

423-253-8400

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Unicoi Turnpike Trail

History

Explore this well-marked National Millennium Trail, running from Vonore to Murphy, North Carolina. Within the Cherokee National Forest at Coker Creek, a 2.5-mile section of the original roadbed is marked for hiking. The route was essential to many prehistoric tribes; European fur traders; the French & Indian War, Revolutionary War, and Civil War; and Trail of Tears. The Unicoi Gap is a landmark along the hiking trail, located at the Tennessee-North Carolina state line. The foot path is a spur off of the Benton-MacKaye Trail, the newest long distance trail in the U.S. Pick up a printed trail guide at the Coker Creek Welcome Center (point 79), Ocoee Whitewater Center (point 51) or Cherohala Skyway Visitor Center (point 71).

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727 Tennessee Ave.
37331 TN
United States

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Coker Creek Welcome Center/Gift Shop

Point of Interest

This modern trading post is situated in the Coker Creek Community, where gold was discovered in the early 1800s, when the area was still part of the Cherokee Nation. Visit the studios and craft galleries tucked in corners and hollows. Surrounded by the Cherokee National Forest, Coker Creek is the gateway to Coker Creek Falls, Unicoi Turnpike Trail, Buck Bald, and miles of forest trails. Stop here for info about the galleries and trails; even pick up gold panning supplies, souvenirs and local crafts. Center open Tues.-Sat., 10 a.m.-5p.m.

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2197 Hwy 68
TN
United States

Benton's Smoky Mountains Country Hams

Point of Interest

Famous for their dry cured hams and hickory smoked bacon, restaurants from Napa Valley to Manhattan know this name. Pick up ham, bacon, homemade sausage and more. Age old principles of brown sugar, salt and plenty of time to cure his hams.

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2603 Hwy 411
TN
United States

Monroe County Courthouse

History

This late Victorian-styled courthouse is one of the oldest on the Tanasi Trail, dating back to 1897; the town of Madisonville dates back to the 1820s. Stroll the square to find quaint little shops and eateries, like Donna's Old Town Café.

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105 College St.
37354 TN
United States

423-442-3981

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Monroe County Department of Tourism

Visitor Services

Open Mon.-Fri., 9 a.m.- 4:30 p.m.

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225 Cherohala skyway
37385 TN
United States

423-253-8010

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The Lost Sea

Tours

Don't miss your chance to see America's largest underground lake. The caverns are rich with Civil War history and artifacts from the Cherokees. Take a glass bottom boat ride or a guided tour of this registered National Natural Landmark, one of 13 in Tennessee.

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140 Lost Sea Rd.
37874 TN
United States

423-337-6616

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Hunter's Bakery & Café

Point of Interest

Stop in this charming, old-school café featuring tasty salads, sandwiches and baked treats.

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101 E. Morris St.
TN
United States

Mayfield Dairy Visitor Center

Point of Interest

"Get the scoop" when you take a tour of this dairy plant to see how milk is bottled and a video of how ice cream is made. While you're here, try a scoop of Mayfield's world-famous ice cream and see for yourself why Time Magazine once called this the best ice cream in America. Open 9 am to 5 pm on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday; Saturday 9 am to 2 pm; closed Wed. and Sunday; there is a cost for the tour.

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806 E. Madison Ave.
TN
United States

Mayfield Farm & Nursery

Point of Interest

Growing and selling a wide variety of fruits and vegetables, this family-owned and -operated farm welcomes visitors to its market and a country store during the spring and summer growing season; it's a popular spot in the fall as well with a corn maze, pumpkin patch and lots of family fun. Designated a Tennessee Century Farm,* this fifth generation family farm was placed in conservation easement with the Land Trust for Tennessee, preserving the agricultural heritage and landscape of the area for future generations. Farm and nursery CLOSED for visitation. Mayfield Corn Maze and Pumpkin Patch open October 2 through November 2; Saturday 10 am to 10 pm; Sunday 1 pm to 7 pm.

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257 Hwy 307
TN
United States

Calhoun

Point of Interest

This area was settled by John Walker (ca. 1770-1834), the part-Cherokee grandson of Nancy Ward (see point 39). Walker operated a ferry along the Hiwassee River and helped contract the Cherokee Turnpike Company in 1806, which maintained the road between Knoxville and Georgia. In 1819, Walker helped negotiate the Calhoun Treaty, in which the Cherokee ceded the remaining lands between the Little Tennessee and Hiwassee Rivers, including what is now McMinn County. In 1820, Walker laid out the town of Calhoun, which he named for the Calhoun Treaty's chief U.S. negotiator.

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Decatur Pike
TN
United States

Morris Vineyard & Tennessee Mountain Winery

Point of Interest

Experience a taste of this family-owned and operated vineyard and winery's finest selections, surrounded by the natural beauty and charm of the foothills of Tennessee with incredible views of the Appalachian Mountains. This spot also offers pick-your-own fruit, available in season.

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346 Union Grove Rd.,
TN
United States

Meigs County Courthouse

Point of Interest

Visit this 1904 courthouse, listed on the National Historic Register. It's the anchor of the town founded in 1836. The Meigs County-Decatur Chamber of Commerce is located across the street.

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17214 Hwy 58N
TN
United States

Erwin Grocery / Jacob L. Grubb Store

Point of Interest

Stop by and take a look at this market listed on the National Register of Historic Places, a old-time country store just like they used to be.

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6788 Highway 58 South
37322 TN
United States

Hiwassee River Wildlife Refuge

Point of Interest

In late fall and winter you can hear the harsh calls of sandhill cranes, gathered here on their way from nesting grounds near the Great Lakes to warmer Southern locations. Over 50,000 birds make a pit stop here each year. View thousands of congregating cranes from an observation deck overlooking the Hiwassee River where it joins the Tennessee River. Sandhill Crane Viewing Days begin in mid-January, with programs on the cranes and the area's Cherokee heritage.

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525 Priddy Ln.
TN
United States

Harrison Bay State Park

Nature & Parks

The 1,200-acre park with 40 miles of Chickamauga Lake shoreline gets its name from a large bay at the main channel of the Tennessee River. Water now covers the old town of Harrison and the last Cherokee Campground, which consisted of three villages ruled by one of the last great Cherokee Chieftains, Joe Vann. This beautiful wooded park is a haven for campers, boaters and fishermen, as well as picnickers. You can also enjoy a meal at Dockside Café or play the Bear Trace at Harrison Bay 18-hole golf course designed by Jack Nicklaus and Joe Lee.

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8411 Harrison Bay Rd.
37341 TN
United States

423-344-6214

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Booker T. Washington State Park

Nature & Parks

This 353-acre state park on the shores of Chickamauga Lake is named in honor of Booker T. Washington. Born into slavery, he is best known as the former president of Tuskegee Institute, an African-American institute of higher learning. Before the Civil Rights Movement, the park was reserved only for African-Americans. Check out the 6-mile bike trail loop; enjoy fishing, boating, three pavilions and over 30 picnic sites along with various outdoor recreational activities. Facilities available for group camping.

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5801 Champion Rd.
37416 TN
United States

423-894-4955

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Tennessee Valley Railroad

History

In operation since 1961, this is the South's largest operating historic railroad. Take a 1-hour excursion on the Missionary Ridge trip through a historic pre-Civil War tunnel; enjoy the 6-hour Chickamauga Turn or choose the day-long Hiwassee River Adventure. It's a relaxing way to view the area's beautiful scenery on this "moving" museum. The train and tunnel were recently featured in the movie Water for Elephants starring Tennessee native Reese Witherspoon.

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4119 Cromwell Rd.
37421 TN
United States

423-894-8028

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Big River Grille & Brewing Works

Breweries, Distilleries, & Wineries

End your Tanasi Trail adventure back in downtown with a relaxing meal. Located in a 1900s trolley barn, visitors and Chattanoogans rave about this locally owned restaurant's great American cuisine, outdoor dining, hand-tossed pizzas and award-winning Iron Horse Stout beer.

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222 Broad Street
37402 TN
United States

(423) 267-2739