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Free Attractions Lead to Family Fun in Knoxville, Tennessee

Knoxville, Tennessee is brimming with attractions that are not only fun, but also easy on the wallet! Did you know that East Tennessee offers a variety of free attractions that are sure to spell family fun in Knoxville?

My family recently headed to the Volunteer State to experience some of the fun in Knoxville and this is what we found:

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World’s Fair Park                                                                                      1060 World’s Fair Park Drive 

The World’s Fair Park, once the site of  the 1982 World’s Fair, continues to brim with fun and excitement. Not only is this park home to the iconic Sunsphere,

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the sprawling lawn and amphitheater are perfect for festivals and concerts,

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and the flowing fountains are perfect for cooling young and old alike as the temperatures climb.    

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The park is a must stop for anyone driving through Knoxville, and offers a fun look at the city.

The Knoxville Museum of Art                                                                1050 Worlds Fair Park Drive

Located right on the edge of the World’s Fair Park, the art museum offers more free fun in Knoxville. The exhibits offer a range of media, style and technique with a permanent collection and temporary traveling exhibits. Don’t miss a stop in the gift shop where you’ll find a few fun and unique items. Outdoors you can stroll through the courtyard to view the sculpture garden which also offers a peek at the park below.

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After exploring the park and art museum you can jump abroad the free trolley to add to your family’s fun in Knoxville where you can hop on and off about anywhere you’d like. Sure beats finding a parking spot!

9-11 Memorial                                                                                                                                     400 Main St.

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More solemn than fun, this black granite obelisk stands as a memorial to those who lost their lives in the terrorist attack that shocked our nation on September 11, 2001. The names of those lost on that day are forever etched into the stone.  The memorial is housed under a large wind chime that softly rings as the wind blows. After visiting the memorial, you can travel up the street to so view some historical markers and around the corner on Gay St. to continue your family fun in Knoxville artsy style!

The Knoxville Botanical Garden and Arboretum         2743 Wimpole Avenue

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Another stop for fun in Knoxville, the Botanical Garden and Arboretum offer the perfect backdrop for family pictures and apparently weddings.  We didn’t stick around long here because there happened to be a private wedding taking place along the stone terrace. But if you’re in the area and looking for a place to stretch your legs, this could be just the place.

If you find yourself near Knoxville you’ll also want to check out Ijams Nature Center, a 275 acre wildlife sanctuary that has an impressive Visitor Center with museum like exhibits and several biking and hiking trails. My family especially enjoys the trail that runs along the Tennessee River. Ijams is celebrating their 100th Anniversary this year and have some fun events planned throughout the year.

Have you visited any of these attractions? Please share your experience and fee free to add any free attractions that you’re aware of in Knoxville.

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Tonya @ Live the Adventure

Monday 16th of May 2011

Great post, Sarah! There were some other stops I had wanted to make but wewere really only there for the day and some places weren't open. We alwayslove the Sunsphere though. As for the botanical garden, I'm really not surewhat I thought. The drive there took us through some less desireable placesin Knoxville- but then that is often the case when we we see things that aremore historical. We had stopped to see the statue of Alex Haley, the authoror Roots, which we drove directly past on the way to the garden. We sloweddown to take a picture when we realized that there seemed to be some illicitbehavior taking place (prostitution, perhaps). We were waved past and had nodesire to take a closer look. I won't go into detail but don't think I havea desire to try to make that stop again and that did give me reason to thinkperhaps we weren't on the best side of town.


Monday 16th of May 2011

Glad you enjoyed our area! I have actually never been to the 9-11 memorial or the botanical gardens, but here is a post of mine with a bunch more stuff: Protection Status
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