If you have been following along on Instagram then you probably saw bits and pieces of our trip to Chattanooga this past week. Shane went to UTC and played college football so it is always to come back and see his friends and explore. There are new restaurants and hotels popping up all over town and every time we come we hit the classics and try something new. Here’s a glimpse into what we did and some of our recommendations from previous trips.
A 3 Day Chattanooga Itinerary
If you’re tired from traveling, a casual evening may be just what you need. Come as you are for a casual dinner at Champy’s or Pizza Bros. Either spot is delicious and will kick your weekend off right.
Start the day with breakfast at Milk & Honey then walk around the shops and boutiques in North Shore. If it’s a nice day, rent a kayak or paddle board and spend the morning on the river. The views surrounding Chattanooga are stunning and the city is built around the river. I highly recommend spending some time either walking or biking around town. You can rent a city bike for $8 for a full day.
For the evening, get cleaned up and head to Whiskey Thief Rooftop at The Edwin. Go early to enjoy the sunset views over a few cocktails and light bites without a huge crowd. Then head to dinner at Old Gillman Grill for an upscale dinner or to Citron et Sel for modern Mexican with fun tequila shots. End the night at Unknown Caller, a swanky speakeasy with craft cocktails and a secret phone booth entrance.
Sleep in and plan for brunch at STIR. The industrial vibe is super cool, but you can sip their $1 mimosas on the patio if you’d like. Spend the afternoon at the Tennessee Aquarium. Even if Aquariums aren’t really your thing, this one is one of the best in the country! There are also many outdoor activities depending on the time of year for your visit. You can go on hikes, river rafting, Ruby Falls, or Lookout Mountain. If its cold or rainy, try indoor rock climbing at High Point Climbing.
Spend the evening in Chattanooga’s up and coming Southside neighborhood. Grab drinks at The Moxy or Flying Squirrel then dinner at State of Confusion. End the night either bowling at Southside Social, enjoying fancy cocktails at Goodfellas underground bar, or singing karaoke at Sing It or Wing It.
Before heading home, grab one last meal at Maple Street Biscuit Co where you can sit on the patio and people watch a slow Sunday morning. If you’re looking to grab and go, donuts from Julie’s Darling Donuts will make the drive home 100 times better.
Where to Stay
- The Westin– This is a new hotel and located in the hip West Village area of downtown. We loved staying here and highly recommend it. There is a fantastic rooftop bar and our room was exceptional.
- The Marriott– We have stayed here in the past and it was great! The hotel is located on the south end of downtown which is an up and coming area, but not as walkable to the main attractions.
- Courtyard by Marriott- This hotel is located more in the heart of downtown where all the museums, the aquarium, and a lot of other walkable sites and restaurants. The rooms are a little outdated but incredibly quiet for being in the hustle and bustle of the city.
- The Edwin Hotel– A stunning boutique hotel located on the river with gorgeous views and chic decor. Ideal for the foodie or if you want to explore along the river and museums.
- If you’re in town to explore the natural beauty the city has to offer, definitely consider Chattanooga RV Rental for your stay.
Where to Eat in Chattanooga
Breakfast & Brunch
- Milk & Honey (North Shore)- Brunch foods any day of the week? Yes please! M&H
- Julie’s Darling Donuts (North Shore) I would not be exaggerating if I said this was the best glazed donut I’ve had in my life. Stop in while you’re walking around the North Shore district and grab a few.
- Maple Street Biscuit Co (Downtown) Be ready for a food coma after one of these incredible biscuit creations. Their biscuits alone are incredible, but add fried chicken and gravy and you’ve got a masterpiece.
- STIR (Southside) A fantastic brunch spot and super cool eclectic vibe. They have $1 mimosas during brunch and amazing shrimp & grits.
- The Daily Ration (North Chattanooga) A chill brunch spot with healthy options and a breezy outdoor space. You can get breakfast or lunch, but skip the avocado toast, it is much better elsewhere.
- Champy’s (MLK) A classic casual fried chicken joint. “40’s & Fowl” is their theme and a favorite for all locals. Get chicken tenders or bone in, with fries. Normally I love Mac & cheese, but theirs is a little much for me.
- Old Gillman Grill (West Village Downtown) A gorgeous new restaurant with fine dining and a beautiful patio in the heart of the city.
- Citron et Sel (West Village Downtown) Imagine taking a shot of tequila in a frozen ice glass and being able to shatter it when you’re done. Plus a side of modern Mexican for dinner!
- Pizza Bros (North Shore) A casual beer & pizza joint with classic and unique options. You can get any pizza half and half so this is the place to try something different! The “Yeti” really surprised me with how much I enjoyed honey on pizza! Get the fried ravioli if you’re feeling an app too.
- State of Confusion (Southside) A new modern restaurant with something for everyone and an awesome outdoor space. Their potato chip nachos are one of my favorite appetizers in town and the steak frites is delicious. While I’ve only been for dinner, I’ve heard it is a favorite for brunch on the weekends as well.
- Tremont Tavern (North Chattanooga) Best burgers in town period.
- Sofa King Juicy Burger (Hill City) The burgers are okay, but the nitrogen milkshakes are BOMB!
Chattanooga Nightlife & Bars
- Whiskey Thief (Downtown) The best place to soak in river and city views with great cocktails and bites.
- Unknown Caller (Downtown) The ultimate speakeasy where you enter through a London style phone booth.
- Goodfellas (Southside) This underground cocktail bar is such a vibe, and one of my new favorite spots in town. If you’re in the mood for craft cocktails and bar games, this is the spot to be. And they also serve pizza until closing.
- Sing It or Wing It (Downtown) A grungy karaoke bar on Market street that is the perfect place to end any night out.
- Southside Social (Southside) Casual bar games, bowling, and outdoor bar with local beers and spirits.
- Alchemy Rooftop (West Village Downtown) The Westin’s rooftop lounge perfect for watching the sunset or enjoying live music all evening long.
- City Cafe Diner (Southside) For the late night drunchies. Open 24 hours!
I hope this helped you plan your trip to Chattanooga! I can’t wait to go back myself. This post is not sponsored by any hotel, restaurant, or travel organization. All recommendations are based on our own experiences. If you are interested in hosting us for hotel or restaurant coverage, please contact me here.