Chattanooga and the surrounding area have a plethora of historical sites to visit. For those who are here for a short time, such as a vacation, wedding, or family reunion, it can be overwhelming to figure out which historical landmark to visit. The following list compiles the five must-see landmarks for this area. The choices have been selected based on certain criteria such as popularity, family-friendly, close activities and, of course, fun level.
The list includes the Chickamauga-Chattanooga National Military Park, the Chattanooga River Walk, Tennessee Railroad Museum, Lookout Mountain and the Chattanooga Choo Choo (yes it is a real place). The Chickamauga-Chattanooga National Military Park is located a short drive outside of the Chattanooga area in historical Chickamauga, GA. This park was the first Military Park in the United States and memorializes the second-bloodiest battle of the Civil War. The Chattanooga River Walk starts at Ross’s Landing in downtown Chattanooga and has access to a variety of activities and sites to see. Lookout Mountain can be seen from downtown and is just a couple miles away. It offers visitors the Incline Railway, Rock City, Ruby Falls and Point Park. Finally, the Chattanooga Choo Choo and the Tennessee Railroad Museum takes visitors back to the beloved time when trains crisscrossed America.
These five locations are the best, must-see historical landmarks in the Chattanooga area. They will satisfy the history buffs while providing fun for the rest of the family. Enjoy your trip to Chattanooga, TN.
Wilder Tower at Chickamauga Battalefield
The Chickamauga-Chattanooga battlefield honors the multiple Civil War Battles that were fought in this area. The main areas are located in Chickamauga and on Lookout Mountain in Chattanooga (Point Park). Chickamauga, GA is an historical town where the second bloodiest battle of the Civil War was fought. It offers historical Civil War tours, walking and biking trails and horse rental, along with a plethora of monuments.
The Riverwalk or Riverpark starts at the Tennessee Aquarium and follows the river for 10 miles. In the downtown area, it offers access to a playground, cardboard sliding, fishing docks, Walnut Street Bridge (one of the world’s longest walking bridge), Hunter Art Museum and the North Shore. The Walnut Street Bridge was built in 1890 and is listed on the National Registry of Historical Places. Also, the starting place for the Riverwalk is called Ross’s Landing. It is the area where the Indian Chief John Ross operated a trade store and ferry.
Home of the Civil War battle called “Battle above the clouds”, Lookout Mountain boasts historical places such as the world famous Incline Railway and Rock City. Another family favorite is Ruby Falls, an underground waterfall, which was discovered in 1928. Lookout Mountain also has Covenant College which sets on the site of the old Lookout Mountain Hotel, once known as the Castle in the Clouds.
Tennessee Railroad Museum
The Tennessee Railroad Museum is a great family place. With multiple trains to admire and the ability to ride along one of the original railroad lines in Chattanooga, including a trip through a pre-Civil War tunnel, the museum has something for everyone. The hour long train ride has a stopover at East Chattanooga where visitors can watch the train rotate on a turntable and tour a railroad restoration shop.
Chattanooga Choo Choo
“Is that the Chattanooga Choo Choo?” Yes it is. The Chattanooga Choo Choo, built in 1909, was a terminal on the Southern Railroad’s line. At the time it was built, anyone traveling south by rail, would stop at this terminal. The terminal was closed in 1970. In 1973 a group of investors turned it into a vacation resort. The Choo Choo has the world’s largest HO gauge model display. After visiting the trains, be sure to stop in at the Station House for a fine dining experience with “singing” servers.