Get ready to soak in the beauty of spring in Chattanooga, TN! This charming city beckons with vibrant blossoms and Southern charm, offering a delightful springtime experience for the whole family. Dive into captivating outdoor experiences that define the essence of the Scenic City during this season. Join us as we explore eight of our favorite ways to enjoy the spirit of spring in the Scenic City!
1. Hike to Mesmerizing Waterfalls
Spring into action with some waterfall therapy! Just 12 miles from Chattanooga, you’ll find the captivating Falling Water Falls, boasting a stunning 110-foot-tall cascade. This petite preserve offers a quick nature escape, perfect for those with limited time.
Make sure to include Ruby Falls in your must-visit list! Unlike your typical waterfall experience, this gem is tucked 1,120 feet below the surface of Lookout Mountain, revealing a stunning 145-foot cascade and the tallest publicly accessible underground waterfall this side of the Mississippi.
Looking for more suggestions? Check out our list of the 10 best waterfalls near Chattanooga.
2. Shop the Chattanooga Market
Starting at the end of April, the Chattanooga Market at the First Horizon Pavilion comes alive every Sunday! With more than 50 local farms and 130 talented artisans, it's a haven for exploration. From farm-fresh produce and artisanal delights to vibrant flowers, handmade crafts, and the backdrop of lively tunes, this market is the place to be. Oh, and did we mention the food trucks? It's not just a market; it's a Sunday adventure where people always find joy, laughter, and a great time!
We love our local markets in Chattanooga and they spring up across town throughout the week! Find more events and seasonal markets at our round-up here.
3. Enjoy a meal or cocktail at local patios and rooftop bars
As the sun works its magic and the days grow longer, there's something truly special about elevating your cocktail experience outdoors and soaking in the delightful spring vibes. The Whiskey Thief takes your libation journey to new heights—literally! Their menu evolves with the seasons, ensuring each cocktail is crafted with the freshest ingredients to complement the perfect spring sip. Another bar worth exploring is the Pickle Barrel downtown, housed in a Flatiron-style building. Enjoy a rooftop patio with a stunning view and don't miss their must-try signature fried pickle spears for a memorable experience.
4. Take the whole family on a spring break safari and scavenger hunt
Get ready for a spring break like never before! Our Spring Break Safari and Scavenger Hunt will have your kids exploring the city in a whole new way. Participating attractions offer hands-on activities and engaging scavenger hunts, encouraging imagination and discovery. It's the perfect recipe for a memorable and educational spring break adventure for the whole family. Don't miss out on the chance to turn this break into an exciting journey of exploration and fun!
5. Get paddling on a kayak tour with Chattanooga Guided Adventures
This spring, join Chattanooga Guided Adventures for an exclusive kayak journey through Chickamauga Dam. Paddle into the towering 120 ft lock, experience the massive gates closing behind you, and feel the excitement as the guides connect your kayaks to a moving anchor, ensuring a secure and unforgettable passage. Another must-try experience is the Nickajack Bat Cave Sunset Kayak Tour, available from late March to early October. This 3-mile paddling takes you right to the entrance of the cave during sunset where you will see thousands of bats take flight, beginning their nightly hunts.
6. Wander Rock City Gardens
You’ve got to check out Rock City, especially in spring! It's like Mother Nature went all out with massive rocks, a garden paradise, and breathtaking views. With 400 different species of plants, trees, and shrubs, this garden is a vibrant canvas waiting to be explored. It's a breathtaking spectacle that promises a refreshing and colorful welcome to the season!
7. Check out the 4 Bridges Arts Festival
Looking for something artsy? Join us at the First Horizon Pavilion this April, for an immersive experience featuring the masterpieces of 140 incredible artists from across the country. Discover the perfect addition for your office, home, or garden as you browse through a diverse array of artworks. Beyond the art, indulge in the festivities with live music, tempting food trucks, engaging children's activities, and much more! The 4 Bridges Art Festival is a weekend celebration that art enthusiasts won't want to miss.
8. Take a ride at the Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum
All aboard the nostalgia express this spring! Whether you're a history enthusiast or just looking for a fun activity, jump aboard the Missionary Ridge Local for a seamless blend of historic charm and modern adventure on their lovingly restored trains. And hey, it's not just for the grown-ups! This family-friendly ride, perfect for the kiddos, is available for booking on most days throughout the month. Picture this: a 6-mile roundtrip where a lively tour guide, well-versed in local history, adds an extra layer of excitement to the journey. Get ready for a ride that's both educational and entertaining at the Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum!