The experiences. The kind that take your breath away. And remind you what it feels like to be alive. Catching a glimpse of life under the sea. Or on top of the world. Walking in the footsteps of soldiers, legends and kings. It’s a feeling. A connection. That can only be Made in Tennessee.
Tennessee is where memories are made, whether at an iconic American attraction like Graceland or Dollywood, through the soul-stirring impact of a once-in-a-lifetime live music event, or basking in the state’s glorious natural wonders and wondrous experiences.
America’s soundtrack was and continues to be made in Tennessee, by legends like Johnny Cash and Tina Turner and superstars Justin Timberlake and Kelsea Ballerini. Pay homage to Elvis at the new and immersive Elvis Presley’s Memphis, a 200,000-square-foot, $45 million entertainment complex across the street from Elvis’™ iconic Graceland. Celebrate country music’s humble beginnings at the Birthplace of Country Music Museum in Bristol and revel in the continuing story at Nashville’s Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum and the Grand Ole Opry. Marvel at never-before-seen, vintage guitars at Songbirds Guitar Museum in Chattanooga. Hear world-class music acts from a variety of music genres at Knoxville’s Tennessee Theatre and Nashville’s Ascend Amphitheater and explore Tennessee greats like Tina Turner at the Tina Turner Museum at Flagg Grove School at the West Tennessee Delta Heritage Center in Brownsville.
The stars (and stars-to-be) come out at night in the more than 160 music venues in Nashville where country singers, pop stars, and rockers hope to be discovered. Americana, folk or bluegrass artists perform at lunchtime at the old-school WDVX Blue Plate Special radio show in Knoxville’s visitor center and newly-established The Mill & Mine where a crowd of 1,200 can rock out on any given night. Music flows from the family-friendly shows in Pigeon Forge including Dolly Parton’s Dixie Stampede and the Smoky Mountain Opry, and some of the country’s most beautiful outdoor venues, including the historic Levitt Shell in Memphis, where Elvis once opened for Johnny Cash. You can also catch music on the Great Lawn at Union City’s Discovery Park of America and during Music City Roots every Wednesday night at The Factory at Franklin in Franklin, Tennessee. A cultural experience offers live music in the style of Mexican marketplace streets at Plaza Mariachi in Nashville.
One of the state’s best-loved musical daughters, Dolly Parton, helps families create memories every day at Dollywood in Pigeon Forge. From Wild Eagle, the nation’s first wing coaster, to Lightning Rod, the world’s fastest wooden coaster, the best rides and shows can be found here. The theme park, which also includes a splash park and cabins, is also home to Dolly’s DreamMore Resort, a family-focused, full-service resort that offers a true Smoky Mountain experience.
Visitors can walk, crawl and doge their way through worlds of adventure at VR Pigeon Forge, a virtual reality arcade. Ride a Chondola, zipline and walk through a tree canopy at Anakeesta aerial adventure park in Gatlinburg. Zipline, repel and ride a giant swing that can reach 50 mph at Off the Grid Mountain Adventures in Elizabethton. View the beautiful habitat for critically endangered Malayan tigers at Zoo Knoxville. Meet the white rhinoceros and other animals, while strolling through the garden and historic plantation farmhouse at Nashville Zoo at Grassmere. The Memphis Zoo is home to 3,500 animals, including baby hippo. Experience a zoo that brings the animals close to you at the Chattanooga Zoo.
Tennessee has a love affair with all things natural from our iconic Great Smoky Mountains National Park to Reelfoot Lake and its migratory waterfowl to cruises on the Mississippi and Tennessee rivers. The former NBA arena turned adventure wonderland at the Bass Pro Shop in the Memphis pyramid is complete with indoor ziplines, bowling alley, shooting and archery ranges and more. Steele Creek Splash Pad in Bristol includes an island of aquariums, dumping water buckets and forest displays. Discovery Park of America in Union City allows guests to blast off into space, ride a giant human slide, feel an earthquake and stroll through gardens.
Adventure is calling. From music to iconic Americana attractions such as Chattanooga’s Rock City and Ruby Falls, family memories are made in Tennessee.