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Old 07-27-2013, 11:05 PM
 
Location: Alexandria, VA - Kingstowne Subdivision
400 posts, read 541,178 times
Reputation: 372

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What should we do if this was the only trip we'll ever make to this town?

Family of 4. 2 adults and 2 toddlers (youngest age 2).

Thanks for your help in advanced.

We'll be in town on the 1st through the 3rd.

Sent from my GT-N8013 using Tapatalk 2
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Old 07-28-2013, 11:30 AM
 
Location: Nashville, TN
1,285 posts, read 2,125,151 times
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Aquarium, Rock City and Ruby Falls are the top attractions in the city. Be sure to check those out.
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Old 07-28-2013, 05:09 PM
 
Location: Chattanooga, TN
2,954 posts, read 4,536,450 times
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36 hours, or 1st - 3rd?

Assuming you mean 1st - 3rd, the first thing to mention is that the 2nd-4th is the annual TN Sales Tax Holiday. School-related things (office supplies, clothes, and computers) won't be charged the 9.25% local+state sales tax. This means the main shopping areas will be as crowded as they are the weekend before Christmas.

Downtown is the place to go. South of the river, you've got the TN Aquarium. The older building is home to the second-largest freshwater aquarium in the world (it was the largest until a bigger one opened in Singapore last April). It traces a drop of water from the headwaters of the TN River in the mountains (with otters, birds, butterflies and live trees on the roof) all the way down to where the MS river hits the gulf. Right next door is the newer and smaller saltwater aquarium which continues the drop's journey through the ocean, and it includes a penguin exhibit.

Outside the aquarium are a couple of splash fountains loved by toddlers everywhere. One in front of the freshwater aquarium and the other between the saltwater building and Market St (The Journey, a memorial to the Cherokee removal).

Close to the Aquarium and afiliated (you can get multi-ticket discounts) are the IMAX theater (mostly plays educational films and documentaries) and Creative Discovery Museum. At the CDM you can play in a river, dig for dinosaur bones, play musical instruments, put on a puppet show, make art, and explore lots of other exhibits.

The Chattanooga Ducks is a fun trip around downtown and in the river.

There's a free electric shuttle that goes from the Chattanooga Choo Choo to downtown.

Across the river (you can walk across the historic Walnut St. Bridge, drive, or take the water taxi), there's a historic restored carosel in a huge blue pavilion ($1/ride), a huge splash/spray fountain, and a large grassy area for playing at Coolidge Park.

Depending on what interests you and your boys, you can ride a real train (at Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum, not at the Choo Choo), see waterfalls, go to the top of mountains, or anything else you want.
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Old 07-30-2013, 08:39 AM
 
Location: chattanooga
352 posts, read 807,252 times
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Spot on JW...thats exactly what they should do, all fun for the kids and doesn't cost a fortune! They will love the discovery museum!
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Old 08-18-2013, 04:35 PM
 
Location: Alexandria, VA - Kingstowne Subdivision
400 posts, read 541,178 times
Reputation: 372
Smile Thanks for the suggestions.

Thanks for all the assistance. We decided on the following items during our 36 hour stay in Chattanooga:
-Crystal palace tour at Raccoon mountain (Welcome). This took 45 minutes and the boys (5 & 3 years old) enjoyed it at the beginning but their attention span was nonexistent towards the end of the tour.


- Lookout Mountain Incline Railway (Ride The Incline) - Took about 45 minutes to complete the train ride. The boys were impressed during the initial stages of the ride but lost interest towards the middle of the ride.


- Lunch at Champy's Famous Fried Chicken (champyschicken.com) - This was exceptional fried chicken. Best I've had at a restaurant outside of Popeyes Chicken (I'm from New Orleans and have a biased opinion about this establishment). I would say that this a must go venue for anyone passing through "Chat-town".



- Dinner at Hillbilly Willys Bar-B-Q & Catering Co. (Best Chattanooga Barbeque | BBQ Catering | Hillbilly Willys | Pulled Pork | Flame Grilled Burgers | Baby Back Ribs) - It was alright bar-b-q. The winning element at this establishment is the sauce. Man-o-man was the sauce good. You can also order it online.



Thanks again for all your suggestions. We were on a budget and decided against going to the aquarium because we've already seen fish in tanks. And let's be honest, there's always an aquarium in every major city.

Chattanooga was beautiful and full of activities for older kids and adults. We may plan a trip to the area when the boys are older (+10).
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Old 08-18-2013, 05:32 PM
 
Location: Nashville, TN
1,285 posts, read 2,125,151 times
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Thanks for the update! Looks like you guys had a great time, glad you enjoyed it. Chattanooga is a fun city to visit.
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Old 08-19-2013, 05:42 AM
 
Location: Chattanooga, TN
2,954 posts, read 4,536,450 times
Reputation: 4759
Thanks for the update! So many people ask for advice then never return to say how everything turned out.

I agree with the assessment of Champy's, the owner is from my home state of Mississippi and fries up some real good chicken.

Glad you liked our city!
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Old 08-19-2013, 07:39 AM
 
Location: chattanooga
352 posts, read 807,252 times
Reputation: 282
Yea! So glad ya'll enjoyed yourself mostly. Champys is the bomb and if you haven't eaten there, you are missing out!!! Chattanooga doesn't really have an exceptional bbq place.
Yep, you can see fish in a tank everywhere, and it is costly, but this Aquarium is fabulous and fun. So, when you have the budget, it really is worth the money.

If you return when they are 10 or older, then you need to go to Raccoon Mtn again and do the exploration tour. Hard hats, boots and helmet lights. For a novice, you will feel like an expert when you get done. But ya gotta want to get dirty cause you will be on your belly sliding thru holes in some places.

By the time you return, the largest climbing wall on the outside of a building will be here. I can't wait till it opens!

Wished i had known ya'll were thinking abt the incline, kids that young do lose interest quickly. I would of suggested you save your money and go to the Discovery Museum.

FYI, it you sign up for emails with the Smithsonian , you will get free passes once, to a museum in their group, once a year. I went to the Space Museum last year in Huntsville, and it was fabulous!!!! My kids are old, but someone with young kids, geesh, you could spend 2 days there and they would never get bored with all the stuff to do. Even paying, it is worth every dime and then some!

Glad you liked Chattanooga! Hope everyone was friendly!

Last edited by Blue502; 08-19-2013 at 07:41 AM.. Reason: my applachian american english is sounding really red this morning
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