When it comes to towns in Tennessee, Nashville is often viewed as the place to be. However, east of the city lies some amazing towns and hidden gems in nature. Among these spots are tons of cool things to do, including the Sunsphere in Knoxville, and many people don't realize these interesting places exist.
From Pigeon Forge to Nantahala National Forest, there's a lot to see outside the big city. If you're looking for unique attractions away from Music City, take this handy dandy roadtrip guide through Knoxville as you venture through its glory.
Address: 810 W. Clinch Ave., Knoxville, TN
Why You Should Go: This retro steel structure is one of Knoxville's most fascinating historic symbols. Towering at 266 feet high, this skyscraper is definitely unusual, with a 77 foot golden glass sphere sitting at the top. You can catch amazing panoramic views of the city at the observation deck from this 1982 World Fair gem.
S.S. Sultana Memorial
Address: 2420 Maryville Pike, Knoxville, TN
Why You Should Go: This massive cargo ship exploded and sank north of Memphis on the Missississippi River way back in 1865. Unfortunately, the tragic loss marks the worst death boat in U.S. history. The iconic ship plus over 1,000 travelers was overshadowed because of the death of Abe Lincoln's Assassin, John Wilkes Booth.
The Body Farm
Price: Tours are not offered to the public at this time
Address: 1924 Alcoa Hwy., Knoxville, TN
Why You Should Go: This creepy yet intriguing "farm" is a tribute to forensic anthropology created by William K. Bass. The purpose of 2.3-acre plot of land behind the University of Tennessee is to study how different scenarios affect decomposing bodies. Over 70 bodies are lying in cages here - some naked, in clothing, in cars and underwater.
Long's Drug Store
Address: 4604 Old Kingston Pike, Knoxville, TN
Why You Should Go: Not to be confused with the iconic Hawaii brand, this vintage shop is not just a pharmacy. Hidden within what may appear to be your typical CVS, this 1956 drug store doubles as an eatery, offering some of the most incredible burgers and shakes in the city.
Peter Kern "Library"
Price: : 💸💸💸
Address: 407 Union Ave., Knoxville, TN
Why You Should Go: If you're itching for a genuine speakeasy experience, you've found your spot. This 1920s-inspired hotel sits at the back of Oliver hotel. It's got all the swanky vibes of a hidden Prohibition-era bar with bookshelves, a fireplace, sultry ambience and fancy craft cocktails.
Address: 5214 Homberg Dr., Knoxville, TN
Why You Should Go: This 6,000-square-foot whimsical spot showcases hundreds of collectibles and memorabilia from through the decades (as far back as the 50s). This thrifty hidden gem will literally take you on a time travel adventure through multiple decades of the past.