I’ve been excited to share a Chattanooga Travel Guide for so long! I’ve called Chattanooga home for about seven years, but have been visiting the city for even longer because my husband has lived here since 2010. I love how Chattanooga is a smaller town nestled in the mountains, but still has so many of the amenities and vibes of a larger city.
There are so many options for both younger people who want a fun night out at trendy bars AND families who want to spend a fun day with their kiddos. The city is also perfect for a weekend getaway! Whether you’re trying to escape the hustle and bustle from a big city like Nashville or Atlanta or if you live in a smaller town and want to have a fun weekend without the stress of a large city, Chattanooga truly has something for everyone.
Besides the stunning views from places like Point Park and Rock City on Lookout Mountain, Signal Point on Signal Mountain, and even Cloudland Canyon just south of us, I think my favorite part of living in Chattanooga is the people. Everyone is not only so down to Earth and friendly, but also SO supportive of our local community.
A few weeks back, my husband and I spent our Babymoon at the Edwin Hotel. My husband went to grab a coffee from Provisions Coffee shop located within the Edwin, and he overheard a tourist in front of his comment on the lack of Starbucks locations in the downtown area. The barista was so prideful in being able to tell him about Chattanooga’s commitment to supporting locally owned businesses, and coffee was definitely not an exception! It made me really proud to live in a city with such a strong passion for supporting business owners in our local community!
Josh and I keep a shared note on our phone of all the local spots we want to try, and it honestly grows faster than we can keep up with! There are so many places we still want to try, but I’ve created a map of some of my can’t-miss spots I know you’ll love!!
Beyond top picks, here is a full list of places in the city that I love!
Stays in Chattanooga
Chattanooga has so many beautiful stays! I’ve gone around and selected some of my favorite unique stays that I love. As I mentioned, we just stayed at The Edwin Hotel for our Babymoon. It has stunning views of the river and is so convenient to the Art District and the pedestrian bridge.
I also love the Westin in West Village because of its convenience for being able to simply walk across the street to so many great restaurants, and its proximity to Downtown Chattanooga. These are some of my favorite boutique hotels that are all great and unique in their own ways:
Self Care in Chattanooga
Who doesn’t love to spend a little time relaxing and pampering every once in a while!? I get my hair done at the Wild Honey Hair studio and Kerry is fantastic! When I finally found her, I was so happy! Ama Spa is also one of my favorites. I started going a few years ago when Josh got me a massage and facial for mothers day one year. I’m totally hooked now! Here’s a full list of some of my favorite self-care businesses:
- High Brow – Brows and Lashes
- Wild Honey Hair Studio
- Skin and Brow Room – Skincare, Brows, and Lashes
- The Nail Bar
- Ama Spa
Shopping in Chattanooga
I have to admit, I don’t do a ton of shopping downtown, but I still had to call out some of my favorite spots to find local goods and spend a little bit of money. Collective Clothing and Belle Rive Boutique are both especially great, and have generously offered discount codes for you guys to use (be sure to check out my social media for the codes)!
- Collective Clothing
- Belle Rive Boutique
- Huck & Peck
- Southeastern Salvage
- Warehouse Row (not as many local shops, but still a great spot to shop around!)
- Locals Only
Spots for Kids in Chattanooga
Chattanooga has SO many great places for families, both outdoors and indoors! I especially love our aquarium, and people come from cities all around to visit it. It’s broken down into two buildings for both freshwater and saltwater. The aquarium also features a petting area and really cool butterfly garden. Lake Winnie is a local waterpark and is also fantastic for a fun summer day! Here’s a full list of some of my favorite family-friendly spots:
Breakfast and Brunch in Chattanooga
Aretha Frankensteins is one of the first places my husband took me for breakfast in the city, and their pancakes are iconic. They serve single pancakes that are truly large enough to split between two people because they take up an entire plate and are SO thick and fluffy. They have a very small dining space, so try to get there right when they open to avoid a wait!
I also love Bluegrass Grille. It’s a nice and casual spot, and EVERYTHING on the menu is good. They’ve graciously offered a free coffee or tea with your meal, so again, check out the coupon in my Chattanooga highlight! Whitebird is located in the Edwin and is a bit more of a fancier spot that I love. We went for brunch and everything was absolutely incredible. Here’s my full list of restaurants that I love:
Lunch in Chattanooga
My husband and I used to meet at Public House all the time for lunch when he was working downtown. Their salmon is amazing! If you’re doing some shopping in Warehouse Row, it’s the perfect place to stop in because it’s on the edge of the building. Mainstreet Meats is also to die for, their burgers are amazing! Here are my favorite lunch spots:
Date Night Spots in Chattanooga
This Chattanooga travel guide list for date night spots could be SO long. One of my favorite things about Chattanooga is how everything and everyone is so down to earth, but we have so many great spots to get dressed up and have a nice night out, even with kids! Alleia is probably one of the most romantic atmospheres in Chattanooga. Tony’s Pasta has some of the BEST homemade pasta, but be prepared to wait! They aren’t currently offering any kind of reservation or call-ahead options, but the wait is so worth it every time!
Family-Friendly Restaurants in Chattanooga
One of the most iconic spots in Chattanooga is definitely Champy’s. It’s so popular but so so good! Their fried chicken really is unmatched. My family gets Lupis all the time, and I love how we don’t feel too crappy after eating there because of all the local fresh ingredients. Here’s my full list!
Vegetarian/Vegan-Friendly Spots in Chattanooga
Chattanooga actually has a pretty large plant-based community, and the restaurants truly do a ton to cater to that crowd! Mayan Kitchen is probably my favorite Mexican restaurant in Chattanooga, all of their ingredients are so fresh! Real Roots is also amazing, and they’re offering a discount code (check out my social media)! Here’s my full list:
- Sluggo’s North
- Plant Power Cafe
- Taco Mamacita
- Mayan Kitchen
- The Local Juicery + Kitchen
- Southern Squeeze
- Real Roots
Coffee Spots in Chattanooga
You already heard me talk about how much Chattanooga loves local coffee, and our wide array of local coffee shops show! Our coffee shops are great for getting a little work done away from home, having a coffee date, meeting for business, or just stopping in for a little pick-me-up!
- Stone Cup Cafe
- Velo Coffee Roasters
- Mean Mug
- Goodman Coffee Roasters
- Mad Priest Coffee
- Milk and Honey
Bars and Breweries to Visit in Chattanooga
For those who don’t know, Asheville has the largest number of local breweries per capita in the United States. We’re so fortunate to live in Chattanooga, because many of our local breweries, like Naked River Brewing, are led by master brewers that have trained and learned in Asheville! Naked River has a delicious Moon Pie stout made with real Moon Pies, which is a Chattanooga-based company!
Hutton and Smith is a definite hotspot and might be the most popular beer in Chattanooga (both in the taproom and in grocery stores), with so many unique and specialty brews. Check it out to see their large collection of hanging mugs. Each mug hanging from the ceiling is reserved for a specific patron that became active with the brewery when they first opened. It’s impossible to get a mug for yourself, unless they have a raffle, which has only happened a couple times since they first opened.
Honest Pint has a super fun and casual vibe. Fun fact: it used to be a brothel! Shoot some pool, play darts, or sit at one of the tables that have taps built right in for a fun night with friends. For something a little trendier, check out Flying Squirrel in our Southside neighborhood or Whiskey Thief for beautiful views of the river at sunset. Here’s my full list:
I hope this Chattanooga travel guide helps with your next visit! I’ve been CHATTing with a ton of local business owners recently and have decided to host a giveaway this week to give back to the local Chattanooga community! Be sure you’re following me on Instagram this week, because I’ll be sharing how you can win one of FIVE $50 gift cards to a local Chattanooga business of your choice, PLUS anyone can get access to some fantastic discounts to local companies in our beautiful cities!