Nestled in the heart of the East Tennessee Grand Division, Knoxville holds a special place both in the state’s history and the state’s identity.
Lovingly nicknamed “Marble City” due to the marble quarries and production that boosted the local economy in the early 20th century, the diverse economy has led to the kind of growth that famously attracted the World’s Fair here in the 1980s. Nowadays, it’s one of the region’s most vital cultural hot spots, overflowing with museums, theater, music and more. And that’s before we even talk about local foodie culture. It’s a town that loves to nourish both body and spirit.
With a population of about 190,000 in the city limits and swelling to almost 900,000 in the greater metropolitan area, Knoxville is the third-largest city in Tennessee. Those looking to explore and seek diversion will find a pleasant selection whether they seek living history or the latest scenes happening here. Museums run the gambit from catering to children to science buffs and even commemorating women’s basketball. The Old City neighborhood is a vibrant blend of the engaging past and the thriving present. Market Square is a charming part of downtown that features a farmers market perfect for people watching and tasting amazing local produce. And nature lovers should check out the Ijams Nature Center and its amazing bird sanctuary.