Skip to Content

Things to Do in Knoxville, TN with the Kids

Most people visiting Tennessee focus on its other cities, mostly Nashville and Memphis. Yet in east Tennessee is Knoxville, a city bustling with charm, fantastic sights, and great places to explore.

I understand planning a vacation is not easy, and that’s why I came up with this great list of things to do with the kids in Knoxville.

Let’s get started!

1. Tennessee Theatre

The Tennessee Theatre is Tennessee’s official state theater.

This downtown Knoxville attraction has an appealing interior and exterior design. It’s an excellent venue for concerts and live performances with resonant acoustics.

2. Sunsphere

There is no better way to experience Knoxville than visiting the Sunphere and viewing the city from above.

Take the elevator and head to the top with your family for a 360-degree view of downtown Knoxville, World’s Fair Park, the famous University of Tennessee, the Tennessee River, and the Smoky Mountains.

This activity is free for kids under 12 years, and it’s something they will remember long after visiting.

3. Market Square

One of the best things to do with the kids in Knoxville is visit Market Square and explore its beautiful streets.

This place is dominated by traditional and modern architectural designs. Regardless of the season, Market Square is full of festivities, so be ready to have fun and lots of laughter.

4. Neyland Stadium

If you happen to visit Knoxville during football season, check out a game at Neyland Stadium. Listening to the bands that march across the field is also something that will please your kids.

There are all year-round events at this stadium, so check the stadium’s calendar.

5. Zoo Knoxville

Zoo Knoxville is located on the town’s eastern side and is a perfect place to spend a day in the city.

The zoo offers kid-friendly attractions and well-designed interactive exhibits that can be seen from different angles.

Besides viewing the animals, the kids can enjoy the rides and zip lines, making their experience at the Zoo Knoxville more exciting.

6. French Memorial Park

Traveling with a toddler creates anxiety, and the French Memorial Park is an excellent place to relax.

The park features two soccer fields, offering an extensive area for kiddos to play with their furry friends.

You will find an exercise yard at the library and a playground.

There is also a walking trail circumventing this park which is excellent for strolling around or working out.

7. The Cutting Edge Classroom Cooking School

Consider the Cutting Edge Classroom Cooking School if you have teens looking for something to keep them engaged and entertained.

This is where their thirst for cooking good food will be quenched, so take advantage during your visit to Knoxville.

The kids will learn how to make different foods from world-class chefs. The educational experience is safe and fun.

The best part about these classes is that the kids can enjoy what they have prepared, and that’s so fulfilling.

8. Blount Mansion

The Blount Mansion was a family home to William Blount, a US constitutional signer who governed the Southwest territory. It also happens to be Knoxville’s oldest museum and a national landmark.

This place is also known as “The Birthplace of Tennessee,” and a virtual tour will unleash much about the becoming of Tennessee as the USA’s 16th state.

Take in all the beauty surrounding this place, especially the flowers in the gardens around the property.

9. Muse Knoxville

To escape the summer heat, head to Muse Knoxville.

The science, technology, engineering, art, and math museum is a sure bet for kids. It is full of incredible facilities, interactive, hands-on exhibits, and kids’ activities.

Your kiddos will be inspired through transformative learning experiences. Let them make the most of their time at the play area and the planetarium.

10. The Tennessean Hotel

Book your stay at the Tennessean Hotel Knoxville and enjoy every moment.

The hotel is conveniently located in the city center, with many attractions and dining options. The property is among the best hotels in Knoxville and boasts a five-star rating.

You’ll love the rooms and suites, not to mention the warm staff who go out of their way to ensure the guests are comfortable.

You have access to world-class amenities and can also explore the surrounding attractions or go shopping in the evening.

11. Knoxville Botanical Garden and Arboretum

There is no better place in Knoxville to soak yourself in nature than the Knoxville Botanical Garden and Arboretum.

The area has lawns, trees, well-tended gardens, and walking trails.

Your family will appreciate walking around the beautiful landscapes and admiring the flowers and plants. For a moment, they will forget the hustle and bustle of the city and enjoy the garden’s unique and fresh atmosphere.

Once done, head to the Pizza Palace and treat your family to an Italian, American, or vegetarian-friendly pizza in a calm atmosphere.

12. World’s Fair Park

There is no Knoxville without the World’s Fair Park.

This small haven is in the heart of a green space sandwiched between lakes, fountains, infrastructure, and trees.

Breathe in the park’s cool and fresh air as you stroll around in admiration of the natural and artificial landscapes, cascading waterfalls, and many beautiful gifts of nature.

The park also has a perfect environment for picnicking, festivals, and live performances, so entertainment is possible.

13. Kilwins Knoxville

Make your day sweeter at Kilwins Knoxville.

This ice cream shop is located in downtown Knoxville. This is where delicious confections such as caramel and pretzel rods covered in chocolate are made.

Scoop any of their 32 original ice cream flavors and get a refreshment like no other on a hot day. You can also enjoy various coffee and hot chocolate products on a cold evening.

14. Soaring Eagle Campground

Drive to the Soaring Eagle Campground 25 miles west of Knoxville and enjoy a memorable camping experience.

The property boasts a swimming pool and a general store, and you can rent kayaks for fishing and boating.

The best part about this campground is that it is easily accessible from the highway and has easy pull-through sites.

15. Ijams Nature Center

The Ijams Nature Center is the definition of serenity.

Hike the 10-mile trail and enjoy the preserve’s natural beauty.

There is a plethora of activities for families here, including rock climbing, canoeing, and biking. There are also environmental educational programs, camps, and classes for adults and kids that you can join.

This one-of-a-kind outdoor exploration is suitable for kids ages five years and older.

16. DEFY Knoxville

DEFY Knoxville is the town’s first indoor trampoline park.

This facility combines fitness, fun, and entertainment, and it’s one of the best things to do with kids in Knoxville.

Purchase a kid jump ticket and enjoy jumping with your little angels. The facility is also ideal for individual workouts, social gatherings, and unforgettable birthday parties.