Knoxville isn’t just barbecue and country music. The roots of jazz, rock, and blues run deep in this lively Tennessee city. Whenever you find yourself in Knoxville, you’ll have to treat yourself to a drink and live music at one of the great local bars. If you enjoy hiking and outdoor recreation, you’ll find yourself in heaven when you visit the forests that ring the outside of the city. When you explore the Knoxville downtown area, you’ll be astonished by the way the city embraces learning and the arts.

01Dine and dive at Knoxville’s architectural icon

The Sunsphere in Knoxville EJ_Rodriquez / Getty Images

The most enduring legacy of the 1982 World Fair is Knoxville’s most impressive architectural work, the Sunsphere. The towering structure was defunct for several decades until it reopened in 2014. The restaurants here include a spectacular pizza place and an amazing Southern BBQ joint, and you can even skydive from the Sunsphere! Just be sure you skydive first and eat later.