Have You Planned Your Summer Vacation?
Spring flowers are blooming, the days are getting warmer, and the kids are counting down to summer break--all signs that it’s time to start thinking about that summer vacation.
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Too busy to read through a million blogs and guidebooks to plan a family trip? Don’t worry, we’ve already done it for you.
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Simply Awesome Trips offers family trip itineraries to destinations near and far. Everything you need to know: where to sleep, eat, and play! All organized into detailed day-by-day plans.
5 Destinations Your Family Will Love
To minimize the number of “Are we there yets?" from the back seat, here are five destinations and all within 3 hours driving distance of Knoxville.
Each of these charming mountain towns combines great local food and shops with terrific indoor and outdoor activities. Something for everyone.
No lodging research needed or activities to plan out- it's all covered in detail saving you valuable time and effort.
Where To Stay, Eat, and Play
Johnson City, TN
--1 hour 38 min. from Knoxville
If you’ve traveled on I-81 between Tennessee and Virginia, you’ve likely seen the turnoff for Johnson City. It’s another small city in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains, and their logo aptly states “start your adventure here.”
It’s a great hub for biking, hiking, and even exploring a fossil site. A revitalized downtown offers terrific restaurants and breweries in a quaint setting. It’s a place where you can spend a day hiking the Appalachian Trail over numerous mountain balds with amazing 360 degree views, bike a local family-friendly bike path, or tour a fossil dig site. And from all of these activities, easily return to town for lodging, a local craft beer, and a great meal. View this itinerary.
--1 hour and 42 min. from Knoxville
Chattanooga has no shortage of things to do for kids AND adults. This is one of the few cities you can visit where you can climb in one of the largest climbing gyms in the country, walk across one of the longest pedestrian bridges in the world, visit Civil War battlefields, admire a jellyfish exhibition, and squeeze through rock boulders alongside tiny gnomes statues--all in one weekend!
In addition to a fun downtown with its variety of good local restaurants and breweries, its outdoor opportunities earned it Outside Magazine’s “Best Town” twice. View this itinerary.
-- 1 hour 54 min. from Knoxville
Abingdon, Va is a beautiful, quaint town in southwest Virginia. It has terrific restaurants, walkable streets, a craft brewery, and the famous Barter Theater.
For families, Abingdon stands out for two reasons: biking the Virginia Creeper Trail (a 34 mile rails to trails pathway) and hiking the trails at Grayson Highlands State Park, famous for its soaring views and wild ponies. View this itinerary.
--2 hours and 20 min. from Knoxville
Brevard, NC is a charming mountain town filled with shops (including a great toy store), restaurants, antiques, and art galleries. It’s located just 33 miles from Asheville. It’s also home to Dupont State Forest, which offers plenty of hiking and mountain biking trails to explore.
The Hunger Games movie was filmed at Dupont where you can visit Triple Falls, the most recognizable mountain scenery in the movie. View this itinerary.
Bryson City, NC
-- 2 hours and 10 min. from Knoxville
Bryson City is another fun outdoor town and possibly the most underrated. Its downtown is walkable with quaint shops and restaurants, and the Great Smoky Mountain train depot resides right in the heart of it.
Within a 20 minute driving radius of downtown, you have great lakes to swim or canoe, rivers to raft, and hikes to waterfalls. Throw in a brewery, a bookstore, an outdoors store, and good restaurants-all downtown. You just can’t beat it. View this itinerary.
A Knoxville Staycation
Sometimes a "staycation" is the right way to go. The nice thing about Knoxville is that you don 't even need to leave town to have a fantastic family outing. Take advantage of downtown activities, spend a day at Ijams Nature Center, bike the greenways, tour the downtown food scene, or go to the top of Knoxville's infamous local landmark, the Sunsphere. You'll find plenty to do in this fun town. View our Knoxville itinerary.
Feel like adventuring out west to Yellowstone National Park? Perhaps a bucket list trip to Paris or Athens? We've got it covered. You'll find more destinations on our website. Many itineraries are free and all are less than $10.
Our Newest Book!
The North Carolina mountain towns of Asheville, Brevard, and Bryson City provide the perfect combination of outdoor fun, terrific local restaurants and craft breweries, and charming downtowns.
They offer a fantastic family getaway in any season. Enjoy easy scenic hikes, float a river, go mountain biking, try apple picking, pitch a tent, take a train ride, or explore the local shops along Main Street. These North Carolina mountain towns have it all!