Are you in search of some really unique and fun things to do in Chattanooga with kids?
The “Scenic City” is a popular destination for families because it offers so many activities for kids of all ages.
Whether you are looking for indoor or outdoor activities, this list is full of options for family fun in Chattanooga!
I have composed a list of my kids’ top spots for fun in Chattanooga. Your kids (and you!) are sure to love these unique family attractions!
- Toddler Activities near Downtown Chattanooga
- Fun and Inexpensive Things to Do
- Kid Friendly Attractions
- Best Seasonal Family Activities
Toddler Activities near Downtown Chattanooga
If you are planning to visit the Chattanooga area with toddlers, you will find plenty of fun things to do throughout the city. Below are some of my toddler’s absolute favorite things to do near downtown Chattanooga.
I know you have probably seen the Tennessee Aquarium on every Chattanooga list you have read, and there is a reason for that! The Tennessee Aquarium is a must-see for anyone spending time in the downtown area.
Whenever we have relatives or friends visit from out of town, the aquarium is top on our list of things to do. Kids from toddlers to teens enjoy seeing all of the animals and exhibits on display at the Tennessee Aquarium.
If you are planning to visit with smaller children, you will be pleased to know that both of the buildings (River Journey and Ocean Journey) are completely stroller friendly too!
Since the aquarium sits right on the river in downtown Chattanooga, it has an awesome location for other sightseeing adventures you may have planned.
The courtyard area in front of the aquarium is packed with fun too! There are channels with shallow water streaming through where little ones love to splash and play.
Just make sure to bring a change of clothes if you think your kiddos will need it after! There are also all sorts of restaurants within walking distance to the aquarium no matter what type of food you like.
For a laid back atmosphere close to the aquarium, check out The Blue Plate restaurant. This “Metropolitan Diner” offers a well-rounded menu and a great patio!
You can check out additional recommendations here- 19 Best Places to Eat in Chattanooga with Kids
Creative Discovery Museum
The Creative Discovery Museum is another fun place to spend time with kids. Like the Tennessee Aquarium, it is located downtown within walking distance to many restaurants and attractions.
The Creative Discovery Museum features all sorts of activities that are super fun for kids of any age. The museum also has one of the most elaborate play features in Chattanooga, and the best part is it’s indoors! So, you can enjoy it on rainy days too!
This indoor playground is full of climbing equipment and slides. The Creative Discovery Museum has exhibits for those interested in music, art, design, animals, pretend play….the list goes on and on.
Make sure you check out the dinosaur dig site where kids can dig in the sand to find dinosaur bones!
Chattanooga Zoo at Warner Park
The Chattanooga Zoo is a great place to spend time in the city…..it’s actually one of my personal favorite places!
Your kids will love seeing so many different animals including:
- Komodo Dragon
- snow leopard
- red panda
The zoo is really well laid out and offers so much shade, which makes it a really nice outdoor activity in even the hot summer months. The Chattanooga Zoo offers a petting area where kids can pet and brush goats.
They also have camel rides, train rides, and a carousel. Right next door, you will find an awesome playground too! Make sure you check out the Chattanooga Zoo’s website before your trip. They often have really fun events for the family that are always a blast!
Fun and Inexpensive Things to Do
If you are looking to throw in some cheaper options for your kids on your family vacation in Chattanooa, the following activities are great activities!
Coolidge Park Carousel
Coolidge Park sits right across the river from downtown Chattanooga. You can even use the Walnut Street Bridge to walk across the river from downtown to the North Shore. This bridge is a pedestrian only walkway so you don’t have to worry about vehicles (except bicycles) driving by.
You can do so many fun things at Coolidge Park including renting bicycles, walking along the pathways, and playing ball or throwing a frisbee on the lawn.
Both of my girls are young, and their favorite part of Coolidge Park is definitely the water feature!
There is a huge fountain in the middle with lots of smaller ones popping up all around it. The pavilion with the carousel is right by the fountains and is a favorite for families as well.
The Chattanooga Riverwalk is a super fun (and FREE) place to spend time in the city, This expansive pathway links the downtown Chattanooga area to the popular Nort Shore district.
On the downtown side of the Riverwalk you will find Riverfront Playground, the Tennessee Aquarium, and the Bluff Art District.
Follow the Riverwalk across the Walnut Street Bridge, and you will find yourself in Coolidge Park.
The Riverwalk provides great scenery for those choosing to jog, bike, or stroll along the paths!
Chattanooga Choo Choo
The Chattanooga Choo Choo is a historic hotel in the downtown Chattanooga area. This hotel is really fun to tour as they often host special activities in the courtyard.
One of Chattanooga’s popular winter activities, Ice on the Landing, takes place at the Chattanooga Choo Choo, and families love skating in this festive ice rink.
The Choo Choo is also near some fantastic restaurants including Stir, The Terminal, and Urban Stack!
Kid Friendly Attractions
Incline Railway to Lookout Mountain
One of the biggest draws to Chattanooga is Lookout Mountain. Once you are up there you can totally see why! The views are incredible and there are so many things to see!
We love spending time at Rock City, and our older daughter really enjoys the paths and bridges.
To add more excitement to your visit to Rock City, use the incline railway to get to the top of the mountain. You get some really great photos this way!
Once at Rock City, you have amazing views of Chattanooga and its surrounding areas. There are waterfalls, bridges, and cave like features that make Rock City super fun for kids of all ages.
If your kids love amusement parks, Lake Winnepesaukah is a great place to spend time near Chattanooga. This local park is home to lots of toddler friendly rides and carnival style games.
If you are visiting the area with older kids, Lake Winnepesaukah offers larger rides and roller coasters. In the warmer months, you can enjoy the water park at Lake Winnesaukah.
This is sure to be a hit with any adventure loving kids taking a trip to Chattanooga!
Ruby Falls is a super popular attraction in Chattanooga and is often combined with a trip to Rock City on Lookout Mountain. When visiting Ruby Falls, guests travel down into caverns where they learn about this historic site.
During your tour you will see the massive waterfall, which is known as Ruby Falls. This breathtaking site is a family favorite and draws all kinds of crowds to the Chattanooga area each year.
Best Family Activities in Chattanooga
Chattanooga offers so many unique opportunities for family fun!
No matter your kids’ ages or interest levels, you are bound to find lots of exciting things to do in the area.
If you are planning a trip to Chattanooga with your family, check out these posts for summer and holiday themed fun for kids:
- Best Fall Activities for Kids in Chattanooga
- Best Winter Activities for Kids in Chattanooga
- Best Outdoor Activities for Kids in Chattanooga
What are your favorite things to do in Chattanooga with kids?
Comment below to share!
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