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While family vacations are always fun, sometimes, you just need time alone as a couple. Tennessee has more than its fair share of romantic cities and getaways - according to a recent press release from Amazon.com, the state is home to three of America's top 20 most romantic cities, and who doesn't want a little romance in their couples retreat? So here goes, the top 10 Tennessee romantic getaways:
Theatrical Escapes in Knoxville
Given the top spot by Amazon for the second year in a row, Knoxville is a standout among great Tennessee romantic getaways. Here you can stroll along the Tennessee River hand in hand and enjoy the morning or sunset vistas of the Smoky Mountains. The allure of this green location is hard to beat, yet this city is also home to a number of big city amenities. Where else can you spend the morning hiking and then check out a world-class performance at the opera at night? Speaking of live performance, any couple who adores the performing arts will love a getaway here. WDVX, the local radio station, broadcasts live weekday bluegrass concerts, while the Knoxville Opera Company, the Historic Tennessee Theatre and the Bijou Theatre provide both contemporary and classic shows that delight all tastes in some of the most awesome structures in the country. A former vaudeville theatre, the Bijou today hosts local jazz and singing performances, as well as local musical theater in addition to its hosting several big time stars in the music industry, as part of it's commitment to the cultural of East Tennessee. The Historic Tennessee Theatre has been everything from a cinema to a wedding venue in its past, but today it is well known for its performances by live musicians in popular music, as well as hosting dance and drama exhibitions. Book a Dandridge rental nearby for your stay!
Wineries and the Smokies in Gatlinburg
Gatlinburg, according to Frommer's, is the second most popular place to get married in the United States, and after you've come for a visit, you'll see why. For nature lovers, there's no place that screams romance more than the Smoky Mountains, and this town sits right in its heart. Here, you two can enjoy a day of horseback riding along the backtrails of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, where spring blooms, summer sunshine and fall color make this a great place to visit nearly year-round. If you're viticulture-curious, head to one of many area wineries or vineyards along the Rocky Top Wine Trail. You can enjoy sweet, fruity and dry varieties from five different wineries, all within a cool 12 miles. Sugarland Cellars is located in town, and offers full tours and complimentary tastings to all guests. Conveniently located at the entrance to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Sugarland Cellars is known for its sweet and semi-sweet wines, so feel free to drink your fair share of Cherry Kee, Mountain Laurel and Martha Jane Rose.
Located just a few miles south of Nashville, Radnor Lake is a great getaway for couples living in the city or those who are coming from a state (or two) away. Nature lovers can let their worries melt away with the 1,200 acres of beautiful natural escapes, which includes the pristine lake and miles of undulating ridges. All hiking trails here are for day use only, so plan on going on a few different trails and enjoying the local wildlife, including friendly deer and turkeys. Radnor is known for its diverse resident flora and fauna, including aromatic spicebush, vibrant tulip poplars and beautiful sourwood and hickory trees. If you are visiting the area during the spring, prepare to feel like a pair of nature gods - the wildflowers, when in bloom, create a rich landscape of green, blue, yellow and pink buds. Best of all, if you ever feel the urge for some city amenities, the sights and sounds of Nashville are just a quick car ride away.
Wildlife in Chattanooga
Chattanooga is a great place for a family getaway, but the adult fun found here is just as charming. Nestled in a valley that's surrounded by seemingly endless hillsides, just being in this small city is often enough to help couples ease the worries they have back home. Of course, once you've pulled yourself away from the vistas for long enough, you can enjoy some of the great sights here, many of which include the city's non-human residents.
Is there anything that releases more of an "awe" factor than adorable sea life? The Tennessee Aquarium is sure to rekindle any flames in your relationship and help draw you closer to one another. Watch the cute penguin couples (they pick a mate for life, you know), or maybe you'll catch a pair of flirting river otters. Even if you're both just animal nuts, you'll have a great time here.