Monday, August 10, 2009

Favorite Destination: Chattanooga, Tennessee

The beautiful Tennessee River
This is our fourth year boating in the deep South. My family finally came to visit us in Tennessee. On a road trip. Seven adults, two cars, driving all the way from Philadelphia. In five days. Mind you, it's a twelve hours drive, not including rest stops. And of course they wanted to see everything. They cannot fathom coming to Tennessee and not visit Graceland. Oh no! Not knowing that Tennessee is a state so wide it borders seven other states, and Memphis is at the other end of the state. My sister bribed us by offering to pay for all our admission tickets to Graceland. That's when I gave in. Because Memphis is also my favorite destination in Tennessee.

First stop was Chattanooga, where Mai Thai is docked. We showed them the marina grounds, and after a fellow angler caught a largemouth Bass, they hastily looked for some fishing rods and spent two hours fishing on the docks. Next day, we went to Rembrandt's Coffeehouse for lunch. Located in the Bluff View Arts District, in a European-style setting, the cafe is surrounded by art galleries as well as a sculpture garden. Its sandwiches, coffee and delectable desserts are just fabulous. We walked off our lunch exploring the area - the Walnut Street pedestrian bridge and downtown - all the while admiring the waterfront and the scenic Tennessee River.

Point Park on Lookout Mountain
Next stop was the Chattanooga Choo-Choo, a renowned landmark of the South. The 1909 terminal station had been turned into the Holiday Inn, and you can sleep in an authentic railcar! How cool is that? In the late afternoon, we drove up to Lookout Mountain, widely known for its many unusual geological features, of which the most famous are Ruby Falls and Rock City. Unfortunately, we only had time for Chickamauga-Chattanooga National Military Park (Point Park on Lookout Mountain), where the battle for Chattanooga was fought during the Civil War.

Did I mention that almost every boater here has a grill or a smoker? How can we not end the evening with a good ole southern barbecue? So while some were trying to catch a fish or two, the rest of us were grilling boudin (New Orleans-style sausage with rice), baby-back ribs (marinated in Lee Kum Kee's Korean BBQ sauce) and pork chops, marinated in Teriyaki sauce. We complemented our dinner with salad, sweet corn, and cool refreshing tapioca pearls with cantaloupe (recipe courtesy of food blog Steamy Kitchen. Thanks, Jaden!)

Stay tuned for part 2 - Nashville
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Exploring Chattanooga, Tennessee A Slice of Paris in Philadelphia Favorite Destination: Memphis, Tennessee


  1. Hi Eileen,
    I like the pictures you post but could you include the location and description too. Was the bird a Blue Heron in your 8/2 posting?

    What is weather like in Tenn around this time? Its been about 95 here in NJ.

  2. Hi Soo Wei!
    Makes me want to do some wandering too! Hmm... got to save up some more US bucks to see you guys again. Maybe spend some time fishing as part of the trip itinerary?

  3. Thanks for reading, y'all! The mountains and roads of this part of Tennessee do remind us of Malaysia. Only thing about fishing is that it requires a lot of time and patience!