Museums Walk in Knoxville, Knoxville

Knoxville offers an amazing collection of fascinating museums that highlight the cultural development and history of the region, honoring local achievements in sports, civic development and the arts. Take the following tour to discover some of Knoxville’s best museums.
You can follow this self-guided walking tour to explore the attractions listed below. How it works: download the app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" from iTunes App Store or Google Play to your mobile phone or tablet. The app turns your mobile device into a personal tour guide and its built-in GPS navigation functions guide you from one tour stop to next. The app works offline, so no data plan is needed when traveling abroad.

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Museums Walk in Knoxville Map

Guide Name: Museums Walk in Knoxville
Guide Location: USA » Knoxville (See other walking tours in Knoxville)
Guide Type: Self-guided Walking Tour (Sightseeing)
# of Attractions: 8
Tour Duration: 3 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 7.2 km
Author: Sandra
1
Beck Cultural Exchange Center

1) Beck Cultural Exchange Center

Established in 1975 as the center for African-American heritage and achievements in Eastern Tennessee, the Beck Cultural Exchange Center, located near downtown Knoxville, was named in honor of James G. and Ethel B. Beck. These distinguished members of the city's black community donated money to acquire the property and create this museum dedicated to African-American contributions in printed works, scrapbooks, audio recording, artwork and memorabilia. It is open Tuesday through Saturday from 10:00 am to 6:00 pm.
2
Mabry-Hazen House Museum

2) Mabry-Hazen House Museum (must see)

Located on top of Mabry Hill, the Mabry-Hazen House Museum includes the Civil War Bethel Cemetery. Constructed in 1858, it was the residence for several generations of the Mabry-Hazen family until 1987. This impressive, refined building accommodated Confederate headquarters during the Civil War as a strategic site adjacent to Fort Hill. It has been a listed house museum since 1992, displaying one of the richest original family collections in the United States. Formerly named Pine Hill Cottage, you will find exhibitions of china, silver, crystal and antique furnishings which provide a unique view into the past. Its regular hours, from March to December, are Wednesday through Friday from 11:00 am to 5:00 pm, and Saturday from 10:00 am to 3:00 pm.
3
Old Smoky Railway Museum

3) Old Smoky Railway Museum

The Southern Terminal and platform, built in 1903 in the Neoclassical Revival style, was designed by Frank P. Milburn in downtown Knoxville. Part of the Old Smoky Railway Museum, you will find a rail yard with a preserved steam locomotive and other machines significant to the settlement of the United States. The museum provides a glimpse of life for the pioneers of this region. Train service was stopped in 1970. Exhibits include ones related to the industry’s development and changing seasonal displays.
4
East Tennessee History Center

4) East Tennessee History Center (must see)

Located at the intersection of Gay Street and Clinch Avenue, the former Knoxville Post Office and Customs House, established in the 1870s, now accommodates the East Tennessee History Center. It houses the Historical Society, Historical Museum, the Calvin M. McClung Historical Collection and the Knoxville County Archives. All foundations cooperate to preserve the history and heritage of the region. A non-profit organization, it is committed to collecting city artifacts, educating the public of the city’s history, keeping records of the region’s events, and developing publications, lectures, tours and other educational activities for its guests. You will also find the genealogy department of the Knoxville County Public Library here.
5
William Blount Mansion

5) William Blount Mansion

The William Blount Mansion, included in the National Register of Historic Places in 1966, is owned and operated by the Blount Mansion Association. Committed to the mansion’s preservation and a positive comprehension of national, regional and local history, it was built between 1792 and 1830 as the residence of William Blount, governor of the southwest governorship in the 1790s and signer of the U.S. Constitution. He was also instrumental in the inauguration of Tennessee as the sixteenth state. This graceful wooden building is a frame hall-parlor house with a single bedroom upstairs. The office behind the mansion was used as the capitol from 1792 to 1796. In this museum you will find stunning exhibits of 18th century antiques. It is open Tuesday through Saturday from 9:30 am to 5:00 pm.
6
James White’s Fort

6) James White’s Fort (must see)

This fort was built in 1786 by Knoxville founder James White as the city’s first pioneer settlement. James White was a militia officer who had fought in the American Revolutionary War. Granted 1,000 acres for his service, he built this two-story log house. The trees surrounding the fort have been cut, and gardens and farms were developed on them. James White resided here until 1793. It was refurbished and opened to the public in 1970 to display original artifacts and depict the frontier lifestyle. Hours of operation are Monday through Saturday from 9:30 am to 5:00 pm from April to November, and Monday through Friday from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm from December to March.
7
Women's Basketball Hall of Fame

7) Women's Basketball Hall of Fame (must see)

The Women's Basketball Hall of Fame, situated on the scenic Tennessee River, was established in 1999 in dedication to the history of women’s basketball. This stunning facility features a huge ten ton basketball atop a glass staircase shaped like a hoop and net, and a brick courtyard shaped like a basketball. You will also find an impressive 17-foot statue in the lobby. Exhibiting hundreds of fascinating basketball photographs and other memorabilia, as well as a short informational movie, in the Modern Locker Room Exhibit guests can watch the league’s prominent coaches talking to their teams and enjoy an interactive game of basketball. It is open Monday through Saturday from 11:00 am to 5:00 pm.
8
Frank H. McClung Museum

8) Frank H. McClung Museum (must see)

The Frank H. McClung Museum, featuring exhibitions of the city's archeology, art and history, is located on UT’s Knoxville campus. It is home to fascinating exhibits of natural science, the visual arts, regional and natural history, as well as a large auditorium, laboratories, a library, photo archive, workshop and concomitant facilities. This distinguished facility has an extensive lobby with brick walls and floors made of Tennessee quartzite. It also features a cupola ceiling, fountain and the figure of a dancing girl named the Vine. Admission to the museum is free. It is open Monday through Saturday from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm, and Sunday from 1:00 pm to 5:00 pm.

Walking Tours in Knoxville, Tennessee

Create Your Own Walk in Knoxville

Create Your Own Walk in Knoxville

Creating your own self-guided walk in Knoxville is easy and fun. Choose the city attractions that you want to see and a walk route map will be created just for you. You can even set your hotel as the start point of the walk.
Downtown Knoxville Orientation Walk

Downtown Knoxville Orientation Walk

Knoxville is home to many historic and cultural attractions, places of interest including World’s Fair Park, Market Square, Gay Street, stunning skyscrapers, the Convention Center and more. Take the following tour to become better acquainted with the best sites Knoxville Downtown has to offer.

Tour Duration: 3 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 4.7 km
Knoxville's Coffee Shops

Knoxville's Coffee Shops

If you’re searching for relaxation and a cup of great coffee, Knoxville’s Old Town offers several coffee shops. You can enjoy not only coffee, but also baked goods and perhaps some good conversation. Take the following tour to visit some of Knoxville’s best coffee shops.

Tour Duration: 1 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.8 km
University of Tennessee Walk

University of Tennessee Walk

The University of Tennessee in Knoxville, located in downtown’s west end, draws many visitors to the city. Founded in 1794 as William Blount College, nowadays it covers 550 acres, including over 200 buildings and a faculty of more than 1,400. Take the following tour to discover UTK’s best attractions.

Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.8 km
Nightlife in Knoxville

Nightlife in Knoxville

Knoxville is home to many great bars and clubs to hang out, many of them concentrated in the Old Town district. Take the following tour to discover some of the most vibrant places in the city, including the Sapphire, Hanna's Café, Patrick Sullivan's, Preservation Pub and more.

Tour Duration: 1 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.0 km
Knoxville’s Historic Buildings

Knoxville’s Historic Buildings

Knoxville County is home to nearly 100 listed historic properties and districts, representing the area’s prestigious and rich history. Check out the following tour of the most prominent historic and architectural gems Knoxville has to offer.

Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.8 km
Family Tour in Knoxville

Family Tour in Knoxville

Downtown Knoxville is the best place to take a lovely daytime stroll. The following tour of attractions includes children’s favorites the Candy Factory and Fort Kid and several other family-oriented landmarks and entertainment venues.

Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.0 km

Tips for Exploring City on Foot at Your Own Pace

Whether you are in Knoxville for a quick stopover or have a few days to see the city in more detail, exploring it on foot, at your own pace, is definitely the way to go. Here are some tips for you to save money, see the best Knoxville has to offer, take good care of your feet while walking, and keep your mobile device – your ultimate "work horse" on this trip - well fed and safe.

Taking Care of Your Feet


To ensure ultimate satisfaction from a day of walking around the city as big as Knoxville, it is imperative to take good care of your feet so as to avoid unpleasant things like blisters, cold or overheated soles, itchy, irritated or otherwise damaged (cracked) skin, etc. Luckily, these days there is no shortage of remedies to address (and, ideally, to prevent) these and other potential problems with feet. Among them: Compression Socks, Rechargeable Battery-Powered Thermo Socks for Cold Weather, Foot Repair Cream, Deodorant Powder, Shoes UV Sterilizer, and many more that you may wish to find a place in your travel kit for.

Travel Gadgets for Your Mobile Device


Your mobile phone or tablet will be your work horse on a self-guided walk. They offer tour map, guide you from one attraction to another, and provide informative background for the sights you wish to visit. Therefore it is absolutely essential to plan against unexpected power outages in the wrong place at the wrong time, much as to ensure the safety of your device.

For these and other contingencies, here's the list of useful appliances: Portable Charger/External Battery Pack, Worldwide Travel Charger Adapter, Power Converter for International Travel Adapter, and Mobile Device Leash.