Spring break is fast approaching and nothing says vacation like a family road trip down to Florida. All that separates you from Walt Disney World, beaches and sunshine is about 900 miles. Looking for some stops on the way down? We did some research to find some of the best “detours” along I-75. From playgrounds to unique landmarks and big cities to underground caverns, we hope to help make this your best road trip yet!
One of the best ways to break up any road trip is to take in some new cities. Below are 6 of the biggest cities you will find on your drive down to Florida.
Stretch your legs at World’s Fair Park or if it is warm enough, play in the splash pad. Take a long stop and visit the Zoo or the Muse Knoxville. Dive into history at James White Fort or Mabry-Hazen House Museum, or simply stop for something to eat in Old City.
This mountain town and vacation area in eastern Tennessee is the home of the famous Dollywood. A year-round family-friendly vacation destination, Pigeon Forge is filled with fun activities. From thrilling attractions and award-winning shows to countless options for dining, shopping and lodging, it’s easy to find something to do here!
Gatlinburg, a mountain town in eastern Tennessee, is known as a gateway to the roughly 520,000-acre Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Many of its key attractions offer sweeping views of the neighboring park, including the 407-ft. Space Needle observation tower and the Sky Lift, a 2.1-mile aerial cable car that journeys from Downtown to the popular amusement park and ski resort Ober Gatlinburg.
Set along the Tennessee River in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains, Chattanooga is a great place to stop. Whether it’s giraffes or penguins, science or trains, scenic views, or underground waterfalls, you are sure to find something for the entire family!
This dynamic city has something for every tot, tween, teen, and adult to enjoy. Delight in under-the-sea adventures at Georgia Aquarium, quench your thirst in the tasting room at World of Coca-Cola, or enjoy a memory-building experience at LEGOLAND Discovery Center. Whether it’s indoors or out, theme parks or puppets, explore some of the best things to do with kids in Atlanta.
Congratulations! You made it to Florida — no matter your destination, Jacksonville is a great stop to finish out the last leg off your trip. Praising its beaches, parks, family-friendly food scene and affordable hotel rates, Lonely Planet ranks Jacksonville on its world list of “10 Best Value Destinations.”
Parks & Playgrounds
Cumberland Falls State Resort Park
7351 Hwy 90, Corbin, KY 40701 – 13.5 miles off route
Ashley Nicole Dream Playground
620 Winona St, Knoxville, TN 37917 – 1.2 miles off route
Smoky Mountain National Park
107 Park Headquarters Rd, Gatlinburg, TN 37738 – hour detour
917 McFee Rd, Farragut, TN 37934 – 6 miles off route
1414 Gadd Rd, Hixson, TN 37343 – 0.6 miles off route
2124 Shepherd Rd, Chattanooga, TN 37421 – 0.5 mile off route
Stone Mountain Park
1000 Robert E Lee Blvd, Stone Mountain, GA 30083 – 2 miles off route
High Falls State Park
76 High Falls Park Dr, Jackson, GA 30233 – 2.5 miles off route
Reed Bingham State Park
542 Reed Bingham Rd, Adel, GA – 6.5 miles off route
825 Cavern Rd, Townsend, TN 37882 – 20 miles off route
Known as the “Greatest Site Under the Smokies” these are the highest rating Cave or Cavern of the Eastern United States. You will find the “BigRoom” on one end of the tour that could almost fit a football stadium inside it. On the other half of the tour you get to view “SilverFalls”. It falls 210 feet from top to bottom and the tallest subterranean waterfall in the Eastern US . Millions of formations are viewed along the 1.25 mile round trip adventure.
140 Lost Sea Rd, Sweetwater, TN 37874 – 7 miles off route
Your Lost Sea adventure begins with a guided tour of the caverns. This involves a ¾ mile round-trip walk on wide sloping pathways. While touring the caverns and underground lake guides will tell of the cavern’s exciting and colorful history. They will also explain the fascinating geological development of the immense cavern rooms and rare formations. At the bottom of the cave you will take a boat ride on The Lost Sea, America’s Largest Underground Lake.
1720 South Scenic Hwy Chattanooga, TN 37409 – 3 miles off route
Journey deep inside historic Lookout Mountain to see the tallest and deepest underground waterfall open to the public in the United States! Descend 260 feet by glass-front elevator to explore ancient formations along the cavern trail to see the thundering falls.
1 Broad St, Chattanooga, TN 37402 – 2 miles off route
From the mountains to the deep seas, you can explore the world in one amazing place right off the highway at the Tennessee Aquarium. With a recommended time of two hours to spend, this aquarium in downtown Chattanooga is a great opportunity to get out of the car.
121 Baker Street NW Atlanta, GA 30313 – 0.5 mile off route
Experience the world’s most famous beverage brand like never before. See the vault that houses the secret formula for Coca-Cola, get a behind-the-scenes look at the bottling process, view hundreds of artifacts and take a trip around the globe with just your taste buds as you taste more than 100 beverages.
100 Tellus Drive Cartersville, GA 30120 – 1.1 miles off route
With four galleries, a digital planetarium and a solar house, the Tellus Science Museum provides an experience out of this world. Catch a planetarium show, dig for fossils and gems to take home, stand under a T-rex or experience space next to a full-size replica of the Wright brothers flyer.
Unique & Wacky
Birthplace of Kentucky Fried Chicken
1002 W. Dixie Hwy, Corbin, KY
Big Dragon Statue
306 John McGhee Blvd, Caryville, TN
The Big Chicken
12 Cobb Pkwy N., Marietta, GA
Allman Brothers Band Museum
2321 Vineville Ave., Macon, GA
Big Peach Orb on a Pole
311 Hwy 49 N., Byron, GA
Confederate Nuclear Missile
1815 E 16th Ave .(near), Cordele, GA
World’s Largest Peanut
Sylvia Dr., Ashburn, GA