Day 104 – Atlanta to Chattanooga – Choo Choo!

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We checked into the Days Inn in Chattanooga after a short-ish trip from Atlanta – a very green trip though! In reality we could have easily made it to Nashville in one day, but we decided to break it up and stay over in Chattanooga. We were staying quite close to downtown, but the town has a free shuttle service so we made use of that and went to the former Chattanooga railway station which is now operating as a hotel for our first stop. Chattanooga was made famous by the Glen Miller song Chattanooga Choo Choo in 1941, which is wayyy before my time, but it still seems to draw tourists, like us. The area around the hotel is kind of weird in that there are quite a lot of derelict looking old buildings, interspersed with a few nice looking bars and restaurants. The American obsession with craft beer pubs is very clear to see here as well! We walked around for a bit and I especially like the way they’ve transformed the platforms with nice fountains and flowers.
As there isn’t too much else to see in the area we took the shuttle back to the downtown area and got out at the aquarium. From there we covered the very walkable town very quickly by walking along the river to the art area and the Hunter Museum of American Art, and back along Broad Street towards our hotel. It was Sunday and the town had that typical Sunday feel about it, with quite a few coffee shops and restaurants shut, and people walking around and taking their kids to the various museums and other activities – quite a nice and relaxed feeling. We found The Bluewater Grill that was open and had a drink there – they have a nice menu but we decided to not eat there and walked on. The pizza place I’d been eyeing up to eat in was shut so we ended up in a BBQ place (Sticky Fingers) where Brian had a burger and I had some smoked chicken wings and ribs – of which I couldn’t even eat nearly half of course. My food came with some very good mac & cheese and deep fried corn on the cob, not battered this time, and both the side dishes were very good. I’ve become so used to asking for a ‘box’ in America and being able to take away my leftovers that I more or less order enough to be able to take some away, I’m sure along with most Americans! It really is the norm here and you rarely see a table of people leaving without at least one person taking away a box of food. In fact, sometimes it gets a bit ridiculous as I’ve seen a woman put about 2 french fries into a box to take away the other day!
From the BBQ place we wandered on down and had a couple of drinks on the roof terrace of The Pickle Barrel and watched the sun set before going back to the motel – it is actually nice to sit outside in these parts as it cools down enough to make it pleasant! I quite liked Chattanooga; it may not be somewhere you’d want to spend more than a day or two but it had a very pleasant feel about it and there’s a big range of places to eat and drink, making it ideal for a quick visit.

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