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Layover Ideas Knoxville McGhee Tyson Airport TYS

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Top 5 Layover Ideas for Knoxville McGhee Tyson Airport

If you find yourself with a long layover at Knoxville McGhee Tyson Airport (TYS), don't fret. There's plenty to do within a 12-hour window in and around Knoxville, Tennessee. Here are our top 5 layover ideas:

1. Explore Downtown Knoxville

Just a 20-minute drive from the airport, downtown Knoxville offers a variety of attractions. Visit the Knoxville Museum of Art, or stroll around Market Square for some shopping and local cuisine. For history buffs, the East Tennessee History Center is a must-visit. For more information, check out the Knoxville Chamber.

2. Visit the University of Tennessee

Home to the Volunteers, the University of Tennessee boasts a beautiful campus that's worth a visit. Take a leisurely walk around the campus, visit the McClung Museum of Natural History and Culture, or catch a game at the Neyland Stadium if you're lucky.

3. Take a Trip to the Great Smoky Mountains

If you have enough time, a trip to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park is highly recommended. It's about an hour's drive from the airport. Enjoy the breathtaking views, hiking trails, and wildlife. The Gatlinburg Chamber of Commerce and the Great Smoky Mountain Convention & Visitors Bureau can provide more information.

4. Visit the Oak Ridge

Known as the 'Secret City', Oak Ridge is about a 40-minute drive from the airport. Visit the American Museum of Science and Energy, or the Oak Ridge Art Center. For more details, contact the Oak Ridge Convention and Visitors Bureau.

5. Enjoy the Pigeon Forge

A little further afield, about an hour's drive from the airport, Pigeon Forge offers fun for the whole family. Visit Dollywood, the Titanic Museum, or the Island in Pigeon Forge. For more information, contact the Pigeon Forge Department of Tourism.

Remember, these are just a few of the many things you can do during a layover at Knoxville McGhee Tyson Airport. So, make the most of your time and enjoy exploring!

Helpful Tips & Resources

Need help navigating your way through an unfamiliar airport? Look no further than iFly.com for expert tips and advice. Here are some helpful tips to help you travel stress-free through TYS Airport:

  • Don't let heavy bags slow you down! Make use of our airport's complimentary baggage carts, available for all travelers in the baggage claim area.
  • If you have some time before your departure, relax, grab a bite at one of TYS's restaurants, peruse the shops, or jump on the free internet and surf galore!
  • If you are flying in business or first class (or are a member), check out where the airline club lounges are located.
  • Once you have passed through security, you can use the airport map to find your gate, as well as the various restaurants and shops that are available on your route.
  • Surf to your heart's content. Jump on Knoxville McGhee Tyson airport's internet (free!)
  • For those (dreaded) early-morning flights, consider one of the airport hotels on or near TYS to spend the night prior to your flight. In many cases your parking for the trip's duration is free!
  • Have a flight arriving and want a fast way to get to your destination? Here are a few taxi and limo airport service providers that service the airport.

Nearby Attractions for an Extended Layover

If your layover at Knoxville McGhee Tyson Airport extends beyond 12 hours, there's no need to worry. You have the opportunity to explore more of what the Knoxville area has to offer. Here are some activities that you can do if you have 12-48 hours to spend:

1. Discover the Beauty of Nashville

Nashville, known as Music City, is a three-hour drive from the airport. Here you can explore the Country Music Hall of Fame, enjoy a live performance at the Grand Ole Opry, or explore the historic Ryman Auditorium. Nashville also offers a great culinary scene and vibrant nightlife.

2. Explore Chattanooga's Attractions

Just under two hours drive from the airport, Chattanooga offers a range of attractions. Visit the Tennessee Aquarium, explore the beautiful Ruby Falls, or take a ride on the Lookout Mountain Incline Railway. The city also offers a vibrant downtown area with shopping, dining, and entertainment.

3. Visit the Historic Town of Jonesborough

Known as Tennessee's oldest town, Jonesborough is just under two hours drive from the airport. Here you can enjoy historic sites, local shops, and unique dining experiences. Don't forget to visit the Jonesborough Repertory Theatre for a local performance.

4. Enjoy the Scenery of Asheville, North Carolina

A two-hour drive from the airport will take you to Asheville, North Carolina. Known for its vibrant arts scene and historic architecture, Asheville offers a range of attractions. Visit the historic Biltmore Estate, explore the beautiful Blue Ridge Parkway, or enjoy local craft beer at one of the many breweries.

5. Experience the Thrills of Dollywood

If you didn't get a chance to visit Dollywood during your shorter layover, an extended layover gives you plenty of time to explore this famed amusement park. Enjoy thrilling rides, live performances, and a taste of Southern culture.

These are just a few of the many attractions that can be explored during an extended layover at Knoxville McGhee Tyson Airport. So, take advantage of your time and make your layover an adventure!

Updated on: November 22, 2023