Bend an ear & listen to my version of a really solid Tennessee excursion

Day 2 – Part 2 of my Chattanooga experience!

On Friday, February 25th, Tim and I awoke to the sound of cows mooing in the field right outside of our tiny house window in Dunlap, Tennessee! We made a little coffee and went outside to greet this hair coo and start our day off right!

Friday was our actual five-year wedding anniversary! We exchanged gifts early that morning. I was given this beautiful bamboo tea tumbler, a wooden massager for my legs, and a beautiful leather, personalized recipe notebook.

Five years of marriage symbolizes stability and flexibility – like wood. Wood is the symbol of the commitment at this point in our lives. I had some of my favorite photos of us from our today, our wedding and our honeymoon in Paris transferred to a piece of wood to hang on his office wall. He loved it!

After exchanging gifts, we drove back down Cagle Mountain to Chattanooga and Rock City on Lookout Mountain.

Rock City is one of those attractions that requires you to pre-register for a ticket online, however the ticket is good for the entire day. We got there right before 11 am and began our exploration.

Rock City features massive ancient rock formations, gardens with over 400 native plant species, and breathtaking “See 7 States” panoramic views. Guests can take an unforgettable journey along the Enchanted Trail where each step reveals natural beauty and wonders along the woodland path.

We even got to see the magic of Fairyland Caverns and Mother Goose Village.

The entire experience takes about 2 hours, if you run through it fairy fast. There are restaurants and shops at the beginning/end of the trail and completely worth stopping by.

The hike is easy to moderate. Some areas you might have to step up or squeeze through, but even with my bad knees, I was able to enjoy it fully.

There are several benches along the way for visitors to take a break, if the need arises.

What is the best part about Rock City? The views!!!

Mixed with a little adventure.

After Rock City, we grabbed a quick bite to eat and headed over to the Incline Railway. Again, this attraction requires online ticket purchases before arriving and their times are exact. We went at 1:30 pm.

At the bottom Incline station in St. Elmo, you will find a great collection of unique shops, restaurants, and attractions.

Some of the things you’ll find are microbrewery tours, fresh flowers, homemade candlemaking, unique coffee, indoor climbing wall, fresh-made burritos, outdoor local dining, hand-dipped ice cream, nostalgic clothing or relax with a massage.

What makes the incline railway a must-see is the fact that it is a Funicular Railway. Also known as an inclined plane or cliff railway, a funicular railway normally solves the problem of transporting people up extremely steep slopes. They’ve been used for hundreds of years and are an extraordinary feat of ingenuity.

After the Incline Railway, we made our way around the block to the Naughty Cat Cafe! This was a bucket list item for me! I have always wanted to experience hanging out in a cafe, petting cats and relaxing to good music – and that is exactly what we did!

The funny thing is, I really thought it might be a strip club, up until we pulled up and it was confirmed with that sandwich board sign!

The cost to visit is $15 a person and booking includes a complimentary, non-alcoholic beverage. Beer and baked goods are available for purchase. Walk-ins are welcome if space allows, but reservations are highly recommended. We recommend booking in advance to ensure a spot. The last booking is one hour prior to closing.

According to the website:

Naughty Cat Cafe is one of the largest cat cafes in the world. We serve as a big foster home for our local shelters.
We always have at least 30 adoptable rescue cats hanging out in fancy lounges full of posh furniture, art from around the world, and jazz music. All the cats are up for
adoption and while adoption is the goal it is most certainly not the expectation. Many people just come to enjoy the cats and give them love and attention they might not otherwise receive in the shelter.

While it does say “cafe” in the name, the local health department asks that they not cook with 30 cats running around. They do offer a large selection of baked goods prepared especially for them by a local bakery.They also have organic, locally roasted coffee, hot teas and a host of non-alcoholic drinks as well as over 30 local beers, hard ciders, sours and seltzers.

We had the absolute best time socializing the cats and giving them all of the pets. Please note: This place had ZERO smell and was extremely clean. It was an awesome experience for both of us!

After spending time with the cats, we went shopping at the moon pie store and a few candy shops. For dinner we headed over to Urban Stack for some juicy burgers for our anniversary dinner. That’s right – no fuss, no muss with us!

Finally, we made it back to the farm and our tiny house to visit with the hairy coos!

Tim got a fire going for us and we just relaxed by the fire enjoying the night, knowing we had another big day in Chattanooga for our Saturday!

Stay tuned for our next adventure – this time we will head to a distillery, selfie museum, and a delicious seafood restaurant!

Until then…

Published by nicolesdestinationunknown

Tourism Director * Freelance Writer * Southern * Catholic * Crazy Cat Lady * Wonder Women * Coffee Addict * Traveler * Voracious Reader * Cultural Junkie * *GSD Mom*

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