Spring break – Knoxville style

People sitting on rooftop

Photo taken from Pexels

 Things to do, see, and eat in Knoxville over break.

TikTok, Instagram, Snapchat - you name it and there’s a surplus of spring break content filling our timelines. It seems like everyone is going on a trip this year whether it’s to Panama City, Fort Lauderdale, Miami, or even Cabo. 

In reality, many of us aren’t going anywhere and will be staying in Knoxville for the week. FOMO is real but don’t let it get you too down. There are all kinds of things to keep you busy here in town even on a tight college budget.


Want to make an entire day of thrifting? Try visiting all 23 KARM locations in the Knoxville area in one day. If you’re the kind of thrifter who takes their time and looks through every rack, maybe cut it down to fewer stores, but if you’re up to the challenge, hit them all. Just don’t go on a Sunday, they’re closed!

The Knoxville Flea Market will be at Chilhowee Park starting Friday, March 15th through Sunday, March 17th. There will be over 250 vendors selling antiques, jewelry, clothes, and more. Admission and parking is free.

Ijams Nature Center

If the outdoors is where you want to be over break, head over to Ijams Nature Center. They offer hiking, ziplining, rock climbing, biking, and more. You can even go ziplining at night under the stars and through trees covered in sparkling lights.

Tea Tasting

The Spice & Tea Exchange of Knoxville is hosting a Black Tea Tasting Workshop on Tuesday, March 12 at 6:30 pm. For $30 you will learn how to prepare the perfect cup and sample over 10 varieties of teas. 

Ancient Lore Village

Submerse yourself in the whimsical experience of the Ancient Lore Village and pretend you're a mythical character gallivanting through the forest. Reservations to stay on-site are typically booked in advance however they offer a variety of day passes that include: axe throwing, archery, hiking, an audio tour, lunch, and more. 

Sporting Events

The Knoxville Ice Bears will host the Roanoke Rail Yard Dawgs on Saturday, March 9th, and the Fayetteville Marksmen on Saturday, March 15th.

The BaseVOLS have four home games scheduled over break. First, they face a three-game series against Illinois starting Friday, March 8th through Sunday, March 10th. They’re also set to match Eastern Kentucky on Tuesday, March 12th.

Lady Vols Softball is slated to play four home games over spring break as well. On Saturday, March 9th, the Tennessee Invitational continues against Ohio State before the following weekend when the Lady Vols begin SEC play against Missouri for a three-game series. 


Use the time over break to visit Zoo Knoxville and say farewell to the zoo’s last elephant, Tonka, as he will soon leave for an elephant sanctuary in Middle Tennessee. If elephants aren’t your thing they have hundreds of other animals to see and even feed!

Food Options

Can’t decide what to eat? Holly’s Gourmet Market & Cafe on Kingston Pike serves brunch daily from 8 am until 2 pm. With a full breakfast and lunch menu served all day, everyone should find something they like.

Just 30 minutes from campus, Big Ed’s Pizza has been a staple in the Oak Ridge community for 54 years and has a reputation for having the best pizza around. 

If you’re looking for a more unique meal option, book a dinner cruise on the Tennessee Riverboat. You’ll set sail on an authentic paddlewheel boat for two hours while enjoying the view and food. 


Liza Moz offers “paint your own pottery” where you select a piece from their collection, paint it, come back in about two weeks and it’ll be fired and ready to take home. Keep in mind they are closed on Tuesdays. 


If you’d rather embrace the Volunteer Spirit over break there are countless ways to give back to the community. Volunteer East Tennessee is a great resource to see multiple organizations that need volunteers. Some examples include - The Salvation Army, Second Harvest Food Bank, Medic Regional Blood Center, the East TN Kidney Foundation, and Young Williams Animal Shelter.

Regardless of where or how you’re spending spring break make sure to have fun, relax and try something new!