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Driving through Knoxville

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Toronto Ontario
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Driving through Knoxville

will be on my way to Florida in January and I plan to make Knoxville vicinity my stop at night.

What I am looking for are some suggestions as to:

a) a reasonably price hotel to stop at

b) a good, preferably non-chain restaurant to eat at in the same vicinity

c) a mall or such to kill a few hours.

all within easy on-off of I-75

Also any advice on avoiding rush hours etc.

Knoxville, Tennessee
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1. Re: Driving through Knoxville

Welcome to Knoxville!

Your best bet will probably be the West Town Mall. It is exit 380. Easy on and off.

There are tons of restaurants around the area. Copper Cellar is very nice, but there is also Japanese and such.

http://www.coppercellar.com/cappuccinos/

Most of the hotels in the area are kind of old. Howard Johnson's is right across from the mall and next to the state police barracks.. There is also an Extended Stay that is newer. I use to work over there and it was nice.

Extended Stay: 865-694-4178

Howard Johnson's 865-693-8111

Traffic is not great during rush hour. Best to avoid. However, it is not as bad as larger cities. Still, I would avoid between 4 and 6 p.m. Most of downtown Knoxville workers are heading that way after work.

Where are you heading to in Florida? I use to live there...

I've also been to Toronto. Lovely city!

Any more questions, just ask!

Knoxville, TN
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for Interlaken
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2. Re: Driving through Knoxville

My gosh, why would you even recommend the Howard Johnson across from the mall?? In addition to several pedestrians being hit and even killed attempting to cross the street to the mall it has horrible horrible reviews here on tripadvisor...

tripadvisor.com/Hotel_Review-g55138-d97960-R…

Avoid this place at all costs. The Cedar Bluff exit has more hotels such as a Hampton Inn and Holiday Inn Select. There are also lots of restaurants around that area. If you must go to a mall, West Town mall is only a couple of miles away.

Columbia, South...
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3. Re: Driving through Knoxville

I agree with tymynatt on this one. That HoJo is ancient, noisy, and nothing to write home about. Not only that, but all of the road construction around West Town Mall is constantly changing and clogging traffic.

My suggestion would be the Baymont Inn and Suites off Campbell Station road in Farragut (exit 373 from I-40/I-75), or something else in the vicinity of Turkey Creek or Parkside Drive. The Baymont has received good reviews and is very easy to find. The Turkey Creek shopping center is about a mile away and is Knoxville's newest which is still growing. You won't get bored if you spend an evening there! Lots of interesting shops and restaurants, plus a brand-new 18-screen movie theater. This area should be very easy to navigate.

Cedar Bluff is a popular suggestion also, although you will have to drive a bit further to get to good shopping. If you choose to stay in that area, I'd recommend Puleo's Grille for dinner. It's a Knoxville original that specializes in Southern and Italian dishes.

Franklin, TN
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4. Re: Driving through Knoxville

I agree, don't go to the HoJo. The place is a pit. Start @ the Cedar Bluff exit (Hilton Garden Inn, Holiday Inn, brand new Hampton Inn)and work your way west towards Turkey Creek (Springhill Suites). .

As for local places to eat, Italian Market & Grill on Kingston Pike. Olde College Inn West on the corner of Kingston Pike and N. Peters Rd.

http://www.oldcollegeinn.com/

As for avoiding rush hours, usual before and after work traffic, just make sure to take I-640 west to bypass downtown.

Welcome to Tennessee.

Knoxville, Tennessee
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5. Re: Driving through Knoxville

Well, alrighty then!

For the life of me, I can't figure out why I didn't think of Turkey Creek. I think I'm getting senile!

Knoxville, Tennessee
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6. Re: Driving through Knoxville

I suggest downtown Knoxville. There are several hotels in the area, including the Crown Plaza, Hilton, Marriott, Hampton Inn, etc. You will have easy walking access to all the shops on Market Square, the East Tennessee History Museum, the Old City, etc. Rather than try to sum it all up for you, I suggest visiting www.downtownknoxville.org. It is a comprehensive site that covers all of the downtown attractions, as well as shopping, dining and lodging information.

Road construction is ongoing throughout Knoxville, and downtown is full of one-way streets. It can make it a little confusing to get around, but it is well-worth it once you get situated. The Hilton probably has the most central location for downtown visits.

I have to confess: I live downtown so I am a little biased.

Some of my favorite restaurants downtown include the Downtown Brewery (www.downtownbrewery.com), Nama (www.namasushibar.com), Tomato Head (www.tomatohead.com), Chesapeake's (www.chesapeakes.com), and Patrick Sullivan's (www.patricksullivans.com). None of these restaurants are chain restaurants.

I guess it just depends on what you want to see when you stop by Knoxville. I used to live in West Knoxville and I agree that Turkey Creek is a good place to visit for both shopping and dining. West Town Mall is the best traditional mall in Knoxville, but you should know that road construction is especially heavy in that area right now. We were in a car wreck just this week in that area. I don't want to deter you though - construction (for the most part) should be under control by January (construction crews are heavy right now getting ready for shopping crowds right after Thanksgiving).

Back to the downtown area: this is the location of the famous Sunsphere, that was featured in a Simpson's episode (and right smack in the middle of the World's Fair Park from the 1984 World's Fair). Downtown also has the Women's Basketball Hall of Fame.

If you use Mapquest or some other kind of map/directions service, please know that with all of the new road construction, the directions may be a little off. It wouldn't hurt to look at www.knoxville.org before you come to see what directions they suggest to get to your destination. They have a toll-free number listed on their website.

Good Luck!

Columbia, South...
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7. Re: Driving through Knoxville

Nice summary of downtown, KnoxCat. Thanks for admitting that you're biased! I'm that way about the zoo... I defend it to no end... I got married there!

I live close to downtown also and enjoy what it has to offer, but in this case I wouldn't recommend staying there. Not only is it out of the way for them, I would imagine that this person is going to be tired from being cooped up in a car all day and they probably wouldn't want to fool with navigating the one-ways, trying to find someplace to eat dinner (finding the restaurant, then figuring out how to walk there or where to park), and finding something to do at night. Turkey Creek requires very little effort for food and entertainment, whereas downtown could be a bit of work at night for a tired traveler who's never been there before.

Knoxville, Tennessee
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8. Re: Driving through Knoxville

True true. Perhaps they could put Downtown on their list of things to do when they drive back through. :)

9. Re: Driving through Knoxville

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