Nestled in the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains, Knoxville retains its Appalachian heritage while welcoming a melting pot of modern tastes and global cultures. Whether you’re interested in renting apartments in Knoxville because you’ve heard about its designation as “America’s Most Romantic City,” because you can’t get enough of the champion Lady Vols, or to take advantage of its rich employment opportunities, Knoxville has a wealth of apartment choices in both the downtown and surrounding areas.
With its roots in the Revolutionary War, present-day Knoxville grew outward from White’s Fort, the settlement established by James White in 1786. In part because of its access to the Tennessee River, the settlement was designated as Tennessee’s first capital in 1791, at which point it was renamed Knoxville, after General Washington’s secretary of war, Henry Knox. After the Civil War, Knoxville’s economy boomed as a result of its being centrally located for trading, as well as for its iron, marble and textile industries.
In many ways, Knoxville is perfectly situated when it comes to weather advantages. Its higher elevation provides Knoxville with cooler summers than many other southern cities experience, while it still enjoys relatively snow-free winters. The area’s climate also offers mild springs and crisp fall days, rounding out the four distinct seasons.
Getting Around Knoxville
Interstates 40 , 75, and 275 smoothly connect Knoxville’s neighborhoods to one another, as well as to the rest of the state. A major airport, McGhee Tyson Airport, is located just south of Knoxville, and hosts several major airlines.
Commuting in Knoxville
Mass transit options are plentiful for those who don’t have cars. Knoxville Area Transit (KAT) connects neighborhoods with the downtown areas, the University of Tennessee, and major shopping plazas. KAT includes fleets of trolleys and busses, both traditional and for those with special needs. The city also offers over 86 miles of paved trails set aside for walkers and bikers.
As a major media market, Knoxville is home to affiliate stations of all the major networks, as well as public television and several radio stations, including WIVK, featuring country music, and the talk radio outlet WCYQ. The Knoxville News Sentinel is the city’s major daily newspaper, but several other newspapers and magazines cover Knoxville, including the weekly independent newspaper Knoxville Mercury, and the Knoxville Business Journal.
Along with the benefits of life in Knoxville apartments with its mild climate, sophisticated transit system and wealth of local media, colorful, cultural Knoxville draws residents from all parts of the country, live in its unique neighborhoods, riverfront benefits and Smoky Mountain flavor.
Perhaps the most recognizable landmark in the Knoxville skyline is the Sunsphere, a 266-foot tower built for the 1982 World’s Fair. It currently boasts observation decks and lounges, all with one-of-a-kind views. The Sunsphere is surrounded by World’s Fair Park, a popular gathering place filled with gardens and fountains. The historic Market Square is a mecca for shopping and dining, with its massive courtyard hosting a number of festivals and regular farmer’s markets throughout the year. University of Tennessee's main campus, with historic and modern buildings, is spread out over an expansive 500-acre campus. Knoxville’s past is vibrantly alive in its landmark Tennessee Theater, a beautifully restored 1920s theater that hosts concerts and shows.
Things to do in Knoxville
" Knoxville residents not only supports a thriving bluegrass scene, but also flock to both the Knoxville Symphony Orchestra and the Knoxville Opera. In addition, Knoxville was voted one of the ""20 Most Rock & Roll towns in the U.S.” Other attractions for those both living in and visiting Knoxville include the Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame -- an appropriate venue, considering that Knoxville’s University of Tennessee is the home of the famous Lady Volunteers. Residents also point with pride to historic Gay Street in the downtown area, as well as the Knoxville Museum of Art, and the Turkey Creek complex, a three-mile stretch of malls, shopping centers, entertainment venues and eateries."
Knoxville is home to the largest Labor Day fireworks show in the country, known as Boomsday. Soon after, the festival known as music festival Autumn on the Square happens in Market Square. Springtime brings the Dogwood Arts Festival, along with an opera celebration, the Rossini Festival. In June, the Kuumba Festival showcases the art and music of the area’s vibrant African American community.
Knoxville Vacation spots
If you’re in the mood for a day trip, you’ll find plenty of attractions within a few hours’ drive from Knoxville, including the country music mecca, Nashville. Even closer is the Smoky Mountain region, where you can camp, raft and explore caves and wildflower gardens. The Smokies are also the home of the charming town of Gatlinburg, as well as Dolly Parton’s legendary theme park, Dollywood.
Where to move in Knoxville
Given Knoxville’s seamless blending of traditional tastes with cutting-edge sensibilities, it’s not surprising there’s a special neighborhood for everyone seeking great Knoxville apartment living in the area. If you’re craving funky, loft apartments in Knoxville's northeast quadrant - the Old City area -- is the place to be. You’ll also find apartments in the North Hills section, which features mid-century architecture and extensive gardens. To the east, rental opportunities in the Holston Hills area neighborhood offer wide streets, lush trees and golf courses. Sequoyah Hills, in the western section of Knoxville, is one of the area’s more upscale neighborhoods in which to rent an apartment, and also offers proximity to the extensive shopping and entertainment of Turkey Creek. Island Home, a neighborhood in Knoxville’s southern quadrant, is among the more rural sections, and is bordered by nature centers and hiking trails.