When flying over southeastern Tennessee, you'll spot barn rooftops telling you to "See Rock City."
The legendary barn rooftops make a good point. The panoramic ridge known as Rock City, atop Chattanooga's Lookout Mountain, is a regional treasure. Rock City is home to Lover's Leap, gardens with hundreds of native plants, trails and spectacular sandstone formations. On the inside of the mountain is the magnificent spectacle of Ruby Falls, with a 145-foot waterfall.
Stop to visit Civil War site Point Park. It commemorates the November 1863 “Battle Above the Clouds,” and is preserved as part of the Chattanooga and Chickamauga National Military Park. Nearby, you will glimpse splendid views of the valley, along with the Battles for Chattanooga Electric Map and other Civil War exhibits.
Awe-inspiring views of the area's surrounding mountains, valleys and the city await you from the Incline Railway, eight minutes away from Lookout Mountain. Opened in 1895, the railway is known as “America’s Most Amazing Mile,” the world's steepest passenger railway.
Life on the lake is full of recreational opportunities, especially when the location is 40 miles of Chicamauga Lake shoreline at 1,200-acre Harrison Bay State Park. First developed as a Tennessee Valley Authority recreation demonstration area in the 1930s, "Harrison Bay" refers to the last Cherokee campground.
Campers, boaters, fishermen and picnickers think of Harrison Bay as a getaway facilitated by easy access to the water. The state park has a complete marina facility, with all types of boats and water recreation vehicles allowed. A boat ramp is available to the public, and the Harrison Bay marina accommodates 20- to 60-foot boats, offering 161 covered slips, 28 uncovered slips and four sailboat slips. Harrison Bay features the Jack Nicklaus-designed Bear Trace Golf Course, along with a 4.5-mile loop bike trail, campsites and pavilions, and one of the most complete marina facilities available.
Take a plunge into Booker T. Washington State Park's Olympic-sized swimming pool. Or, take in stunning scenery as you wind through the six-mile mountain biking trail. A top-notch bike trail covers seven miles of lakeside and undeveloped landscapes, maintained by Southern Off-Road Bike Association (SORBA). Booker T. Washington State Park is popular for fishing, swimming, boating and other water sports, along with bird-watching.
Discover Chester Frost County Park, an inviting campground located within a 280-acre lakefront park on a peninsula. The park contains a power boat launch, boat docks and ramps, a swimming beach, fishing piers, group picnic facilities, an indoor pavilion and a developed campground for RV, tent and group camping on the shores of Chickamauga Lake. Operated by Hamilton County, the facility celebrates fishing tournaments, competitive events and the annual Hamilton County Fair.
Rich in history and blessed with scenic beauty, Hamilton County and Chattanooga offers a bounty of cultural and recreational activities as well as a thriving business center. The region is known for friendly locals and natural beauty with its river and mountains.
Examples of 200k Homes
Chattanooga has a free electric shuttle, over 30 LEED-certified buildings and farm-to-table restaurants. It’s making a name for itself as “Gig City,” with the fastest internet in the nation. In Hamilton County, outdoor opportunities abound and USA Today’s ”Best Town Ever Top 10 Best Riverfront.” Chattanooga, Tennessee, is within a day’s drive of one-third of the U.S. population, and within a two-day drive of nearly 80% of the U.S. population.
Popular attractions and activities include the Chattanooga Market and various farmers markets, natural and manmade attractions, walking and bike trails, local shopping, watersports, free music concerts, public art, 4 Bridges Art Festival, Riverbend Music Festival, Wine over Water and more.
Other activities are: boating, paddle sports, fishing, hiking, community gardening, golf, racquet sports, collegiate games, river cruises, Pro Soccer, marathons, national park unit tours, historical groups for native Americans and Civil War. Chattanooga has all of the above, in downtown & surrounding areas, with Lookout Mountain, Signal Mountain, Raccoon Mountain, and the Tennessee River.
Shop at the largest mall in Tennessee, Hamilton Place, and at downtown warehouse row shops; local antique malls, local shops on NorthShore & SouthSide.
For healthcare, count on Chattanooga to have world-class facilities: Memorial, Erlanger Regional & Parkridge are our largest. We have 11 hospitals with 5,459 beds.
Parks offer fantastic outlets for recreation: Harrison Bay State Park; Booker T Washington State Park; Chester Frost Park (County). Downtown city parks include: Coolidge Park & Renaissance Park on the NorthShore. 12-mile RiverWalk from downtown to the TN RiverPark and beyond to the Chickamauga Lake Dam.
Tax & Living Expenses
Recently, Tennessee earned a number-one spot among states considered prime retirement locations in a Bankrate.com study. Ranked by data such as climate, tax rates, cost of living and access to healthcare, Tennessee has a cost of living 9.6% below the national average.
Our state and local tax burden is the third lowest in the nation, with residents enjoying no income tax except on interest and dividends. State sales tax is 7%; 5% for food.
Tennessee has no state property tax. Property taxes are locally determined and collected.
Chattanooga’s median home value is $132,00 with the cost of living at 93/100. The median household income is $43,603 with per capita of $26,024.
Retirees can expand their education by taking courses from one of four area colleges and universities: University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, Chattanooga State Community College, Covenant College, or Southern Adventist University.
Experience Living in Hamilton County
What a lovely, detailed response to my request for information! I wonder if other cities would copy your great initiative in outreach to potential residents!- C. Mathis, from Albuquerque, New Mexico
After many years of stopping in Chattanooga on the way to Florida, Jim and I decided to check out the retirement options. Chattanooga has changed so much, and all for the better. We love the downtown living, walkability, and super friendly people. We are now proud to call Chattanooga home.- Jim and Brenda, previously from Columbus, Ohio
I wanted to take a few moments to let you know how much we appreciate all the efforts of Choose Chattanooga over the last two years. As you know, we have, indeed, chosen Chattanooga as our retirement home; in no small way, this is due to your assistance and support.- Doug and Mimi Hedwig, retired, from New York
Chattanooga was love at first sight for us. My husband and I came here for a nice anniversary weekend and 6 months later, we moved from Alabama to start a new life. Chattanooga has everything we needed and more.- Lori Hart, originally from Jacksonville, AL
Hamilton County can take some of the hassle out of your lifestyle visit. We have arranged a special visitor retirement packet just for you along with a welcome gift. Please contact us for more details.
Discover Tennessee Tour
Tennessee’s array of amenities will please any interest. Whether you enjoy a active lifestyle or prefer a more leisurely pace, Tennessee provides natural beauty, a mild climate, urban conveniences and rural peacefulness.
Contact us for your personal tour of a Retire TN county.