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Best Places to Propose in Knoxville

The Best Places to Propose in Knoxville

Oh, you know I love a good surprise! Photographing proposals is a seriously good time. Knoxville, Tennessee, is a charming and romantic city that offers a variety of picturesque locations for a perfect proposal. Whether you’re looking for a scenic view of the mountains, a romantic spot by the river, or a cozy setting in the heart of downtown, Knoxville has it all. With its rich history, vibrant culture, and natural beauty, Knoxville is an ideal place to pop the question and create a lasting memory with your significant other. Let’s explore some of the best places to propose in Knoxville that are sure to make your partner say “Yes!”

We were named a local expert by Redfin. Check out the article we were featured in, 8 Fun Facts About Knoxville, TN, to Help You Get to Know the Marble City.

Best Place to Propose in Knoxville Botanical Gardens
Fall Photos at Knoxville Botanical Gardens

Knoxville Botanical Garden and Arboretum

The Knoxville Botanical Gardens is a beautiful, serene public garden. The gardens are situated on 47 acres of land and feature a variety of themed gardens, including a Kitchen Garden, Green Garden, and Dogwood Collection, among others. The location includes walking trails, water features, and a new reception or event venue.

The gardens are a great place to propose in Knoxville if you and your partner enjoy spending time in nature and appreciate beautiful gardens. It offers a peaceful and romantic atmosphere that could make for a memorable and special moment. It’s important to remember that the gardens are a public space, so you may want to plan your proposal when it is less busy (around mid-day or early on the weekends) to ensure privacy and a more intimate setting.

World’s Fair Park

World’s Fair Park is in beautiful downtown Knoxville, providing a picturesque proposal backdrop. Take a romantic stroll through the grounds or enjoy a sunset picnic for an unforgettable moment. It covers 70 acres and features several attractions, including a 266-foot-tall Sunsphere, a man-made lake, and various sculptures and fountains.

The park’s numerous benches, gardens, and green spaces offer plenty of opportunities for romantic and intimate engagement photos after your proposal. Whether you pop the question at the top of the Sunsphere or in a secluded corner of the park, you can create a lasting and memorable moment.

Market Square

Market Square is a popular pedestrian mall and gathering place in downtown Knoxville. It is a vibrant and bustling area with shops, restaurants, and entertainment options. Historic buildings surround the square, and street performers and other events often occur there.

Some people might love the idea of being proposed to in a public space like Market Square, surrounded by the energy and excitement of the city. The Tennessee Theatre on Gay Street is just a street away and is a popular photo spot. Others might prefer a more private or intimate setting. There are plenty of quiet corners and hidden spots in and around the square where you could pop the question, away from the crowds. Alternatively, if you want to go big and publicly display your love, you could propose in the middle of the square!

UT Gardens Proposal Location in Knoxville
Spring Photos at UT Gardens Knoxville

UT Gardens Knoxville

The UT Gardens Knoxville is a beautiful botanical garden on the University of Tennessee campus. It covers about 4 acres and features a variety of garden styles, including a kitchen garden, a water garden, a rock garden, and a sensory garden.

The UT Gardens Knoxville offers a peaceful and picturesque setting, with various beautiful backdrops for your proposal, such as the Rose Garden or the Iris Garden. If you and your partner are nature lovers or appreciate a tranquil and scenic environment, then UT Gardens Knoxville could be an excellent choice.

The gardens hug Neyland Drive and can be busy during travel work hours (8am and 5pm). The last thing you want is a lot of traffic noise while you say your proposal. Select a time close to sunset to secure that intimate, quiet time and beautiful golden light.

Ijams Nature Center

Ijams Nature Center is a 315-acre park in Knoxville, Tennessee, that features a variety of outdoor recreational activities, including hiking trails, biking trails, rock climbing, and paddle sports. The park also offers educational programs and events focused on nature and conservation.

The park has several picturesque spots, including a quarry with turquoise water, a scenic overlook, and a Tennessee Riverwalk.

It’s essential to plan your proposal carefully and consider the time of day, weather, and any potential crowds that may be present. Check Ijam’s Event Calendar before securing a date and time. There are plentiful nature programs that drive visitors to its location. These events occur throughout the year, including guided hikes, educational workshops, and summer camps for kids.

Volunteer Landing

You may know Volunteer Landing as the landing site for the Vol Navy, but it is also one of the great proposal locations. The park is located along the Tennessee River and offers beautiful views.

The park features a paved walking and biking trail that runs along the river, providing opportunities for the perfect proposal photos. There are also several benches and picnic tables located throughout the park.

Volunteer Landing is also home to several restaurants and businesses, including the Volunteer Princess, a luxury yacht that offers dinner cruises and private events on the river. There is yummy food located at Ruth Chris. After a proposal, why not take your fiance to a fancy dinner?

Cherokee Boulevard in Sequoyah Hills Proposal Place
Summer Photos at Cherokee Boulevard at Sequoyah Hills

Cherokee Boulevard at Sequoyah Hills

Cherokee Boulevard is a scenic roadway that runs through the Sequoyah Hills neighborhood. The neighborhood is located along the Tennessee River and is known for its beautiful homes and tree-lined streets.

Cherokee Boulevard is a popular destination for joggers, walkers, and cyclists. It is popular because of its picturesque views of the river and the Great Smoky Mountains. The boulevard is also home to several parks, including Sequoyah Park, Talahi Park, and Cherokee Park, which offer playgrounds, picnic areas, and walking trails.

Cherokee Boulevard or its surrounding parks can be a perfect location for a proposal. With the help of a qualified engagement photographer in Knoxville to capture your proposal, you won’t have to worry about creating a special moment for your fiance.

Melton Hill Park

Melton Hill Park is a beautiful waterfront park in west Knoxville. It spans over 173 acres and is situated along the shores of Melton Hill Lake, a reservoir created by the Melton Hill Dam on the Clinch River.

The park has several picnic areas with tables and grills, making it a great spot for a family outing or group gatherings. A network of trails also offers stunning views of the lake and surrounding scenery. There is also plenty of large, open fields full of auburn tall grass that is the perfect location for a proposal.

The area is a popular weekend location for many outdoor enthusiasts and families looking for a scenic and fun-filled day out. Plan your proposal during a weekday evening to ensure an intimate moment with you and your future spouse.

Meads Quarry

Located just over the river in South Knoxville, is Meads Quarry. The quarry operated from the late 1800s until the mid-1900s. It produced marble for many notable buildings, including the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C. The quarry was named after Ross Mead, who owned the quarry and also served as Knoxville’s mayor.

After the quarry ceased operation, the site was abandoned for several decades. In the 1990s, the City of Knoxville began a redevelopment project to turn the quarry into a park and recreation area. The park opened in 2011 and is now popular for hiking, biking, fishing, and kayaking.

One of the main attractions of Meads Quarry is the paddleboard and kayak rentals available at the park’s waterfront. Visitors can also explore the quarry’s hiking trails, which offer scenic views of the surrounding landscape and remnants of the quarry’s industrial past, such as abandoned machinery and structures.

Norris Dam State Park Proposal Place
Fall Photos at Norris Dam State Park

Norris Dam State Park

Norris Dam State Park is a beautiful state park in Anderson County, just north of Knoxville. It is situated on over 4,000 acres of lush woodlands and rolling hills. This location features a variety of recreational activities such as hiking, camping, fishing, boating, and more.

The centerpiece of this state park is the Norris Dam, which was completed in 1936 and created Norris Lake. The park offers a variety of beautiful backdrops, including lush forests, scenic vistas, and the historic Norris Dam itself. The park’s many hiking trails also provide opportunities for unique and intimate proposal photos.

Some popular locations within the park for a proposal include the Norris Dam overlook, which provides a stunning view of the dam. There is also the River Bluff Trail, and the Watershed Trail, which offers scenic views of the park’s rolling hills and forested areas. If you like this area so much, you can also get married at the Norris Dam Tea Room.

The University of Tennessee Arboretum

The University of Tennessee Arboretum is a 250-acre botanical garden in Oak Ridge. University of Tennessee students manage it, and it serves as a teaching and research facility for its Department of Forestry, Wildlife, and Fisheries.

The arboretum features over 2,500 labeled woody plants, including trees, shrubs, and vines. These plants are arranged in themed gardens and natural areas like the Dogwood Collection, Oak Collection, and Wildflower Meadow. Several hiking trails wind through the arboretum’s habitats, including wetlands, meadows, and forests.

Proposal Location in Knoxville at Cove Lake State Park
Summer Photos at Cove Lake State Park

Cove Lake State Park

Cove Lake State Park is a beautiful state park in Campbell County, Tennessee. The park spans over 673 acres and features a 210-acre lake surrounded by picturesque mountains. It’s a popular destination for outdoor activities such as fishing, boating, hiking, camping, and picnicking.

The state park offers scenic areas perfect for engagement photos, including the lake and its surrounding mountains, picnic areas, pavilions, historic Caryville Flats, and the beautiful Cove Lake Dam. Several hiking trails in the park lead to stunning vistas, such as the Cove Lake Trail and the Cumberland Trail. These trails offer a great opportunity to capture breathtaking photos with a beautiful natural backdrop.

Cove Lake State Park is a great location for proposal photos, especially if you want a scenic outdoor setting. Whether you’re a nature lover or just looking for a beautiful backdrop for your photos, Cove Lake State Park is worth considering.

Downtown Clinton

Downtown Clinton, TN, can be a great location for proposal photos. The area is filled with charming historic buildings, beautiful architecture, and picturesque streetscapes, which can provide a lovely backdrop for your photos.

You can take photos in front of historic landmarks such as the Anderson County Courthouse. There is also the historic Ritz Theater. You can also use the area’s scenic surroundings and natural beauty to capture stunning outdoor shots. There are plenty of options for backdrops, whether you prefer a rustic or urban vibe.

Smoky Mountain Proposal Location Knoxville
Winter Photos at Cades Cove in the Smoky Mountains

The Smoky Mountains

Looking for a mountain option in the great outdoors? The Great Smoky Mountains National Park is just a few hours east of Knoxville. It is always a good option for a proposal. With its stunning views, rich biodiversity, and cultural significance, it’s no wonder why it’s one of the most visited national parks in the country.

One of the most beautiful aspects of the Great Smoky Mountains is its rolling hills and verdant valleys. From the foothills to the mountain peaks, the landscape is a stunning display of greenery and wildlife. The autumn season brings an explosion of color, as the leaves turn red, orange, and gold hues. Snow and ice blanket the landscape in the winter, transforming it into a winter wonderland. Springtime brings an abundance of wildflowers, while summer is perfect for outdoor adventures like hiking, biking, and fishing.

As for proposal photos, the Great Smoky Mountains provide a stunning backdrop for capturing beautiful memories. With its many perfect spots, such as Cades Cove, Newfound Gap, Historic Elkmont, or The Foothills Parkway, there are plenty of opportunities to create beautiful and romantic photos. Whether you’re looking for a serene and peaceful setting or a dramatic and adventurous one, the Great Smoky Mountains have something for you.

Just be sure to hire a Smoky Mountain Permitted Photographer for your proposal. Per the park requirements, photographers with a Commercial Use Authorization are the only photographers allowed to access the park for this shoot. I am familiar with many locations inside its boundaries and can direct you to the perfect spot.

Proposal Photographer

Taking pictures is what I do! As a Knoxville Photographer, I know the best place to propose in Knoxville. Whether you are looking for a location with a great view or something off the beaten path, there is so much that Knoxville can offer. Contact me today to plan your special night!


Natural light + honest photographer for all humans.


Knoxville, Tennessee



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