Kingsport, located in the northeastern tip of Tennessee bordering Virginia, is perched at the spot where the north and south forks of the Holston River flow together. History, commerce and recreation are tied to this town's unique location (once dubbed King's Port). The town (together with Johnson City and Bristol) is part of the Tri-Cities metropolitan area.
The Cherokee Great Indian War Trail ran through here and settlers stopped to build boats along the riverside for the journey westward. Later, stagecoaches stopped here to change horses at the Exchange Place, now an 1850s restored living history farm.
U.S. presidents stopped at the 1802 Netherland Inn, a stop on the Great Stage Road. The restored three-story inn is open to touring. A relocated log cabin behind the inn (now a children's museum) was once home to Daniel Boone. Visitors can follow the Daniel Boone Wilderness Trail beginning at the inn and ending in Cumberland, KY.
Today, Kingsport is known for its recreation opportunities. Warrior's Path State Park offers fishing, paddleboats, camping and golf plus hiking trails along the Holston River while Boone Dam Reservation offers boating and swimming on the man-made Boone Lake. Bays Mountain Park & Planetarium features a nature preserve, planetarium and observatory.
Two art galleries are located in the downtown: DKA Gallery in the old Gem Theatre and Up Against the Wall Gallery, one of the largest in the state. Dining options range from dinner at Harmony Grocery, an old market, to drive-through hamburgers at locally-owned Pal's, complete with gigantic hamburger, hotdog and milkshake atop each location.
Kingsport is located in the tip of northeastern Tennessee, just over the Virginia border about 90 minutes northeast of Knoxville off I-81 on Hwy. 11W.