If you follow us on social (if you’re not, what are you even doing with your life!?) at @visitknoxville you’ll notice we often do themes on certain days of the week.  On Facebook, we share a lot of blog posts (like this one!) and on Instagram, we often do a #muralmonday to showcase all the Knoxville murals.  Today’s post is about #sunspheresunday and how to get some of the shots we see of our beautiful and unique Sunsphere.  If you’re looking for other top Instagrammable spots, check out this post here.

*You’ll notice none of these (with the exception of the header) are taken with a drone.  We wanted to share shots that any visitor – or local – could capture!

1. From beside the fountain at World’s Fair Park

We’ll start off with this beaut that might be easier to get than you think.  Head to the Knoxville Convention Center (KCC), the Clinch Street side.  Face the KCC with the Holiday Inn and Tennessean hotels behind you.  Go to the right of the KCC where there is a large outdoor concrete area used for all kinds of events.  There are some stairs that will take you down by the man-made pool.  In the summer you can see these beautiful crepe myrtles, perfect for framing your shot.

2. From Clinch St. Bridge with pole banner

This one is good if there’s a specific pole banner up for an event you want to commemorate, or you just enjoy the visual of vertical lines.  This one is a bit harder than it looks to capture, because you have to be at the right pole.  If you look close, there are other banners on other poles along the Clinch Street Bridge.  You have to be at the right distance for this to work and look right.


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3. From Embassy Suites

The Embassy Suites claims the highest hotel rooftop bar in Knoxville, the Radius.  Enjoy commanding views of downtown and beyond.  Radius is open to the public, so get a drink, take a selfie, and tip your server.

4. From World’s Fair Park

We like this one because it shows off the fountains in peak summer style with lots of lush foliage.  And, it’s an easy shot because you don’t have to do anything particularly odd to get it.  Simply head to the splash pads in World’s Fair Park and snap away!

5. From Clinch Street Bridge

This one is from the same street as #2 above, but a bit further away from the ‘sphere and totally different angle.  The building is known as the Candy Factory on Clinch Avenue Bridge.  And that reflection is not photoshop! 


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6. A Pinch of Glitter

If you’re looking for a smidgen of the Sunsphere with a heapin' helpin' of sparkle courtesy of Glitterville, this is a good one. Stand on the opposite corner of Jackson and Broadway (you should be across from both Glitterville and Balter Beerworks).  Nighttime obviously is best for this one so you can see all the glowing unicorns and lights in action!

7. From 11th Street Garage

This garage is primarily for UT student commuter parking, but has free parking for nights and weekends.  Circle your way to the top for a view of that Sunsphere! 


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8. Reflection

Nowhere specific to go for shots like these but they are fun, no?  In this one, you can see the reflection of the Tennessean Hotel in it, so this was taken somewhere on Clinch Street.  We love a creative eye!


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9. From the Knoxville Museum of Art

This one is one of our favorites, simply because you not only get a great shot, but you get to enjoy the Knoxville Museum of Art to get it!  This one is also nice because it captures a bit of the city and World’s Fair Park itself.  Bonus – the angle is great for selfies and group shots.  To get it: Visit the Knoxville Museum of Art and take the stairs to the second floor.  Go out on the balcony in between the contemporary gallery and the Higher Grounds gallery.


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10. From Cumberland Avenue

This is another angle right under your nose, that gives a bit more of a nature feel with the waterfall in the foreground.  It’s a common one to pass if you’re coming from downtown and going to a UT football game.  This one is not the best for selfies as the angle to achieve this is pointing up *double chin alert*.  To get it, stand on the north side of Cumberland Avenue, just west of Poplar Street.  You can also head up to the pedestrian bridge that goes from the Poplar Street lot and connects to the Knoxville Convention Center’s rotunda (as seen from this shot). To get it, you’ll stand on the north side of Cumberland Avenue, just west of Poplar Street.


We hope this inspired you to grab your phone or camera and get snappin’.  Follow @visitknoxville on social to see more of what makes this city and beautiful and inspiring place to visit and photograph!