A car is best for this area. Public transit operates with limited hours of operation and the area has been allowed to develop so that it is impossible to get around by bike or walking. The local bus service is run by JCT (Johnson City Transit System)  Fare is 75 cents per ride. Transfers are free.Monday through Friday from 6:15 a.m. to 6:15 p.m. (last 30-minute route begins at 5:45 p.m.), and on Saturday from 8:15 a.m. to 5:15 p.m (last 30-minute route begins at 4:45 p.m.). Buses stop one per hour.
Rocky Mount Living History Museum - An 18th century living history open air village. They have people dressed in period clothing demonstrating what life was like at the time. The Museum is Located just north of town, and can be reached by bus on the SILVER LINE. 200 Hyder Hill Rd
Piney Flats, Tennessee
Hands On Regional Museum Kids science and discovery museum. 315 East Main Street Johnson City, Tennessee 37601 (423) 434-HAND (4263)
Gray Fossil Site Run by East Tennessee State University, this is a museum devoted to the recent discoveries since 2000 of fossils from the Miocene period, including red pandas, turtles, tapirs, a rhino and a bear.
The Down Home Founded in 1976, the Down Home has become a mecca for music lovers in Upper East Tennessee and Southwest Virginia. The primary emphasis is on quality music, and the performance atmosphere promotes listening rather than socializing. There is plenty of time for friendly conversation before the show and between sets. With an excellent sound system hung from the ceiling, the club is a favorite of performers as well as listeners. 300 W. Main Street. Johnson City, Tennessee. Beer & Food Available. Cash Only
Antillio's - Greek/Italian/Mediterranean. Good Stuff, moderately priced. They Deliver.
Burger Bar (Inside Doubletree Hotel) - Yea, just go to Five Guy's across the street.
Bello Vita - Italian
Cootie Browns. Idiosyncratic place with an ecletic menu - all very tasty. Arguably the best pizza in JC.edit
Crazy Tomato - Pizza and Italian
Dickey's BBQ - CLOSED. (well....that was quick.)
El Charloais - The best Mexican food in The United States. If you think you might utilize the 'yellow sauce' you might want to consider throwing the toilet paper in the freezer before hand. Don't be stingy, there's plenty to go around.
El Matador - Mexican.
Firehouse - Sit down restaurant with no booze. Should be a sin.
Five Guys - Burger and Fries. Quality.
Freibergs - German Cuisine. Outrageous lunch specials. The front door is really great. Located Downtown
Italian Pizza Pub - Oddly satisfying for being so small, divey. Good deals with ETSU I.D.
Knight's Pizza - A JC Staple. Basically on ETSU's Campus. Great beer selection, good ZA, pickle spears, TVs, patio.
Main Street Pizza - Good pizza and good beer selection. Open late.
Marco's Pizza - This place is actually pretty solid.
Mama Mia's Pizza - Pizza and Italian
Mid City Grill - Open late, the best burger in the state of Tennessee. If you're here and you're sober then you're doing it wrong.
Pal's - Local fast food place. Better than McDonald's.
Peerless - Local steakhouse
Pizza Inn - www.jennycraig.com/1-800-94-jenny
Poor Richards - Local institution serving sandwiches and such.
Red Pig BBQ - meh
Ruby Tuesday's - Only as a last resort.
Sahib - Indian. Lunch Buffet is quality and moderately priced.
Scratch Pizza - Brick oven pizza. Order the "trust pizza" (they decide what to put on it), a Dr. Enuf (JC's local soda), and choose a record from their collection to spin. You won't regret it.
Shoney's - Breakfast buffet. The only place where your server is guaranteed to be more hungover than you.
Simms Pizzeria - NY style pizza
Smokey Bones - This place will do.
Tommy Thai - Killer Thai food, but a little pricey for dinner.
Acoustic Coffeehouse. If you can't wait until next year's Bonnaroo, this place is for you. A pretty laid-back hippie bar. WARNING, don't be fooled by the gaggle of pseudo-attractive, seemingly-intellectual 'bohemian' chicks you might come across here. Rest assured, they're typical Tennesseans who have likely never left the country. (With the exception of a choice few who have visited France/Spain or went on a mission trip somewhere around the Caribbean) Most of these girls just come here for an excuse to wear their sun-dress and head bands. The guys who frequent here never shower, but can likely 'play a bit of banjo.' $8 pitchers on Wednesday nights. Nachos suck. edit
The Battery - Restaurant by day, club/bar by night. Two words: Tapout T-Shirts.
Cahootenany's - Closed. R.I.P. Cahoot's. We won't miss your smell.
Capone's - One of the larger music venues in the Tri-Cities. This place sometimes hosts regional and national acts, but on nights none roll through town, this is where you'll find a large assortment of cheap cover bands singing songs about railroads and cowboy boots. Stay late enough and you're sure to hear a cover of Johnson City's unofficial anthem, "Wagon Wheel." This is when you know it's time to retire for the evening. The back room opens up later for a more 'club' feel. If you care about your dignity avoid this portion.
Holy Taco - decent food and a quiz night on Thursdays. Eclectic crowd.
Label (formerly 112 Downtown) - Restaurant by day, turns into more of a bar/club by night. Pretentious crowd. During the months of April/May it's imperative to avoid this place due to the over abundance of high school prom-goers.
New Beginnings - a gay bar
Numan's - If you're downtown and need to drop a deuce, the upstairs bathroom in this joint is your best bet. Otherwise, avoid it.
Tipton Street Pub - This is the kind of bar that when "Don't Stop Believin" comes on the jukebox everyone reacts as if they've never heard it before. You might run into your fair share of Bros and boat shoes here, but otherwise a pretty cool place.
Peanut's Mecca Cafe - Dive bar
Willow Tree - Half coffee shop, half music room. Similar to The Acoustic Coffee House but not as good of beer selection. Better food for sure. Usually hosts a plethora of local bands.
Carnegie Hotel, 1216 W. State of Franklin Road, ☎ +1-423-979-6400, . A nice hotel, with a very nice bar and restaurant. Claims on their website that they are a revival of the old hotel that once existed- and this might be true in terms of their inspiration- but the hotel building itself is only a few years old.edit
Ramada Limited, 2606 N. Roan St, ☎ +1-432-282-4011, . edit
Carter Family Fold, Hilton, VA. Probably the most interesting destination in the whole area. Old-time and bluegrass music, about an hour away. $7 to get in, concerts every Saturday night.
Rock Creek Camp Ground is a U.S. Forest Service camp ground that is clean and not that far from Johnson City (Erwin, TN); it has bathrooms and swimming pond and trails but is not open year round (closed during winter).