Local Attractions

Enjoy all of the best things to do in Gatlinburg just a short walk or drive from our hotel.

G

atlinburg is a popular vacation resort town surrounded by forest-covered mountains. The destination has so much to offer. It sits at the entrance to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, the most visited park in the United States. The historic downtown area has plenty of shopping, dining and family-friendly activities. Nearby Pigeon Forge is home to Dollywood and The Island, a shopping, dining, and entertainment complex. The Gatlinburg Trolley Stop is onsite with quick and easy transportation all over town.

The Great Smoky Mountains National Park

The National Park straddles the North Carolina and Tennessee border. The Smoky Mountains get their name from the smoky blue mist that surrounds them. The park’s sprawling landscape encompasses lush forests, wildflowers, wildlife, beautiful streams, rivers and waterfalls that appear along the parks 800+ miles of trails. The Great Smoky Mountains National Park is world-renowned for its diversity of plant and wildlife, the beauty of its mountains, and its Southern Appalachian mountain culture. It is America’s most visited national park and located less than 2 miles from our Gatlinburg hotel.

Great Smoky Mountains National Park sign
Aerial view of downtown Gatlinburg from the Skylift

Downtown Gatlinburg

One of the best things to do in Gatlinburg is to head downtown. You will find local attractions, candy kitchens, moonshine distilleries, restaurants and plenty of shopping. Make sure you get the chance to watch the taffy makers pulling the salt water taffy in their storefront windows!

Dollywood

Everyone loves Dolly Parton! Dollywood is a popular park that has something for everyone. Complete with water rides, roller coasters, restaurants, stores, and more than 30 performers a day providing entertainment, people of all ages will love visiting this theme park. The park also features artisans and craftsmen and their unique products and handmade souvenirs.

Little boy watching roller coaster
Anakeesta Firefly Village

Anakeesta

Anakeesta is your one stop for family fun and adventure in Gatlinburg! The Chondola station is just a short walk away at Light #3 (Rocky Waters is at Light #2). You’ll ride the scenic Chondola to the summit of Anakeesta, where you’ll enter Firefly Village. From here, you can browse the shops, grab a bite to eat, or have some fun! There’s a zipline adventure, a canopy walk, a playground, a mountain coaster, and so much more. Whether you want to have fun or just relax, Anakeesta has something for everyone.

Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies

Ripley’s Aquarium is one of the most popular Gatlinburg attractions. It’s within walking distance of our hotel at Light #3 (Rocky Waters is at Light #2) It was voted the number one aquarium in the United States by several renowned travel sites. There is something for everyone to see with more than 350 different species of marine life to explore at the aquarium, including stingrays, giant sea turtles, and seahorses.

Ripley's Aquarium of the Smokies
Hillbilly Golf in Gatlinburg

Hillbilly Golf

Gatlinburg’s famous mini golf attraction is located just across the street from Rocky Waters! Looking for something fun to do after a full day in the park? Hillbilly Golf is the world’s most unusual miniature golf course. You will ride the Incline 300 feet to the mountaintop above the city. There are two 18-hole courses, riddled with mountaineer hazards. The whole family will enjoy this truly unique adventure.

Titanic Museum

The Titanic Museum in Pigeon Forge is a celebration of the ship, its passengers, and its crew. This interactive museum gives visitors the opportunity to touch a real iceberg, walk the hallways and the Grand Staircase, stand on sloping decks, and more. When you first enter the ship, you’ll receive a boarding pass of a passenger or crew member on the Titanic. At the end of your museum visit, you can discover the fate of the person on your boarding pass in the Memorial Room. This unique museum gives guests the opportunity to experience what it was like to be aboard the RMS Titanic. 

Great Smoky Arts & Crafts Community

Explore the 100+ artisan shops of Great Smoky Arts & Crafts Community that are located along an eight-mile loop. Many shops feature the traditional crafts of the region including candle-making, wood carvings, basket weaving, pottery, handmade brooms, dolls, jewelry, and leather work. There are a few restaurants, cafes, a soda fountain and a tea room along the loop.
www.gatlinburgcrafts.com

Ghostwalk of Gatlinburg

Ghostwalk Tours are offered at 9:00 p.m., 10:30 p.m. and midnight with the option of riding or walking. The tour will take you through the streets of Gatlinburg, where you will see many historical sites that are reported to be haunted.   www.ghostwalkofgatlinburg.com

Gatlinburg Farmers Market

The local Farmers Market is open seasonally from mid-May through the first week of October every Saturday from 8:30 a.m. to noon. You will find a great selection of local fruits, vegetables, eggs, honey, meats, baked goods, and crafts, fun activities for the kids and occasionally live music.
www.gatlinburgfarmersmarket.com

Gatlinburg Mountain Coaster

The family-friendly Gatlinburg Mountain Coaster is a unique and fun thrill ride that puts you in the driver’s seat! Rider’s coast down the mountain in single or double rider coaster cars on a silent track. Individual brake handles are used to control speed so you can enjoy the ride, any way you like.
www.gatlinburgmountaincoaster.com

The Island in Pigeon Forge

The Island in Pigeon Forge is a shopping and entertainment complex with more than 60 retail and specialty shops, popular restaurants, rides, games, entertainment, live music and much more. Take in amazing views of the Great Smoky Mountains on the 200-foot-high observation wheel, and make sure to see the The Island Show Fountains, a magical combination of water dance and light, all perfectly choreographed to popular music.
www.islandinpigeonforge.com

Rowdy Bear Mountain

Rowdy Bear Mountain offers a gravity-propelled roller coaster that winds its way through the woods of the Rowdy Bear Mountain. You can also try the Rowdy Bear Mountain Glider, the first of its kind in the world, where riders safely soar through the treetops of Rowdy Bear Mountain.
www.rowdybearcoaster.com

Gatlinburg Sky Lift

Take the sky lift from downtown Gatlinburg to get a bird’s eye view of the town and the mountains. The lift makes a gradual 1,800-foot ascent to the summit of Crockett Mountain, where visitors enjoy exploring the mountain and views.
www.gatlinburgskylift.com

Tanger Outlets

Tanger Outlets Sevierville is a pleasant shopping destination with over 100 top brand-name outlet stores. Early morning and weekdays are the best time to go if you want to avoid heavy crowds.
www.tangeroutlet.com/sevierville