Are you planning a visit to the Smoky Mountains? Great choice! The Smoky Mountains are full of adventure and wonders, making them one of America’s most popular tourist spots. Whether you’re seeking a weekend getaway or an extended vacation destination, there’s no shortage of things to do while visiting this beautiful area.
From mountaintop views, cascading waterfalls, charming towns, and plenty of outdoor activities, here are some of the top attractions and activities you won’t miss when exploring the majestic Smokys.
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Visiting Dollywood is one of the most sought-after experiences for visitors to the Smoky Mountains. This thriving theme park features thrilling roller coasters, big-name entertainment, and a variety of shows that will keep you entertained all day long.
Also, don’t forget to try some delicious Southern-style cooking while you’re there – Dollywood has some pretty tasty treats!
Dollywood also features Flower & Food Festival, usually held in May. And if you are traveling with family and friends, don’t forget to check out the family-friendly attractions such as Splash Country Water Park, the famous Wildwood Grove, and Mystic Mountain.
- Go Shopping:
Shopping in the Smoky Mountains is one of the most exciting experiences. The Ogle Brothers General Store is the best Smoky Mountain general store as it offers a variety of souvenirs, clothing, and other goods you won’t find anywhere else. So this store is worth visiting whether you’re looking for a unique gift or new gear.
- Great Smoky Mountains National Park:
If you’re looking for an outdoor adventure, head to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. This park is home to various trails, views, and wildlife you won’t find anywhere else. Hike or bike along the trails, explore the variety of fish-filled streams and waterfalls, or sit back and take in the beautiful views of the mountains.
The park also offers plenty of campgrounds for those who want to stay longer and explore more. With various camping sites and campfire experiences, you will have a fantastic time in the Smokys.
Anakeesta started as a shopping and dining destination in the Smoky Mountains but has become one of the most-visited attractions. This mountaintop village features a variety of attractions, especially suited for families. From a canopy walk to a zip-line tour and a mountain coaster, you will have an unforgettable experience.
Anakeesta also features a beautiful firefly village and a magnificent view of the Smoky Mountains. Don’t forget to take some photos at their observation tower! It gives you a 360 view of the surrounding area.
- Stay in a Cabin:
Consider staying in a cozy cabin to get the most out of your Smoky Mountain experience. Whether you rent a cabin for a weekend or an entire week, you will find the perfect cabin for your needs. From rustic cabins in the woods to cozy lakeside retreats, there are plenty of Smoky Mountain cabins to choose from. Plus, you can take advantage of the amenities such as hot tubs, outdoor grills, and fireplaces.
Some luxurious cabins offer game rooms, home theaters, and private swimming pools. If you are with your loved ones, find a cabin with beautiful views and plenty of amenities to make your stay even more special.
- See a Show:
The Smokys has plenty of entertainment for the whole family. Catch a show at Dollywood, the Great Smoky Mountain Murder Mystery Dinner Theatre, or enjoy a live performance from a local band in one of the many pubs and bars.
Dolly Parton’s Stampede Dinner Attraction is another beautiful experience you won’t miss. Enjoy a delicious four-course meal while watching an incredible show with horses, music, dancing, and various stunts.
The Smokys offer an array of performances for every taste, ensuring everyone can enjoy the entertainment.
- Visit The Wax Museum:
The Wax Museum of the Smokys is a great place to visit while in the area. Here you can take pictures with life-like wax figures of your favorite celebrities such as Johnny Depp, Brad Pitt, and Taylor Swift.
The museum also features wax figures of celebrities from the past, including Elvis Presley, Marilyn Monroe, and more. The wax museum is an exciting way to learn about celebrities’ history and lives in a fun and interactive way. Plus, the museum is a great way to make some incredible memories that you won’t soon forget!
- Explore Historic Towns:
The towns surrounding the Smoky Mountains are full of charm and history. Whether you’re exploring Gatlinburg or Pigeon Forge, these towns offer plenty of things to do for the whole family.
For a more laid-back experience, drive through Pigeon Forge and explore all the local attractions or ride on the Great Smoky Mountains Railroad. If you’re looking for more excitement, head to Gatlinburg and explore the world-famous Ober Gatlinburg, an amusement park and ski resort.
- Take a Scenic Drive:
If you’re looking for a more relaxing way to explore the area, take a scenic drive. The roads around the Smoky Mountains wind through forests, valleys, and mountain passes. With plenty of scenic lookouts and roadside stands, this is the perfect way to take in the area’s beauty.
However, be sure to watch out for wildlife that may be crossing the road as you drive. Kids will especially love the chance to spot a bear or wild turkey.
- Visit The Titanic Museum:
The Titanic Museum is a must-see attraction in the Smokys. This museum honors the people who lost their lives aboard the Titanic and is filled with interactive exhibits, artifacts, and stories.
You can also tour the museum’s replica of the ship and explore the many displays that tell the captivating story of the ill-fated voyage. Finally, when you enter the ship’s main grand staircase, you can leave your mark with a personalized tile. That will be a great way to commemorate your visit to the Titanic Museum.
- Rafting & Kayaking:
The Smoky Mountains offer a few of the most amazing whitewater rafting and kayaking experiences. There are a variety of rivers and streams that provide thrills for both beginners and experienced paddlers.
Float down the calm waters of the Little Pigeon River, or take a journey down the rapids of the Nolichucky. The Smokys has something to offer, no matter what type of adventure you’re looking for.
The Great Smoky Mountains are beautiful and welcoming, no matter what time of year you visit. So remember to take plenty of photos and make memories that will last a lifetime! And there’s plenty to do whether you’re outdoorsy or prefer indoor activities.
So start packing your bags and head to Tennessee for a vacation you won’t forget.