The Smoky Mountains of Tennessee provide a haven of activities for both couples’ getaways and family adventures. Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge are twin cities of entertainment, with Gatlinburg providing more for visiting couples and Pigeon Forge attracting families to its exciting theme parks. Driving to the cities themselves is a treasure, allowing you to witness the beautiful scenic areas just off the highway, as well as the soaring Blue Ridge Mountain Range.
Gatlinburg is the first city you will come to on your journey, as it is the gateway to Pigeon Forge. Gatlinburg is a popular tourism town, with Ober Gatlinburg drawing skiers to the only ski resort in Tennessee. With 8 slopes, 3 chair lifts and an abundance of wildlife, Ober Gatlinburg is the perfect resort for any level of skier. As you move in to the town center, you will see the wide variety of man-made attractions. The Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies provides a unique mix of animals and activities for the entire family. Waddling with penguins, splashing with the rays and even sleeping with sharks are just some of the unique opportunities that this aquarium provides. As well as skiing and seeing the beautiful assortment of fish, Gatlinburg also offers several unique shopping opportunities from the Great Smoky Arts and Crafts loop to the Mountain Mall.
Continuing along on your journey, we will drive down the road to our next destination: Pigeon Forge. Pigeon Forge is the ultimate family activity center, mainly centered around it’s iconic theme park, Dollywood. Dollywood, originally “Rebel Railroad”, has had many names over the years, culminating in “Dollywood”, when the actress and singer bought in an investment in 1986. The park has a wonderful mix of rides, all revolving around the “War of Northern Aggression” theme. This southern theme park houses 8 roller coasters, ranging from “kiddie” to “adult”, and is broken in to 10 mini villages, each with their own niche. Along with Dollywood, Pigeon Forge houses many arcades, concert venues, and restaurants. One of the most popular “dinner and a show” type venues is Dixie Stampede. Also owned by Dolly Parton, this restaurant/theatre is truly a one-of-a-kind experience. Opening with an introduction from Dolly Parton herself, the true beauty of this venue is it’s simplicity. The menu offers a four-course meal with a soup to start, the choice of 2 entrees, 2 default sides, 2 choices for desserts, a choice of water, tea or coke, and no silverware. Thats right, no silverware, dinner is eaten by hand! As well as dinner, you also witness a spectacular blend of comedy and intense action in the rodeo style show, as your main event.
This variety, this spectacular blend of activities, is the reason that Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge are two of the most visited tourist destinations in the US. To discover all of the adventures that you can get in to on your visit, go to the Gatlinburg City website here. Be sure to visit these beautiful and fun cities, and experience all of the magnificent things that they have to offer. Also, visit the Acadia Community Blog every Thursday to learn more about the wonderful adventures in the Southeast.