Smoky Mountain memories that last a lifetime don’t have to come with a steep price tag. In fact, you’ll find dozens of free things to do in Pigeon Forge, Gatlinburg and the Smoky Mountains. Here are 5 of our favorite free things to do with the family in and around Pigeon Forge.
1. Visit the Old Mill District
Take a stroll back in time by exploring the Old Mill District in Pigeon Forge. Without spending a dime, you and your family can see a working flour mill nearly two centuries old, sample old-fashioned sweets, moonshine and even feed the ducks. If you’re feeling spendy, consider splurging just $3 per person to see the mill up-close with a guided tour.
2. Take a hike and explore
The Great Smoky Mountains National Park is doesn’t charge an entry fee, which means you and your family can take in all of nature’s splendor at no charge. Hike more than 800 miles of trails, explore historical areas like Cades Cove, splash in waterfalls and interact with exhibits in the Sugarlands Visitor Center all without dropping a single dime.
3. Check Out The Glades
The Glades, located in nearby Gatlinburg, is a unique district of art studios, galleries and venues. Many of the artists at work here practice centuries-old folk arts and crafts, creating original pieces including candles, baskets, quilts, brooms, pottery, jewelry, dolls, ceramics, scrimshaw, silversmithing, leather, stained glass, wearable fashions, fine photography, frameable art, oils, watercolors and more.
It’s free to explore the neighborhood – and you’ll likely find many opportunities to learn more from the artists at work as you wander. See demonstrations, hear histories and more as you interact with these skill artisans.
4. Bike the greenway
There is no better way to see the beautiful sights Pigeon Forge has to offer. One of our favorite free things to do in Pigeon Forge, the Pigeon Forge greenway runs along the Little Pigeon River and stretches across four miles. The main entrances can be found in Patriot Park, Jake Thomas Road, and Butler Street at Ashley Avenue. Check out our map for more information on where to begin.
5. Visit the Little River Railroad & Lumber Company
The Smoky Mountains have a rich history. Head back in time and learn about the region’s logging heritage at the Little River Railroad and Lumber Company in nearby Townsend. This free museum is open year-round and lets history buffs of all ages learn about a turn-of-the-century sawmill and the folks who worker there more than 100 years ago.