Gatlinburg, TN: Things To Do, Places To Stay & More

Gatlinburg, TN is a destination for all ages and interests. Just south of Pigeon Forge, Gatlinburg borders the Great Smoky Mountains National Park with all kinds of rustic mountainside attractions. Downtown Gatlinburg is very walkable, making it a great spot to spend the entire day shopping and sightseeing. You'll find so many things to do, places to eat, and thousands of different ways to spend your vacation.

Gatlinburg Tn

Where is Gatlinburg?

Getting there is simple: It's just a seven mile jaunt down the Parkway from the center of Pigeon Forge, which means you don't have to travel very far at all to enjoy some big Gatlinburg attractions and adventures! Because it's nestled just outside the national park, the Great Smoky Mountains give Gatlinburg a unique, alpine feel – all with a unique Tennessee twist.

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Things To Do In Gatlinburg

From downhill skiing to world-class attractions, you'll stay busy in Gatlinburg during all four seasons: Winter turns the area into a veritable wonderland with Smoky Mountain skiing and sledding; spring's mild temperatures make hiking the area's 600+ miles of trails pleasant; summer's sunny skies are perfect companions for rafting the mountain rapids; and fall brings a symphony of colors to behold and the mountains changes hues.

Gatlinburg Attractions

Gatlinburg Hotels

Opting to stay in the Gatlinburg area? Check out our list of top Gatlinburg hotels and condos. A hotel is a great lodging option if you're looking for amenities like continental breakfast, daily housekeeping services, and close proximity to the many things to do in Gatlinburg on the parkway.

Gatlinburg Hotels

Gatlinburg Cabin Rentals

If you're looking for a bit of seclusion and gorgeous mountain views, consider browsing our selection of Gatlinburg cabin rentals. A scenic log cabin in this part of the Smoky Mountains makes for a wonderful getaway especially if you're aiming to spend more time in the national park, which is extremely close by, than other attractions.

Gatlinburg Cabin Rentals

Gatlinburg Restaurants

Get a bite to eat downtown. Breakfast, lunch and dinner are all delicious when you're dining at one of these fabulous Gatlinburg restaurants. There are spaces to accomodate parties of all sizes for any occasion. Walk down the strip and choose from the many tasty establishments.

Gatlinburg Restaurants

Gatlinburg Hikes

There are tons of great places to go hiking in Gatlinburg. You can start at the visitor center for a bunch of easier options, or dive right into the tough stuff after taking a scenic drive down Newfound Gap Road. Blaze a trail on the very mountains you can see from your cabin. The Great Smoky Mountains National Park is just south of this little mountain town.

Gatlinburg Hikes

Sugarlands Visitor Center

Nestled just inside the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, the Sugarlands Visitor Center is the perfect place to begin your mountain adventure. Learn about park activities, get up close and personal with the local flora and fauna, and even talk with a ranger at this NPS-operated center.

Visitor Centers

Gatlinburg Sports

Located near Gatlinburg-Pittman High School and just north of the national park, Rocky Top Sports World is host to many football, lacrosse, basketball, volleyball and soccer tournaments. Many traveling teams come to the area to compete. With Mount LeConte serving as the backdrop to the outdoor facilities, the location is unique in its mountain setting.

Rocky Top Sports World
Best Of Pigeon Forge 2022Anakeesta: Click to visit page.

Anakeesta

From the famous chondola to the treetop skybridge to the mountain coaster, Anakeesta is one of Gatlinburg's most memorable and all-encompassing attractions. Grab friends & family and zip side by side on their award winning dueling zipline, and then relax & grab a bite to eat in the Magical Firefly Village.

Anakeesta
7D Dark Ride Adventure: Click to visit page.

7D Dark Ride Adventure

This seven dimensional state-of-the-art shooting game is not for the faint of heart. You will be blown away by the combination of wind, sound, and movement that propels 7D Dark Ride Adventure into a beyond real experience. Join the fun with a room full of fellow adventurers and ready your trigger finger, because you're sure to have a blast.

7D Dark Ride Adventure
Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies: Click to visit page.

Ripley's Aquarium of the Smokies

At Ripley's Aquarium of the Smokies, explore a coral reef, tropical rainforest and other exciting destinations without leaving the mountains! This world-class attraction was recently voted America's #1 Aquarium by TripAdvisor and it's easy to see why: This expansive under-water attraction is home to hundreds of interactive and innovative exhibits for folks of all ages to enjoy!

Ripley's Aquarium of the Smokies
Gatlinburg, TN: Things To Do, Places To Stay & More: Click to visit page.

Greystone Lodge On The River

Recently renovated, this Gatlinburg hotel with a water park is a casually luxurious destination that's great for families wanting to stay near all the fun of the parkway. Greystone Lodge on the River is within walking distance of Ripley's Aquarium. Kids will enjoy everything from the waterslide and outdoor pool area to the cozy bunkbeds in the guest rooms!

Greystone Lodge
Gatlinburg, TN: Things To Do, Places To Stay & More: Click to visit page.

The Appy Lodge

If you're looking to stay right on the Gatlinburg parkway, consider the newly renovated Appy Lodge. Each of the rooms at the Appy is named after an actual shelter on the Appalachian Trail and includes hardwood flooring, incredible walk-in showers, and high end finishes and custom décor throughout. And you can't miss the history that lines the hallways; see for yourself!

The Appy Lodge
J.O.E. & Pop’s Sub Shoppe: Click to visit page.

J.O.E. & Pop's Sub Shoppe

If you're a fan of Philly cheese steaks, reuben sandwiches and Italian subs, you'll love J.O.E. & Pop's Sub Shoppe in Gatlinburg. All the meats and cheeses are freshly sliced and the subs are made exactly the way you like them. Make your meal a platter with 2 sides for only $2 more.

J.O.E. & Pop's Sub Shoppe
Alamo Steakhouse & Saloon: Click to visit page.

Alamo Steakhouse & Saloon

With locations in both Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge, Alamo Steakhouse & Saloon has been voted Best Steak in the area year after year. But their delicious dining options aren't limited to their award-winning steak; their unique dishes like pistachio encrusted salmon and grilled oysters are just as mouth watering

Alamo Steakhouse
Big Daddy’s Pizzeria: Click to visit page.

Big Daddy's Pizzeria

Big Daddy's Pizzeria is so dedicated to serving perfectly wood fired pizzas made with the freshest ingredients that they don't even have a freezer on the premises. After their very own pizzeoli crafts the handmade dough, their specialty pizzas are prepared to every guest's delight.

Big Daddy's Pizzeria

Make the most of your next Pigeon Forge vacation by spending some quality time with plenty of things to do in Gatlinburg, TN with all of the amazing sites and attractions! Learn more about Smoky Mountain attractions and things to do in East Tennessee by clicking through PigeonForge.com.


Upcoming Events in Gatlinburg

Gatlinburg’s July 4th Fireworks Finale: Click for event info.

Downtown Gatlinburg

Gatlinburg’s July 4th Fireworks Finale

Thu, Jul 4, 2024 11:00 pm

Celebrate America at Gatlinburg's July 4th Fireworks Finale in Downtown Gatlinburg, Tennessee, to mark our nation’s “Independence Day” with an amazing fireworks show starting at 11:00pm. The fir...

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July 4th Parade in Gatlinburg, Tennessee: Click for event info.

Downtown Gatlinburg

July 4th Parade in Gatlinburg, Tennessee

Thu, Jul 4, 2024

Gatlinburg celebrates the 4th of July in a big way and this year will be no exception with the first Independence Day Parade in the nation. The parade has been named as a "Top Ten Parade to see in the...

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Gatlinburg River Raft Regatta: Click for event info.

Gatlinburg

Gatlinburg River Raft Regatta

Thu, Jul 4, 2024 11:00 am - 2:00 pm

Get ready for an adrenaline-pumping summer spectacle in Gatlinburg! Back by popular demand and nestled within the lively atmosphere of Gatlinburg's Fourth of July festivities, it's time for the exhila...

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Penguin Pajama Party: Click for event info.

Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies

Penguin Pajama Party

Sat, Jul 20, 2024

Bring your penguin pajamas and find out what these birds do at night when you spend the night at Ripley's Aquarium of the Smokies Penguin Playhouse. After a fun-filled night including a dive show, sca...

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July Gatlinburg Craftsmen’s Fair: Click for event info.

Gatlinburg Convention Center

July Gatlinburg Craftsmen’s Fair

Jul 12-21, 2024 10:00 am - 5:00 pm

A unique characteristic of the Gatlinburg Craftsmen's Fair is the fact that artisans not only make their art available for viewing and sale, but also demonstrate their special talents and skills durin...

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Smoky Mountain Bigfoot Conference: Click for event info.

Gatlinburg Convention Center

Smoky Mountain Bigfoot Conference

Sat, Jul 27, 2024

Get ready for the 6th annual Smoky Mountain Bigfoot Conference! This conference is not just for Bigfoot enthusiasts, but for anyone who wants to believe. Join us as we take you on a journey to unr...

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Smoky Mountain Tunes & Tales: Click for event info.

Downtown Gatlinburg

Smoky Mountain Tunes & Tales

Jul 1-31, 2024 6:00 - 10:00 pm

Smoky Mountain Tunes & Tales returns this summer to entertain Gatlinburg visitors! Tunes & Tales is a summer-long street performance festival featuring costumed musical performers, dancers and storyte...

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Breakfast With A Mermaid: Click for event info.

Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies

Breakfast With A Mermaid

Select dates from Apr 4 - Aug 3, 2024 8:00 am

Have you ever wanted to meet a mermaid? Now is your chance! Join us for Breakfast with a Mermaid at Ripley's Aquarium in Gatlinburg. Breakfast includes scrambled eggs, bacon, biscuits, potatoes, ju...

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United Tastes Of America: Click for event info.

Anakeesta

United Tastes Of America

May 24 - Aug 11, 2024

Get a taste of each region of the United States at our brand-new one-of-a-kind food and drink festival. Let your taste buds "travel" across the country while enjoying family entertainment for all ages...

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Gatlinburg Songwriters Festival: Click for event info.

Gatlinburg Inn

Gatlinburg Songwriters Festival

Aug 16-18, 2024

The Gatlinburg Songwriters Festival is an intimate, two day music series taking place at the Historic Gatlinburg Inn featuring some of the top songwriters in Nashville, responsible for multi-platinum ...

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Monsters On The Mountain: Click for event info.

Gatlinburg Convention Center

Monsters On The Mountain

Aug 23-25, 2024

Monsters on the Mountain is a 3 day music event at the Gatlinburg Convention Center. It will feature 3 days of rock music on several stages. For 2024, Joan Jett and The Blackhearts will headline the e...

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October Gatlinburg Craftsmen’s Fair: Click for event info.

Gatlinburg Convention Center

October Gatlinburg Craftsmen’s Fair

Oct 3-20, 2024 10:00 am - 5:00 pm

The Gatlinburg Craftsmen’s Fair hosts artisans and craftsmen from all over the nation. Hundreds of booths with unique and one-of-a-kind handmade products are beautifully displayed, as these skilled ...

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Sensory-Friendly Nights At The Aquarium: Click for event info.

Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies

Sensory-Friendly Nights At The Aquarium

Select dates from Jan 31 - Nov 27, 2024

Join us for a quieter experience at Ripley's Aquarium! Several nights throughout the year, Ripley's Aquarium of the Smokies in Gatlinburg hosts sensory-friendly events which offer welcoming lightin...

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Great Smoky Holiday Arts & Crafts Show: Click for event info.

Gatlinburg Convention Center

Great Smoky Holiday Arts & Crafts Show

Nov 26 - Dec 8, 2024

Experience the wonder of the season at the Gatlinburg Convention Center, where the members of the Great Smoky Arts & Crafts Community present their exclusive handcrafted gifts during their much-an...

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Pints & Penguins: Click for event info.

Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies

Pints & Penguins

Select dates from Jan 26 - Dec 13, 2024

Pints & Penguins is an adult-only sleepover event full of animal experiences, delicious bites, a full bar, and more! Start your night off with appetizers and drinks, followed by a behind-the-scenes...

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Sleep With The Sharks at Ripley’s Aquarium: Click for event info.

Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies

Sleep With The Sharks at Ripley’s Aquarium

Select dates from Mar 23 - Dec 28, 2024

Do sharks sleep? Find out for yourself when you spend the night at Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies. After a fun-filled night including a late night snack, scavenger hunt, and late night activity, d...

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Christmas Experience at Anakeesta: Click for event info.

Anakeesta

Christmas Experience at Anakeesta

Nov 15 - Dec 31, 2024

When the sun sets in the Smokies, Anakeesta mountain comes to life with a celebration of lights. Gather around the fire with family and friends for hot cocoa or your favorite hot toddy, then stroll th...

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Smoky Mountain Music Festival: Click for event info.

Gatlinburg Convention Center

Smoky Mountain Music Festival

Select dates from Apr 4-25, 2025

The Smoky Mountain Music Festival is a competition for elementary, middle and high school music groups. It offers these groups a chance to showcase their work and talent in front of adjudicators in th...

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For more events in the area, be sure to check our our full Smoky Mountain events calendar.

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