There are a million reasons to visit Gatlinburg…and attractions to suit every taste.
You can come have a romantic getaway weekend complete with spa services, world-class dining, and cultural activities…or bring your buddies to Gatlinburg for a week of adventure including Zorb, the Zipline, and White Water Rafting…or bring your family (including the smallest of tots) and tour amusement parks, comedy shows, and all the pancake breakfasts that you can stand.
But, there are a few attractions that stand out from the rest. They are unique in Gatlinburg, and we think when you’re making a decision about how to spend your time in the Smokies, you should consider these:
1. Gatlinburg Sky Lift. I’m scared of heights, too. However, the Gatlinburg Chair Lift is a special experience–a 1200 foot climb up the side of Crockett Mountain. One little known fact the lift was originally purchased from the Sugar Bowl Ski Area in California in the 1950s, unassembled, and then reconstructed in Gatlinburg. Aptly put, it is the best seat in Gatlinburg. Rates are Adults $12 and $9 for children.
2. Hillbilly Golf. It’s the world’s most unusual miniature golf course. Ride the Incline 300 feet straight up to the mountain top above the city. Two challenging 18-hole courses await you. Both are riddled with mountaineer hazards Ñ from outhouses to stills, rocky walls and lush native plants. It’s great fun and excitement for the whole family. A truly unique adventure you aren’t likely to forget.
3. Gatlinburg Space Needle. Ride the glass elevator over 400 feet and step out to a breathtaking 360 degree view of the Great Smoky Mountains. The observation deck also provides a spectacular view of Gatlinburg’s downtown area from one end to the other. Enjoy the sight by day or Gatlinburg’s lights by night. Don’t forget your camera! The adventure only begins at the top of the Space Needle. Below the Needle you will enjoy Arcadia, a two level 25,000 square foot fun center with a variety of the latest amusements for the whole family. Tickets for the glass elevator ride to the observation deck: Adult $7.25, Senior (60 +) $5.00 or $4.00 with AARP Membership Card, Children (5-12 yrs.) $3.00, Children 4 yrs. and under FREE (with adult ticket) for Group Rates, Click Here.
4. Sweet Fanny Adams Theatre. This is Gatlinburg´s ONLY Musical Comedy Entertainment Attraction and the OLDEST Purveyor of Professional, Live-On-Stage, Original Musical Comedies, outrageous humor and hilarious fun in the Smokies. It is the ONLY alternative to Country Music Shows in the area. The unique format hearkens back to the Music Halls of the 1890s. The performers take turns adding their uniqueness to the inevitable comic mayhem for which the theatre is renowned. I saw the new show just a couple of weeks ago…campy & hilarious!
5. The Pancake Pantry. Since 1960 when the Pancake Pantry became Tennessee’s first pancake house, visitors to Gatlinburg have made dining with them a tradition. What keeps them coming back? It’s the real butter, the honest-to-goodness fresh whipped cream and everything made from scratch. Maybe you’ll select the Austrian Apple-Walnut Pancakes covered with a rich apple cider compote made with melted butter, black walnuts, apples and sweet spices and then topped with powdered sugar and real whipped cream. Want a sandwich instead? Try a Polish Aristocrat, Polynesian Delight or British Dipper among other distinctive choices.
6. Arrowmont School of Arts & Crafts. A nationally renowned center of contemporary arts & crafts education, Arrowmont offers workshops for 1 & 2 weeks in the spring and summer, and 1-week and weekends in the fall. Areas of study include: ceramics, painting, fibers, metals, warm glass,jewelry, drawing, photography, wood turning, wood working, sculpture, book & paper arts. The public is welcome year ’round to visit the school’s galleries, resource center, book & supply store.
7. Smoky Mountain Winery. I know I’ve mentioned this one in previous posts, but it bears repeating…Wine may not be the first thing that pops to mind when contemplating what to do in Gatlinburg, but Smoky Mountain Winery opened its doors in 1981. You can take a free tour of the production facilities then follow it up with a free tasting of more than 20 available award-winning wines. Take a bottle home to remember your honeymoon, anniversary or family reunion!
8. Clingman’s Dome. We brag about Park all the time; however, you should trek up to the dome specifically. At 6,643 ft, Clingmans Dome is the highest point in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. It is the highest point in Tennessee, and the third highest mountain east of the Mississippi. The tower of Clingmans Dome offers spectacular 360° views of the Smokies & beyond for visitors willing to climb the steep 1/2 mile walk to the tower at the top.
9. The Donut Friar. Open at 5 a.m., the aromas of freshly-made donuts, cinnamon bread, & pastries drifting from this shop are impossible to resist! Also see cappuccino, latte & expresso made to your liking! I can conjure the smell of melted sugar as I work on this blog. Don’t miss this one!
10. Dollywood. I know that some of you can’t imagine why an amusement park as unique; however, the title fits. Dollywood is a one-of-a-kind Smoky Mountain Family Adventure! Spanning 125 acres and nestled in the lush foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains in Pigeon Forge, TN, near Gatlinburg, Dollywood is one of the most popular family vacation destinations. Plus, any place that has a stand dedicated to fried green tomatoes, can’t be bad. Email firstname.lastname@example.org to buy printable tickets to avoid the long lines on arrival.
To see the original “Unique Gatlinburg Attractions — Part 2” Click Here!
This blog is sponsored in part by ERA In The Smokies Realty and Rentals located at 207 Parkway in Gatlinburg, TN. For more information on a Gatlinburg Cabin for your Smoky Mountain Vacation or all the reasons to move to the Smokies, call 1-800-309-0277. ERA In The Smokies is a leader in chalet and Log Cabin Rentals and Real Estate Sales in the Gatlinburg area.