Are the mountains calling your name? In 2019, the 12.55 MILLION people visited the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The Smokies is the perfect vacation destination as it is easily accessible, has no entry free, has hiking trails for people of all experience levels, and has attractions that all family members can enjoy, oh and I didn’t even mention the luxury cabins with breathtaking mountain views!

No matter if you are just looking for a once in a lifetime vacation or to purchase your very own piece of the Smokies you probably have some questions we can answer. What do families actually do when they visit the Smokies, and where are people most likely to stay to take advantage of all the Smoky Mountains have to offer?

Top Family Fun in Pigeon Forge

Dollywood 150 acres of pure Smoky Mountain Magic. Named after Sevier Counties own Dolly Parton “Dollywood” host 15+ family friendly shows, wonderful food, and over 3 dozen rides! $79/Adult 
$69/Senior Citizen
10 out of 10
The Island The Island is positioned directionally in the center of Pigeon Forge and right along the river. Home to over 30 shops, some of the finest food; including Paula Deens Homestyle Kitchen, and dozens of attractions for the kids. You can’t miss The Island as directly in its center sits The Great Smoky Mountain Wheel. Free Entry and Parking. Will be cost for food and attractions. Plan $150 to $200 for a family of 4. 8 out of 10
Dolly Parton Stampede Dolly Parton Stampede opened in 1988 and is a staple in the Smokies. The show features 32 professionally trained horses and riders that take you on a journey and competition. The food at Dolly Partons Stampede is finger licking good(utensils are not allowed) and serves what I believe to be the finest biscuits & gravy in the south! $55.00/Adult
8 out of 10

Top Family Fun in Gatlinburg

Ripley’s Aquarium Ripley’s Aquarium in Gatlinburg is rated the top Aquarium in the United States and for good reason! Over 100,000 sea creatures on display, a 340 foot under water tunnel, a interactive learning experience, and all this within 1.4 million gallons of water! $37.99/Adult
9 out of 10
Anakeesta Anakeesta is perched 600 feet above downtown Gatlinburg and host activities that the whole family can enjoy. Excellent food, panoramic Smoky Mountain views, tree canopy sky bridges, and a kids treehouse village playground. $24.99/Adult
$21.99/Senior Citizen
7.5  out of 10
Ober Gatlinburg We love Ober Gatlinburg because there is just so much to do! Ober is a staple of the Smoky Mountains which has been around for over 50 year now. Over the past 50 years they have continued to add to the attractions they offer which now include; The Aerial Tramway, Snow Skiing, Snow Tubing, Scenic Chairway, Alpine Slide, Ice Skating, and a  Ski Mountain Coaster! Free Entry/Cost per attractions ranges from $4 to $15 8 out of 10
Hike the Smokies Why come to the Smoky Mountains without experiencing the Smoky Mountains! The Smokies have hiking trails to suit all experience levels and if you plan on spending a week in the Smokies then you should at least plan a day or two to experience the wonderful part of creation! You can find a trail that suits your experience level at FREE! 10 out of 10

Top Family Attractions in Wears Valley/Townsend

Metcalf Bottoms Metcalf Bottoms is situated between Gatlinburg and Wears Valley and is a excellent place for a family picnic and to let children play in the cool Smoky Mountain river water. FREE or rent a pavilion for $25. You can rent a pavilion at 7 out of 10
Mountain Coasters Wears Valley Road is home to two of the first Mountain Coasters that are now familiar throughout all areas of the Smokies. Goats on the Roof is a premium mountain coaster experience that you can find while traveling to your cabin in Wears Valley. $20 to $30 7 out of 10
River Tube in Townsend River tubing in Townsend is a great way to spend a day in the Smokies! While there are now several companies to tube with in Townsend our favorite remains the River Rat. $19.99/Adults
FREE/5 and Under
8.5 out of 10
Bluff Mountain 4 Wheeling My first experience with Bluff Mountain Adventures was in 2019 and I must tell you….I LOVED IT! I am convinced that this is one of the best kept secrets when it comes to Smoky Mountain Adventures! Ride by yourself on a single 4-wheeler or take the whole family in one of the many ATV options as you scale 2300 up Bluff Mountains on your way to a few views that can only be found on this adventure! $57 to $200 depending on vehicle and riding experience chosen. 9 out of 10
Foothills Parkway Foothills Parkway is a 16 mile stretch of roadway with stunning mountain views that went largely unfinished for 30 years due to engineering difficulties and environmental concerns. In 2018, “The Missing Link” was finished and opened to the public. Find out more about its history at FREE and great for family pictures 7 out of 10

Best Smoky Mountain Hiking Trails for Families

Laurel Falls 2.3 miles with a elevation gain of 314 feet that lead to one of the prettiest waterfalls in the Smokies. That is why Laurel Falls is a visitor favorite of the Smoky Mountains and great for all experience levels. In the Elkmont area of the Smokies. 9 out of 10
The Gatlinburg Trail 3.9 miles with a elevation gain of 235 feet The Gatlinburg Trail follows along a beautiful river and is a great place to learn some of the history behind the Smoky Mountains. Gatlinburg/Sugarlands Area 7 out of 10
Cataract Falls Ok, I will agree to tell you about Cataract Falls but you agree to tell no one else. Cataract Falls is a ¾ mile round trip hike to a hidden 25 foot waterfall just minutes from Gatlinburg. Find out how to get to Cataract Falls and everything to consider when making your trip at Gatlinburg 8 out of 10
Grotto Falls The only 25 foot tall walk behind waterfall in the Smoky Mountains. The trail takes you through the “old growth forrest” where in the spring you will be treated to a host of wildflowers. Grotto Falls is 2.6 miles round trip and has a elevation gain of 585 feet Roaring Fork Motor Nature Trail 8 out of 10
Porters Creek Trail  Have you ever seen  a picture of that unique Smoky Mountain Moss covering the river and waterfall rocks? That is what you will find on the Porter Creek Trail. A 4 mile round trip hike that gain 699 feet in elevation as you travel through the wildflowers, historic homes, and to a beautiful waterfall to wrap up this gorgeous hike. Greenbriar 8 out of 10

Closest Cabin Resorts to Smoky Mountain Attractions

Resort Name Resort Description Cabin Price Ranges
Little Valley Little Valley brings the Smoky Mountains to your back porch! Little Valley offers a excellent location just minutes from Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg, TN while offering so many family friendly amenities that you never have to leave your resort. Little Valley offers a serine mountain setting in a good location with all the amenities you could ask for! $200,000 to $600,000+
Mountain Shadows Mountain Shadows Resort is just 3.2 miles from downtown Gatlinburg, across the street from the great smoky mountains national park, next to the arts and crafts village,  and just 30 minutes from Dollywood. Mountain shadows resort host luxury cabins conveniently located close to some of the best walking trails in the smokies while only being minutes away from the best attractions in the area. $200,000 to $750,000
Starr Crest Starr Crest has unique mountain views, is just 10 minutes to Dollywood, 10 Minutes to downtown Pigeon Forge, and provides  easy access to the national park and trails. Starr Crest provides owners with access to a community playground, pavilion, and pool. $300,000 to $800,000
Black Bear Falls Black Bear Falls is a true log cabin community nestled in the smoky mountains with beautiful natural springs and streams. 3 miles to downtown Gatlinburg, 4 miles from the Great Smoky Mountain National Park, and just 25 minutes from Dollywood. Black Bear Falls is a premier log cabin resort with everything a investor could want. $300,000 to $700,000
Alpine Mountain Village Alpine Mountain Village is a luxury cabin resort 400 yards from pigeon forge parkway. Great location with easy access to roads. Alpine Mountain Village has a on site pool, picnic pavilion and playground. Walking trails can be found throughout the property. While mountain views do exist in this resort the majority of properties do not have a mountain view. $300,000 to $900,000