Eight Exciting Things You Should Do When Visiting Gatlinburg

6 min read

Gatlinburg, Tennessee, is a popular place for tourists to visit because it is in the Great Smoky Mountains, where they can enjoy outdoor activities and beautiful scenery.
This beautiful town offers visitors of all ages a once-in-a-lifetime experience with its stunning views, a wide range of wildlife, and lively local culture.

This article will delve into nine exciting activities you must add to your itinerary when visiting Gatlinburg.

Discover the Wonders of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park

As you enter the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, you'll quickly understand why it's America's most visited national park. You'll fall in love with its alluring beauty as soon as you breathe in the crisp mountain air and observe the lush surroundings.

With more than 800 miles of well-kept hiking trails, the park has much to offer, whether you're an experienced hiker or just like to stroll.

Explore the park's stunning waterfalls, bright wildflower meadows, and diverse animals. Clingmans Dome, the park's highest peak, offers a breathtaking perspective of the Smokies. This spectacular view is excellent for photography and contemplation in nature.

Discover the Magic of Horseback Riding in Gatlinburg's Breathtaking Terrain

Imagine being surrounded by the majestic beauty of the Smoky Mountains as the sun gives the landscape a warm glow. Exploring on horseback comes to mind as you seek a special way to experience this incredible scenery.

The gentle rhythm of the horse's gait, the sounds of nature, and the feeling of being one with the environment make for an unforgettable adventure.

You can live this dream by experiencing horseback riding in Gatlinburg, surrounded by the area's captivating beauty.

Walking through dense forests and crossing babbling streams, you'll breathe the fresh mountain air, take in breathtaking views, and enjoy a relaxing mountain tour with guided tours for all skill levels.

Embark on an Underwater Adventure at Ripley's Aquarium of the Smokies

Prepare for a thrilling underwater journey as you enter Ripley's Aquarium of the Smokies. This aquatic wonderland will leave you spellbound. This fascinating aquarium lets you get close to some of the ocean's most interesting creatures. It is home to over 10,000 exotic sea creatures from 350 different species.

As you wander through the vibrant exhibits, be prepared for an awe-inspiring experience in the Shark Lagoon. Here, you'll walk through a clear glass tunnel surrounded by sharks, graceful stingrays, and other captivating marine life.

The fun continues at the Penguin Playhouse, where you can play with and watch adorable African penguins play.

Ascend to New Heights at Gatlinburg SkyLift Park

Imagine flying above Gatlinburg, feeling the breeze, and admiring the Smoky Mountains. At Gatlinburg SkyLift Park, you can turn this vision into reality as you embark on an exhilarating chairlift ride to the summit of Crockett Mountain.

From 1,800 feet above sea level, you can see the charming town of Gatlinburg and the amazing mountain ranges beyond. Your adventure doesn't end there, though! Challenge yourself to cross the SkyBridge, North America's longest pedestrian suspension bridge.

This thrilling attraction spans an impressive 680 feet across a deep valley. It gives visitors a unique vantage point for taking photos that will last a lifetime.

Embrace Nature's Beauty on the Roaring Fork Motor Nature Trail

Imagine driving down a winding road while listening to the tranquility of dense forests and the calming sounds of mountain streams. The Roaring Fork, Motor Nature Trail, is a scenic 5.5-mile loop that allows you to experience the Smoky Mountains from a unique perspective.

Take advantage of the many photo ops, historical sites, and trailheads for short walks along this scenic route. Stop to examine the well-preserved log homes, grist mills, and other structures that reveal the lives of early settlers.

Embrace Adventure and Serenity at Anakeesta

At Anakeesta, an outdoor adventure park in Gatlinburg's heart, you'll find the perfect balance of exhilaration and tranquility.
Your journey begins with a scenic Chondola ride, whisking you to the summit of Anakeesta Mountain. Once there, prepare for a heart-pumping experience as you take on the Dueling Zipline Adventure or traverse the Treetop Skywalk. Both activities offer unparalleled views of the surrounding landscape.

Vista Gardens is a lovely place to stroll.

The beautiful colors and relaxing atmosphere will enchant you. Have lunch at a hillside restaurant with breathtaking views to end your vacation.

Celebrate Creativity and Heritage at the Gatlinburg Arts and Crafts Community

The Gatlinburg Arts and Crafts Community, established in 1937, offers this enchanting experience as you explore an 8-mile loop featuring over 100 talented artisans.

As you meander through the community, immerse yourself in the region's rich heritage, brought to life by the exquisite work of painters, potters, woodworkers, and more. Each unique creation is a testament to the dedication and skill of these craftspeople, who continue to preserve the area's vibrant traditions.

Take advantage of the opportunity to take home a one-of-a-kind souvenir, a tangible reminder of your visit to Gatlinburg that also supports the livelihood of these remarkable artisans.

Discover Year-Round Fun at Ober Gatlinburg

Ober Gatlinburg, a unique ski area and amusement park combo, offers year-round entertainment for the entire family.

When the snow falls, embrace the thrill of skiing and snowboarding down the powdery slopes, or embark on a snow tubing adventure that will leave you grinning from ear to ear. As the seasons change and warmer weather arrives, the fun continues with attractions like the Alpine Slide, mountain coaster, and interactive wildlife encounters.

A visit to Ober Gatlinburg would only be complete with experiencing the Aerial Tramway. This must-ride attraction provides awe-inspiring views of Gatlinburg and the Smokies, making it a memorable experience regardless of the season.


Gatlinburg is the perfect place for a memorable vacation because of its stunning natural beauty, rich cultural history, and endless opportunities for adventure.
From visiting the beautiful Great Smoky Mountains National Park to the thrilling attractions at Anakeesta, this charming mountain town is full of fun things to do.
So, grab your bags and get ready for the trip of a lifetime to Gatlinburg, Tennessee, where you will have experiences you will never forget.

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