Divorce yourself from the daily grind, sitting behind a desk all day and get ready for a magnificent vacation in the great outdoors. Celebrate every day and immerse yourself in the bountiful activities of the ethereal yet thriving destination of Pigeon Forge, Tennessee and the adventures of the Great Smoky Mountains. Populated with hundreds of activities for every age, and every type of personality – especially outdoor enthusiasts and nature lovers, Pigeon Forge is one big kiss with Mother Nature that includes 500,000 acres of Southern Appalachian wilderness and its many treasures. From white-water rafting, ATV riding, zorbing down and getting your thrills at Dollywood or an indoor Jurassic Jungle Boat Ride to hiking Smoky Mountain trails, golfing, visiting grand museums—including a grand car museum and an all-things Elvis museum—and exploring historical and cultural landmarks, here are a few Must-Do activities to consider adding to your itinerary while visiting Pigeon Forge, Tennessee:
Explore 19th-century historic buildings, churches and pioneer log cabins still standing at Cades Cove in Smoky Mountains National Park, a 6,800-acre valley about 30 miles from Pigeon Forge that offers scenic routes with breathtaking landscapes, diverse wildlife and Abrams Falls—a picturesque waterfall with a 20-foot drop to a pool and stream below located on Abrams Creek. To experience it all, take Cades Cove Loop Road, an 11-mile one-way, paved loop road open sunrise to sunset year-round.
Stroll Parkway, Pigeon Forge’s 5-mile strip, and it various attractions, restaurants, theaters and stores.
Indulge your inner car buff or enjoy the top-name antiques at the Smokey Mountain Car Museum, a long-time attraction on the Pigeon Forge Parkway that showcases more than 25 antique cars and other vehicles, some with famous connections. Highlights include a James Bond “007” Aston Martin used in the movie Goldfinger, Elvis Presley’s Mercedes CPE, an Evel Knievel jump bike, the Silver Dollar Car of Hank Williams, Jr. and a bulletproof Cadillac that once belonged to gangster Al Capone.
Visit Pigeon’s Forge’s own Dollywood, an award-winning 150-acre theme park located in the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains and featuring more than 40 rides and attractions, plus Dolly Parton’s Dixie Stampede with a four-course feast. Upgrade your day ticket to include Dollywood’s water-park, Splash Country
Race your buddy in computerized go-karts at The Pigeon Forge Adventure Raceway, which has a three-level-high track, as well as miniature golf and bumper boats. The seasonal attraction is open March through November, with select winter weekends.
Celebrate “The King” at the Elvis Presley Museum in Pigeon Forge, with over 15,000 square feet of ALL things Elvis, including the largest private collection of memorabilia, including the King’s last limousine, his world-famous $250,000 “TCB” Ring, collectibles, apparel and autographed memories. There are also nightly Elvis musical tributes at the TCB (Taking Care of Business –Elvis’ motto) Theatre and Elvis films during the day.
Enjoy more sedate outdoors activities such as leaf peeping, wildlife watching, miniature golf, hiking, nature tours and horseback riding.
Ride on ATV with Bluff Mountain Adventures, which offers guided ATV trail rides on 6,000 acres of Mountain Trails exploring the wilderness of East Tennessee through dirt roads, over hills and creeks, and through down-and-dirty mud puddles.
Take part in Wilderness Wildlife Week every January with an enriching series of walks, talks and workshops, as well as informative exhibits that entertain while encouraging the participant to know more about the diverse area and the Smoky Mountains.
Climb inside the giant, round and bouncy :orb,” which is like being inside a big rubber ball, and feel the G-force adrenaline rush of tumbling head over heels while rolling and somersaulting down a 700-foot-long hill along the Smoky Mountains. Not for the truly weak at heart or uneasy stomachs!
Indulge your adventurist spirit with thrill rides, laser tag, whitewater rafting, rock climbing, ATV exploring or mountain biking in the Smoky Mountains.
Enjoy a night out at a dinner theater, comedy show, magic show or live music at one of many establishments, like the entertaining dinner shows and entertainment complexes.
Experience the sensation of freefalling in a 21-foot-tall vertical wind tunnel with 120-mph winds at Flyaway Indoor Skydiving.
Discover 500,000 acres of Southern Appalachian wilderness on one of the oldest uplands on earth where you’ll find diverse wildlife, streams, beautiful waterfalls and a variety of flowering plants.
Enjoy a variety of activities throughout the year including 800 miles of trails for hiking and exploration, and plenty of sightseeing and photo opportunities along the Great Smoky Mountains National Park’s scenic routes.
Experience life in the fast lane at the Fast Tracks amusement park, with a three-story, elevated go-kart racetrack with CAN-AM racing, Naskart racers, skid racers and junior racers, plus miniature golf, bumper boats, kiddie rides, an arcade, bungee jumping and the Sky Scraper thrill ride which reaches 150 feet in the air.
Get up close and personal with some of your favorite celebrities, sort of, at the Hollywood Wax Museum in Pigeon Forge, which is open 365 days a year with life-size and life-like wax representations of some of your favorite celebrities and public figures.
Take a Jurassic Jungle Boat Ride, a massive indoor special-effects thrill ride through a winding river and a dinosaur-infested jungle with caves, dynamic waterfalls and erupting geysers that’s fun for all ages.
Search for treasure, battle dragons and goblins, or discover secret passages, plus play 18-hole SpecialFX Pirate Golf, travel through the world’s largest mirror maze or race through the Vault laser challenge at MagiQuest for ultimate family fun!
Tempt your palate with wine tasting at Mountain Valley Winery in Pigeon Forge, one of about 12 wineries in Tennessee.
Get your heart pounding while rafting the river with adventures at Tennessee’s Big Pigeon River, offering family-friendly float trips and spirited Class III-IV rapids that flow along the eastern border of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.
Visit the Old Mill of Pigeon Forge, listed on the National Register of Historic Places and one of the most popular places in the Smokies, then grab a bite to eat at the Old Mill Pottery House Café & Grille’s with menu items made with ingredients still ground at the Old Mill.
Tube or kayak the Little River with River Rage, which offers 3 different routes, ranging from easy and relaxing to fast and adventurous, all with amazing views.
See Pigeon Forge and the Smokies from an eagle-eye point of view on a tour with Scenic Helicopter Tours.
Find yourself trapped by the spirit of an ancient pharaoh and face his challenges to get out of the The Tomb.
Let the tree tips and mountain foliage tickle your toes as you zip line through the Smoky Mountains. Ziplines of the Smokies is highly recommended by travelers.
Check out one of many dinner theater shows like the Hatfield and McCoy Dinner Show and the Lumberjack Feud complete with ESPN athletes, draft horses and gut-wrenching comedy, both located on the Parkway.
Snap some of the most breathtaking photos during the fall when colors peak mid-October through early November. One of the most picturesque views of the foliage can be seen from Cades Cove in the Great Smokey National Park.