Pigeon Forge is a popular vacation destination in the heart of the Great Smoky Mountains in Tennessee, USA. This charming town is renowned for its stunning natural beauty, world-class attractions, and southern hospitality, making it a perfect spot for a family getaway. Families can enjoy various activities such as water parks, mini-golf, snow tubing, and hiking.
In this blog, we’ll discuss some of the most exciting ways to make your family trip to Pigeon Forge unforgettable. We’ll cover everything from must-see attractions to outdoor adventures, dining options, shopping hotspots, and much more.
- Visit Dollywood
This popular amusement park offers a range of attractions suitable for all ages, from thrilling roller coasters to water rides and live entertainment shows. The park also features various themed areas, including the Wildwood Grove and Country Fair, providing a unique experience for the whole family. Additionally, Dollywood hosts seasonal events throughout the year, such as the Harvest Festival and Smoky Mountain Christmas, adding even more excitement to your trip.
- Experience the Best of Southern Cuisine
From savory dishes to sweet treats, Pigeon Forge has much to offer regarding Southern cuisine. Here are some of the best restaurants you should try to get the best food in Pigeon Forge during your visit.
- Old Mill Restaurant: It serves traditional Southern dishes with fresh, locally sourced ingredients. Some of the must-try dishes at Old Mill include their famous corn chowder, chicken and dumplings, and fried chicken.
- Puckett’s: Their menu features classic Southern dishes, such as hot chicken, meatloaf, and fried catfish. The restaurant also has a live music venue, making it a great spot to enjoy a meal and entertainment.
- Huck Finn’s: This family-friendly restaurant serves fresh seafood and other Southern favorites like fried chicken and BBQ. Remember to try their famous hushpuppies and catfish!
- Local Goat: This restaurant offers delicious Southern dishes like jumbo wings, incredible salads, hefty steaks, tender ribs, and exceptional desserts. Local Goat also has an extensive cocktail menu, making it a great spot to unwind after a long day of exploring Pigeon Forge.
- Visit the Island in Pigeon Forge
The Island is a great place to spend a day or evening with its colorful storefronts, lively atmosphere, and various activities. The Ferris wheel is one of the main attractions on The Island, providing a bird’s eye view of the surrounding mountains and city. The Island also features live music performances and a water fountain show, which are free to enjoy. Shopping is also popular on The Island, with over 40 unique stores offering a range of products, from clothing to handmade souvenirs.
- Explore the Great Smoky Mountains National Park
The national park offers numerous opportunities to discover the area’s natural beauty, such as hiking, wildlife watching, and scenic drives. With over 800 miles of hiking trails, families can choose from various trails suitable for all skill levels, including kid-friendly trails. The Great Backyard, a program by the park, offers an excellent opportunity for families to learn about the natural environment and participate in interactive activities.
- Play Miniature Golf
Pigeon Forge has numerous miniature golf courses to choose from, each with their unique theme and challenges. One popular option is Crave Golf Club, which features two 19-hole mini-golf courses, one indoor and one outdoor, with a candy-themed design. The courses are filled with colorful obstacles such as lollipops, gumdrops, and candy canes, making them appealing to children and adults alike. Crave Golf Club also offers a variety of other activities, including a mini escape room and an on-site candy store.
- Play at Pigeon Forge Snow
This indoor snow park offers a variety of winter activities, such as snow tubing, snowman building, and snowball fights. The snow is made of natural snow created by a snow-making machine and is kept at 60-70 degrees Fahrenheit. This makes it a perfect destination for families, especially those who are looking for a winter experience in the summer months. Pigeon Forge Snow offers multiple tubing lanes, each with varying degrees of difficulty, which can accommodate both kids and adults. They also provide all the necessary equipment, including snow tubes, boots, and gloves, so you don’t need to worry about bringing anything. Additionally, the snow park is well-lit, making it a fun activity even after dark.
- Explore the Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies
The aquarium offers a unique and immersive experience, allowing visitors to get up close and personal with various aquatic creatures. From the underwater tunnel to the touch tanks, the aquarium offers various interactive exhibits for all ages. You can witness exotic sea creatures, including jellyfish, sea turtles, sharks, and stingrays.
One of the highlights of the aquarium is the Penguin Playhouse, where visitors can watch penguins waddling, swimming, and interacting with each other. Besides the exhibits, the aquarium offers various educational programs and shows throughout the day, providing visitors with fascinating information about marine life.
- Visit Titanic Museum Attraction
As you enter the museum, you will be transported back to the Titanic’s maiden voyage, where you can explore authentic artifacts and exhibits, including a replica of the Grand Staircase. The museum offers interactive experiences, such as feeling the cold water of the North Atlantic and walking on the sloping decks of the ship. The attraction is an excellent way for families to learn about history while entertained and engaged.
- Go to Parrot Mountain & Gardens
The attraction features a beautiful botanical garden with various plants, flowers, and trees. Visitors can explore the garden’s winding paths and take in the breathtaking views of the surrounding mountains. However, the real highlight of Parrot Mountain is the collection of species of colorful and friendly parrots that visitors can interact with. Kids and adults can feed, hold, and take photos with the parrots, making for a truly unforgettable experience. The attraction also offers a petting zoo, a playground, and a souvenir shop, ensuring there’s something for everyone in the family to enjoy.
- Ride The Rapids
This adventure will take you through the scenic beauty of the Smoky Mountains as you navigate the rapids of the Pigeon River. The experienced guides will ensure your safety and provide all the necessary equipment, including life jackets and helmets. The rafting experience suits families with children over 8, and the guides will customize the trip to match your skill level.
Pigeon Forge offers various fun activities for families to enjoy together. Taking advantage of the different attractions available makes your family trip more exciting and memorable. Whether you explore the Great Smoky Mountains, visit Dollywood, or experience the many other adventures Pigeon Forge offers, you will create lasting memories that your family will cherish for years. By planning, staying flexible, and being open to new experiences, you can make the most of your time in Pigeon Forge and have an unforgettable family vacation.