Thursday, January 31, 2013

5 FREE Things To Do In The Gatlinburg/Pigeon Forge Area

The Gatlinburg/Pigeon Forge area is chock full of activities and fun family adventures. The good news is that there are quite a few FREE places to check out. I have highlighted 5 below.

1) The Smoky Mountains National Park- Duh!! This beautiful expanse of park providing the scenic backdrop for the area seems like a no-brainer, but quite a few visitors to the area never step foot in the actual park. We took a narrated tour in to the park and our guide told us that it is approximated that half of all visitors to the area don't actually go to the national park. Cades Cove, Clingman's Dome and Sugarlands Visitor Center are just a few of the highlights to visit while in the park.

2) Visit The Christmas Place in Pigeon Forge. This mega-store features anything and everything Christmas. The kids will love perusing the many displays and enjoying the Christmas spirit all year long. Across the street, The Inn at Christmas Place is a Christmas-themed hotel that is also fun to explore to check out the displays.

3) Stroll the streets of Gatlinburg. Taking a walk down the quaint streets of Gatlinburg is great for people-watching and checking out the fun trinket shops and candy-making stores. Head on over to the riverwalk along the Little Pigeon River, right off the main drag in Gatlinburg. A little quieter stroll and lovely scenery.

4)  Old Mill/Patriot's Park. The Old Mill Shopping District features the Old Mill itself, which sits along the Little Pigeon River,and some cute shops including the Old Mill's general store. I enjoy the restaurant at The Old Mill, although this is not free, it is definitely tasty. Walking around the grounds is free, but if you want to take a tour of the inside of the mill, there is a small fee.  Patriot Park is next to the Mill and is a nice park featuring displays pertaining to American heritage and patriotism. It was a perfect place to let the kids run off some energy.

5) Drive the Arts and Craft Loop. This loop has a plethora of handmade arts and crafts from local artisans. Take the loop and check out painting, pottery, wood crafts, leather crafting, candles, glass-blowing, basket weaving, quilting and more. There is no fee to just take the loop and stop to watch the artisans at work; however, if you don't wish to drive it yourself, there are trolleys available for a nominal fee that will take you along the loop.

The Gatlinburg/Pigeon Forge area has so many fun family activities- many of which are free or very budget-friendly. Take some time to check them out on your next trip to the Smokies.

1 comment:

  1. Just wanted to say Hello! I found your blog through BloggyMoms(Ohio). Great to find other Ohio bloggers!