If you’re looking to de-stress and unwind in nature, look no further than Gatlinburg. Gatlinburg is a lush mountain town in Eastern Tennessee popular among vacationers for its breathtaking views and grandeur. Nestled at the foothills of the famous Great Smoky Mountains, Gatlinburg hosts various exciting activities you can partake in on your vacation.
Its popularity among travelers is steadily expanding as an increasing number of people choose to visit this town every year. Why? Because it has something to offer everybody.
Let’s go over a few compelling reasons why you should choose Gatlinburg as the destination for your next vacation.
1. Experience the Cabin Life
The accommodations you choose for your trip help ensure the best vacation of your life or one that you dread for years to come. Luckily, Gatlinburg and its surrounding areas have no shortage of lodging for its many visitors. There’s a wide variety to choose from, so you can rest your mind at ease.
Hotels are usually the first choice for most travelers, but this city is home to several different cabins you can rent for the duration of your stay. Cabins have the advantage of being secluded, so you don’t have to put up with prying or noisy neighbors that ruin your stay. What’s best is that you’ll be close to nature and can even pick pet-friendly ones. When traveling with a big group to Gatlinburg, large cabin rentals offer many spacious cabins. So, Google “gatlinburg large cabin rentals” and pick one according to your needs and preferences.
2. Explore the Great Smoky Mountains National Park
Through Gatlinburg, you can easily visit the Great Smoky Mountains National Park – the most visited and popular national park in the US, with almost 11 million visitors annually. Several hiking trails of this national park can be accessed from right outside the city.
Cades Cove is a wide, verdant valley in the national park where you’ll come across black bears, deer, and coyotes. You can spend your time wildlife watching alongside enjoying the hike. You can also go on a wildflower walk, head to one of the waterfalls in the mountains, or have a picnic.
3. Have Fun at Ober Gatlinburg
Ober Gatlinburg is a one-stop shop for many thrilling activities, especially during winters. You’ll have the opportunity to ski, snowboard, and snow tube at Ober, and lessons are available for anyone partaking in these sports for the first time.
While there’s no snow during summers, you can still enjoy various other fun activities. Summer tubing, the alpine slide, ice skating, wildlife encounters, mountain coasters, and many other activities are still open during the summers. This place has something for everyone, and during all the seasons – that’s all the more reason to vacation in Ober Gatlinburg.
4. Indulge in Shopping
No trip to Gatlinburg is complete without a shopping trip. The shopping options here are particularly varied and have something for everyone. Don’t forget to stroll along the downtown strip, which is home to hundreds of small shops and where you can shop to your heart’s desire.
Alongside this, the Great Smoky Arts and Crafts Community is an 8-mile stretch with over a hundred shops selling unique handmade artworks. It’s the largest congregation of independent artisans in North America, so you’re bound to find the perfect item to keep or give as a souvenir.
5. Enjoy Southern Food
Southern food is a favorite among all Americans, and there’s no better place than Gatlinburg to indulge in some. Gatlinburg offers several delicious options for people who love to eat, from family-owned eateries to high-end restaurants, most of which come with magnificent views of the mountains.
The area is said to have the highest concentration of pancake houses worldwide, and who doesn’t like pancakes? Moreover, Gatlinburg’s Ole Smoky Moonshine Distillery is the country’s most visited distillery and offers a range of original flavors, so you’re bound to find one you like.
6. Visit Anakeesta
Anakeesta is a theme park located on a small mountain in Gatlinburg. You’ll need to buy a wristband to enter and then, later on, ride a chair lift to reach the top. You can also ride one of the Ridge Rambles trucks to get there. Once at the top, there’s no shortage of activities to do.
What’s best is that there are several places to eat and shop, and many special events are held at the theme park from time to time. Also, explore the Treetop Skywalk, which comprises over 800 feet of sky bridges. You can walk from one treetop to another while viewing the wildlife below.
7. Have Fun at the Gatlinburg SkyLift
The Gatlinburg SkyLift is one of the city’s famous icons that offers breathtaking views of the Great Smoky Mountains. Passengers are taken 1,800 feet above sea level to the top of Crockett Mountain to the Gatlinburg SkyBridge – the longest pedestrian bridge in North America at 680 feet long.
You can also visit the SkyDeck and witness the area’s lush forests and beautiful mountains while relaxing in the amphitheater seating.
8. Visit Ripley’s Aquarium
Ripley’s aquarium brings the ocean to you in the middle of the Great Smoky Mountains, with more than 10,000 exotic marine creatures across 350 different species. There’s also an indoor playground for kids to play in and an underwater tunnel that offers close-up views of sharks and penguins.
Children are usually so enamored by the sea creatures that they spend hours exploring all that the aquarium has to offer. So, it’s usually better to set aside a whole afternoon for this part of the trip.
Gatlinburg is the most popular and tourist-loved vacation spot in the United States since it’s brimming with various activities, scenic sites, and shopping spots. The Great Smoky Mountain National Park is accessible from outside Gatlinburg, so you can hike and fish in the park all you like. But don’t forget to book cabin rentals to ensure a comfortable and relaxing stay.
What’s more, Ober Gatlinburg and Anakeesta are two theme parks that offer a wide variety of activities for people of all ages. Alongside this, Southern food is available everywhere, and you can enjoy it with the most beautiful views. Several small shops around the city make its shopping scene one to remember. Ripley’s aquarium and the Gatlinburg SkyLift are also iconic places you must visit on your trip to Gatlinburg. With so many enticing activities to choose from, you will surely be tempted to extend your trip for a few extra days.