My family and I usually take a yearly trip to Pigeon Forge/Gatlinburg Tennessee. Keep in mind my children are ages 7 and 2 so you can get a better idea of which attractions may or may not be ideal for your family. This is just a summary of everything we did on vacation and I will be reviewing each attraction individually in the coming weeks so please check back soon.
We arrived in Pigeon Forge on a Monday and checked into our hotel, Country Cascades, which is right in the center of town and about a quarter mile from the Parkway. It was an excellent location. After checking in we walked across the street to The Island. The Island is a little city all its own. There are lots of shops, amusement rides, an arcade, and tons of places to eat. We chose to eat dinner at the Mellow Mushroom. The pizza was good but the crust was phenomenal. This particular location is not a full service restaurant. You order at the front counter and get your own drinks which is not a big deal but thought I’d let you all know because I wish I had known.
After dinner we went to the arcade, the kids rode a few rides and my husband listened to some Bluegrass music outside of the Ole Smoky Moonshine Distillery. One thing I think is very important when going to the Island to ride the rides is the height of your kids. My daughter is 2.5 years old but not tall enough to go on most rides. She was able to go on the carousel and the trackless train but an adult had to ride with her.
We then walked over to The Comedy Barn Theatre which is right next to The Island. I was sort of skeptical on how my kids would enjoy the show but I was more than pleasantly surprised. This show is hilarious and clean comedy for the entire family. It was a full 2 hour show and we headed back to the hotel to get some sleep.
Tuesday morning we woke up and had the free deluxe breakfast at our hotel, Country Cascades. Breakfast was just ok nothing spectacular but it got us going for the day.
We then drove into Gatlinburg to the Riley’s Aquarium which I say is must for any family. My children were in awe of all the different species of fish. We spent about 1.5 there but easily could have spent more time there especially had we arrived at a busier time of day. We then went to Ripley’s Believe It or Not Museum. This was fun for all of us but the little one was ready for a nap so she didn’t have the greatest time. From there we went to Ripley’s Haunted Adventure and Ripley’s 5D Theatre.
My daughter was too young for both attractions so my husband took my daughter to Ole Smoky Moonshine Gatlinburg for Bluegrass music while my son and I visited the attractions. The 5D Theatre was so much fun. My son wanted to go back in after we were done. The Haunted Attraction was a great intro to haunted houses for my 7 year old. He was very brave and I was very happy we didn’t leave with him crying. The entire family then walked to the Ripley’s Mirror Maze. That was lots of fun but not so much if you are claustrophobic. I only started to get panicky in the last 30 seconds or so.
As if we hadn’t done enough yet we then went back to Pigeon Forge to the Hatfield & McCoy Dinner Feud Show. The food was amazing and the show was great for the whole family. After dinner we decided to wind down the day at Ripley’s Davy Crockett Mini-golf. This was a nice way to end our exhausting day.
Wednesday we woke up early and went to the Tanger Outlets in Sevierville which is right next to Pigeon Forge. Rain was expected so we went to Ripley’s Old McDonald Farm Mini-golf which was really cool. Then it was back to Gatlinburg to visit Guiness World records Museum. We enjoyed The Comedy Barn so much that we went back for the Comedy Critters show. Then we were off to dinner since it was raining cats and dogs After dinner we hit a few souvenir shops, Rockin’ Raceway arcade, then Mad Dog’s Creamery for some delicious ice cream.
The next morning it was time to say goodbye to the good ole Smoky Mountains until 2016.