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Top 6 Must See Places in Gatlinburg TN and the Smoky Mountains

Scenic photo of Gatlinburg and the Smoky Mountains.
July 19, 2018

Gatlinburg, Tennessee is unlike anywhere else in the world! Located on the border of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, our charming city boasts a unique mix of gorgeous natural scenery and some of the nation’s top family-friendly attractions. To help you make the most of your next vacation, Timber Tops Cabin Rentals has put together a guide to six must see places in Gatlinburg TN and the Smokies.

1. Gatlinburg Space Needle

A scenic photo of Gatlinburg and the mountains

The Gatlinburg Space Needle is the most iconic fixture of Gatlinburg’s skyline! This striking observation tower offers breathtaking views of the city and the mountains from 407 feet in the air. Boasting free viewfinders and a glass elevator that takes guests to the top of the tower, the Space Needle provides an unforgettable experience. After you’ve taken in the vistas, you can see a show at the Space Needle’s Iris Theater, enjoy dinner at the Slice Pizza Bakery, play all of your favorite arcade classics at Arcadia, or test your wits in The Captured escape room.

2. Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies

Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies was voted the #2 aquarium in America by the readers of USA Today! This enormously popular attraction is famous for its one-of-a-kind exhibits. Guests will have the chance to glide through Shark Lagoon on a moving sidewalk, pet a real live stingray at Touch-A-Ray Bay, and even see mermaids go diving in the tanks. Be sure to inquire about Ripley’s special add-on experiences, which include glass bottom boat tours and a behind-the-scenes encounter with an adorable African penguin.

3. Ole Smoky Moonshine Distillery

Jars of moonshine at the Ole Smoky distillery in Gatlinburg TN.

The Ole Smoky Moonshine Distillery is another one of the must see places in Gatlinburg TN. Known as “The Holler,” Ole Smoky is the most visited distillery in the nation. The main draw at The Holler is the tasting bar where guests can sample a variety of unique moonshine flavors (like Apple Pie, Blackberry, our Hunch Punch) for just $5. In return, you’ll receive a $5 coupon that can be applied to any purchase made in the Ole Smoky gift shop. The Holler is also well known for its toe-tapping country and bluegrass music, which makes the distillery a great spot for drinkers and non-drinkers alike.

4. Dollywood

Drawing in around 3 million guests each year, Dollywood is the largest ticketed attraction in the state of Tennessee. Co-owned by Smoky Mountain native Dolly Parton, this awesome theme park celebrates everything there is to love about the Volunteer State with thrills, music, food, and fun. Visitors will find a fantastic collection of exhilarating rides and roller coasters along with world-class shows and good old-fashioned Southern cuisine. Dollywood hosts a number of popular festivals throughout the year that bring special entertainment to the park, so be sure to check the calendar before you plan your trip!

5. The Old Mill

The Old Mill on the Little Pigeon River in the Smoky Mountains

Built along the Little Pigeon River in 1830, The Old Mill is a piece of Smoky Mountain history. Today, this working grist mill is surrounded by a wonderful selection of shops and restaurants, many of which use the freshly ground flour and cornmeal produced by the mill. No trip to the Smokies is complete without a meal at The Old Mill Restaurant or a cone from The Old Mill Creamery!

6. Cades Cove

Cades Cove is the most frequented section of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, attracting over 2 million annual visitors. This breathtaking valley is famous for its well-preserved historic buildings, gorgeous mountain views, and incredible wildlife viewing. If you are hoping to spot a black bear or a white-tailed deer during your vacation, this is the place to visit! Cades Cove features a convenient 11-mile, one way, loop road that stops at all of the valley’s major landmarks.

Where to Stay in Gatlinburg TN

Beautiful mountain views from the deck of the Lookout Lodge cabin

When you stay with Timber Tops Cabin Rentals, you will be near all of these must see places in Gatlinburg TN and the Smoky Mountains. Our cabins come with your choice of stellar amenities, including stunning mountain views, decks with rocking chairs and hot tubs, fully furnished kitchens, epic theater rooms, and awesome game rooms. With everything from 1 bedroom cabins for romantic escapes to 15 bedroom lodges for family reunions, we are sure to have the ideal accommodations for your vacation. To start planning your getaway, browse our selection of cabins in Gatlinburg TN!

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