If you’ve been wondering what the number one thing to do in Gatlinburg is, you’re not alone. Check out this Gatlinburg vacation guide so you can plan your trip and make the most of your time in this beautiful area.
With a plethora of activities and sites to discover in Gatlinburg, it’s easy for even the best-laid plans to fall short. To make sure your trip won’t miss out on the area’s top attractions, read on!
Gatlinburg, Tennessee, is a popular vacation destination in the United States. Every year, thousands of people flock to this small mountain town for its stunning views and endless activities. But what is the number one thing to do in Gatlinburg?
Let’s find out!
What Is The Number One Thing To do in Gatlinburg?
The number one thing to do in Gatlinburg, Tennessee, is to explore the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.
This park is the most visited national park in the United States and covers over 800 square miles of land featuring lush forests, dramatic mountain views, and abundant wildlife.
Visitors can spend days exploring the park through a variety of activities including hiking, camping, fishing, horseback riding, and more! There are also a number of Smoky Mountains scenic drives to take in the views.
In addition to these outdoor activities, Gatlinburg is home to many attractions, including Ober Gatlinburg, Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies, Anakeesta, and more.
With so much to do you won’t want to miss out on this beautiful area of Tennessee.
What Should You Not Miss Great Smoky Mountains?
The Great Smoky Mountains National Park is one of the most beautiful places in the United States, and should not be missed by any traveler looking to experience natural wonders.
With a wide range of activities, sights, and experiences, there are plenty of attractions to explore in this majestic park. Here are just some of the must-sees at Great Smoky Mountains National Park:
• Cades Cove – One of the most popular spots in the park, this valley features a wonderful mix of wildlife and stunning mountain views. Whether you’re looking for great hiking trails, scenic drives, or just an opportunity to take some beautiful photos, Cades Cove is the perfect spot.
• Clingmans Dome – This is the highest point in Tennessee, and from here you can experience breathtaking views of distant peaks. There are also several trails that lead out from here, allowing visitors to explore more of the park’s remote areas.
• Cataloochee Valley – One of the most scenic valleys in the Smokies, Cataloochee Valley offers visitors a chance to explore the park’s history and natural wonders. Here you’ll find an old logging settlement and even elk that were reintroduced into the area in 2001.
• Roaring Fork Motor Nature Trail – This is one of the most popular driving routes through the Smokies, taking you past numerous historic and scenic sites. Along the way, you’ll be treated to multiple waterfalls and plenty of opportunities for photos.
• Newfound Gap Road – This scenic drive offers access to the park year-round, and is a great way to explore the Smokies. This road cuts through the center of the park, offering impressive views and plenty of places to pull over and take pictures.
There’s also plenty of other attractions to explore while in the area, such as great dining options, historic sites, and more.
Make sure to research all of your options before heading out so you don’t miss out on anything the Great Smoky Mountains National Park has to offer!
How many days is enough in Gatlinburg?
If you’re looking for a relaxing vacation and just want to get away from it all, two or three nights is perfect.
Spend your time exploring downtown, catching some live music, visiting the Ripley’s Aquarium, and eating your way through the area.
If you’re looking for adventure, then four or five nights is ideal. Take a guided tour of Great Smoky Mountains National Park, go whitewater rafting around Gatlinburg, brave an alpine coaster ride at Ober Gatlinburg Ski Resort, and get a bird’s eye view of the city while ziplining.
For the ultimate Gatlinburg experience, we recommend at least a week in town. You’ll be able to experience everything the area has to offer, from hiking through the Smoky Mountains to visiting Gatlinburg’s top attractions.
And don’t forget to take a short drive to nearby towns like Pigeon Forge and Sevierville for even more fun!
Whether you’re looking for relaxation or adventure, Gatlinburg has something for everyone—so why not stay awhile? You won’t be disappointed!
Where to Stay in Gatlinburg?
GSM Family Vacations Cabin is the perfect place to stay while visiting Gatlinburg. Located in the Gatlinburg Arts & Crafts District, this luxurious mountain retreat is only a short 10-minute drive from downtown Gatlinburg and provides guests with an abundance of amenities, breathtaking mountain views, and plenty of entertainment options.
Smoky Mountains 7-Day Itinerary
I understand how difficult it can be to plan a trip, especially if it’s your first time going. That’s why I created this 7-day itinerary for the Smoky Mountains. It outlines all of the best places to go in the area and comes with insider tips that will save you a lot of stress–trust me, they saved me when I was planning my own trip!
- Our 7-day itinerary takes you to the best places in the Smoky Mountains.
- You’ll get to see all the best sights and attractions with driving directions
- The itinerary is designed to show you the most scenic routes.
- Packing Checklist for every season.
- You’ll have everything you need to make the most of your trip.
- Insider Tips!
Here’s a quick overview of our Smoky Mountains 7-Day Itinerary.
- Day 1: Cades Cove Loop
- Day 2: Rich Mountain Road
- Day 3: Cataloochee Valley
- Day 4: Newfound Gap Road
- Day 5: Roaring Fork Motor Trail
- Day 6: Little River Road
- Day6: Foothills Parkway
Get Our FREE Winter Packing Checklist For The Smokies!
Recommended Gatlinburg Vacation Resources
- Smoky Mountains Vacation Guide
- Pigeon Forge Vacation Guide
- Fun Things to Do in Gatlinburg in March
- Great Smoky Mountains Family Vacations Facebook Group
More Related Resources
Are you planning a trip to the Smoky Mountains any time soon? If so, you need to check out our guide to the top 25 Things To Do In Gatlinburg, TN, that you’ll surely enjoy with the whole family.
Capture all your fun experiences with a compact travel camera that you can take wherever your adventure takes you.