How to Enjoy Your First Vacation to Gatlinburg

Published Aug 7, 2021

If you’re a first-time visitor to Gatlinburg, welcome! We can’t wait to meet you and show off this friendly town. Here are a few tips to help you get the most out of your Gatlinburg vacation.

1. Plan to Explore Our Wonderfully Walkable Dowtown

Bring your favorite walking shoes. Downtown Gatlinburg is walkable, with attractions just minutes from each other. Plan outings for maximum fun along what locals call The Strip. Strollable highlights include Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies and the Hollywood Star Cars Museum.

2. Look Up!

On your first trip to Gatlinburg, you might not know that you can catch chairlifts to the mountains from right here in downtown. A chairlift ride is a must!

  • Ride to Anakeesta theme park from the heart of downtown! Catch the Anakeesta “chondola” and choose between an open chairlift or an enclosed gondola for your vertical 600-foot ride.
  • Ride 500 vertical feet on iconic yellow chairlifts to Gatlinburg SkyLift Park. Stop at the mountaintop park to walk over the SkyBridge spanning the valley.

3. Don't Miss Our Local Moonshine

Vacations are all about trying new things you don’t have back home. In Gatlinburg, you’ll want to sample a Tennessee classic, real moonshine. If you picture backwoods stills hidden from the government, think again. Moonshine distilling has been legal here since 2010, so distilleries are popular spots, offering local, legit moonshine.

4. Get into the National Park

With all the attractions of Gatlinburg, you might end up leaving too little time to see the wonders of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Don’t neglect this national treasure. Love to hike? There are 800 miles of hiking and walking trails. Not into hiking? Take a scenic drive. Enjoy local history? The park includes fascinating historic cabins, mills, and chapels.

5. Stay in a Gatlinburg Rental Cabin

We know there are other options for lodging. Why rent a vacation cabin? You get privacy plus all the conveniences you need if you want to cook for yourself or spend time hanging out. Our cabins are minutes from Gatlinburg, so you’re close to the action.

Featured Rentals Selected Just For You