5 Tips for Parking in Downtown Gatlinburg

Published Jan 10, 2022

If you’re driving into Gatlinburg from your vacation cabin, plan ahead for parking. Let these five tips guide you to finding spaces near all the attractions.

1. Think About Timing

If you’re coming for a special event like the Christmas parade or Fourth of July, or you’re here in the autumn or summer tourist seasons, be aware that parking could be tough. Don’t worry, though–there are thousands of spaces.

2. Use the Free Park and Ride

Park for free at one of two city-run park and ride lots. Then catch the free trolley into town. You’ll find park and ride lots here:

  • Gatlinburg Welcome Center. The park and ride lot is at the center located on Highway 441 near the Spur. This 145-space lot has room for cars, buses, and RVs. Trolleys depart from here every 45 minutes.
  • City Hall. This park and ride lot, on Highway 321, has 95 car, bus, and RV spaces. You can catch a trolley here every 45 minutes. 

3. Try a City Garage or Lot

The city offers paid parking close to the action. These locations cost $10 per visit, for passenger vehicles only.

  • Aquarium Parking Garage. Located behind Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies in the heart of downtown, this 364-spot garage is a good base for eateries, shops, and attractions lining the Parkway.
  • McMahan Parking Garage. Located on the Parkway, this garage with 366 spots is close to destinations including Smoky Mountain Brewery, Tennessee Shine Co., and Ole Red. 
  • Highway 441 Parking Lot. This 34-space lot is another option.

4. Choose a Private Lot

At least 20 privately owned lots dot downtown. Daily rates at commercially owned lots vary from as low as $5 to $20 or more, depending on the season and events.

5. Look for Street Parking

This is your last resort unless you’re lucky or you’re an early riser. Street parking is limited and the few street spaces fill up quickly. River Road is one location with street spaces.

You’ll navigate Gatlinburg like a pro. At the day’s end, drive back to your convenient vacation rental cabin. Reserve your Gatlinburg cabin now. 

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