9 Reasons You Should Choose Gatlinburg, TN as Next Vacation Destination

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Gatlinburg, Tennessee, in the heart of the Great Smoky Mountains, is a town like no other. This charming destination, constantly changing its hues to blend with the seasons, offers a range of outdoor activities, history, and local culture.

Let’s discuss why Gatlinburg should be your next holiday destination.

1. A Feast for the Palate: Food and Wine Culture

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The culinary delights of Gatlinburg are as varied as they are mouthwatering. Traditional Southern fare rubs shoulders with contemporary gourmet dishes, catering to an array of tastes. One could savor mountain trout at a riverside eatery, treat themselves to a generous breakfast at a local diner, or indulge in a sweet craving with homemade fudge or taffy.

Oh, and it would be remiss not to mention Gatlinburg’s breakfast tradition. Pancake Pantry, the town’s cherished breakfast spot, has a variety of pancakes, from the classic buttermilk to more adventurous offerings—an ideal way to kickstart a day of Gatlinburg exploration.

Wine lovers, too, will find their calling here. Gatlinburg takes pride in being home to Tennessee Homemade Wines, a local winery that spins magic with age-old family recipes. And while you’re here, don’t miss out on their Raspberry Wine. This sweet yet tart wine, crafted and bottled in Gatlinburg, adds a special flavor to your experience.

2. A Canvas of Colors: Gatlinburg’s Spectacular Natural Beauty

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Stealing the spotlight as the most frequented national park in the United States, the Great Smoky Mountains National Park is a sprawling canvas of untouched wilderness. It presents an array of flora and fauna for the nature enthusiast, whether their heart leans towards hiking trails, fishing, or a peaceful picnic among wildflowers.

For those drawn to heights, a ride on the Gatlinburg SkyLift could be a memory for the ages. Sweeping vistas of towering Smoky Mountains on one side and the enchanting town on the other could leave anyone spellbound. Once at the top, the SkyDeck offers a bird’s eye view of the surroundings, while the SkyBridge, North America’s longest pedestrian suspension bridge, promises a walk to remember.

What’s beautiful about Gatlinburg is that it’s not biased toward any season. Every time of the year brings a new charm to the place. The blossoming wildflowers of spring, summer’s greenery, the riotous hues of autumn leaves, and the tranquil white blanket of winter all add a unique layer to Gatlinburg’s charm.

3. The Thrill of the Ride: Unique and Thrilling Attractions

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For a ride that promises both thrill and an unbeatable view, the Gatlinburg Aerial Tramway comes highly recommended. The panoramic sight from the tram, encompassing the breathtaking Smoky Mountains and the bustling city beneath, offers a unique perspective.

Then there’s Ripley’s Aquarium, an indispensable part of any Gatlinburg itinerary. This top-notch facility, housing thousands of sea creatures and interactive exhibits like the Penguin Playhouse and Stingray Bay, promises an informative and immersive experience for visitors of all ages.

For the adrenaline-seekers, the Gatlinburg Mountain Coaster is an irresistible challenge. This roller coaster, tucked away in the forest, provides a thrilling journey through twists and turns, all the while offering spectacular views of the Smoky Mountains. It’s truly a ride that marries the thrill of speed with the allure of nature.

4. The Great Outdoors: Unforgettable Outdoor Activities

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The Smoky Mountains backdrop of Gatlinburg provides a myriad of hiking trails, each carrying its own distinct appeal. A trail for every skill level, from tranquil forest pathways to invigorating treks leading to cascading waterfalls and mountain peaks, waits to be discovered. With an array of wildlife and breathtaking landscapes to boot, every venture outdoors promises a unique experience.

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For those who prefer their adventures with a splash of excitement, whitewater rafting down the Pigeon River offers a perfect blend of exhilaration and scenic charm. This heart-pumping activity promises not only a good workout but also a chance to create indelible memories amidst the beauty of the Smoky Mountains.

The wildlife of Gatlinburg adds a magical touch to the outdoor experience. From black bears and white-tailed deer to an assortment of bird species, the opportunity to observe these magnificent creatures in their natural environment is not to be missed. Guided tours and safaris provide an opportunity for safe and educational interactions with wildlife.

5. Beyond the Mall: Unique Shopping Experiences

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The Village Shops in Gatlinburg offers a unique shopping experience reminiscent of a quaint European hamlet. This intriguing collection of boutiques and specialty shops promises an array of local crafts, unique mementos, and delectable treats.

The Gatlinburg Crafts Community provides a vibrant snapshot of the town’s artistic heritage. A scenic loop stretching over 8 miles is dotted with studios and shops where artisans demonstrate their craft, creating everything from jewelry and pottery to handwoven baskets and quilts. It’s a perfect chance to carry a piece of Gatlinburg’s artistic charm back home.

6. A Walk Through Time: Gatlinburg’s Rich History and Culture

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Gatlinburg and the Smoky Mountains hold stories from the past waiting to be unraveled. Historical sites, like the cabins of the Pioneer Village and the Mountain Farm Museum, offer a rich trove of historical exploration.

Gatlinburg’s vibrant music scene, deeply rooted in Appalachian culture, is another facet of its identity. From toe-tapping bluegrass and timeless country to energetic rock and roll, the town’s music is sure to touch a chord with everyone.

7. Festive Flair: Gatlinburg’s Special Events and Festivals

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Gatlinburg’s calendar is speckled with numerous festivals and events that celebrate the seasons, culture, and more. These lively gatherings present unique entertainment, scrumptious food, and an opportunity to connect with locals and fellow visitors. They add an extra sprinkle of joy and a uniquely Gatlinburg flavor to one’s vacation in this charming town.

8. Comfortable and Varied Accommodations

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Imagine cozying up in a cabin secluded in the woods with nothing but panoramic views of the Smoky Mountains for company. That’s Gatlinburg for you – an assortment of snug cabins offering a peaceful retreat amidst nature, your very own home away from home in the heart of the mountains.

For those leaning towards a dose of grandeur, Gatlinburg isn’t short on luxury accommodations. Upscale resorts and hotels, brimming with top-tier services and amenities, await. Boutique hotels offer an intimate experience, while larger resorts pamper guests with spa services, gastronomical delights, and awe-inspiring mountain views. It’s luxury lodging tailored to every discerning taste.

9. Ease of Access: Getting to and Around Gatlinburg

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One might argue that getting to Gatlinburg is an adventure in itself. Regardless of your point of origin, scenic roads that twist and turn through the breathtaking landscapes of the Smoky Mountains make the journey a prelude to the Gatlinburg experience. Once in town, navigating around is a breeze, with most attractions within a comfortable walk or a quick drive.


In Gatlinburg, Tennessee, one finds a rare blend of majestic natural splendor, pulse-racing attractions, a rich cultural tapestry, and a culinary scene that’s a delight for the senses. Whether it’s an adventurous escapade, a serene retreat, culinary exploration, or a harmonious mix of all, Gatlinburg has it all. So, what’s the holdup? Set your sights on Gatlinburg and etch unforgettable memories against the grandeur of the Great Smoky Mountains.