Pigeon Forge is one of the top family-friendly vacation spots in Tennessee. Its’ location is right next to the quaint downtown of Gatlinburg and minutes away from world class hiking in the Smoky Mountains National Park. This area makes for one of the best national park vacations any time of
Pigeon Forge Attractions for Kids
Rent a Cabin
The first thing I recommend when staying in Pigeon Forge with kids is to rent a cabin. Cabin rentals in the area are plentiful and by choosing to stay in a cabin, you are adding to the mountain feel. We rented from Patriot Getaways. They have many options available, and we were very happy with the location, size of the cabin and amenities it offered. The kids often did not want to leave the cabin. They wanted to stay and enjoy the basement, balcony, and woods nearby- which made it very family friendly! An
Drive Down the Main Road
The main street in Pigeon Forge is similar to International Drive in Orlando (meaning it has a plethora of
MagiQuest and Mini Golf
This is a giant indoor play area for kids. The MagiQuest itself is a sort of digital scavenger hunt, but we opted for mini golf. They had an indoor glow in the dark mini golf course that was pretty fun! It was raining that afternoon, so we decided on an indoor activity instead of staying in our cabin. The black lights added an element of fun, and for $9 a child, I thought…why not?
Dollywood Theme Park
One of my favorite things to do in Pigeon Forge with kids is to visit Dollywood. Dollywood is well known as a beautiful family-friendly attractions and shows. If you have children who enjoy rides, then this is a great place to spend the day nestled amongst the trees and enjoying the surroundings.
This is one of my favorite Pigeon Forge attractions for kids. Pigeon Forge is home to the world’s largest Titanic Museum (although there is another one in Branson, Missouri). On this self-guided tour, visitors can walk the Grand Staircase and hallways, try to stand on sloping decks, and even touch 28-degree water. I would recommend this for children who are at least old enough to understand what happened and will appreciate the 400+ actual artifacts.
Watch a Country Dinner Show
There are many options for a country dinner show in Pigeon Forge. In fact, many people have shared with me that they rated it as their favorite Pigeon Forge attraction for kids. There are a few options, but here are some of the most popular ones: Dolly Parton’s Stampede, Hatfield & McCoy Dinner Feud, and Pirates Voyage Dinner and Show.
Watch a Lumberjack Show
This is exactly what it sounds like – a lumberjack competition. The men and women performing these feats are not only athletic, but very talented. They even call a few people from the audience to test their aim at axe throwing. I highly recommend watching the show.
Ride an Alpine Coaster
Another one of the great Pigeon Forge attractions with kids was the Alpine Coaster. There are a few varieties available and are close by. This one was a little pricey at $15 a ticket, so I decided to go hunting on Groupon, and found 2 for $20 (so I just bought two of them for our family). Although $10 a ride is still a little steep in my book, it was a lot more fun than I thought it would be. You start off at the bottom of the mountain, and then slowly your “coaster” goes up the track. Once you are at the top, the coaster is ready to go down the track. Notice in the picture below, there are two levers that act as brakes (in case you feel you are going too fast). You never really go very fast, but this is a good option for those with small children (38″ can ride with an adult).
Go Hiking in Smoky Mountain National Park
One of our favorite things to do in Pigeon Forge with kids is hiking a trail or driving around Smoky Mountain National Park. Once you get to the main road, follow the signs to the park. You can drive around and stop at the many overlooks to take pictures, and enjoy the mountain scenery.
We have hiked a few trails in the Smokies, yet our favorite remains Laurel Falls. We have done this hike twice in the winter (the first time the kids were 3 and 5, and the second time they were 5 and 7). It is a very easy, short
There are a couple of sections where you scramble through some rocks, and even though there are steep drops, the trail is wide enough that you can safely hike with smaller children.
Most of the path, however, is level and paved (see above). There are many places to stop and take pictures, or just to relax and enjoy nature.
As with most
Visiting in the fall is probably the perfect time for a Smoky Mountain vacation. If you have time, consider visiting the entire park with runs through both Tennessee and North Carolina. Don’t forget that there are plenty of things to do in North Carolina in the fall for outdoor enthusiasts too.
There are plenty of places to go shopping in Pigeon Forge. Less than 20 minutes away is the Sevierville
Gatlinburg is a quaint town about 10-15 minutes away from Pigeon Forge. It has great boutique stores, delicious restaurants,
Ride an ATV
There are so many things to do in Pigeon Forge with kids that you may never run out of options. For those who are a little older and up for some adventure, consider ATV rides in Pigeon Forge. There are a few companies that offer ATV rides and you can even bring your kids (check their site for ages/safety)
Both times we visited Pigeon Forge was on a road trip around the South. We rented a huge SUV and traveled with family members for the holidays. We drove up from Miami and have stopped along the way at St. Augustine, Savannah, Atlanta, Helen, Greenville, and Charleston. For options on where to stay in Pigeon Forge, click here.
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