Top 10 Gatlinburg Attractions to Add to Your Bucket List

firefly village at anakeesta

When you visit the Smoky Mountains, there is so much fun to be had! Gatlinburg has endless opportunities for both excitement and relaxation. When you plan your vacation, you’ll have so many activities to choose from. You’ll want to plan more than one trip just to fit in all the fun! We’ve put together a guide of the top 10 Gatlinburg attractions to add to your bucket list.

1. Ober Gatlinburg

gatlinburg trolley beside ober gatlinburg signOne of the places that should be at the top of your list is Ober Gatlinburg. This popular ski area and amusement park is a can’t-miss Gatlinburg attraction. Visit in the winter to hit the slopes for skiing, snowboarding, and tubing, or visit during the summer to cool off on water rides. There is fun for the whole family at Ober! See some of your favorite Smoky Mountain animals in the Wildlife Encounter, ride the Alpine Slide, or go ice skating any time of the year at the indoor rink.

2. Anakeesta

Anakeesta is one of the best attractions to experience the magic of the mountains. Take a scenic ride to the top of Anakeesta Mountain, where you’ll enter Firefly Village. There, you’ll find opportunities for shopping, dining, and fun. Try the Dueling Zipline Adventure, the Tree Canopy Walk, or the Rail Runner Mountain Coaster! The single-rail mountain coaster is the first of its kind in the United States. After all your fun, grab a bite to eat at Cliff Top Grill & Bar!

3. Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies

The outside of Ripley's Aquarium of the Smokies.Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies is one of the top aquariums in the country, and it’s not hard to see why. You’ll have the chance to see thousands of your favorite aquatic animals, and can even interact with some of them! We recommend trying the Glass Bottom Boat Adventure when you visit. You’ll venture out into the heart of Shark Lagoon, with just 3 inches of glass separating you from the 12-foot sharks that call the lagoon home. You can also splash with the stingrays, waddle with penguins, and feed a green sea turtle!

4. Gatlinburg SkyLift

The Gatlinburg SkyLift offers one of the best views of the Smoky Mountains. The SkyLift takes guests from the heart of Gatlinburg up 500 vertical feet to the top of Crockett Mountain. In the spring of 2019, you’ll have the chance to get off at the top onto the SkyDeck, where you can take in views you won’t get anywhere else. On your ride back down the mountain, you’ll have more stunning views! Also coming in spring of 2019 is the SkyBridge, which will be the longest pedestrian suspension bridge in North America.

5. Gatlinburg Space Needle

Gatlinburg Sky Lift with Space NeedleFor more spectacular views of the Smoky Mountains, plan a trip to the Gatlinburg Space Needle. When you visit the Space Needle, you’ll ride in a glass elevator up more than 400 feet to the top of the observation tower. From the top, you’ll have breathtaking views of the Smoky Mountains and the city of Gatlinburg. You can even come back at night to see the city lights!

6. Ole Smoky Moonshine Holler

Ole Smoky Moonshine Holler is one of the most popular Gatlinburg attractions for adults. The Holler is America’s most visited distillery. You’ll have the opportunity to see authentic-working moonshine stills and take in the process from beginning to end. The distillers are available to answer any questions you have about the history and lore of moonshining in Tennessee. You can also treat yourself to $5 samples of their signature flavors!

7. Gatlinburg Pinball Museum

classic pinball machineFor the largest collection of pinballs and retro games in the Smoky Mountains, head to the Gatlinburg Pinball Museum! The history of a museum meets the fun of an arcade in this attraction. Not only can you look at the exhibits, but you can play with them too! The museum’s collection of games includes mostly limited editions dating as far back as the 1960s. Some of the pinballs include Lord of the Rings, The Walking Dead, and the 1965 classic Gottlieb Sky-Line.

8. Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Odditorium

Step into a world of strange and unusual when you visit Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Odditorium in Gatlinburg. This museum includes odd items from all around the world. Throughout its three floors, you’ll see more than 500 exhibits and artifacts. Some things you can expect to find are a vampire killing kit, authentic shrunken heads, a car covered in crystals, and plenty of interactives for you to enjoy!

9. Hollywood Star Cars Museum

The Hollywood Star Cars Museum in Gatlinburg TN.If you love cars and you love Hollywood, the Hollywood Star Cars Museum should definitely be at the top of your bucket list. See some of the most famous cars from your favorite TV shows and movies! The cars are on display in recreated settings with lights, sounds, and action. Some cars you can expect to see the Batmobile, the Ghostbusters Ecto-1, General Lee from Dukes of Hazzard, and cars from the Fast and Furious franchise. After you look at all the cars in the museum, you can get a picture of yourself sitting in one!

10. Rowdy Bear Mountain

Rowdy Bear Mountain is one of the most exciting Gatlinburg attractions! It is home to two amazing thrill rides, The Gravity Coaster and The Mountain Glider. The Gravity Coaster is a gravity-propelled alpine mountain coaster that reaches speeds up to 35 miles per hour and winds through the woods of Rowdy Bear Mountain. The Mountain Glider is the first of its kind in the world and is a suspended single rail coaster that soars through the treetops and combines free falling and hang gliding.

Save Money on Gatlinburg Attractions

When you stay in our Gatlinburg cabin rentals, you’ll be given a Freedom Fun Pass. The Freedom Fun Pass helps you save money on some of the best Gatlinburg attractions! For every paid night stay, you’ll get a free ticket to exciting Gatlinburg attractions, including Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies!

Check out more Gatlinburg attractions to add to your bucket list, then start planning your trip!