Tennessee’s Smoky Mountains are famous for being one of America’s best family vacation destinations. However, the Smokies aren’t just for kids! The cities of Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg offer numerous activities that are perfect for a couple’s escape or a getaway with your best friends. To help you make the most of your trip, Hearthside Cabin Rentals has put together a guide to the top six Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg attractions for adults.
1. Alcatraz East Crime Museum
The Alcatraz East Crime Museum is a can’t-miss stop for anyone who loves watching true crime stories on TV! This awesome attraction is dedicated to the history of crime in America and includes over 500 fascinating artifacts. Some of the most-buzzed-about items in the collection include Bonnie and Clyde’s shootout car, O.J. Simpson’s Ford Bronco, John Dillinger’s death mask, and Al Capone’s rosary. In addition to these pieces of history, Alcatraz East is also filled with interactive exhibits that are organized into five galleries: History of Crime, The Consequences of Crime, Crime Scene Investigation, Crime Fighting, and Pop Culture/Counterfeit Crime.
If you’re looking to do some souvenir shopping during your vacation, head directly to the Great Smoky Arts & Crafts Community! Located off of the East Parkway in Gatlinburg, this 8-mile loop is lined with galleries, studios, and shops. Considered the largest group of independent artisans in the United States, the Arts & Crafts Community is well known for its locally produced, handmade gifts. Whether you’re in search of paintings, photography, wood carvings, candles, jewelry, baskets, pottery, or something else, you’re sure to find the perfect souvenir in this charming shopping area.
3. Moonshine Distilleries
Moonshine distilleries are some of the most popular Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg attractions for adults. While making moonshine was once an illicit activity conducted under the cover of darkness, a 2009 change in Tennessee state law allowed a number of distilleries to set up shop in the Smokies. Adult visitors to these distilleries will have the chance to sample a variety of unique whiskey flavors, such as apple pie, vanilla bean, and root beer float. Most of the distilleries in town charge a $5 tasting fee, but participants are compensated with a $5 coupon that can be applied to any purchase made in the gift shop. For more information, check out our complete guide to the best distilleries in Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge.
Not a big moonshine fan? Don’t worry; the Smokies are also home to some fantastic wineries! As part of the Rocky Top Wine Trail, a number of wineries in Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg offer free tastings and tours. Be sure to get your official Rocky Top Wine Trail passport stamped at each location because you’ll receive free gifts as you complete the trail. Here are all of the participating wineries:
- Mountain Valley Vineyards
- Apple Barn Winery
- Hillside Winery
- Sugarland Cellars Winery
- Mill Bridge Winery
5. The Captured Escape Game
Escape games are among the hottest trends sweeping the nation, and Gatlinburg boasts one of the very best games in the Southeast! Located at the base of the Gatlinburg Space Needle, The Captured is an interactive adventure themed around a family of cannibals that abduct tourists in the Smoky Mountains. Participants in the game are “locked” in a room for 60 minutes and must find clues and solve puzzles in order to escape before the cannibals have them for dinner. The Captured is a ton of fun for groups!
6. Great Smoky Mountain Murder Mystery Dinner Theater
The Great Smoky Mountain Murder Mystery Dinner Theater is a wonderful place to spend an evening! This amazing theater produces a great collection of fun murder mystery shows that parody classic TV programs and movies, such as The Dukes of Hazzard, The Beverly Hillbillies, and Gone with the Wind. While you watch the show, you’ll dine on a mouthwatering three-course feast with all of your favorite Southern dishes.
When you stay with Hearthside Cabin Rentals, you will be just a short drive from all of the best Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg attractions for adults. With everything from 1 bedroom cabins to 18 bedroom lodges, we are guaranteed to have the perfect accommodations for your escape. To start planning your getaway, browse our collection of cabins in Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg!