Animal lovers are sure to have a blast in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee! Our Smoky Mountain city features a host of attractions where you can see, and in some cases interact with, a variety of beautiful critters. To help you make the most of your next vacation, Hearthside Cabin Rentals has put together a guide to 10 incredible animal attractions in Pigeon Forge TN and the Smokies.
1. Smoky Mountain Deer Farm and Exotic Petting Zoo
The Smoky Mountain Deer Farm is unlike any other petting zoo you’ve ever visited! The deer at this attraction are very docile and friendly, so you can walk right into their pen and give them some food. In addition to deer, the zoo features goats, horses, camels, elk, llamas, zebras, kangaroos, and even more exotic animals. The Deer Farm is also home to an awesome horseback riding stable that offers fun trail rides.
Cades Cove is the most visited section of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. This breathtaking valley is perfect for wildlife viewing because it lacks the dense forest that characterizes much of the park. From the comfort of your car, you’ll have the chance to spot black bears, pileated woodpeckers, wild turkey, and white-tailed deer.
3. Parrot Mountain and Gardens
Parrot Mountain and Gardens truly feels like a world apart. Located on four acres in the foothills of the Smokies, this unique attraction is home to hundreds of stunning tropical birds, many of whom talk and pose for pictures. Visitors can even play with baby birds in the nursery, which has many adorable parrots that are available for adoption.
4. American Eagle Foundation
The American Eagle Foundation Headquarters is another one of the best animal attractions in Pigeon Forge TN. The AEF offers tours of its facilities where you may be able to meet Challenger, the famous bald eagle that flies over sports stadiums during the national anthem. You can also see some of the AEF eagles at Eagle Mountain Sanctuary and the Wings of America Show at the Dollywood theme park.
Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies was recently voted the best aquarium in the United States by the readers of USA Today! This awesome aquarium is home to over 10,000 sea creatures, including penguins, sharks, sea turtles, stingrays, eels, and many more. For an additional fee, guests can reserve special encounters with the aquarium’s loveable penguins.
6. Rainforest Adventures Discovery Zoo
The Rainforest Adventures Discovery Zoo showcases over 600 beautiful animals from all around the world. Popular critters at the zoo include the lemurs, crocodiles, snakes, and parrots. Most of the zoo is located indoors, which makes it a great rainy day destination.
7. Wildlife Encounter at Ober Gatlinburg
If you aren’t able to find your favorite Smoky Mountain animals in the national park, seeing them at Ober Gatlinburg’s Wildlife Encounter is the next best thing! This small zoo at the Ober Gatlinburg Amusement Park is home to black bears, bobcats, river otters, raccoons, flying squirrels, snakes, turtles, and birds of prey.
Goats on the Roof is a quirky attraction that actually has live goats on its roof! Visitors can send a can of food up to the celebrity animals by using a one-of-a-kind “goat-cycle” machine. Located on Wears Valley Road, this popular shop also offers homemade fudge, ice cream, souvenirs, and a thrilling alpine coaster.
9. Smoky Mountain Cat House
The Smoky Mountain Cat House is a fun shop that is filled with a seemingly endless variety of cat-themed items, including jewelry, home decor, handbags, clocks, wallets, change purses, T-shirts, and so much more. Of course, the Cat House also houses a number of friendly felines who love attention from visitors.
10. Amazing Animals Show (Seasonal)
Over the summer, the Comedy Barn in Pigeon Forge typically hosts the Amazing Animals Pet Show. Starring trained dogs, cats, pigs, parrots, and a mini-donkey, this hilarious show is sure to keep you in stitches. The talented animals (and humans) in this show have appeared on Animal Planet and The Tonight Show.
When you stay with Hearthside Cabin Rentals, you will be minutes away from all of these fantastic animal attractions in Pigeon Forge TN. 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 vacation, browse our selection of cabins in Pigeon Forge!