October 31, 2023
Smoky Mountain Winterfest is one of the most magical times of the year! Gatlinburg, Pigeon Forge and Sevierville all come alive at night as flickering holiday lights make for a relaxing and joyful atmosphere! There’s no better way to get into the Christmas spirit than attending a Smoky Mountain Winterfest event! Here are the top 10 ways to celebrate Smoky Mountain Winterfest:
You don’t have to spend a single dollar on this one! It’s entirely free, and full of fun, to walk the Gatlinburg Parkway at night as it’s all lit up with beautiful holiday lights and decorations! Feel free to drop by some of the awesome shops, eateries and attractions on the Parkway at this Smoky Mountain Winterfest attraction!
Holiday lights take over the grounds at Anakeesta’s Enchanted Christmas Celebration as the sun sets on the mountain! The Gatlinburg adventure park brings the Christmas spirit together with fun and adventure! Everyone in the family can enjoy a hot chocolate around a roaring fire before taking off to explore thousands of twinkling lights and decorations throughout the Anakeesta villages! Don’t forget to grab a bite to eat at one of the great Anakeesta restaurants!
Each winter, the Fantasy of Lights Christmas Parade in Gatlinburg is always a favorite event for families to attend! The parade lineup includes balloons, floats decorated by local businesses and community groups and local high school marching bands! Beginning at 7:30 p.m. on December 1, 2023 from Baskins Creek Bypass and East Parkway through downtown before ending at traffic light #10. A tree lighting ceremony starts at 7:25 p.m. on the Parkway Plaza.
The Lights Over Gatlinburg at Gatlinburg SkyPark attracts tens of thousands of visitors from across the country each season at Smoky Mountain Winterfest! The entire park is covered in everything Christmas, with photo opportunities for the family, a 38-foot-tall multicolored Christmas tree and a tunnel of lights covering the entirety of the record-breaking Gatlinburg SkyBridge!
Did you know Dollywood’s Smoky Mountain Christmas has been voted America’s Best Christmas event for more than a decade? The Pigeon Forge theme park lights up each winter with more than 6 million individual lights that put visitors in the Christmas spirit! You can enjoy some Dollywood rides, holiday music, award-winning shows and fireworks that routinely put smiles on faces!
Millions of lights, custom decorations, over a mile of garland and endless entertainment are to be found at Winterfest at The Island! The 23-acre property lights up as the sun goes down to create a winter wonderland full of plenty of great things to do! The number of great shops, restaurants and attractions is endless with something fun for everyone to do. Sparkling lights, giant ornaments and tall trees are all seen throughout The Island! The 200-foot-tall Great Smoky Mountain Wheel is decorated with red, green and white lights!
Stay in your car and enjoy the holiday lights at Pigeon Forge Driving Tour of Lights ! This Smoky Mountain Winterfest attraction runs from early November through mid-February on the Pigeon Forge Parkway. The Parkway transforms into a winter wonderland as lights and decorations create a beautiful, cozy environment!
The Winterfest Wonders of Light Walking Trail , Pigeon Forge’s newest light show, features 20 nature-themed outdoor light displays along the beautiful Riverwalk nature trail! This Smoky Mountain Winterfest attraction made its debut in 2022. These awesome light displays include walk-thru arches, a colorful 52-feet-long caterpillar, Old Man Winter and larger-than-life flowers!
They do holiday decorating up right at Apple Barn Cider Mill & General Store ! The Christmas spirit takes over as soon as you arrive! This family farm specializes in growing apple crops and has for decades now! Check out the Apple Barn Christmas & Candles Shop for unique holiday gifts and treasures! No trip here is complete without a wonderful meal at Applewood Farmhouse Restaurant or Applewood Grill.
The Shadrack’s Christmas Wonderland is a drive-thru light experience in Sevierville! Located at Soaky Mountain Waterpark, this fan-favorite experience has been entertaining Smoky Mountain Winterfest guests for years! Although it has a new location, the show offers the same great experience with new additions! Visitors can enjoy a longer drive route, majestic 25-feet-tall trumpeting angels, and more. There's even a custom-built Santa's Safari themed area with comical displays. This is one of the best ways to take in Christmas lights!
Make sure you check out some of these awesome Smoky Mountain Winterfest attractions on your visit! If you’re looking for a place to stay, check out our Smoky Mountain cabins!