Ever since this Pigeon Forge theme park (formerly Silver Dollar City) made its debut as Dollywood in 1986, it has grown to become one of the top attractions in the southeastern United States. The owners have invested hundreds of millions of dollars in capital improvements over the past 25 years, transforming the 130-acre site into an all-around family-fun extravaganza.
Over the years, Dollywood has really boosted its standing as a place to find great thrill rides. The park now boasts four roller coasters, including the brand-new Wild Eagle, the nation’s first winged roller coaster, which launches at the start of the 2012 season. There are also lots of wet rides that keep guests cool in summer, and an entire section full of kiddie rides just for the younger fun lovers.
Dollywood has something for all ages and interests, however. In addition to rides, there are numerous attractions to keep guests entertained, including a museum dedicated to the life of Dolly Parton as well as one of her actual touring buses, which guests can go inside and get an up-close look at what life on the road might be like.
Dollywood first made its mark, however, with its music shows. There are nearly a dozen indoor and outdoor performance venues located throughout the park, all of which showcase a wide variety of live acts, from country and gospel music to the oldies of the ‘50s and, during November and December, the merry sounds of the holidays.
Crafts are also an important part of the Dollywood equation. One entire section of the theme park, Craftsman’s Village, is home to shops and studios that feature the works of talented area crafts people. You’ll see live demonstrations of crafts like blacksmithing and glass blowing, just to mention a couple. During October, the entire park turns into one giant crafts fair as part of the annual Southern Gospel & Harvest Celebration.
Speaking of festivals, Dollywood has them all year long. In addition to Smoky Mountain Christmas and Harvest celebrations, they kick off each season with the Festival of Nations, get tasty with the Barbeque & Bluegrass in May and then celebrate summer with KidsFest. Each festival brings with it special guest performers, shows, attractions and foods.
Summer is also when Dollywood’s Splash Country is in business, helping visitors stay cool customers all season long with a wave pool, slides, lazy river and other unique water-based activities. Between the amusement park and the theme park, there are multiple days’ worth of things to do at Dollywood, so don’t plan a trip there without first exploring our inventory of Pigeon Forge, Tennessee cabins. We have many properties that are just a short drive from the parks’ entrance.