13 Fun Winter Things to Do in Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge

Dec 05, 2018




The chill of winter has the tendency to keep you bundled up indoors, but for some, that can cause you to go stir crazy with cabin fever. For those of you who are looking for adventure this winter season, consider these 13 fun winter things to do in Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge. Heartland Rentals' cabins in Gatlinburg are a short drive to all of the fun there is to be had in downtown. Book a Gatlinburg cabin with Heartland Rentals and revel in all things winter in the Smokies!


Outdoor Fun


1. Ober Gatlinburg Ski Resort


Ober Gatlinburg rests atop Ski Mountain in Gatlinburg, a mere 5-15 minute drive from any of our Pigeon Forge or Gatlinburg cabins. Ober Gatlinburg has a plethora of winter activities to get your blood pumping. You can have your pick from skiing, snowboarding, snow tubing, wildlife encounter, ice skating, mountain coaster, ice bumper cars, Aerial tramway, chair lift, terrain park, and even a kids snow zone.


2. Winter Hiking


Winter hiking has its advantages compared to spring, summer and even fall seasons. With fewer people on the trails and fewer leaves on the trees- you are greeted with an even more optimal vantage point around every exciting turn of the trail. Waterfall hikes are even more splendorous as the freezing temperatures tend to force the rushing water into an ice sculpture of frozen free-flowing water creating blankets of ice. If you choose to hike in the elements, be sure to pack proper items and wear appropriate gear.


Holiday Shows & More


3. Winterfest


Enjoy the brilliant color of over five million twinkling lights throughout the parkway of Pigeon Forge. You'll find displays of glittering snowflakes, wildlife, trees, and decorated buildings throughout town. Winterfest is on display now through February 18th, 2019.


4. Winter Magic and Smoky Mountain Tunes and Tales


Now through December 22nd - As you stroll through the streets of Gatlinburg, you'll hear cheerful caroling every Friday and Saturday after from 5:00–9:30 p.m.


5. Dolly's Smoky Mountain Christmas


There's nothing quite like Christmas at Dollywood! This year's annual celebration of Dolly's Smoky Mountain Christmas is bigger and better than ever. Five million plus brilliant lights are delicately decorated throughout Dollywood theme park to deliver it's most magical Christmas display yet.  Enjoy endless bounds of Christmas spirit at Dollywood now through January 5, 2019.


6. Dolly Parton's Christmas Celebration


Dolly Parton's Christmas Celebration will transform your evening with a musical nutcracker, a mischievous elf, ice skating, a live nativity scene, heartfelt holiday music, high flying acrobatics, and a four-course meal.


7. Christmas at The Titanic


Visit The Titanic Museum in Pigeon Forge and experience what an Edwardian-style Christmas might have been like.


8. Christmas at The Smoky Mountain Opry


Christmas at The Smoky Mountain Opry will be a spirited event you won't want to miss! Showstopping performances and holiday cheer are sure to fill your heart.


9. Ollie's Festive Follies


Sweet Fanny Adams Theater brings a special holiday treat this winter by portraying a miniature version of A Christmas Carol, a sing-a-long, and lots of holiday laughter.


10. Christmastime at Dolly Parton's Stampede


Embark on a holiday journey where you'll experience a living nativity scene, heartfelt performances, and a cast and crew of 32 horses and riders who will compete and perform acrobatic stunts all while enjoying a four-course meal.


11. Trolley Ride of Lights


Now through January 26, 2019 - For $5 you can witness this year's Trolley Ride of Lights featuring custom lighting and creative displays of native wildlife that light the night throughout downtown Gatlinburg.


Food & Shopping


12. Incredible Christmas Place


Experience year-round Christmas cheer at the Incredible Christmas Place. Shop for all of your holiday decoration needs, collectibles, fudge, and more.


13. The Old Mill and Old Mill Square


The Old Mill is as traditional as it gets when it comes to home cooking, pantry staples, cookbooks, pottery, and more. As a historic site, The Old Mill has a lot of backstories.  For ultimate holiday shopping, enjoy the shops at Old Mill Square. You'll find everything from hand milled flours and meals to handspun pottery to belts, to artisan olive oil and crafted moonshine, jams and jellies.



We hope our list of 13 fun winter things to do in Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge has given you some ideas for your winter vacation itinerary. The magic of winter in the Smokies has just begun! Don't hesitate to book your winter retreat at one of the cabins in Gatlinburg or Pigeon Forge with Heartland Rentals.


Photo Credit: Ober Gatlinburg via Facebook


Category: Things to do

Doug Shanks


By Doug Shanks a Smoky Mountain blogger and writes about things to do in Gatlinburg, Pigeon Forge, Wears Valley, and Sevierville, Tennessee. Area interests include hiking, fishing, whitewater rafting, shopping, and family fun.

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