Pigeon Forge

By: Olga Wierbicki
A river scene somewhere near Pigeon Forge

Visible high above Pigeon Forge are the majestic peaks of the Great Smoky Mountains, dominated by Mount LeConte, the third highest mountain of the Smokies. They provide an impressive welcome to visitors coming to enjoy all that Pigeon Forge has to offer. Situated in the middle between Sevierville and Gatlinburg, Pigeon Forge is THE center of fun in the Smokies.

Pigeon Forge offers fun for everyone, both young and old. At the north end are the challenging science attraction WonderWorks and the fascinating Titanic Museum Attraction. The fun continues at the south end, where visitors enjoy the thrilling antics of horse and rider at the Dixie Stampede Dinner Attraction. In between are many musical theaters and attractions, shops and restaurants, hotels, cabins, and campgrounds.

While most of the activity in Pigeon Forge centers along the main parkway, visitors will also want to explore three recreational hubs just off the parkway: The Old Mill, Dollywood, and The Island in Pigeon Forge.

Built in 1830, The Old Mill is a gristmill on the banks of the Little Pigeon River. The waterfall there still turns the giant water wheel to grind corn daily. The Old Mill Square is not only the historic nucleus of Pigeon Forge, but also home to restaurants, gift shops, craft shops, art galleries, and the Old Forge Distillery. Next door is Patriot Park where many of Pigeon Forge’s special events take place, such as the annual Fourth of July Celebration.

Dollywood is the most visited ticketed attraction in Tennessee, with loads of fun for the whole family. More than just an amusement park with rides, games, and shows, Dollywood is a theme park that pays tribute to the heritage and culture of Appalachia, as well as to the area’s most famous citizen, Dolly Parton. Children and adults also delight in swimming and sliding at Dollywood’s Splash Country and staying overnight at Dollywood’s brand-new DreamMore Resort.

Just off the parkway is The Island in Pigeon Forge, an 18-acre complex offering free access and free parking. Its signature attraction is the Great Smoky Mountains Observation Wheel, which swings visitors 200 feet up into the air for the best view in town. Paula Deen’s Family Kitchen restaurant and the Margaritaville Island Hotel are just two examples of The Island’s many wonderful retail, entertainment, restaurant, and lodging venues. If you need a break, come sit a spell and watch the choreographed color, sound, and light display of the central multi-tiered fountain.

It’s easy to see why Pigeon Forge is a favorite family vacation destination, whether you’re coming to shop, play, eat, marry, or just spend time with loved ones, family, and friends.