There are plenty of things to do in Gatlinburg, Pigeon Forge, and Sevierville when the snow falls and the temperature drops. You can enjoy the beauty of the winter season at night with dazzling holiday light displays throughout the area. You can drive, be driven, or walk.
Gatlinburg Winter Magic Trolley Ride of Lights—At only $5 a rider (children under 3 are free if they sit on an adult’s lap), you can enjoy the beauty of Winterfest and Gatlinburg’s dazzling “Winter Magic” of over $1.6m worth of custom-designed displays and updated LED lighting. Pick up the trolley at the City of Gatlinburg’s mass transit center next to Ripely’s Aquarium of the Smokies. The rides are daily at 6:30pm, 7:30pm, and 8:30pm. The trolley is enclosed and heated so it’ll be a nice way to warm up and get out of the cold. If the trolley is sold out, there is a self-guided tour with the Visit Gatlinburg App and you can get printed maps in the Gatlinburg Welcome Centers. The trolley rides are through January 31st.
Smoky Mountain Winterfest Lights Driving Tour—Over 20 different locations in Pigeon Forge will greet you with spectacular holiday light displays while you experience the beauty of winter from the comfort of your vehicle. You can pick up a free map at the Pigeon Forge Welcome Centers or the Pigeon Forge Trolley Office.
Dollywood’s Smoky Mountain Christmas—Through December 23rd, Dollywood has something for every family member with holiday shows and performances, a nightly Parade of Lights, Santa’s Workshop, and members of the movie Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer. Complete your visit with all the fixings of a traditional holiday feast from park restaurants. You’ll find roasted turkey and dressing, wassail, pumpkin pie, and a make-your-own s’mores pit.
Winterfest at The Island—During Winterfest you can write letters to Santa and drop in the mailbox, meet Santa, enjoy seasonal drinks and treats, and get photos with holiday props and special guests. You can also ride the Winterfest Island Express and (if purchasing on a Friday or on the weekend) get a golden ticket good for a free hot chocolate at the Margaritaville Coffee Shop and a bell to ring on the ride.
Shadrack’s Christmas Wonderland—They host several locations with their light and music show, but Sevierville is the one you should visit if you’re heading to the Smokies. Located in the Tennessee Smokies Baseball Stadium, you can enjoy the most advanced drive-through light show. Performances are every night from dusk to 10pm, or later on weekends, through January 3rd. Better yet, you don’t need to worry about weather. They are open even in the rain.
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