Vacation time comes around, and visions of luxury, thrills, and adventures call us. Tennessee’s Great Smoky Mountains National Park is a popular item on the adventure tourist’s bucket list, and it has become one of the country’s most visited tourist attractions. It is a national park that many consider a must-see sight, which also has some of the most-visited entertainment venues in the state.
It is a scenic spot that allows you to get as close to nature as you like, complemented by entertainment venues like theme parks, musical performances, and dinner theatre; the Smokies can be as leisurely as you make them. Activities you can enjoy are whitewater rafting, spelunking, climbing, and trekking. You can test your endurance and stamina as you trek along the mountain trails or relax and rejuvenate as you sip your drink sitting out on a cabin verandah surrounded by the richness of the landscape. There are various entertainment options to make the most of your trip when you get tired of explorations and adventures.
Here’s a list of our recommendations for entertainment selections that you should not miss during your visit to the mountains.
1. Dolly Parton’s Stampede
Dolly Parton’s Stampede is a spectacular show filled with magic, music, stunts, and a delicious four-course meal. It is within minutes of the famous tourist attractions in Pigeon Forge and is extremely hard to miss. The show combines Dolly’s love for horses and her passion for entertaining into one great production that has been entertaining visitors for over 30 years. It dazzles the spectators with live horses, beautiful costumes, and special effects, perfect for all ages.
The four-course meal is to die for. It is one of the most sought-after dinner shows in Pigeon Forge and is extremely popular amongst visitors to the Smoky Mountains. The food is prepared in front of your eyes by some of the best chefs in the country.
2. Dollywood Theme Park
The well-known theme park owned by the amazing Dolly Parton hosts nearly 3 million guests. Dollywood is the most famous tourist attraction in Pigeon Forge, spreading across 160 acres. It provides the perfect setting for a fun family day throughout the season. It has over 50 world-class rides and the friendliest theme park atmosphere that promises to give you and your family a day you will never forget.
Dollywood has received multiple international awards and has been acclaimed as ‘America’s most beautiful park’ by the Golden Ticket Award in 2021. The fast rollercoaster rides will have you screaming at the top of your lungs, while the peaceful train ride on the Dollywood Express will have you enjoying the beauty of the theme park. The rides cater to all ages and meet all the safety requirements to ensure that you and your family have an exciting day.
3. Splash Country
Can you imagine a summer season without a splash? We can’t either! Dollywood has the most trusted and safe water park if you plan to visit the Smoky Mountains. Splash Country has all that you expect from an exciting water park. You can bring the daredevil in you and slide down the Fire Tower Falls that rise to 70 feet. Or you can go to the Bear Mountain Fire Tower, a multi-level interactive area that involves different slides and water cannons for the entire family. A gigantic bucket splashes 1000 gallons of water for the ultimate splash.
If you wish to float in the water and soak in all the sunlight, grab a floaty from the Downbound Float Trip and enjoy the scenic views around you as you sail through a 1,500-foot-long river. It is a relaxing way to enjoy the soothing sounds of the splashing waterfalls with your loved ones.
4. Pirates Voyage
Another popular dinner show known as the Pirates Voyage has all the ingredients for an exciting evening for your family. You will be invited to join Blackbeard, and his quartermaster, Calico Jack, two most famous pirates of the 17th century, as they lead their crews in a battle for control of the seas. You’ll laugh at their antics as they bring history to life right before your eyes. The pirates are joined by their wives, known as “wenches,” because they are always up to no good! Prepare for a fun-filled evening full of laughter guaranteed to entertain everyone in attendance!
The show also features a three-course meal prepared by the Captain’s chef and served by a wench of your choosing. As you feast on your meal, you’ll be entertained by live music from the ship’s band. Then when it’s time for dessert, you’re definitely in for a treat!
5. Comedy Barn
Comedy Barn is a clean comedy theater that has been entertaining thousands of families since it opened its doors in 1992. It has become one of America’s most successful comedy theaters, with over 5 million people attending its shows. If you are looking for an evening of clean comedy with family-friendly humor that appeals to adults and kids alike, this is the place!
The Comedy Barn has something for everyone in the family! It is a full-service facility with a restaurant on site that offers up to three shows per night. They have just about every type of show you can imagine, from family-friendly stand-up comedy to ventriloquists, magicians, and more. Your children can interact with various barnyard animals and enjoy the amazing juggler’s tricks. The upbeat music will have you on your feet in no time.
6. Hatfield and McCoy Dinner Feud
What’s some southern fun without a little action? The Hatfields and the McCoys have been having the longest-running family feud. This show perfectly captures this feud and translates it hilariously for the audience to enjoy. It has been a family favorite since it opened in 1974. It features an all-you-can-eat buffet and a cast of 40 actors dressed as the feuding families who perform skits and reenactments that offer some insight into the history of the feud. Grab your tickets and witness the two families settle their rivalry on the most hysterical night.
7. Smoky Mountain Opry
Smoky Mountain Opry is the largest musical show in the region. If you are a huge music fan and wish to enjoy some, this show is for you. It features country music stars performing musical numbers from their latest albums and popular favorites from their past hits. It’s a great way to get up close and personal with your favorite artists. The show also includes comedy skits and other special performances by some of the biggest names in country music today.
Smoky Mountain Opry presents three shows every day. The venue has been entertaining audiences for more than 30 years now and is also home to some of the best live shows in Pigeon Forge.
The Smoky Mountains draw tourists from around the world with its natural beauty, expansive wilderness, and tourist-friendly venues. There is plenty to do in the Smoky Mountains with hikes and multiple outdoor activities. The entertainment options are endless in this area, with amusement parks, music venues, and theatre shows.
And of course, who doesn’t love southern food? Whether traveling with your family, friends, or colleagues, this place has something for everyone. It combines the vitality of a naturally rich spot with the vibrance of entertainment venues making for a truly ideal vacation destination. So do your research and get packing!