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Located in Sevier County in the beautiful state of Tennessee, Pigeon Forge is a family vacation hub. The city is relatively small; however, it offers world-class attractions and days filled with unlimited fun and enjoyment. In addition, the town is situated next to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, which in itself is a fantastic destination. If you happen to visit the Smokies, Pigeon Forge is a not-to-miss place, especially when you are that close. Hence we recommend adding a day or two just for this beautiful town. Pigeon Forge gives the incoming tourists plenty of opportunities to enjoy adventurous activities.
Top 10 attractions in Pigeon Forge, TN
In Pigeon Forge, there is everything, ranging from comforting resorts and cabins to mesmerizing campgrounds and fancy restaurants. Let us look at the top 10 attractions for visitors exploring Pigeon Forge.
This is a landmark theme park located in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee. It is one of the top attractions in the city for children and adults alike. Dollywood attracts more than 4 million tourists each year. This park is unique because it provides conventional theme park rides and offers several activities that are only local to this area. These include Tennessee music shows, handicraft workshops, and more. You might have already guessed it by its name; this park is owned by the famous American singer and songwriter Dolly Parton. Due to this affiliation, Dollywood hosts multiple musical nights and concerts around the year. These shows feature Dolly Parton herself and many other local, national, and international singers.
Dollywood’s must-see attractions include Adventures In Imagination, Craftsman’s Valley, Jukebox Junction, Country Fair, Owens Farm, Rivertown Junction, and Timber Canyon. Dollywood is also home to 9 world-class theaters. In addition, the management has recently opened Dollywood’s Splash Country, a family water park, and the theme park. This features all water rides and slides you can imagine. You can also fill your guts at an exquisite Dollywood resort offering local cuisine. A 1-month-long festival at the park, Festival Of Nations, displays cultures and traditions from all over the world. This serves as a highlight event and draws in visitors of all nationalities every year. You can also enjoy Barbecue parties and social events at the park. There are dedicated spaces available for anyone who might be interested in those.
2. Titanic Museum
This is a gigantic museum shaped like the Titanic itself. This is a relatively new addition to Pigeon Forge, Tennessee. The museum’s main building is half in size to the actual Titanic. For visitors to experience being in a floating carriage, an artificial pool was designed for the structure. In 20 galleries, the Titanic Museum displays artifacts, original paintings, everyday items, and furniture. You can walk into the museum and feel the elegant and gorgeous detail of the Titanic from inside. Here, you will see all the famous rooms and halls from the movie in real life. Over the last ten years, this museum has undoubtedly become a top attraction for every tourist.
The Titanic Museum has devised an ingenious method to present personal stories from the Titanic. As you enter the museum, you will be handed over a passenger ticket with the name of an actual person who was on board the Titanic. The ticket will display the class in which that passenger was traveling. You will then be escorted to your respective dining rooms, restrooms, and event halls. You will learn the personalized story of the passenger whose ticket is in your hands during all of this. At the end of your tour, they also let you know if that passenger survived the incident or not. There is also a Titanic Memorial Room on the ship where you can pay your respects to the ones who lost their lives in that tragic disaster.
Anyone who doesn’t already know what WonderWorks is is an entertainment hub with science and fun exhibits of all kinds. It is just a great place to entertain your family and friends. The most noticeable aspect of their facilities is their façade, designed in an inverted building. All over the United States, WonderWorks operates in 6 different locations. These include Orlando, Panama City Beach, Syracuse, Myrtle Beach, Branson, and last but not least, Pigeon Forge. Like in every other location, WonderWorks at Pigeon Forge attracts visitors of all ages. This center has been customized to include exhibits that are somehow related to Pigeon Forge and what it’s famous for.
The entire facility comprises six different zones; Natural Disasters, Light & Sound, Imagination Lab, Physical Challenge, Space Discovery, and Far Out Art Gallery. You also get to enjoy obstacle courses, 4D theaters, laser tag, and comedy shows. This shows the variety of exhibits and displays offered at the WonderWorks. Their center at Pigeon Forge is open for visitors every day of the year. We recommend that you spare 3 to 4 hours for this visit since it usually takes up this much time to enjoy every demonstration fully.
Moreover, you do not have to worry about the food either. They serve great food at WonderWorks and allow you to throw birthday parties or host private gatherings. Keeping the popularity of WonderWorks in mind, do expect to have plenty of people around when you are visiting.
4. The Island In Pigeon Forge
This is a great place to hang out in Pigeon Forge. The Island has everything from world-class rides and food stalls to observation wheel and performance areas. As soon as you get into The Island In Pigeon Forge, you will notice something going on in every corner. You can easily spend an entire day without having to worry about what to do next. This is a supermarket of attractions. The dancing fountains show at The Island In Pigeon Forge is quite famous among visitors and locals alike. Whether you are in Pigeon Forge on your own or visiting with your family, this is a must-see place. What’s great about The Island In Pigeon Forge is that it allows you to enjoy anything and everything within walking distance and at a surprisingly affordable price.
You can ride on the 200-foot observation wheel and take in the spectacular views of the entire city. You can even see layers behind layers of the Great Smoky Mountains from the top. At The Island In Pigeon Forge, you get to play mini-golf, enjoy water rides, and have a typical picnic. With over 6,000 square feet of public space available, you can walk around and enjoy the ambiance of Pigeon Forge in all its glory. Also, there are plenty of shops, stores, malls, and outlets for you to go shopping and collect souvenirs. But, wait for what we are about to reveal. The entry into The Island In Pigeon Forge is entirely free for all. What’s not to like about this place, right?
5. Alcatraz East Crime Museum
Alcatraz East is one of the most appealing and fascinating museums in the entire state of Tennessee. Anyone who gets a chance to visit Pigeon Forge must have a look at this intriguing attraction. This museum features all famous criminals throughout history. It displays their crimes, their stories, artifacts, and much more. In this museum, you will be able to get a complete grasp of the criminal history of America. This perspective will enable you to understand how criminals operate and are eventually detained. The museum is home to 5 distinctive galleries representing crime from all perspectives. The Alcatraz East Crime Museum is established over 25,000 square feet of land and requires you to set aside at least 4 hours from your time in Pigeon Forge for a complete visit.
The museum is spread over two floors. Other than viewing spectacular galleries, you can enjoy interactive exhibits as well. If you visit with your children, they will also enjoy tasteful delights in a restaurant inside the museum. You can also take pictures with exhibits, models, and torment devices used throughout history. There is also a police training area where you can try your hands at shooting targets and complete an indoor training obstacle course. The indoor of the museum is made entirely out of wood, which gives it a classical and rural vibe. You will also be able to book a guided tour if you want. The museum is generally not very crowded, which provides you ample space and time to see everything in detail.
6. Hatfield & McCoy Dinner Show
You need to check out the Hatfield & McCoy Dinner Show whenever you are in Pigeon Forge. It is a must-see for anyone who loves food and eateries. This dinner show is dedicated to a feud between two rural American families. This feud went on from 1863 to 1891. Since then, it has been a part of American folklore and legend. The entire theater has been given a rustic look, with farm animals and wooden structures. As this place is usually packed with tourists, we recommend that you book your spot well in advance. When you walk in, you will be offered a souvenir picture. Afterward, you will be escorted to your seat.
While you wait for the show, you can try target practice and shop at their gift store. As a waiter takes your order, the show will have already started. The show is hilarious, and both families try their best to make their guests feel at home. The interior of this theater is well decorated. You will find fun things to look at and enjoy in every corner.
Moreover, the audience tables are divided in half, so you get to choose if you want to sit on the Hatfield side or the McCoy side. The show will then end in one family winning the dinner feud. As evident from its name, the entire act revolves around food, diet, and cuisine. However, there are also some pretty decent musical performances from both sides of the stage.
7. Hollywood Wax Museum
Hollywood Wax Museum is another top attraction in Pigeon Forge. This museum is much more interactive than the one located in Hollywood, Los Angeles. Here, you can take selfies with the wax figures and see them up close. Make sure not to touch any figure with a “wet paint” sticker on it. Almost all famous Hollywood personalities, figures, and characters are displayed in this museum. At the entrance, you can see Mount Rushmore’s Hollywood Version featuring Elvis Presley, Charlie Chaplin, John Wayne, and Marilyn Monroe. As you walk through the museum, you will see actors, actresses, comedians, TV hosts, bodybuilders, and more. Every figure is designed with great care and displayed under a setting that is famously associated with them.
After you purchase your tickets, the entry to the museum is only opened in batches. This is done so that everyone can have some alone time with the figures. This makes the place less crowded and more enjoyable. There is also a gift shop inside the museum to buy props, souvenirs, and mementos. They also have identical duplicates of Academy Awards in all categories. After COVID-19, the Hollywood Wax Museum has put stringent policies concerning social distancing and wearing face masks. Therefore, make sure to practice every necessary precaution. The museum has made an exception for allowing the visitors to take the masks off only when they are taking a selfie with the wax figures.
8. Smoky Mountain Alpine Coaster
In Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, no one would want to miss out on a ride such as the Smoky Mountain Alpine Coaster. It has become a top tourist destination in Pigeon Forge and attracts thousands of new visitors every month. This ride is the first Alpine Coaster in the Southern United States. But, if you wonder, a traditional roller coaster and an alpine coaster are not the same. In a regular roller coaster, you get to ride with a big group and have no control over the ride itself. On the other hand, in an alpine coaster, you ride on a two-person cart with a hand-held accelerator and brake for controlling your speed along the way.
The Smoky Mountain Alpine Coaster offers a 1.2-mile long round trip. The ride usually takes around 7 to 10 minutes in its entirety. The alpine coaster is entirely safe and can be enjoyed by anyone above three years of age. Once the ride starts, make sure not to stop on the track in any scenario. With that in mind, you are ready to enjoy one of the most enthralling rides in all of Tennessee. What makes it unique is that the ride is relaxing and fun at the same time. When you are on track, you get to appreciate the beauty of nature that surrounds you. These mesmerizing scenes keep on changing as you take one after another. Moreover, the entire length of the track is fenced from both sides, so you do not have to worry about wildlife interrupting your trip.
9. The Old Mill Restaurant
Whenever you feel hungry during your trip to Pigeon Forge, make sure to stop by at The Old Mill Restaurant. This restaurant was built inside a 190-year-old gristmill. In the floods of 1875 and 1920, everything in the area was washed away except for this mill. Previously, it was known as the Pigeon Forge Mill, but now it has been transformed into a souvenir shop and a restaurant. To this day, the mill and restaurant are family-owned and -operated. The restaurant’s humble beginnings go back to the 1920s, but the owners still use the same recipes. All in all, it’s a great place to eat as well as a significant historic site.
The restaurant is well-built and has been decorated all over. The indoor restaurant is filled with wooden family cabins to sit and eat your favorite dishes. This is a smoke-free environment, making it an excellent place for lunch and dinner with families. A general store is also placed adjacent to the restaurant, where you can grab anything on the go. If you are visiting in the day, you can also walk down to the stream and take spectacular views from the old basement. Across the main road, there is a pottery barn, creamery, pigeon pottery, and a candy store. The restaurant is particularly famous among locals and visitors alike. While you are waiting in line to get in, you can read the story of the Old Mill from boards placed on both sides of the walkway.
10. Paula Deen’s Lumberjack Feud Show & Adventure Park
Here, you can enjoy all sorts of wood tricks, including chopping, axe throwing, log rolling, log climbing, sawing, and many more. It is located right on the parkway and has become a significant attraction in Pigeon Forge for visitors of all ages. Like the Hatfield and McCoy Dinner Show, this act is rolled into a feud between Dawson and McGraw. They compete with each other in all tricks that we have previously mentioned. It is just amazing to see these lumberjacks fight with different kinds of wood to race for the win. If you are interested, the lumberjacks also let you try your hand at some tricks. You can even compete with other visitors and win prizes.
Recently, the park has added several other attractions other than the Lumberjack Feud Show to attract more visitors. It is now equipped with a funky double-helix zip line, a jump tower, a 3D theater, and thrill rides. Even with these additions, the show is enough to attract more crowds than ever. It is traditional as well as delivers a touch of improvisation and creativeness. You only need to purchase one entry ticket to come and see all these attractions, including the Lumberjack Feud Show. Paula Deen bought this show after opening a family kitchen in Pigeon Forge. She now thinks that her new interest has grown in popularity more than her kitchen.
The city of Pigeon Forge is a great destination to visit, especially if you are looking for a fun and relaxing retreat. It’s a small place with a lot of attractions packed into it. The city is home to everything from museums and family shows to amusement parks and great restaurants. If you have never been here before, you need to mark it as your next vacation spot right now.