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The Appalachian Lodge

Gatlinburg Sky Lift

Gatlinburg is a favorite vacation destination for families from all over the world. The city is located next door to America’s most popular national park, the Great Smoky Mountains, and the area is filled with fun attractions for the entire family! Here are 4 family-friendly activities in Gatlinburg to enjoy during your next trip!

1. Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Kid playing in the national parkAt The Appy, we are blessed to have America’s most visited natural playground in our backyard. The Great Smoky Mountains National Park is a national gem and local treasure. With over 500,000 acres of trails, streams, history and more, there are countless opportunities for every guest. When you visit with your family, head to the Sugarlands Visitors Center before you start your Smokies adventure. Located just 10 minutes from our hotel, the Sugarlands Visitors Center has information on how to make the most of your time while in the park. You’ll find helpful rangers, a plant and animal museum, a gift shop, and info on ranger-led programs and the Junior Ranger program. Pick up a Hike the Smokies – For Families logbook to keep track of your miles on the trails. Once you’ve reached certain milestones with your mileage, you can return to the visitors center to collect a mileage sticker or special pin from the park — a reward that will certainly add excitement to your family’s day.

2. Anakeesta

Anakeesta, located just 5 minutes from our hotel, is one of downtown Gatlinburg’s top go-to spots for family fun and adventure. At Anakeesta, you’ll find plenty of ways to play, such as a treehouse playground, ziplining, a mountain coaster and more. Families will also enjoy shopping, dining and soaking up the views of the Smokies. Anakeesta is a destination that is not only convenient from our hotel and downtown Gatlinburg but is also an experience that is sure to leave guests of all ages happy and wanting to return again and again.

3. Ripley’s Attractions

If you’re looking for attractions that will keep your children entertained and busy, then Ripley’s is your answer. With seven Ripley’s attractions located in downtown Gatlinburg, you’ll find Ripley’s fun on every corner and plenty of experiences to fill up your trip. Get lost in the Ripley’s Mirror Maze, be amazed at Ripley’s Believe It or Not!, get spooked during Ripley’s Haunted Adventure and much more! If you plan on visiting often you may want to consider purchasing a Ripley’s Passholder membership.

4. Our Gatlinburg Hotel & Downtown Gatlinburg

Gatlinburg Space Needle downtownBeing a guest at our Gatlinburg hotel will not only put you in the heart of the most popular family attractions of the Smokies but is also a great opportunity to simply enjoy being here and exploring downtown Gatlinburg. Ripley’s Davy Crockett Mini Golf is just outside of our front door, and with two pools, there’s an opportunity to relax and play at our hotel year around. You can hop on the trolley at the trolley stop in our parking lot and explore downtown! An all-day trolley pass is $2. Explore museums, go shopping, ride the Sky Lift or take a trip to the top of the Space Needle, and finish up with a stop at Fannie Farkle’s for classic Gatlinburg food and fun.

You’ll find countless activities in Gatlinburg to keep your family busy and happy during your vacation to the Smoky Mountains! Book one of our hotel rooms in Gatlinburg to enjoy everything we have to offer.