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The Appalachian Lodge

The Chondola Station for Anakeesta in Gatlinburg TN.

Located on top of a mountain overlooking downtown Gatlinburg, Tennessee, Anakeesta is one of the most-buzzed-about attractions in the Smokies! Opened in 2017, this unique theme park offers thrills, breathtaking scenery, and lots of family-friendly fun. To help you make the most of your next vacation, The Appy Lodge has put together a guide to six of the best things to do at Anakeesta in Gatlinburg TN.

1. Ride the ChondolaThe Anakeesta gondolas in Gatlinburg TN.

Getting to Anakeesta is half the fun! The only way to reach the theme park is via the
“Chondola” (a portmanteau of chairlift and gondola). When you stroll over to the Chondola Station on The Strip, you can choose between taking an open-air chairlift to the top of the mountain or an enclosed gondola with large glass windows. Regardless of which ride you choose, you will enjoy gorgeous views of the city as you climb 600 feet in the air.

2. Have an Adventure in the Trees

Exploring the treetops is another one of our favorite things to do at Anakeesta in Gatlinburg TN. The theme park boasts a scenic Canopy Walk that is suspended 40 – 60 feet above the forest floor and includes a series of 16 connected skybridges that weave through the trees. Young visitors will love Anakeesta’s Treehouse Village Playground, a kid-friendly network of treehouses equipped with fun challenges and educational elements.

A young woman at a zipline course.3. Go Ziplining

If you’re looking to add a shot of adrenaline to your visit, be sure to try Anakeesta’s dueling zipline ride! This thrilling attraction allows two zipliners to race each other from the summit of the mountain down to the Parkway. Of course, you can always take the Chondola back to Anakeesta to continue the fun after your zipline adventure.

4. Mine for Gems

Perfect for kids, Anakeesta boasts a wonderful gem mining station. Little ones (and their parents) will have a blast searching for fossils and gemstones. The station features a lovely interactive waterfall that is always a big hit with children.

5. Enjoy Shopping andPearl's Pie in the Sky bakery at Anakeesta in Gatlinburg TN. Dining

Anakeesta is also home to Firefly Village, a special area with some of the best stores and restaurants in Gatlinburg. When you’re not ziplining or walking through the treetops, you can relax by browsing through the unique shops and having a tasty meal. Highlights of Firefly Village include Cliff Top Grill & Bar, Pearl’s Pie in the Sky, Anakeesta Smokehouse, the Catching Fireflies boutique, and the Great Outdoors Trading Company.

6. Take in the Views

Guests at Anakeesta in Gatlinburg TN will enjoy some of the most stunning vistas in town. Whether you stroll through the park’s botanical garden, hike through Anakeesta’s Memorial Forest Walk, or just unwind at Firefly Village, you’ll take in unparalleled views of the Smoky Mountains. Don’t forget to bring your camera!

A hotel room in The Appy Lodge in Gatlinburg TN.Situated right on the Parkway, The Appy Lodge is just a 17-minute walk (or a 3-minute drive) from the Anakeesta Chondola Station. Offering free parking, indoor and outdoor swimming pools, complimentary breakfast, and walk-in showers, The Appy Lodge has everything you need for an incredible getaway. To start planning your escape to the Smokies, browse our selection of Gatlinburg hotel rooms!