When it comes to staying “in the know,” What-to-Do does the work for you. We’ll share the hottest news for 2019 so you can make the most of your visit to the Smokies. Here are some of the latest attractions you can add to your vacation itinerary.
Get a Glimpse of Bigfoot!
Yes, the elusive creature that has allegedly roamed the forests for centuries may finally get tracked down… On July 27, 2019 the first ever Smoky Mountain Bigfoot Conference comes to Gatlinburg! If there was ever a chance to find this species, the people attending this conference will certainly try. Among those expected to attend are Cliff Barackman from Animal Planet’s Finding Bigfoot, and U.S. Representative Tim Burchett. The Tennessee politician has always been interested in exploring theories into the unknown. Special events include a hike through the national park in search of Bigfoot, and a question and answer session with Barackman and other researchers and investigators will take place after they share their own personal stories and encounters with the audience. Plus, attendees can get their fill of Bigfoot merchandise from any of the vendors that will be onsite. Tickets are expected to sell out for this inaugural event, but this probably won’t be the last Bigfoot conference in Gatlinburg. Due to the anticipated success of the event, we expect to see it again next year!
Dollywood has grown! Wildwood Grove is their biggest expansion ever. Blending magical and natural themes, Wildwood Grove invites you to explore a hidden land and ride new attractions such as the Dragonflier (a suspended roller coaster that mimics the flight path of a dragonfly) and the Mad Mockingbird (a flying scooter ride that takes you up among the birds).
Dare to take a stroll across the longest suspension bridge for pedestrians in the United States. At Gatlinburg’s SkyLift Park, you can take a walk 150 feet off the ground and travel almost 700 feet across the valley. This latest attraction is scheduled to open May 2019 and is expected to get a lot of foot traffic in the years to come. Assuming you don’t have a fear of heights, visitors will be amazed by the gorgeous 360˚ views from the new SkyBridge and adjacent SkyDeck.
Pirates are Coming to the Smokies!
A new pirate dinner show is coming soon to Pigeon Forge. In the spring of 2019, get ready to welcome Pirates Voyage Dinner & Show, A Dolly Parton Company. If life on the high seas as a scallywag appeals to you, go see Pirates Voyage for dinner and an acrobatic performance. Complete with a turquoise lagoon, sea lions, mermaids and tropical birds, this swashbuckling adventure will transport you back to the time when no vessel was safe from pirates. Eat hearty like a pirate at Pirates Voyage! Multiple courses will await you at this pirate-themed dinner show.
There are a few new places to grab a delicious bite to eat and a refreshing beverage in the Smokies! If you’re looking to try something different, here are some of the area’s newest restaurants:
- Ole Red Restaurant in Gatlinburg
- Dave & Buster’s Arcade in Sevierville
- Gaucho Urbano Brazilian Steakhouse in Pigeon Forge
Rocky Top Mountain Coaster
Prepare yourself for a cool new ride! Recently opened in Pigeon Forge, the newest mountain coaster boasts a 9-minute ride through 20 acres of beautiful terrain. Journey up to 30mph as you navigate turns and tunnels on one of the four courses. At night the track lights up for a fantastic experience.
Accessing the Colors of the Smokies
Those who are colorblind can now witness the gorgeous colors of the Smoky Mountains during the fall season. The beautiful blending of red, orange, yellow and green colors cannot be observed by those with a red-green color deficiency. To help everyone see the autumn colors, special viewfinders have been installed by The Tennessee Department of Tourist Development at 3 locations in the Smoky Mountains: Ober Gatlinburg, Big South Fork National River and Recreation Area near Oneida, and at the Westbound Interstate 26 overlook near Erwin. Plus, more are on the way! Those who have never been able to see the colors of fall (and even the fresh hues of spring) sometimes become emotional when they use the special viewers. For a full list of locations, visit tnfallcolor.com.