Pigeon Forge sits just a few miles north of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park in Tennessee. This location makes Pigeon Forge a popular mountain resort town, pulling in visitors from near and far throughout the year. With a wide array of vacation rental homes and cabins, it’s relatively easy to find accommodations that are both rustic and luxurious. While the mountains and a number of amusement parks are high on tourists’ lists of things to do, there are a multitude of other options to enjoy, too. These seven wildly unique activities in Pigeon Forge can help you create some unforgettable memories.
Outdoor Gravity Park
Pigeon Forge’s Outdoor Gravity Park offers unique adventures for every member of the family. Chances are you’ve probably seen hamsters running in little plastic balls before. Now is your chance to have the same experience! Climb into an OGO, a plastic sphere that houses you while you roll around the park, and take in the expansive green spaces with rolling hills and valleys. With various tracks featuring zig-zag courses, and even a 1,000-foot hill, your ride experience promises to be a thrill to remember. You can navigate the park alone or with a couple of buddies in your OGO.
The Forbidden Caverns combine both entertainment and education as you explore the underground world underneath Pigeon Forge. You’ll see natural chimneys, grottos, streams and rock formations on your guided tour. The tours include special lighting effects, sound effects and more. Learn all about how moonshiners used the caves to make moonshine decades ago. The tours take about an hour, and you can also bring a picnic to enjoy in the on-site pavilion. A restaurant and souvenir shop are also located on the grounds.
If you’ve never tried Hillbilly Golf, you don’t know what you’ve been missing. The first part of the adventure involves riding an incline tram up 300 feet to the top of a mountain. From there, you have your choice of two 18-hole courses, each filled with unique hazards such as outhouses and moonshine stills. Dodge the tractors and other standard Appalachian obstacles as you make your way through the mini golf course.
Salt and Pepper Shaker Museum
Perhaps you’ve never given much thought to salt and pepper shakers. But if you visit the Salt and Pepper Shaker Museum, you may never look at these dining-table essentials the same way again. With more than 20,000 sets of salt and pepper shakers on display from all over the world, the collection on display is truly astounding. While you tour the museum, be prepared to learn fascinating facts about salt and pepper. You can also learn the various benefits of having a salt or pepper shaker with just one hole, three holes or more holes.
Parrot Mountain and Gardens
At Parrot Mountain and Gardens, you can touch, see and feed exotic parrots. Watch the colorful birds enjoying their natural habitats in the gardens. Visit the on-site nursery to see tiny baby parrots hatch out of their eggs and receive hand-feedings from employees. If you find a bird you love, you can even sponsor it with a donation. Enjoy lunch in the park while you listen to the parrots call. Explore the gardens and watch the birds flying freely. Don’t miss the ample photo opportunities with the beautiful landscaping and breathtaking wildlife in the park.
Great Smoky Arts and Crafts Community
This area in Tennessee is rich in artisans practicing their specialties. One of the distinctive things about Pigeon Forge is the craftsmen who love to share their creations and allow people to watch as they craft. The Great Smoky Arts and Crafts Community is just that: a place where people can go to watch artisans create their personal magic. The community plans special craft shows throughout the year, and provides an opportunity to both experience and learn about different types of crafts that are popular in Tennessee, such as woodworking, candle-making, soap-making, painting, ceramics and glassblowing.
For a truly artisanal experience, spend a few hours at the Sandman’s Workshop. This is the place to find a personalized garden stone or a memorial stone made just for you. The shop also has ready-made items available for purchase as you tour the premises. You can even choose your stone and order the personalization. The artisans on staff complete the work for you while you wait.
Spending a vacation in Pigeon Forge promises to be filled with adventure. While you’ll definitely want to hit all of the major activities, such as national parks, it’s wise to get off the beaten path to learn about the more unique aspects of Pigeon Forge.
Be sure to make yourself at home in one of the many vacation rental homes in the area, which make it possible to enjoy all of the comforts of home while you enjoy seeing new sights and forging new memories.