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When you vacation in Pigeon Forge, TN, it doesn’t take a lot of money to have a good time. In fact, there are a number of fun activities in the Smoky Mountains that don’t cost a cent to enjoy! To help you make the most of your getaway, The Inn On The River has put together a guide to five of the best things to do in Pigeon Forge for free:
1. The Great Smoky Mountains National Park
Pigeon Forge is just a short drive from the most visited national park in the United States! One of the reasons the Great Smoky Mountains National Park is so popular is that it does not charge an admission fee. All of the park’s natural beauty is accessible to anyone and everyone, regardless of how much money they have. Here are a few of our favorite free activities in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park:
- Hike the park’s 800 miles of trails.
- Drive on scenic roads.
- View the area’s spectacular wildlife.
- Visit historic cabins and buildings.
- Have a picnic.
The Old Mill is Pigeon Forge’s most iconic landmark. This historic gristmill has been grinding grain into flour since 1830! There are a number of excellent restaurants and stores surrounding The Old Mill, but there are also plenty of things to see and do in the square that cost little to no money:
- Browse the knickknacks and novelty items at The Old Mill General Store.
- Watch a blacksmith demonstration at the Iron Mountain Metal Craft Shop.
- Feed the ducks who frequent the Little Pigeon River. Duck food is available at The Old Mill General Store for $0.25.
- Watch fudge being made at The Old Mill Candy Kitchen. Sometimes free samples of fudge are available.
- Walk next door to Patriot Park to see flags from all 50 states, a historic missile, and a veterans’ memorial. There is also a great pavilion that is perfect for a picnic.
3. The Rocky Top Wine Trail
The Rocky Top Wine Trail is another one of the best things to do in Pigeon Forge for free! Five wineries in the Smoky Mountain area have banded together to offer free samples and tours to anyone who visits. When you get your official Rocky Top Wine Trail Passport stamped at the different wineries, you’ll even get a free gift to take home. The wineries on the trail are:
- Mountain Valley Winery
- Apple Barn Winery
- Hillside Winery
- Mill Bridge Winery
- Apple Barn Cider House
4. Friendly Falls
Located on Wears Valley Road, Friendly Falls is a hidden gem in the Smokies. When you pull over at this unassuming restaurant and store you will find a beautiful waterfall and plenty of outdoor seating. Friendly Falls is one of the few waterfalls in the Smoky Mountains that doesn’t require any hiking to get to! While visitors are welcome to order food or enjoy the Magic Gem Mine attraction, just admiring the waterfall is completely free.
The Island in Pigeon Forge is one of the most popular shopping, dining, and entertainment complexes in the Smokies. While there are plenty of opportunities to spend money at The Island, there are also a number of excellent free things to do:
- Watch The Island’s Show Fountain. This awesome fountain features geysers of water that sync up with hit songs from the past and present.
- Kick back in a rocking chair.
- Enjoy live country or bluegrass music at the Ole Smoky Moonshine Distillery.
- Admire the Great Smoky Mountain Wheel, The Island’s signature 200 foot tall Ferris wheel. The wheel is particularly stunning at night, when all of its beautiful lights come on.
When you stay at The Inn On The River, you will be just a short drive from all of these excellent things to do in Pigeon Forge for free. To start planning your vacation, check out all of the amenities at our Pigeon Forge hotel!