5 Free Things to Do in Gatlinburg During Your Vacation
You will be pleasantly surprised to know that a Smoky Mountain vacation can be one of the most affordable trips you ever take with your family! In fact, you will find plenty of fun activities in Gatlinburg you can enjoy without spending a dime! Here are 5 free things to do in Gatlinburg during your vacation to the Smokies:
1. Walk or Bike the Gatlinburg Trail
The Gatlinburg Trail is a scenic walking path that travels for 1.9 miles from Gatlinburg to the Sugarlands Visitor Center in Great Smoky Mountains National Park. This is one of just two trails in the park where visitors are permitted to ride a bicycle, making it a perfect destination for those who love cycling! The trail runs through the forest alongside the Little Pigeon River and even crosses the river at one point by a footbridge! While exploring the trail, you will also have the opportunity to view the foundations and chimneys of several old homesites.
2. Visit a Gatlinburg Distillery
Gatlinburg is home to several distilleries where you can experience the long standing tradition of moonshining in the Smoky Mountains! While there is a small charge for moonshine sampling, you can explore each distillery at no charge and tours are free! Some of the most popular distilleries in Gatlinburg include the Sugarlands Distillery, Doc Collier Moonshine, and Ole Smoky Moonshine.
3. Stroll Through Downtown Gatlinburg
Another free thing to do in Gatlinburg during your vacation in the Smokies is a stroll through downtown Gatlinburg! This lively and pedestrian friendly area offers fantastic opportunities for window shopping and people watching! While walking through downtown Gatlinburg, take a detour into the Village Shops to visit a variety of unique stores in a themed bavarian village! If you prefer to get off the beaten path, head just south of the Parkway to River Road where you can enjoy a peaceful walk along the river!
4. Experience the Nantahala Outdoor Center
You will find the flagship store of the Nantahala Outdoor Center in Gatlinburg, which offers 18,000 square foot of retail space! This is not your typical department store, but a destination that is fun for the whole family! While browsing through the store, be sure to check out the swinging rope bridge, kid-friendly bear cave and the giant fireplace which is perfect for warming up on cool days! The Nantahala Outdoor Center is also a great place to begin your vacation as you can stock up on all of the apparel and gear you need for hiking through the Smokies!
5. Enjoy the Salt and Pepper Shaker Museum
While there is technically a nominal fee to visit Gatlinburg’s Salt and Pepper Shaker Museum, the admission is good towards any purchase in the gift shop! Also, children who are 12 years and under are admitted to the museum for free! This fun and unique museum features more than 20,000 salt and pepper shakers from around the world and shows how the changes in society can be found represented in shakers!
Check out all of the rooms at our hotel in the Smoky Mountains today to stay close to these free things to do in Gatlinburg! We look forward to seeing you soon!