horse in a pasture surrounded by mountains

10 Free Things to Do in Pigeon Forge

March 17, 2016

Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg attract thousands of visitors annually. These cities are known for their proximity to the Smoky Mountains, attractions and lodging accommodations.

Booking a cabin the Smoky Mountains is easy. Accommodations by Great Cabins in the Smokies has lots of options to choose from. These cozy cabins are located in Wears Valley, only minutes from Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge.

A trip to the Smokies is a great getaway. As any vacation, it can get expensive. Luckily, there are lots of free things to do in Pigeon Forge! Here are our 10 favorites.

1. Hiking

The Smokies are famous for their hiking trails! Since these trails are a part of the Great Smoky Mountain National Park, they are free to visit! Who doesn’t love fresh air, picturesque scenery and exercise? It’s a great way to get out and enjoy your surroundings.

2. The Island

Relax and enjoy the show! At The Island in Pigeon Forge, you can relax in chairs that surround a water works show. The Island is located in a popular shopping area. If you need a break from all the shopping and walking, sit in the shade and enjoy the synchronized water display.

3. Old Mill

Visiting the Old Mill is like going back in time. You can visit all the shops at the Old Mill including the general store, get free taffy and fudge samples at the Candy Kitchen or grab breakfast at the Farmhouse Kitchen. The Old Mill shops are free to visit and explore! For a small fee, you can take a tour of the mill and learn about the history.

4. Wildlife

There are many animals to see in the Smoky Mountains! Make sure you bring your camera. Depending on where you’re visiting from, you may see an animal you’ve never seen up close! The Smokies are known for their black bear population, deer and elk. Always proceed with caution when in the presence of wildlife.

5. Cades Cove

Cades Cove is a gem located within the heart of the Smoky Mountains. Cades Cove is accessible by hiking or driving. If you hike Cades Cove, there are many spots along the way to see, including Abrams Falls, a 20 foot waterfall. If you choose to drive, you will be able to see churches that are over 100 years old, beautiful scenery and more! This is a wonderful free attraction anybody can enjoy year round.

6. Shops

Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg and known for their shopping! Whether you’re there to window shop, or have a shopping spree, there are plenty of shops to visit! Downtown Gatlinburg offers unique shops that have pottery, blown glass and treats. Pigeon Forge also offers outlet malls, small shops and places to visit. You could spend your whole trip in the local shops! Make sure to visit them on your next trip the Smokies!

7. Kids at Dinner Shows

Dinner shows are a great nightly activity for the whole family. Although, bringing the family can be costly. Luckily, many dinner shows in Pigeon Forge offer free entry (with a paying adult) for kids. Everybody will enjoy the music, comedy and performances right here in Pigeon Forge.

8. Clingmans Dome

At 6,643 feet, Clingmans dome is the highest vantage point in the Smokies. Talk about an incredible view! It is within driving distance, however, requires a half-mile, steep hike to reach the dome. You won’t regret it! The famous Appalachian trail crosses right through Clingmans Dome! You may see some hikers from the trail on your visit. Clingmans dome is the 2,144 mile marker of the Appalachian Trail.

9. Railroad Museum

The Railroad Museum is a free attraction in Pigeon Forge with lots to see! The museum has lots of history about the railroad and its ties to East Tennessee! You can even look at some of the old railroad cars and learn the history behind it.

10. Festivals

There are always festivals going on in Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge! Depending on the season, you are certain to catch a trade show, craft show or festival. In the spring, the area has many attractions outdoors that the whole family can enjoy, for free!

Make sure to book your cabin in the Smokies and enjoy some of the free attractions Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg have to offer!

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