Fall is one of the most popular times of the year to visit Gatlinburg, TN, and it’s not hard to see why! During the autumn months, Gatlinburg and the Smoky Mountains come alive with a breathtaking display of technicolor leaves in every shade of yellow, orange, and red. This year, peak season for the fall foliage is expected to arrive in late October, but visitors should be able to see plenty of lovely leaves in mid-October and early November as well.
In addition to the gorgeous foliage, autumn also brings a number of fun seasonal events and activities to Gatlinburg. To help you make the most of your next vacation, the Edgewater Hotel has put together a guide to six of our favorite things to do in Gatlinburg in the fall.
1. Taking a Scenic Drive
A drive through the Great Smoky Mountains National Park is one of the very best ways to see the fall colors! Here are a few of the most popular roads for leaf peeping:
- Roaring Fork Motor Nature Trail
- Newfound Gap Road
- Little River Road
- Cades Cove Loop Road
2. Going on a Ghost Tour
The Halloween season is a great excuse to take a ghost tour in Gatlinburg! There is nothing like walking through the downtown area on a crisp fall evening as you hear all about the city’s most haunted locations. Participants will even have the chance to use the same ghost hunting equipment you see on TV.
3. Attending OktOBERfest
The OktOBERfest celebration at the Ober Gatlinburg Amusement Park is another highlight of visiting Gatlinburg in the fall. Running from late September through the end of October, this awesome festival features authentic German food, music, and beer. If you’ve never had schnitzel or strudel before, this is your chance to try these tasty German delicacies!
4. Hiking in the National Park
The comfortable cool weather and stunning foliage make fall the perfect time for a hike in the Smokies! Some of our favorite autumn hikes include:
- Baskins Creek Falls (3 miles roundtrip)
- Little River Trail (4.9 miles roundtrip)
- Porters Creek Trail (4 miles roundtrip)
5. Exploring a Haunted House
The Mysterious Mansion is open all year round, but in the fall, this haunted house gets extra spooky! On weekend evenings in October, the Mansion hosts special Halloween Presentations that feature more intense sights and frights. As Gatlinburg’s oldest haunted house, the Mysterious Mansion has been scaring vacationers for over 35 years!
6. Enjoying an Apple Pie
Apple pie is a quintessential fall treat! If you’re craving this classic dessert, head on over to the Crust and Crumb Bakery to pick up one of their mouthwatering pies. The Crust and Crumb also offers apple turnovers and apple danishes for guests who are looking for something a little lighter.
Where to Stay in Gatlinburg
When you stay at the Edgewater Hotel, you will have the perfect home base for enjoying Gatlinburg in the fall. Located right on River Road, our hotel is steps away from all of the awesome attractions, restaurants, and shops in downtown Gatlinburg. Offering complimentary breakfast, indoor and outdoor swimming pools, private balconies with beautiful views, and specialty rooms with fireplaces, the Edgewater Hotel has everything you need for an unforgettable vacation. To start planning your getaway, browse our selection of Gatlinburg hotel rooms!