Gatlinburg offers many things for the entire family to enjoy. It’s also a place that’s very welcoming to large groups that come here to experience the fun-filled activities that line the Parkway, and the things outside the beautiful mountain town that excite the senses in a totally different way. Here are 10 fun things to do in Gatlinburg with your group:
1. Visit Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies
Considered the crown jewel of all the Ripley’s attractions in Gatlinburg, Ripley’s Aquarium was recently voted the best U.S. aquarium by USA Today readers and features an array of sea creatures and interactive displays good for groups of all ages. When you stay at the Edgewater Hotel, you’ll be able to walk to the aquarium!
2. Play Games at Arcadia
Located at the base of the Gatlinburg Space Needle, try your hand at pinball, coin games and skee ball when you visit Arcadia. Each will test your skills and provide hours of fun, especially if your competitive spirit takes hold with your group.
3. Go See Impossibilities Magic Show
Inside the same spacious arcade is a room that the master mentalist, Erik Dobell, and the magical comedian, Chris Collins, put on a head-scratching display of tricks several nights a week during the Impossibilities magic show. Chances are good that one of your group members will be called onstage to assist them in one of their dazzling tricks.
4. Do a Moonshine Tour
Gather the grown-ups for the most popular activity in Gatlinburg for adults: moonshine tours and tastings. The downtown Gatlinburg distilleries offer tours with some of their expert distillers, and you can see how the process comes together before it hits the shelves.
5. Go Hiking
Many visitors to the Smoky Mountains don’t need to be reminded that a hike in the National Park is a fantastic way to unwind and become one with nature. It’s also a nice chance to talk to your friends without using your cell phone, even though it’ll come in handy for pictures.
6. Take the Aerial Tramway up to Ober Gatlinburg
Skiing and tubing are activities that can be enjoyed in the winter, but don’t let the change of seasons prevent you from visiting Ober Gatlinburg during the warmer months. They bring out the water slides in the summer and the German grub in the fall, so hop on the tram to the all-season resort and let the fun begin!
7. Enjoy the Views at Anakeesta
Anakeesta is Gatlinburg’s newest mountaintop attraction. Ride the chairlift or the 6-person gondola up to Anakeesta Mountain, where you can experience breathtaking views of Mt. LeConte and Gatlinburg below. You can visit Firefly Village and grab a bite to eat at one of the restaurants, or try the dueling zipline adventure! A mountain coaster is currently under construction and will bring more fun to an already unforgettable place.
8. Laugh with Alex Stokes on a Gatlinburg Comedy Tour
Alex Stokes is a local comedian who has several books that are sold in a few Gatlinburg businesses, and this activity is perfect for your group. He will take you on one of two tours on the Gatlinburg Comedy Tour: one is a kid-friendly tour of the town; the second is an adult-friendly tour with stops at the local wine and moonshine distilleries in town. The laughs are sure to be endless and keep you talking about this one days after your trip.
9. Eat Breakfast at The Pancake Pantry
Who can pass up a chance to eat at one of Gatlinburg’s famous pancake establishments? The Pancake Pantry is a favorite of many. Because of its popularity, the lines can be long, but they do move fast. They have more than 20 varieties of pancakes, and the portions are large and delicious. For fun, challenge yourself and fellow group members to finish their monstrous portions!
10. Shop and Walk Around The Village
Shopping and souvenirs are plentiful in Gatlinburg, and there’s not many places better than The Village to pick up a cherished item for your trip home. The centerpiece of The Village is the fountain, which gives visitors a nice photo memory of their trip to Gatlinburg. Go early in the morning and take some selfies with your group for uninterrupted photos of your own special memories of your group trip.
Where to Stay
There’s no better place to stay with your group than at the Edgewater Hotel! We have spacious suites that have separate sitting and sleeping areas and are great for families and groups visiting the area. You’ll also get to take advantage of our incredible hotel amenities, like a complimentary hot continental breakfast and both an indoor and outdoor pool!
Hopefully now you have a pretty good idea of the many enjoyable activities that your group is sure to find irresistible when in Gatlinburg! This is just a small sampling of things to do in Gatlinburg, so make sure you do some more exploring and see what you think of the other activities offered here. Browse our Gatlinburg hotel rooms to start planning your group vacation!