Pigeon Forge, Tennessee has been on my “must see” travel list for quite some time now because I’d heard people talking about it as being a family fun oriented city surrounded by gorgeous natural landscape – and that just seems like the best of both worlds to me! So last week my family and I decided to road trip out to the great state of Tennessee, through the Great Smoky National Park and into what I can only explain as a kids “Las Vegas like” strip of pure adrenaline bordered by the sweet sights and sounds of untouched nature. There were many adventures that we loved having in Pigeon Forge – these were our favorites.
Pigeon Forge, Tennessee
Pigeon Forge was unlike anything I’d seen before. Imagine driving through miles of untouched natural scenery with winding roads and no cell phone service, gas stations or sight of another human being – then POP – out of nowhere you come across a huge city full of commotion and excitement right there in the middle of it. I felt as though I had uncovered a hidden secret.
As we came around the last of many winding and uneven roads through the Great Smokey Mountains we found ourselves at the base of a long (and I mean very long) strip of attractions including comedy shows, double and maybe even triple level go-cart courses, restaurants, hotels and shopping districts. After hearing my husband and I talk about how excited we were to see the scenery of the mountains for several hours of our road trip, my kids faces lit up as they realized that this destination was going to be just as much for them as it was for us! Each kid screamed with excitement as their noses pressed harder and harder against the smudge covered backseat windows – trying to get a better look at what was in store. They both named off things they wanted to do first – changing their number one spot with every attraction we passed.
6 Must See Attractions and Adventures for Families
We embarked as a family upon Pigeon Forge with fury as we jumped from one attraction to another – completely wearing ourselves out in a struggle to see and do it all. Out of all of the attractions we were able to fit into our visit- these were our favorites.
1 . Titanic Museum
The Titanic Museum held the number one spot on my list – but it turned out that my kids were just as interested in exploring the recreated rooms of the ship and hearing about the lives and stories told as I was. My daughter said she remembered learning about the Titanic in her school courses and marveled that this museum brought her studies to life and helped her to make the connection that this really did happen. My son, who is 5, found interest in listening to the animated guide on his headphones that offered him a chance to search for a lost puppy among the ship’s corridors. My favorite piece of this collection was the black and white photographs taken from one of the passengers on the ship – they were beautiful and raw.
This museum told so many untold stories of the passengers aboard the Titanic – and with each interactive piece of the puzzle created a way for those stories to form a connection with any age.
2 . Wonderworks
The next stop on our list was Wonderworks – an interactive exhibit that places emphasis on learning about space, physics, and math in a hands-on and adventurous way. Upon entering the house that appears to be flipped upside down, you are given the opportunity to take part in several activities including a rock wall, a high ropes course, a bed of nails and many other thrilling scientific oddities. Simply follow the loop of attractions within the building and create hours worth of fun and learning – and a bit of exercise.
3 . The Track
After spending some time exploring the indoor attractions – we were ready to have a little fun in the sun! We decided to head over to The Track, one of many outdoor go-cart courses on the strip. We opted for this track because it looked like fun and it also had a spot with smaller go carts for the kids to drive on their own. This is a great way to burn off a little steam – if you have any left.
4 . Magiquest
This trip was definitely about exploration as many of these exhibits we had never visited before – Magiquest being one of them. While I’m not sure any of us really grasped what we were supposed to be doing – we fully enjoyed running around trying to get objects to react to our wishes. We also made sure to get lost in the available mirror maze and play a round of glow in the dark golf below the Magiquest room before we left.
5 . The Island
After all of the kid-sized family fun – I was excited to check out a shopping and restaurant district called “The Island”. Here we were able to watch a dancing fountain, do a little shopping and grab a bite to eat. Here you can find fun restaurant options like Paula Deen’s Kitchen and Margaritaville.
6 . Great Smoky Mountains
We couldn’t come near the Great Smoky Mountains and NOT stop to explore them a little bit! While we didn’t get to walk the trails or search for waterfalls, we did take the time to drive through them with the windows down and stop at the overlooks to breathe in the beauty of the landscape.
If you’re looking to take a family trip that includes a lot of adventure – both through attractions and through nature – Pigeon Forge is definitely a destination worth checking out. Join us on our Pigeon Forge adventure on YouTube.
What attraction would you be most excited to check out? Tell me in the comments.
Disclosure: Some considerations were provided by brands mentioned in this post such as guest access to attractions. No compensation was received for this post.