There are so many astonishing new Sevierville and Pigeon Forge attractions opening this year - you may have a hard time deciding where to start. From shopping and brain games to heart-pounding adventures, Sevierville and Pigeon Forge are the places to be this summer and fall.
The Mountain Mile Shopping Center
Shopaholics, rejoice. The Mountain Mile Shopping Center is coming soon. With 174 acres and over 1 million square feet of shopping, restaurants, hotels, and attractions, the Mountain Mile is the hottest thing happening in Pigeon Forge. This retail mecca is located across the street from traditional favorites such as The Island, and just a few minutes from Dollywood. Retailers include Fossil, Chico's, J.Crew, Loft, Nine West, and more are moving in all the time. When you need to rest your feet (or your wallet), stop for lunch at the Hard Rock Café, Cracker Barrel, or any one of dozens of restaurants near The Mile.
Sevier Air Trampoline Park & Ninja Warrior Course
Thirty-eight thousand square feet of trampolines, net systems, rock-climbing walls, and ninja warrior courses are the perfect recipe for burning off stress and wearing out energetic kids. The facility's trampoline park is the largest in the area and includes admission to the Ninja Warrior Course. Kids and adults can test their skills on the ninja course to see how they stack up against the celebrity contestants on TV. If you've got younger kids, visit the Networx Net System in the park. This is a 3-story net climbing course that is fun and safe for kids from 2 up to 10 years old.
Rock Climbing Wall at Rafting in the Smokies
Rafting in the Smokies is a favorite destination for zip lining and rafting or floating the river. Now you can add the rock-climbing wall to your ticket to save money and have even more fun. The 4-sided climbing wall has different levels of challenge for all abilities. Just follow the colored handholds that correspond to your climbing level. No experience is necessary, but climbers must be at least 2 years old and weigh more than 33 pounds.
Ripley's Glass-Bottom Boat Adventure
Climb into the glass-bottom boats at Ripley's Aquarium of the Smokies for a float through Shark Lagoon that you'll never forget. Only 3 inches of glass separate you from 12-foot sharks, sea turtles, and thousands of other aquatic animals swimming right under your feet.
Crave Golf Club
Move over, Willy Wonka. The Crave Golf Club is the sweetest new attraction in Pigeon Forge. Crave is mini-golf meets Candy Land with delightful double-decker indoor and outdoor courses, including an innovative rooftop course. This cutting-edge putt-putt course features multi-challenge holes with more than one way to win, so it's a good time for the whole family.
Anakeesta Chairlift and Gondola
Opening this month, Anakeesta Village is accessible by open-air chair lift or enclosed gondola (a construct known as a "chondola"). Take in the stunning views during the 600-foot ride to the summit of Anakeesta Mountain. Once there, you'll enter the magical Firefly Village, home of treehouse-themed shopping and dining, plus scenic overlooks and beautiful views of Mt. LeConte. Visitors can also charge down the dueling zip lines or marvel at the tree canopy walk.
Also notable is the Forest Memorial Interpretive Trail, situated on the south side of Anakeesta Mountain. This side of the mountain was badly burned in the 2016 wildfires that swept through the Smokies. The trail pays tribute to the men and women who fought the fires, and allows hikers to understand the part fire plays in the natural world.
Pigeon Forge Snow
Need a break from the heat? How about some snow tubing? Pigeon Forge Snow now offers indoor winter fun all year round. State-of-the-art snowmaking machines transform this 35,000square-foot facility into a wintery world with 15 snow tubing lanes, snowball fight fields, and snowman-building areas. Don't worry if you didn't bring a coat - ambient temperature inside is a balmy 65 degrees. Opening later this year.
Goats on the Roof of the Smokies
While there are many new attractions this year, don't forget long-time favorites like Goats on the Roof. Haven't been? Goats on the Roof is a sweets and gift shop - with actual goats on the roof. You can feed the goats yourself, but you have to hop on the special "goat cycle" to pedal a bucket of chow up to the roof. The air conditioning and goat-watching entertainment are free, but don't leave without taking a trip down the mile-long Goat Coaster on the property - the mountain views are spectacular.
Planning your last blast of summer? Want to get a jump on your fall break vacation? Be sure to include the exciting, whimsical, and awe-inspiring new attractions in Sevierville and Pigeon Forge.
About Darryl Payne
Darryl Payne is a native of East Tennessee in the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains. He is a web developer with a passion for building great websites. As a local, he can offer a unique perspective on where to stay and things to do while on vacation in the Smokies. To read his latest recommendations, please click the Google+ follow button.