We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Seeing the mtns next week

Amory, Mississippi
5 posts
Save Topic
Seeing the mtns next week

First vacation in 20 years. Taking our 15 year old son and his 2 friends with us. Rented a cabin in Bear Creek Crossing. Owner was fabulous in sending me a few coupons and giving overall info. Cabin is very reasonably priced and is a gated community with a pool and putt-putt golf course. One of the very few cabins that didn't charge a cleaning fee and the deposit came off the top of the total rental charge. Those were all pluses to me!

Going to be grilling and picnicking most of the time to save money. Intend to eat out once at Cici's Pizza and a nicer eat out meal for dinner. Going to do a breakfast buffet at least once.

Only two main attractions, but doing the Aquarium and Wonderworks for sure. Going to also do the Heritage Center, the Aviation Museum, Muscle Car Museum and Knive Works or superstore or something another. We also are thinking about teh Cooper Creek Trout Pond to try our hand at trout fishing. I think it is closer to Cherokee, however. Also possibly considering Lazer Port day bands for 5 attractions but cannot find many reviews on them. Not sure if worth the money or not.

We are planning on seeing as much of the Park as possible. Considering some of the classes the rangers do. Considering tubing in a more remote area and not in the middle of the crowds.

So, question is this. Anything I mention NOT worth it? Any suggestions of other things we could do that are VERY affordable?

I enjoy all the posts I read. Great information!

Tuscaloosa, Alabama
Level Contributor
334 posts
Save Reply
1. Re: Seeing the mtns next week

If you are going to Knife Works you will almost be back to the interstate where there is a huge Bass Pro Shop. Across from the Bass Pro Shop is the Smokies Stadium where the Tennessee Smokies (minor league) baseball team plays - don't know if they will have any home games during your stay but if so, thought the boys might like to see a baseball game.

I also think teenage boys might like zip lines - there are several in the area now but I think they are a little expensive - not sure.

Before you go to Lazer Port look for the coupons they have out for a free game of black light miniature golf. We haven't made it there yet but we have our coupons that we picked up when we were there about a month ago.

Your boys might also like swimming at one of the local swimming holes - Metcalf Bottoms, Greenbrier entrance to the park and the "Y" (between Townsend and Cades Cove) - all free.

You can find all kinds of discount coupons at welcome centers in Pigeon Forge (the city operated centers are at light #0 and #5), the entrance of Walmart and in the lobbies of many restaurants and hotels so be sure to stock up before starting your activities.

Pembroke Pines...
Level Contributor
73 posts
1 review
Save Reply
2. Re: Seeing the mtns next week

One of the favorite things to do with our boys is bike-riding around Cades cove early Wed or Sat morning, when the loop is closed to cars until 10 am. We always take up our own bicycles, but they are also available for rent at the Cades Cove campground -- not sure how much that is, or what condition they are in. But riding in the early morning around the Cove is a treat - cool and misty, uncrowded, and high probability of seeing lots of wildlife. Always one of my must-do's. The hardest part is getting teenagers up before dawn to get there just after sunrise .... :-)

There are also lots of great hikes, if the boys are into that. All free!

Amory, Mississippi
5 posts
Save Reply
3. Re: Seeing the mtns next week

Thank you so very much! I'm like a kid at Christmas I am so excited!

Haubstadt IN
Level Contributor
336 posts
115 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: Seeing the mtns next week

We spend most of our time in the park. There is so much to do there. There are several waterfalls to hike to. Clingman's Dome provides gorgeous views. We love the Chimneys picnic area - our kids love to stick their feet in the cool water & climb around on the rocks (even our 16 year old daughter!).

N. GA
Level Contributor
475 posts
1 review
Save Reply
5. Re: Seeing the mtns next week

I am sincerely happy you are getting to go after so long with no vacation. Have a blast:-)

Boston...
Level Contributor
5,524 posts
47 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: Seeing the mtns next week

I visited the Wonderworks in Orlando when I was fifteen and thought it was lame. There are a few cool things like the virtual roller coaster and bed of nails, but it was mostly a bunch of cheesy electronic tricks that were mildly interesting but also embarrassing knowing you paid over twenty bucks a piece to see them. Definitely go for some fishing.

I highly highly recommend ranger led programs. They are all unbelievably well qualified for their jobs and do a good job presenting usually dull subjects in new refreshing ways. I enjoyed an astronomical presentation at Black Canyon National Park last week and though I was familiar with most of the ranger's points about stars, supernovae, and the like, his enthusiasm rekindled my once passionate interest in science. I'm now enrolled in an astronomy course in the fall and am compiling a science-y reading list.

I've been in several destinations like Gatlinburg where there's a whole gamut of low-class or cheesy touristy stuff right alongside a world class nature preserve. There are usually several things I enjoy doing (like zip lines!) but in some places I'm like, "Wow, I could be climbing the Chimney Tops or wading in the creek right now and this is lame." I don't know your guys, but I'm usually more down with outdoor adventure stuff, though that's usually more expensive. In the park, be sure not to just go to the most popular locations that you hear so much about on the forums. Those spots are nice as any other, but they're always really crowded unless you go before ten in the morning. That seems to be the magic number.

A quiet place to tube is Deep Creek over on the North Carolina side of the national park. NC is quiet in general. Very nice.

Enjoy your trip! First vacation in twenty years is a big deal. Hope you have a great time. Remember, the park is free! Keyword: free. Ha.

Edited: 16 June 2010, 00:06
Salem, Virginia
Level Contributor
326 posts
23 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: Seeing the mtns next week

Kids that age would probably love the go-carts in Pigeon forge. Also the bear habitat at the three bears general store is supposed to be nice. Ponderosa dude ranch has a fishing pond in which u rent ur poles and dont need a license. They have horseback riding and a petting farm too. Going to the mountains and exploring and hiking are the things my kids loved the most. We havent done it yet but I think the helocopter rides would be a blast. Grilling out and using the hot tub at the cabin in the evenings is great. Kids usually also love walking the strip in Gatlinburg looking at the candy making and the stuff out front of the attractions. Theres just sooo much to do that they will have a ball.

Amory, Mississippi
5 posts
Save Reply
8. Re: Seeing the mtns next week

Thanks. I think we have decided that I will make a huge list of things to do and the kids get to choose each day what we will do. Tubing, creek swimming, go karts, aquarium, ranger classes, hiking, and wildlife spotting top the list. Can you tell we are super excited??

Boston...
Level Contributor
5,524 posts
47 reviews
Save Reply
9. Re: Seeing the mtns next week

Sounds like a good plan.

dallas
Level Contributor
146 posts
Save Reply
10. Re: Seeing the mtns next week

Have a supercalifragilistic time!!!

Get answers to your questions about Pigeon Forge