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When did all the parking show up?

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When did all the parking show up?

I am heading down to Gburg in October for the first time since 2011. Using Google maps I see that a couple of the older strip motels have been taken down and replaced by parking lots/garages. I don't remember them being there in 2011. I know that two of the ones that went down were not shabby places so was just wondering if anyone knew what brought on the demise of a couple of the strip motels and how they turned into parking over retail shops or another motel. I know Gburg has always needed more parking, but am kinda surprised that it would occur right on the strip.

Dayton, Ohio
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479 posts
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11. Re: When did all the parking show up?

We prefer the quaintness of GB, don't go for the shows at at all, not our cup of tea for entertainment. Want a place to walk around town, so six lane roadway just means harder to get close to stores, etc..

As stated above each to his own, it's what makes the world go round.

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12. Re: When did all the parking show up?

I don't get the draw of Pigeon Forge over.....anything really. It's a suburban sprawl, 6-lane, bumper-to-bumper Eyesore. Unless you are really into Kuntry Music and nascar, Pigeon Forge is a place to avoid.

Gatlinburg is "the Gateway to the Smokies."

For that reason alone it will always be better.

Thibodaux, Louisiana
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280 posts
72 reviews
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13. Re: When did all the parking show up?

I love Gatlinburg but in the past 10 years or so it has went through a major change. The town is showing a true reflection of the times. More head shops and bars/disileries. The thing that was neat the first time I went was the building designs were unique. Now all the buildings are starting to look like any other part of the country. Think they should have some ordinaces in keeping all the building a certain style like Helena, Ga did. Unfortunately the good ole days are gone.

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1,530 posts
21 reviews
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14. Re: When did all the parking show up?

Pigeon Forge, as well as Gatlinburg simply needed some architectural guidelines before the sprawl began. I'm not particularly drawn to either one as a "Main Destination", since I tend to avoid crowds on vacation. I do enjoy a stroll along the strip in Gatlinburg once or twice during a visit. But for us, the attraction is of course the National Park. We do smile and laugh at some of the folks in town. It's somewhat joyful to see others have a big time.

Paris, Tn
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for Gatlinburg, Pigeon Forge
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2,864 posts
28 reviews
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15. Re: When did all the parking show up?

We first started coming to the Pig/forge area when our kids were about seven and ten years old. The town was much more suited for youngsters than say Gat/burg. There was 1 shop in Pig/forge that I looked forward to seeing annually. Being a police officer I liked visiting "CARBO'S POLICE MUSEUM". (it has since closed) I even donated one of our uniform patches to display on his wall. No matter where we shopped there was always plenty of parking. In fact , there's always been more parking spaces than stores. Since our kids are all grown and out of the house, the only places my wife and I go to with any regularity in Pi/forge is perhaps dinners at SHONEY'S or the OLD MILL restaurant. Can't leave out KRISPY KREME......other than those and FOOD CITY those are about the only places in Pig/forge we do business.

And when we're in Gat/burg we have a certain few "stops" we routinely shop at such as the PEPPER PALACE, and arts & crafts community on Glades Rd. All our other vacation time is spent in the Nat park.


Destination Expert
for Indianapolis
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545 posts
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16. Re: When did all the parking show up?

My parents took me to the area back as a kid and I didn't end up going back until 2005, and then again in 2007. We then did a Blue Ridge Parkway trip and visited GB again in just a couple of years ago. I never really got into PF. For one, I'm more a saver than a spender, and to me, higher priced things like miniature golf, go karts, etc., well I can do all that stuff at home, so why do it on vacation? I think were people stay and what they do is more of a reflection of who they are. I can see more outdoor focused people choosing GB over PF because it is closer to the park. Those who don't care to hit the trails, but would rather see shows and do fun houses, etc., while checking out the park via a car trip, I can see them wanting PF over GB.

We are heading down that way soon, but this is our first day hike focused trip. Wife and I are going to take a day and do a LeConte hike. I will likely be heading out at or just before first light and making other hikes throughout the week. Got a place with a full kitchen this time. My plan is to bring breakfast and lunch food and eat out for dinner most nights. That alone will save us some money. Also plan to get back to Cherokee just to check stuff out there and hike up to Waterrock Knob off the Blue Ridge Parkway. Also wouldn't mind checking out some more of the Arts and Crafts area as well.

After this year, not sure if we will be going back anytime soon. Got hiking trips planned for Glacier, Yellowstone, Alaska, and Utah. After this fourth trip to the area in ten years, I feel we've seen what is there to see. It is always nice to get away to the mountains though, but there is really only so many things and then there is nothing new to see and do (depending on preferences).

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17. Re: When did all the parking show up?

With 900 miles of hiking trails, there are plenty of reasons to come back again and again. I never get tired of the Smokies.

18. Re: When did all the parking show up?

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