Celebrate the Holidays With These Fun Winter Activities near Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Lysianne PeacockBryson City, Gatlinburg, Nantahala, Pigeon River

Celebrate the Holidays With These Fun Winter Activities near Great Smoky Mountains National Park

It’s the most wonderful time of the year, and while Wildwater may be closed for the season, there is still fun to be had to celebrate the holidays. We have put together a list of our favorite holiday activities near Great Smoky Mountains National Park that are sure to bring the Christmas cheer.

Things to do Near Bryson City, NC

Drive through a Christmas Lights Spectacular

Enjoy an evening of Christmas bliss from the comfort of your vehicle by visiting Bryson City’s Smoky Mountain Christmas Light Spectacular. You will be greeted with spectacular, giant LED displays featuring the 12 Days of Christmas. 

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Layer Up for a Winter Hike

Lace up your boots and take a hike in Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Listen to the rushing waters and see frozen waterfalls on the Deep Creek Trail or visit the Road to Nowhere on the Goldmine Loop Trail. 

Hit the Slopes

Bryson City is located just over 45 minutes away from Cataloochee Ski Area in Maggie Valley, NC. Guests can ski or snowboard or visit Tube World for a day of tubing.

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Ride the Polar Express Train 

Bring the magic of the Polar Express to life by booking a Polar Express Train Ride with The Great Smoky Mountain Railroad in Bryson City. Guests will be taken on a 1 ¼ hour journey through the wilderness to the “North Pole.” This experience will be set to the soundtrack of the movie, and Guests will get to enjoy hot cocoa and meet Santa Claus.

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Things to do Near Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge, TN

See Christmas Lights 

If you’re visiting Pigeon Forge or Gatlinburg this holiday season, you’re in for a treat with Winterfest. Millions of small, twinkling lights come together on the streets to form displays that will leave you feeling like you’re walking in a winter wonderland. In addition to these elaborate light displays, Pigeon Forge is teaming with holiday events that are sure to keep you and the family entertained. 

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Get Your Apres Ski On

If you’re looking for a mountaintop of excitement, look no further than Ober Mountain. This scenic four-season Adventure Park and Ski Area is filled with fun winter activities. From ice skating to skiing and snowboarding, adventure awaits at Ober Mountain. 

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Hit the Trails

If snow sports are not your thing, lace up your boots and take a hike in Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Experience the magic of waterfalls in the winter by hiking the Trillium Gap or Laurel Falls trail or experience the winter magic of the Great Smoky Mountains from Charlies Bunion, the Chimney Tops, or Mt. Sterling.

Take in the View from New Heights 

Great Smoky Mountain Wheel: Located at The Island in Pigeon Forge, you will travel 200 feet in the air in a glass gondola to take in the snow-dusted panoramic views of the Smoky Mountains. Each gondola is big enough to hold 8 people.

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Gatlinburg Sky Lift and SkyBridge: Ride a chairlift up the side of a mountain to take in the breathtaking views of Gatlinburg and surrounding mountains. Once at the top, you can grab a warm beverage at the gift shop and traverse the record-breaking SkyBridge, the longest pedestrian cable bridge in North America. If you’re visiting Gatlinburg to ring in the New Year, make sure to purchase tickets for the New Year’s Eve Lights of Wonder VIP celebration. 

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