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5 Things You Didn’t Know About Gatlinburg Tennessee

Gatlinburg has been named one of the top travel destinations in the United States, and it’s not hard to understand why! While we’re sure you’ve heard about all the popular attractions, from the Gatlinburg SkyLift Park to Anakeesta, and the many delicious restaurants, from the Pancake Pantry to The Peddler, there are some things you might not know about one of our favorite mountain towns! Here are 5 things you didn’t know about Gatlinburg Tennessee.

1. You can still see the first cabin ever built.

Of course, there are hundreds of beautiful cabin rentals in Gatlinburg where you can stay on your Smoky Mountain vacation, but did you know the first cabin that was ever built in Gatlinburg is still standing? That’s right! A man named William Ogle started building his cabin in 1802, but unfortunately passed away in 1803 before finishing. His wife ended up bringing her family back to the area and finishing the cabin, making Martha Ogle the first settler of Gatlinburg! Although it’s not in its original spot anymore, the cabin is still standing at the Gatlinburg Welcome Center.

2. It is home to Tennessee’s first pancake house.

Pancake Pantry in GatlinburgGatlinburg is home to the first pancake house in Tennessee! The Pancake Pantry is considered a Gatlinburg tradition, serving guests the most important meal of the day since 1960. Open daily from 7 AM to 3 PM, this Gatlinburg restaurant is the perfect stop for specialty pancakes like sweet potato pancakes and Caribbean pancakes, as well as crepes, waffles, and other breakfast specials.

3. Gatlinburg was occupied by the Confederacy during the Civil War

Although Gatlinburg was mainly pro-Union during the Civil War, it was actually occupied by the Confederacy. The rebels used Gatlinburg as a home base as they ventured into Alum Cave to mine saltpeter, which was a mineral needed to produce gunpowder. They occupied Gatlinburg up until 1863 after the Battle of Burg Hill, during which two Union forces drove the rebels into North Carolina.

4. It hosts more weddings than any U.S. city except Las Vegas.

couple getting married in the mountainsGatlinburg is one of the most popular wedding destinations in the South! In fact, the city hosts more weddings than any other U.S. city, with the exception of Las Vegas. The romantic mountain scenery and its variety of wedding venues make it a top choice for couples to spend their special day. Whether you choose to get married at a chapel, a Smoky Mountain cabin, or outdoors surrounded by views of the Smokies, you’re sure to remember your wedding in Gatlinburg!

5. Some parts are rumored to be haunted.

You can choose whether to believe this fun fact or not — but some places in Gatlinburg are rumored to be haunted! If you’re fascinated by all things ghosts, there are several places you can visit in town. Enjoy a meal at The Greenbrier Restaurant, where you just might see the ghost of a young woman named Lydia. Some say they’ve heard her walking through the restaurant at night crying for her long lost love, who was said to be killed on his way back from Knoxville the day of their wedding. Or, take a drive through Roaring Fork and keep your eyes open for Lucy, a young woman who is said to have been spotted wandering along the trail asking visitors for a ride. For some guaranteed spooky fun, enjoy a ghost tour, walk through the Mysterious Mansion, or see if you can make it through Ripley’s Haunted Adventure!

aerial view of Gatlinburg TN on a spring dayMore Fun Facts About Gatlinburg Tennessee

After reading all of these interesting facts about Gatlinburg, we bet you can’t wait to learn more! Find out more about Gatlinburg Tennessee, then start planning your visit to explore the city for yourself.