5 Landmarks in the Smoky Mountains You Need to Visit on Your Next Vacation
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Throughout the Smokies, there are some incredible destinations that everyone should visit at least once! Whether it is an important piece of history, a unique structure, or simply somewhere to enjoy the mountain scenery, these locations are a must see when you are in the area. Here are 5 landmarks in the Smoky Mountains you need to visit on your next vacation:
1. Dolly Parton Statue
As you probably know, Dolly Parton has played a huge role in making the Smokies what it is today. She was born in Sevier County and has spent a large part of her life giving back to her hometown community. If you are a fan of Dolly, country music, or the Smoky Mountains in general, you will definitely want to check out the statue that was built in her honor. You can find the statue of Dolly, with guitar in hand, in downtown Sevierville in front of the Sevier County Courthouse. Be sure to bring your camera along to snap a photo of your family gathered around one of the biggest stars in the Smokies!
2. Gatlinburg Space Needle
Standing at 407 feet tall, the Gatlinburg Space Needle is one of the most iconic landmarks in Gatlinburg! Plus, you can ride to the top and get an unbelievable view of the town and the mountains from the observation tower. In addition to incredible scenery, the tower has Higher Learning exhibits that feature fun facts about Gatlinburg and the Smokies! No matter what season you are visiting, you can get a 360 degree view because the Space Needle is open 365 days a year! After you are finished exploring the scenery, be sure to spend some time in one of the largest arcades in the Smokies, located at the base of the Space Needle.
3. Great Smoky Mountains National Park Sign
The Great Smoky Mountains National Park is filled with a ton of landmarks of its own, from gushing waterfalls to historical buildings from old settlements. You will want to stop by the entrance sign of the national park to take a picture to show your friends and family back home! It is a tradition of many families to take a group photo in front of the sign to show they have made it to the peaceful Smokies. While you are in the park, be sure to drive through Cades Cove, where you will find amazing scenery, thrilling hiking trails, and maybe even a couple of black bears!
4. The Old Mill
When you travel to Pigeon Forge, you can visit one of the oldest continually operated gristmills in the country! The history of The Old Mill started two centuries ago when local farmers would travel with their sacks of grain to use the mill to produce meal and flour for cooking. Flash forward to today, the mill is still used by the restaurant next door to make some of their ingredients. After you take in the amazing sight of the gristmill for yourself, be sure to visit the restaurant and surrounding shops for some incredible homemade treats! The Old Mill Square even features its own general store, where you can pick up a unique Smoky Mountain souvenir!
5. The Great Smoky Mountain Wheel
One of the most popular destinations in Pigeon Forge for visitors is The Island! There you will find dozens of exciting attractions, delicious restaurants, and incredible shops. At the center of all the action is the 200 foot tall ferris wheel. The Great Smoky Mountain Wheel was opened in 2013 and has quickly become one of the biggest landmarks in the Smokies. It features all-glass gondolas that offer an unbelievable view of the mountains and the city of Pigeon Forge. As you stop at the top of the ferris wheel, you can soak in the view and get a picture that is worth well over 1,000 words!
Now that you know about some of the most famous landmarks in the Smoky Mountains, be sure to check out some of the other attractions in the Smokies you will want to visit! We look forward to seeing you soon!