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Top 4 Free Things to Do in Gatlinburg Your Family Will Love

downtown gatlinburg

When you take a family vacation to Gatlinburg, it doesn’t mean you have to spend a fortune! In fact, there are plenty of activities you can enjoy throughout town without spending a dime. When you combine all of the free things to do in Gatlinburg with our affordable cabin rentals, it is no wonder why so many families come to the Smokies year after year! Here are the top 4 free things to do in Gatlinburg your family will love:

1. Visit the National Park

Great Smoky MountainsOne of the awesome things about the Great Smoky Mountains National Park is there’s no entrance fee! While most national parks across the country charge admission, the Great Smoky Mountains National Park is free due to a long standing agreement with the federal government. Your family can enjoy hundreds of scenic hiking trails, view amazing historical structures, and explore everything from wildflowers to waterfalls at no cost! We recommend starting your park visit at the Sugarlands Visitor Center, which is the closest visitor facility to downtown Gatlinburg.

2. Stroll Through Downtown Gatlinburg

Another one of the free things to do in Gatlinburg is strolling through downtown Gatlinburg! This is a great place to do some window shopping or to find a restaurant you might want to visit during your vacation! You will also find plenty of fun attractions, including miniature golf courses, unique museums, mountain coasters, and even haunted houses! If you want to get away from the crowds, consider walking just a block off the Parkway on River Road for a pleasant stroll.

3. Explore the Gatlinburg Arts & Crafts Community

Great Smoky Arts and Crafts Community signThe Gatlinburg Arts & Crafts Community is a section of Gatlinburg that is home to over 100 artists and craftsmen including sculptors, painters, glass workers, and many other artisans. In fact, this community contains the largest independent organization of artisans in the United States! You can explore the Gatlinburg Arts & Crafts Community on an 8-mile loop road, stopping by the various shops to meet the artists who are happy to showcase their wares! This is a fun opportunity to learn more about the history of various crafts, as well as the perfect time to pick up a one-of-a-kind gift or souvenir to bring home!

4. Enjoy a Picnic in the Mountains

When you want to experience the beauty of the great outdoors, pack a picnic lunch to enjoy among the mountain scenery! There are several free city parks in Gatlinburg that are open to the public, each with picnic tables, recreational facilities, and a playground area for the kids. One of the best parks is Mynatt Park, which is considered a hidden gem that is overlooked by most visitors to Gatlinburg. This park not only features picnic tables but also has grills you can use for a fun cookout with hamburgers, hot dogs, and all the fixin’s! If you want to go a little farther into the mountains, Metcalf Bottoms has a picnic area with tables and grills that sit next to the river, providing a place for the kids to play before and after you eat!

Saving money on your trip doesn’t mean you won’t have fun! Need a place to stay during your Smoky Mountain vacation? Check out all of our cabins in the Smoky Mountains today to start planning!