Country music and whiskey may be the first things to come to mind about Tennessee. However, this Southern state is underrated when it comes to natural beauty. The eastern region is home to the Great Smoky Mountains, which are some of the most breathtaking and culturally influential peaks in Appalachia. As a result of the area’s unique mountain culture, the town of Pigeon Forge came into being.
Visitors come from far and wide to Pigeon Forge to enjoy family-friendly entertainment in the midst of a forest wonderland. When you’re not hiking the rugged trails of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, you’ll find more than enough to keep you busy at The Island in Pigeon Forge. The 23-acre entertainment complex consists of shopping, dining, kid-friendly attractions, events and festivals, and more all year round. Read on to discover all the fun things to do at The Island!
As you stroll through the nicely landscaped pavements, you’re bound to discover a few new favorite spots among the unique shops at The Island in Pigeon Forge! Spice up your wardrobe at Southern Charm Boutique and Be Free Boutique, and then accent your new outfits with accessories from Sparkles Jewelry, Fashion & Accessories. Stop by the Margaritaville Store and Island Tiki General Store for fun vacation-themed souvenirs.
Once you’re done shopping for you, check off your holiday shopping list for the kids at The Toychest Company and Ridemakerz. Give your home the gift of a gorgeous new painting from Master’s Editions or a set of candles or pottery from Farmhouse Decor & Gifts. If snacking is your middle name, you can’t pass up the Beef Jerky Experience and Byrd’s Famous Cookies. With over 40 other boutiques and retail stores, The Island is hands-down one of the best places to go shopping in the Smokies!
Whether you’re in the mood for a laid-back atmosphere to hang out and relax or you’re looking for a vibrant scene to pregame the evening, The Island has it all. For those vacationing with children, you’ll be in for a family-friendly dining experience at Paula Deen’s Family Kitchen and Timberwood Grill. If you’d rather pick up the energy in a fun environment, you’ll find nothing but hilarity, American fare and ice cold beer at Dick’s Last Resort.
Perhaps you’re not quite ready for a full dinner yet, but you’re craving a mid-afternoon snack. You’ll have plenty of tempting options between The Fudgery, Sweet!, and The Island Creamery. Next, head over to Dude’s Daiquiris or Ole Smoky Moonshine to kick back over a smooth adult beverage after a long afternoon of walking in the sun. Looking for a quick pick-me-up of something caffeinated? Margaritaville Coffee offers signature coffee blends, espresso favorites, plus smoothies and hot chocolate for the little ones.
Rides & Games
Pigeon Forge is one of the most family-friendly destinations in the South, partially thanks to The Island’s vast and varied kid-friendly attractions. Once you’ve seen all the shops and had your fill of delicious Southern food and Tennessee moonshine, take the whole family out for amusement rides and games!
Ideal for smaller children, Funny Cars allows you to control your car as it sends you spinning. Reverse Time amps up the intensity as you spin in a circle while rising and falling up and down. The Island Ropes Course gives your kids a chance to let out some energy, while the Great Smoky Mountain Wheel is a must when you want to catch some glorious mountain views. Try all these exciting rides and many others with an Unlimited Rides Pass, giving you countless turns on each ride for 48 hours.
In addition to amusement rides, The Island is home to specialty attractions for all ages. Learn about American history from the perspective of its most heinous criminals at the Alcatraz East Crime Museum. Think you could bust out of prison or find your way back home from Mars? Choose between five themed escape rooms at the Escape Game and work together to solve the puzzles! On the other hand, you may prefer competing against your family members at Arcade City or Battleground: Tactical Laser Tag. With so many fun ways to spend quality family time, you’ll never get bored when you vacation at The Island.
While summertime may be ideal for outdoor adventures, it’s no secret that fall and winter are the best months to visit the Smokies. Not only will you get to see the picturesque fall colors of the forested mountains, but the autumn and holiday seasons always bring huge celebrations.
The Island hosts some of the best seasonal events in Pigeon Forge, starting on September 22nd with fall-themed decor, flavors, and photo ops across the entire property. In October, Chalkfest welcomes artists of all levels to turn The Island into a gigantic canvas. When Winterfest rolls around in November and December, you can expect to see magnificent lighting displays enhanced with the multi-million dollar Island Show Fountain. Plus, there’s never any shortage of live music and entertainment during the holiday season. Last but not least, consider staying through December 31st at The Island, where a fireworks show welcomes the new year with a bang.
The Great Smoky Mountains are a magnificent natural wonder worth taking the time to explore. However, once you step off the dirt trail and back onto asphalt, what’s next? The Island in Pigeon Forge allows you to make the most of your vacation in the Smokies, whether you have a couple of hours of downtime to kill or an entire week-long itinerary to fill. As you plan your mountainside getaway in the Smokies, indulge in the full range of shopping, dining, playtime and seasonal celebrations at The Island in Pigeon Forge!