Enter Gatlinburg, the small gem of a city nestled on the northern edge of the Smoky Mountains in Tennessee. For outdoor enthusiasts, history buffs, thrill seekers, and shoppers/diners alike, Gatlinburg truly lives up to the claim of having something for everyone.
The first thing she pointed out, which would seemingly go against the grain of marketing your own city (don’t worry, she’s a pro!), is that Gatlinburg isn’t quite as big as many people seem to think it is.
“People know about Gatlinburg and they assume it’s a large city, but Gatlinburg is only three miles long. It’s very much a walkable town.” Nicole says. “There are only ten traffic lights on the main parkway through downtown Gatlinburg, and the Greystone Lodge is right in the middle, at light number five. So we’re quite literally in the heart of everything.”
Right across the street sits Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies. Opposite the aquarium is the Anakeesta adventure park, featuring shops and restaurants, chairlifts, gondola rides, repelling, ziplining, botanical gardens, an upcoming observation desk, and much, much more. A block-and-a-half up the street you’ll find the new SkyBridge – a suspension bridge that crosses over a ravine exactly one mile high (and, oh yeah, the bottom of the bridge is see-through at the center point!) Just under a mile away is Ober Gatlinburg, the popular all-season attraction complete with an amusement park, dozens of shops and eateries, year-round snow tubing, bumper cars, ice skating, and even a live animal exhibit featuring local wildlife including bears and otters. Even further up the road, about two miles or so, is the gateway to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. And that’s just part of what Gatlinburg offers within two short miles of its city center!
Further into the Smoky Mountains you’ll find countless hiking trails with waterfall access, horseback riding adventures, ATV tours, Pink Jeep tours, and the Sugarland Visitor Center where park rangers lead outdoor classes and teach about the natural history of the mountains. You can even venture to the exact site where President Roosevelt dedicated the park in 1940.
Surrounding the Greystone Lodge is Ole Red (a pub style eatery with southern comfort twists), the LandShark Bar & Grille (courtesy of Margaritaville), No Way Jose’s (for those craving Mexican fare), Best Italian On the Parkway (which needs no further explanation), Mellow Mushroom (for the always popular pizza option), and, for those who enjoy a bite bright and early, the Donut Friar (a crowd favorite!). Simply put, for kids with picky eating habits or adults with adventurous foodie appetites, Gatlinburg once again has something for everyone!
So, whether you’re a single-family household or a large school group, and whether you’re looking for outdoor adventure and education or dining/shopping/entertainment options galore, Gatlinburg truly does have something for everyone. And if you want to learn more about the Greystone Lodge or any of the attractions we mentioned, click the respective links below.
Quick Tidbits About the Greystone Lodge:
- Large groups ARE welcome (they have nearly 160 double queen rooms, about 30 of which are all on one floor to ensure your group stays together).
- Most rooms overlook the Little Pigeon River.
- They offer a deluxe breakfast with quick access to plenty of food options including southern favorites like biscuits and gravy.
- During the warmer months they operate an outdoor pool with a water slide.
- Convenient parking with two on-site lots and a five-story garage.
- Motorcoach parking is free AND reserved (so your spot is guaranteed!)
- The Gatlinburg Trolleys stop right out front of the hotel and take you anywhere (for just 50 cents a ride) within downtown Gatlinburg, including the Arts and Crafts Loop.
- The Gatlinburg Convention Center is 0.6 miles away (about a 10-15 minute walk) and is where most school and musical performances are held.
Greystone Lodge On the River
Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies
Anakeesta Adventure Park
Great Smoky Mountains National Park
LandShark Bar and Grille
No Way Jose’s
Best Italian On the Parkway
Carver’s Orchard and Applehouse Restaurant
Arts and Crafts Loop
Pirate’s Voyage Dinner & Show