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smoky mountain winterfest lights that say gatlinburg welcomes you

Smoky Mountain Winterfest: Your Guide to Holiday Activities & Events

DATE : October 23, 2023

The holidays are quickly approaching once again, and there’s no better time to book a trip to the Smokies! From the crisp mountain air to festive light displays and delicious food, there are plenty of memories to be made during the Christmas season. Here’s everything you need to know about Smoky Mountain Winterfest for the ultimate holiday vacation you’ll never forget:

What is Smoky Mountain Winterfest?

Smoky Mountain Winterfest is an annual tradition of displaying millions of Christmas lights throughout Sevierville, Pigeon Forge, and Gatlinburg, that stay up all the way to February! As darkness falls, enjoy walking or driving through the hundreds of displays, whether on your own in your car with Christmas music playing or on a guided trolley tour. In Pigeon Forge, the beautiful Riverwalk Trail is transformed into a winter wonderland that will amaze you, and the Fantasy of Lights Christmas Parade is one of the most joyous winter activities in Gatlinburg that you won’t want to miss!

Other Festive Activities 

After taking a scenic drive through the holiday light displays of Smoky Mountain Winterfest, what else can you do to celebrate Christmas and embrace the festive spirit? Take a look:

baskins square signDollywood’s Smoky Mountain Christmas: Everyone must experience Dollywood during the holidays at least once! Ride the Dollywood Express for the best light-viewing experience, enjoy one of their Christmas shows, explore Santa’s Village (where you might find Santa working), and definitely get their infamous cinnamon bread for a tasty treat. 

Holiday Shopping: One of the best things to do in Gatlinburg during the holidays is to buy gifts for friends and family! Places like Baskins Square, The Village Shops, and The Mountain Mall feature unique stores with items you won’t find anywhere else, plus amazing Smoky Mountain souvenirs!

Winter sports: Ober Mountain in Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge Snow both offer fun winter sports activities such as snow tubing! Kids and adults alike will have a blast, and at Ober Mountain, you can even go skiing or ice skating!

Great Smoky Mountains Arts and Craft Show: Locally handmade items such as pottery, jewelry, woodworking, candles, decor, and more are available at two craft shows in November and December, located at the Gatlinburg Convention Center. 

Where to Stay 

At The Bearskin Lodge, we offer beautiful, spacious rooms with balconies overlooking a stream or downtown Gatlinburg and amazing amenities! We have King and Queen suites, family suites, and standard rooms to fit your family’s needs. You’ll find gas fireplaces in some suites, and beautiful hickory furniture, a mini-fridge, a microwave, and a Keurig coffee maker in every room. Other onsite amenities include our outdoor fire pit area, free grab-and-go breakfast, fitness center, guest laundry, plenty of parking, and much more. 

Planning your next trip is easy when you stay with us! Book a stay at our Gatlinburg hotel and get ready for a magical vacation during Smoky Mountain Winterfest!