865-233-2390

Winter

 

Winter Events in Gatlinburg

While winter may be cold in the Smokies, it is still a beautiful sight. With a holiday to celebrate in each month of winter, make your way to Elk Springs Resort and cozy up near a fireplace, or relax in a Jacuzzi! Gatlinburg’s Winterfest is a fantastic way to enjoy the sights of the city with lights on display all through town, or you can ride down Tubing Hill at the Ober Gatlinburg Ski Resort, and definitely go see Dollywood’s Smoky Mountain Christmas.

“Winter is the time for comfort, for good food and warmth, for the touch of a friendly hand and for a talk beside the fire: it is the time for home.” – Edith Sitwell

Weather to Expect: The temperature is cool with highs in the high 40s-low 50s during the day and mid-low 30s at night. With snow-topped peaks at higher elevations with an average snowfall of around 12 inches, you might have a white Christmas after all.

 

December Events

Pigeon Forge Winterfest

NOVEMBER 11, 2021 – FEBRUARY 15, 2022

The Pigeon Forge Winterfest is the longest lasting winter light display in the Smokies. Join locals and guests alike for cider sipping, candy sampling, live music and of course, lights!

Gatlinburg Winter Magic Trolley Ride of Lights

MID-NOVEMBER – LATE DECEMBER

The streets of Gatlinburg have never been brighter! Featuring one-of-a-kind LED light displays, guests can see custom-built winter forests, snowmen, dancing fountains, indigenous animals such as deer, squirrels, foxes, and more! Now that the lights have been converted to LED bulbs, the City of Gatlinburg saves 95% in energy cost allowing all 120 days to be lit for the price of three days of electricity! Trolley rides are at 6:30, 7:30, and 8:30. $5. For the most up-to-date information, click here.

Dollywood Holiday Events

NOVEMBER 6, 2021 – JANUARY 2, 2021

Starting in early February, Dollywood hosts a number of holiday-related events such as Appalachian Christmas, Carol of the Trees, A Christmas Carol, and a Gospel Christmas. For more information, click here.

Anakeesta’s Enchanted Winter of Lights

NOVEMBER 11 – FEBRUARY 12, 2021

Experience the joy, light, and wonder each winter season at Anakeesta’s  “Enchanted Winter of Lights.” This three-month long celebration features a 1,000-foot canopy of twinkling lights, Walk-In Snow Globe, an “Arctic Alley”  which features thousands of lights programmed to festive seasonal soundtracks, and a newly added new sensory walk on the Vista Gardens’ boardwalk. After soaking in the brilliant lights, enjoy a variety of other activities at Anakeesta such as their AnaVista Tower, gem mining, zipline, shopping or just relaxing by the firepit with a hot cocoa or other seasonal drink and food favorites.

Lights Over Gatlinburg-Gatlinburg SkyLift Park

NOVEMBER 13 – JANUARY 24, 2021

Experience the joy of the season on the longest pedestrian suspension bridge in North America at Gatlinburg’s SkyLift Park. “Lights Over Gatlinburg” adorns its adventure park with over 40,000 lights providing endless wonder to celebrate the season. Experience a glittering view of downtown Gatlinburg at night as you stroll down its SkyBridge and walk through a 300-foot tunnel of twinkling lights. After taking in a glittering view of the surrounding mountains at night and the SkyBridge itself, continue the celebration on the SkyDeck with a warm hot chocolate or cider by the fire pit. Guests can also enjoy SkyLift Park’s 30-foot Christmas Tree that features lights animated to music.

Winter Magic Tunes & Tales

LATE NOVEMBER – MID-DECEMBER

On Friday and Saturday nights all winter long, enjoy free live entertainment on the Parkway including caroling, storytelling, and lights! For the most up-to-date information, click here.

Breakfast or Brunch with Santa

EARLY DECEMBER

Head to the Old Mill Square for breakfast or brunch with Santa and create a lasting memory for the whole family! For the most up-to-date information, click here.

Great Smoky Christmas Arts & Crafts Show

NOVEMBER 9 – DECEMBER 5, 2021

The Gatlinburg Arts and Crafts Community is the nation’s largest organization of independent artisans, and every December they bring you crafts and hand make products such as quilts, woven baskets, hand-dipped candles, leather goods, jewelry, art, and pottery. The Gatlinburg Convention Center hosts hundreds of artisans each year. This event is free and open to the public. For more information, click here.

Gatlinburg Fantasy of Lights Christmas Parade

DECEMBER 3, 2021

You won’t want to miss the 46th Annual Fantasy of Lights Christmas Parade in downtown Gatlinburg. Be sure to bundle up and arrive early as the streets fill up quick! The parade starts at 7:30pm, and includes marching bands, giant Christmas balloons, and of course, the Winter Magic Lights. The Fantasy of Lights Christmas Parade is recognized as one of the “Top 20 Events in the Southeast.”

Christmas in the Smokies Bluegrass Festival

DECEMBER 1 – 4, 2021

Head over to the Smoky Mountain Convention Center in Pigeon Forge to hear some of the oldest and finest music in the Smokies: bluegrass. Combined with your Christmas favorites, it’s sure to be a family favorite. For more information and tickets visit the their official website.

New Year’s Eve Ball Drop & Fireworks

DECEMBER 31

Gatlinburg will welcome the arrival of 2022 in unique style with its Annual New Year’s Eve Ball Drop and Fireworks Show around the intersection of Parkway and Historic Nature Trail at the base of the Space Needle late December 31. Nearly 50,000 people will gather around the intersection of Parkway and Historic Nature Trail at the base of the Space Needle on December 31 to ring in the New Year. At the stroke of midnight on January 1, 2022, fireworks will blast off the rooftop of the 400-foot tall Space Needle with special music choreographed for the fireworks show produced by Pyro-Shows of LaFollette, Tennessee. The Space Needle has added rhythmic LED lights to the tower, making for a spectacular display.

 

January Events

 

Gatlinburg Aerial Tramway

The Gatlinburg Aerial Tramway is open year-round, but can be especially spectacular with all the winter lights up around Gatlinburg. The Tramway holds 120 passengers and departs from downtown Gatlinburg to the Ober Gatlinburg Ski Resort & Amusement Park regularly.

Penguin Playhouse at Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies

Keep warm while mingling with winter’s favorite birds, penguins! The Ripley’s Penguin Playhouse has an interactive display that will let you get up close and personal in the world’s best penguin exhibit. Daily activities are abound, and you can even take home an original penguin painting to cherish the memories!

Anakeesta’s Enchanted Winter of Lights

November through February – Experience the joy, light, and wonder each winter season at Anakeesta’s  “Enchanted Winter of Lights.” This three-month long celebration features a 1,000-foot canopy of twinkling lights, Walk-In Snow Globe, an “Arctic Alley”  which features thousands of lights programmed to festive seasonal soundtracks, and a newly added new sensory walk on the Vista Gardens’ boardwalk. After soaking in the brilliant lights, enjoy a variety of other activities at Anakeesta such as their AnaVista Tower, gem mining, zipline, shopping or just relaxing by the firepit with a hot cocoa or other seasonal drink and food favorites.

Lights Over Gatlinburg – Gatlinburg Skylift Park

November through January – Experience the joy of the season on the longest pedestrian suspension bridge in North America at Gatlinburg’s SkyLift Park. “Lights Over Gatlinburg” adorns its adventure park with over 40,000 lights providing endless wonder to celebrate the season. Experience a glittering view of downtown Gatlinburg at night as you stroll down its SkyBridge and walk through a 300-foot tunnel of twinkling lights. After taking in a glittering view of the surrounding mountains at night and the SkyBridge itself, continue the celebration on the SkyDeck with a warm hot chocolate or cider by the fire pit. Guests can also enjoy SkyLift Park’s 30-foot Christmas Tree that features lights animated to music.

 

February Events

Snow Tubing at Ober Gatlinburg Ski Resort

Snow Tubing is one of the most family-friendly ways to hit the slopes! Tubing tickets for the 2021/2022 Season will go on sale online starting October 15, 2021. The Snow Tubing Park will reopen November 20, 2021 and will operate daily through the end of March 2022 (weather permitting). For more information and tickets, click here.

Winter Hiking in the Smokies

There are lots of trails that are quite beautiful when covered in snow. If you are ready to dress warmly and see historic homesteads, beautiful mountain views, and more! Check out our own Hiking Guide for tips, top hikes, a hiking checklist and more.

THINGS TO DO

    PLACES TO STAY

      FOOD AND DRINK