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27 Feb 2023
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Local Guides

As the weather warms up and the earth awakens from its frozen stupor, it's fair to say spring is most definitely in the air in the Smoky Mountains. Everyone is itching to get out and about, and Spring Break provides the perfect opportunity for families to get away and create space in their busy schedues for fun! Your trusty Mountain Laurel Chalets team has put together the perfect five-day Gatlinburg TN Spring Break guide that's sure to please every member of your family.

Through our partnership with Xplorie, our guests will receive one free ticket per reservation for every day of your stay to each of the suggested ticketed attractions below. This is a gift from us that, along with access to a complimentary concierge who will handle the booking of any and all attractions on your behalf, will save you both money and time. To take advantage of the savings, be sure to book your attractions directly through Xplorie and not through the attractions themselves.


Check out Crockett's Breakfast Camp where you'll enjoy incredible breakfast offerings in a fun and friendly environment. They offer plenty of savory and sweet selections, and every bit of it's delicious. PRO TIP: try the griddle cakes (their take on pancakes)--you'll thank us later!


Welcome to the longest running attraction in Gatlinburg! "CBS News reports that Gatlinburg SkyBridge made the 2022 Google 'Year in Search' list as one of the Top 10 Most Scenic Spots in U.S. Ride the yellow chairlift up to the best views in Gatlinburg and cross the record-breaking SkyBridge, the longest pedestrian cable bridge in North America. After your walk across SkyBridge, take a hike along the SkyTrail and climb Tulip Tower to the observation area. Relax and take in the view from the SkyDeck amphitheater. Shop in the SkyCenter for souvenirs and grab a snack while you're at it." (

1:00pm: LUNCH

Is it really a trip to Gatlinburg if you don't indulge in some of the best street food in the south? Pop into Fannie Farkles and grab everyone a legendary Ogle Dog or sausage sub. Once you're done, work off that "Fannie" (pun intended) as you walk over to The Crazy Mason Milkshake Bar to indulge in gourmet milkshakes. Try the Berried in Chocolate shake and the No Oreo-dinary Cheesecake shake--they're fan favorites. With over 50 milkshake flavors to suit every palate, every member of your crew will be satisfied!


"WonderWorks Indoor Amusement Park is one of the best Pigeon Forge attractions. With over 42,000 square feet of “edu-tainment,” WonderWorks is an amusement park for the mind. The attraction combines education and entertainment with more than 100 hands-on exhibits that challenge the mind and spark the imagination." ( This place is really fun! Adults and kids alike will enjoy the interactive exhibits which include 4-D rides and a three story indoor ropes course. 

6:30pm: DINNER

Less than a mile from Wonderworks sits one of Pigeon Forge's best family dining experiences. Local Goat offers delicious food and drinks in a relaxed environment, and everything is made from scratch. We recommend their deep fried deviled eggs to start, and you can't beat the bison meatloaf with caramelized onion mashed potatoes for your entree.


Enjoy breakfast at Brick and Spoon as you fuel up for a long day on your feet. If you're a fan of eggs, you must try the Bayou Benedict. Love seafood? The Crab Cake Benny will knock your socks off! If you're craving something sweeter, the Banana's Foster french toast is a great choice.

10:00am: A DAY AT DOLLYWOOD (opens for the 2023 season on March 11)

"Voted the #1 Theme Park in the United States by Tripadvisor, Dollywood offers more than 50 world-class rides, high-energy entertainment, award-winning dining, and the friendliest park atmosphere in the world!" ( PRO TIP: plan to eat lunch and dinner inside the park. The food is delicious, and you'll want to soak up every minute you can until closing time!


A trip to Gatlinburg isn't complete without a stop at Pancake Pantry."We offer twenty-four different varieties of pancakes, many waffles, farm fresh eggs, sizzling ham, bacon or country sausage and golden butter-fried hash brown potatoes…the list goes on and on. Of course all of our batters are made from fresh ingredients and we prepare each syrup and compote in our kitchen." ( It's a Gatlinburg staple!


With a variety of trip options from high-adventure rapids to more mild river experiences, Big Creek Expeditions is open for the season and ready to take you down river through the Great Smoky Mountains. The beauty of the Pigeon River and its majestic surroundings combined with the thrill of whitewater rafting will fill you with wonder and leave you with lifelong family memories. PRO TIP: pack sandwiches/snacks in a cooler so you have easy access to food before or after your rafting trip.

5:00pm: DINNER

You'll be more than ready for an early dinner after a day of white water rafting! Grab a local brew and delicious meal at Blue Moose Burgers and Wings. Their award-winning mesquite barbeque jumbo wings are fantastic. If you're feeling extra hungry you might want to try Moose's Big Daddy Mac and Cheese Burger, an all American cheeseburger served with a giant portion of fried macaroni and cheese and two slices of Applewood smoked bacon.


Welcome to the most successful and well-attended clean comedy theater in the world. "The Comedy Barn Theater in Pigeon Forge offers clean comedy for an enjoyable evening of family fun. We have comedians, jugglers, ventriloquists, barnyard animals, live music, and more! Experience over two hours of side-splitting jokes and hilarious antics from our talented cast. You’ll laugh until you can’t laugh any more." (

10:00am: BRUNCH

Sleep in a bit (you've earned it!), then enjoy brunch in Pigeon Forge at family owned and operated Sawyer's Farmhouse Restaurant. "Sawyer’s Farmhouse Breakfast is a locally-owned and operated restaurant. We opened our doors in July of 2014 and have acquired a large following and rave reviews on Trip Advisor and Yelp. We serve various breakfast food including crepes, Belgian waffles, made-from-scratch pancakes, syrups, and compotes. We have freshly-whipped butter that melts easily over the waffles and pancakes that are then covered in our warm homemade syrups." ( PRO TIP: bring card games and coloring books for kids to enjoy in case you have to wait for a table; there's often a wait to be seated, but it's worth being patient, we promise!


Channel your inner flannel and stir up some friendly family competition as you make your way through several different courses in this two-hour adventure. Admission includes access to the Flying Ox (zipline roller coaster), the High Woodsmen Challenge (lumberjack-themed ropes course), Loggersports (log roll, boom run, and speed climb), and Timber Towers (two 80-foot free fall jumps). 


Follow up your time at the adventure park by sitting back and watching how the professionals get it done. This one and a half hour show features world-champion lumberjacks competing on the log roll, double buck, boom run, axe throw, spring board chop, and speed climb. The fast paced action is sure to keep everyone's attention!


Head back home and settle in for a relaxing night at home, made perfect with a sunset picnic on the porch of your Mountain Laurel Chalets property. Prepare your own picnic based on your family's culinary preferences, or let our friends at Picnic in the Park prepare one for you instead. Follow up dinner with a family movie night, and we'd call that just about the perfect day!


Recently named the best donut shop in Tennessee by Southern Living Magazine, The Donut Friar is a local staple and longtime bringer of sweet, fried goodness to the Gatlinburg community. This cash-only business doesn't even have a website (only a Facebook page), yet you'll be hard pressed to find anyone within 50 square miles who hasn't heard of (or visited) it. You might think that donuts don't constitute a full breakfast, but with 30 varieties to choose from, along with fresh loaves of cinnamon bread and other seasonal treats, you'll be anything but hungry when you exit their doors. Come early, though; once your favorites are gone for the day, they're gone, and you most definitely won't want to miss out!


A trip to the Smokies isn't complete without a day spent in the national park. Visit Clingman's Dome (park in the adjacent lot and hike 0.5 miles to the observation tower at the summit) for the best view in Tennessee. Hike the Alum Cave trail, which, at just over two miles each way, is an attainable distance for a family hike with big experiential payoffs. Drive to Cades Cove for a picnic lunch, and be sure to keep your eyes open for wildlife as it's the best place in the park to view furry visitors. PRO TIP: remember to buy a parking pass if you plan to stop at any point for longer than 15 minutes; as of March 1, 2023, parking passes are required, and failure to show proof of purchase will result in a fine.

6:30pm: DINNER

Grab the fam and visit the largest Mellow Mushroom in the United States. Their pretzel bites with beer-cheese dip are great for starters, and you can't go wrong with one of their signature pizzas for your main course. Add on some greens as well; they're well known for their Greek salad and homemade Esperanza dressing. Yum!


Finish out your spring break trip with a little more family competition and visit Crave, the #1 mini-golf course in the country. It features an indoor course, an outdoor rooftop course, escape rooms, mini bowling, and a soft-serve ice cream and candy shop. This confectionary-themed attraction is so whimsical and fun, and it really is a great way to end a great day/week in the Smokies!


We hope it goes without saying, but we'll say it anyhow: we want to be your first choice when it comes to renting a vacation home in the Smoky Mountains.

We hope you'll choose to spend your Spring Break staying at a Mountain Laurel Chalets property! Our chalets are conveniently located to all of the above activities. We are known for our outstanding customer service and the cleanliness of our homes. We pride ourselves on a rich 50 year history of serving Tennessee's Smoky Mountain community, and our reputation for consistency and quality is unsurpassed. Browse our portfolio of homes today and book now for spring break. Also, remember: each of the attractions mentioned above are eligible for a free ticket for each day of your stay at a Mountain Laurel Chalets property through our partnership with XplorieNow that's a deal worth taking!

***Download a printable version of the 5-Day Activity Guide to Spring Break in the Smokies HERE.***