From adrenalin-pumping roller coasters to kiddie rides, seasonal festivals to live music , museums and historic buildings, find boundless fun for the entire family at the Dollywood theme park. Opened in 1986 by legendary country singer Dolly Parton, Dollywood is the highlight of the trip to Pigeon Forge for many people. It attracts over 2 million visitors per year.
The park spreads across 150 acres (60 hectares), so arrive early in order to see as much of the area as possible. Maps are available at the main entrance to help you plan your day as you explore the park’s 10 themed zones.
Go to the Country Fair for a host of family-friendly attractions or step aboard the Dollywood Express at the Village for a steam train ride around a mountain top. Thrill-seekers can enjoy roller-coaster rides and zip lines in Wilderness Pass or visit Timber Canyon where the Thunderhead ride reaches speeds up to 55 miles (88 kilometers) per hour.
Don’t miss Craftsmans Valley, where you can visit a blacksmith shop, eagle sanctuary and a replica of Tennessee’s first grist mill. Head to Owens Farm to see a reconstruction of Dolly Parton’s childhood home or ride the river rapids.
Find live entertainment at the Adventures in Imagination and Showstreet venues. Some performances even feature Dolly Parton herself. Find the schedule on the website. Investigate the museums dedicated to gospel music and Dolly Parton’s entertainment career.
Buy food or drink throughout the park from buffet restaurants to pizza joints or a 1950s-inspired diner.
Dollywood is a short 10-minute drive east from the center of Pigeon Forge. A convenient way to arrive is via the low-cost town trolleys. The park has a large parking lot, which you’ll have to pay to use. Dollywood’s opening times vary throughout the year, so check the park’s official website for full details. You can buy tickets for one day, several days or an entire season. Admission is free for children aged three and under.