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Gatlinburg Space Needle

Ride in a glass elevator to an observation tower for panoramic mountain views or enjoy comedy, magician and fireworks shows.

Gatlinburg Space Needle is an observation tower and entertainment complex located in the center of Gatlinburg. Come here to enjoy uninterrupted views of the Smoky Mountains and learn about the region’s history. Watch comedian and magician shows and celebrate New Year’s Eve at a free pyrotechnic fireworks display.

Step inside one of two glass elevators and ascend over 400 feet (121 meters) to a lookout platform, which presents 360-degree views of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Look for the peak of the 6,593-foot (2,009-meter) Mount LeConte, one of the national park’s tallest mountains. Spend as long as you want on the platform to enjoy the spectacular year-round views, from wildflowers in spring to snow-capped peaks during winter.

While at the platform, be sure to visit the Higher Learning educational center to find out about the geographical and cultural history of Gatlinburg and the Smoky Mountains. 

If you are looking for live entertainment, visit the Iris Theater at the base of the Space Needle. Here you can witness the talents of hypnotists, magicians and illusionists as well as enjoy comedy shows. Alternatively, watch the sky light up around the Space Needle during the New Year’s Eve fireworks display.

For those visiting with kids, the Arcadia amusement center provides hours of family fun. Select from over 100 arcade games, feel the force of a hurricane simulator or participate in a laser tag competition. When you get hungry visit the on-site restaurant for everything from pizzas and calzones to pretzels and cheesecake.

The tower is conveniently located in the heart of downtown Gatlinburg. Use the Gatlinburg Trolley, which stops close to the complex’s entrance, or find a pay-and-display parking lot nearby. 

Gatlinburg Space Needle is open daily. Closing times vary, but may be midnight or later. See the tower’s official website for full current details. Tickets are valid for a return visit within 24 hours of purchase, thus allowing you to experience the views during the day and at night. Additional fees apply for theater shows and arcade attractions.


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Best Lodging Options Near Gatlinburg Space Needle

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Glenstone Lodge $89
Glenstone Lodge

Glenstone Lodge

504 Historic Nature Trl, Gatlinburg, TN
     
    3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

    Located in the heart of Gatlinburg, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Gatlinburg Convention Center, Gatlinburg Sky Lift, and Gatlinburg Space Needle. Ole Smoky Moonshine Distillery and Ripley's Believe It Or Not Museum are also within 10 minutes.

    Margaritaville Resort Gatlinburg $149
    Margaritaville Resort Gatlinburg

    Margaritaville Resort Gatlinburg

    539 Parkway, Gatlinburg, TN
       
      4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

      Situated in the mountains, this spa hotel is within a 5-minute walk of Anakeesta and Ripley's Aquarium of the Smokies. Gatlinburg Sky Lift and Gatlinburg Space Needle are also within 15 minutes.

      Country Inn & Suites by Radisson, Gatlinburg, TN $78
      Country Inn & Suites by Radisson, Gatlinburg, TN

      Country Inn & Suites by Radisson, Gatlinburg, TN

      421 Reagan Lane, Gatlinburg, TN
         
        2.5 out of 5.0 Stars

        Located in the heart of Gatlinburg, this hotel is within a 5-minute walk of Gatlinburg Ziplines, Gatlinburg Sky Lift, and Ripley's Believe It Or Not Museum. Gatlinburg Convention Center and Ole Smoky Moonshine Distillery are also within 10 minutes.

        The Park Vista - a DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel - Gatlinburg $112
        The Park Vista - a DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel - Gatlinburg

        The Park Vista - a DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel - Gatlinburg

        705 Cherokee Orchard Road, Gatlinburg, TN
           
          3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

          This family-friendly Gatlinburg hotel is located in a national park, within a 15-minute walk of Traffic Light #6, Ripley's Aquarium of the Smokies, and Gatlinburg Convention Center. Gatlinburg Sky Lift and Gatlinburg Space Needle are also within 1 mi (2 km).

          Gatlinburg River Inn $54
          Gatlinburg River Inn

          Gatlinburg River Inn

          324 Hemlock Street, Gatlinburg, TN
             
            2.0 out of 5.0 Stars

            Situated on a river, this hotel is within 1 mi (2 km) of Ripley's Aquarium of the Smokies, Gatlinburg Sky Lift, and Ripley's Believe It Or Not Museum. Gatlinburg Space Needle and Gatlinburg Convention Center are also within 2 mi (3 km).

            River Terrace Resort & Convention Center $79
            River Terrace Resort & Convention Center

            River Terrace Resort & Convention Center

            240 River Road, Gatlinburg, TN
               
              2.5 out of 5.0 Stars

              Situated in Gatlinburg, this resort is within a 5-minute walk of Mysterious Mansion and Ripley's Aquarium of the Smokies. Gatlinburg Sky Lift and Ripley's Believe It Or Not Museum are also within 10 minutes.

              Sidney James Mountain Lodge $73
              Sidney James Mountain Lodge

              Sidney James Mountain Lodge

              610 Historic Nature Trl, Gatlinburg, TN
                 
                2.5 out of 5.0 Stars

                Located in the heart of Gatlinburg, this motel is within a 15-minute walk of Gatlinburg Space Needle and Gatlinburg Sky Lift. Ripley's Aquarium of the Smokies and Dollywood are also within 9 mi (15 km).

                Reagan Resorts Inn $46
                Reagan Resorts Inn

                Reagan Resorts Inn

                938 Parkway, Gatlinburg, TN
                   
                  2.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                  Located in the heart of Gatlinburg, this hotel is steps from Ripley's Haunted Adventure, Ole Smoky Moonshine Distillery, and Gatlinburg Space Needle. Gatlinburg Sky Lift and Ripley's Believe It Or Not Museum are also within 5 minutes.