Whether you’re about to visit the Great Smoky Mountains for the first time or visiting for the 100th time, we think you’ll love getting out of the hustle-and-bustle by heading to some hidden gems! It’s always great to head off the beaten path and check out local favorites. We want to share 5 places with you that you might not have on your itinerary, but you totally should! 

  1. Forbidden Caverns

Did you know Tennessee is home to the most caves in the United States? Forbidden Caverns is one you can take a guided tour of! You’ll be amazed at the natural underground formations made over hundreds of years. The tour guides are incredibly knowledgeable and can answer all your questions. Also, it is completely safe; handrails are added where necessary and the caves are well-lit. 

The Bush brothers have an incredible story of how their beans became a household staple in America. The visitor center is just on the outskirts of Sevierville; and it’s a lovely drive. Go for the history, stay for the food! Enjoy southern specialties at the Bush’s Family Café after your tour. 

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If you’re a history buff, this is going to be the highlight of your trip! Explore vintage aircrafts and memorabilia from years past. This museum will be sure to satisfy the interest of the “Warbird” fan! It is located at the Gatlinburg Pigeon Forge Airport in Sevierville.

This community is the largest independent organization of artisans in the United States! Every shop is filled to the brim with pieces made by local artists. Often, the artists are there, and they are always happy to chat with visitors about their work. It’s a wonderful insight into Appalachian art! 

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We cannot say enough amazing things about Parrot Mountain and Gardens! Hundreds and hundreds of beautiful birds of different species occupy 4 acres of beautifully landscaped gardens. It’s a stunning place to be surrounded by and interact with nature. 

Who knows, one of these places may become your new family tradition. Be sure to check them out when you visit the Smokies!