Hands making pottery

Don’t Break the Bank: 5 Fun AND Free Things to Do Near Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg

Summer is coming to a close and for most people that means the vacation budget has been spent. But don’t fret, there is still time to get some last minute activities in with the family and without spending even a penny. Here are 5 fun free things to do near Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg:

1. Watch Potters Create at Pigeon River Pottery

For over 50 years, Pigeon River Pottery in-house artisans have been creating the beautiful plates, bowls and other serving pieces used in two restaurants at The Old Mill Square. Each day guests can come in the store and watch potters transform a lump of clay into a work of art without paying anything. After watching the demonstration, feel free to take a look around the store for other handcrafted pieces.

2. Take a Scenic Drive Through Cades Cove

It is finally cooling down in East Tennessee which means it’s the perfect time to roll the windows down and enjoy a scenic drive through Cades Cove. There is an 11-mile loop that winds double rainbow in Cades Covearound the valley with breathtaking views of wildlife and historic buildings. The best part is you can experience this without leaving the comfort of your vehicle.

3. Picnic in Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Nothing says summer like a picnic in the Smokies. Pack all of your favorite summer treats in a picnic basket and head to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park! There are tons of trails you can hit until you find the perfect picnic spot, but some are seasonal. Don’t forget to bring a blanket just in case a picnic table is not available.

4. Go Museum Hopping

Looking for something more educational? Try hopping from museum to museum. There are many museums near Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg that offer free admission. They often encourage a donation, but it isn’t mandatory. The Little River Railroad & Lumber Company museum teaches visitors about the history of steam logging. It has both indoor and outdoor exhibits including a vintage caboose. Another cool museum to check out is the Sevier County Heritage Museum. You can learn all about local history including information on early settlers there for free.

5. Window Shop at The Village

The Village Shoppes in Gatlinburg TnJust because you don’t have money to spend doesn’t mean it hurts to window shop. Exploring the shops located around The Village is one of the best free things to do in Gatlinburg. There are plenty of benches and spots to sit if you want to take a break. There is even a beautiful fountain that serves as a great background for a family photo!

We would love for you to experience these great attractions and so much more. If you are staying at one of Auntie Belham’s Cabin Rentals, you can take advantage of our free attraction tickets for even more fun and free things to do near Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg!