1. Fall Colors
First on our list are the unparalleled colors of the Smoky Mountains each fall, making this season one of the most popular for visiting Pigeon Forge. The variety of trees dotting the Smoky Mountain hills and the mild climate of East Tennessee make for a perfect combination when it comes to enjoying the oranges, golds, and reds of the changing leaves on the trees. For one of the best seats in the house when it comes to fall colors, we recommend a ride on the 200-foot Great Smoky Mountain Wheel at Pigeon Forge’s The Island.
2. Mountain Views
Besides the fall colors, one of the highlights of visiting the Smoky Mountains, of course, is viewing the beautiful Smoky Mountains! To take advantage of the best that Pigeon Forge has to offer, you should not only visit attractions like Clingmans Dome in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, but also check out our Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg cabin rentals with private mountain views. Plan to relax in a rocking chair, sip your morning cup of Joe, and enjoy the grandeur of the Smokies without another tourist in sight!
3. Comfort Food
For most of us, when we think of fall, we automatically think of food. Maybe it’s a warm bowl of chili, a baked sweet potato with melted butter and cinnamon, or pumpkin-flavored anything. In the Smokies, we have our own versions of fall comfort food classics. Things like apple fritters at the Apple Barn, a stack of buttermilk pancakes with syrup at Log Cabin Pancake House, or a hot bowl of corn chowder at The Old Mill Restaurant. And don’t forget to stop by Paula Deen’s Family Kitchen for Southern favorites any time of year—things like Best Ever Southern Fried Chicken and Chicken-Fried Pork Chops.
4. Mild Weather
Pigeon Forge visitors love the fall for many reasons, and the mild weather is certainly one of them. Typically, fall temperatures in the Smokies range from the 40s and 50s in the morning and late evening to the upper 70s and low 80s throughout the day, offering visitors the best of both worlds. You get those perfectly cool mornings on the porch with a steaming cup of coffee in your hand and those nice afternoons that aren’t too hot or too cold when you’re hiking the Smokies or shopping along the Parkway.
5. Fascinating History
Another reason we’re thankful for the Smokies is the amount of history these mountains have to offer. In the Great Smoky Mountains National Park alone you’ll find a variety of centuries-old structures that tell the story of these mountains from the days of the Cherokee Indians to the first European settlers of the 19th century. If you want the place where you’ll find the widest variety of historic buildings in the Smokies, pay a visit to the lush valley of Cades Cove, where you’ll find everything from a working grist mill to churches.
While you’re visiting Cades Cove for the fascinating historical structures, don’t miss the variety of wildlife in this area of the national park. In fact, Cades Cove is known for offering some of the best opportunities for viewing wildlife in the area, and the milder weather of the fall is sure to improve your chances. Get out for a hike or a bike ride during your Gatlinburg or Pigeon Forge stay, and keep your eyes peeled for white-tailed deer, coyotes, turkeys, and even the symbol of the Smokies, the American Black Bear.
7. Fun Shows
Although the daytime temperatures are awesome, by the time the sun goes down, you might be looking for a fun alternative to staying outside in the cold. How about a dinner show in Pigeon Forge? This area is known for combining some of the best food with some of the best entertainment for unforgettable evenings with the family. A few dinner shows to check out while you’re in town include the Hatfield and McCoy Dinner Show, Great Smoky Mountain Murder Mystery Dinner Theater, Biblical Times Dinner Theater, Lumberjack Adventure, and Dixie Stampede.
8. Arts & Crafts
If it’s fall, that can only mean one thing: it’s almost Christmas! And Christmastime—though one of our favorite times of year—can also be one of the most stressful. That’s another reason we’re thankful for the Smokies: you can easily knock out your Christmas list with one visit to the Great Smoky Arts & Crafts Community. This historic 8-mile loop in nearby Gatlinburg is home to the largest group of independent artisans in North America and has been designated a Tennessee Heritage Arts & Crafts Trail. You’ll find almost everything in their shops, including candles, baskets, quilts, pottery, jewelry, jams and jellies, and so much more!
9. Cozy Cabins
Sure, a visit to the Smokies in the fall isn’t complete without mountain views, fall colors, and a mug full of something warm and satisfying. But here’s a little secret: you can have all of these fall favorites in one convenient location when you stay in one of our beautiful Smoky Mountain cabins! Choose a cabin with mountain views, and you’ll have private access to your very own piece of Pigeon Forge paradise. Then your family can enjoy the best of what fall has to offer from the comfort of your rocking chair porch.
10. Family Time
We love so many things about the fall, but the final item on our list has to be one of the most important: time with family! A visit to the Smokies makes this time possible with our comfy Pigeon Forge or Gatlinburg cabins, complete with fully equipped kitchens, game tables, and dining rooms. You can enjoy home-cooked meals, indoor activities, and outdoor fun without leaving your cabin’s driveway. And the memories you make with your loved ones are sure to be the best part of any Smoky Mountain vacation!