Did you know that Parents’ Day is July 23? This year, consider showing your appreciation by treating your parents to one of our ideas for a Smoky Mountain getaway. What better way to thank Mom and Dad than sending them to a place where they can enjoy beautiful scenery, amazing restaurants, great shopping, and endless memorable experiences? You might consider booking a cabin just for them or taking them with you to enjoy a weekend of family fun. Regardless of which you choose, there are plenty of special ideas for ways to treat your parents.
My parents love going to the Smokies. As a person who grew up not too far from the Smoky Mountains, I became familiar with Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge at a young age and came to eagerly anticipate our yearly trips back to the Smokies. However, we never seemed to lack for new things to try. Visiting the Smokies never gets old! Here are a few ideas for treating your parents to some brand-new memories of their own.
- Book a cabin
Find a fantastic cabin for your parents to spend the weekend alone or join them for a family getaway. Browse our hundreds of cabins to find the perfect fit, picking fun extras like private home theaters, indoor pools, hot tubs, mountain views, and game tables! A comfortable and fun cabin will be a gift you are proud to give and one your parents are sure to appreciate.
- Schedule an in-cabin massage
Treat your parents to a massage! They won’t even have to leave the comfort of their own cabin. Choose among options such as Swedish, deep tissue, neuromuscular therapy, and geriatric, and let our professional specialists take care of the rest.
- Moonshine tastings and live music at Ole Smoky Moonshine
Your parents might enjoy a stop at the Ole Smoky Barn at the Island in Pigeon Forge to enjoy a tasting bar, distillery store, and retail store. The new location, which opened in October 2014, is a beautifully done sister store to Ole Smoky’s original flagship in Gatlinburg, known as The Holler. They can try samples, listen to live music, and pick a couple jars to enjoy back at the cabin.
- Dinner at The Peddler
A trip to Gatlinburg is never complete for my parents without a night spent eating at The Peddler, one of Gatlinburg’s oldest premier steakhouses. Call ahead for advance seating during the restaurant’s dinner hours, beginning at 5:00 p.m. most days of the week and 4:30 p.m. on Saturdays. Enjoy an incredible, unique salad bar and steaks cut at your table at this historic eatery.
- A ride on the Great Smoky Mountain Wheel
This 200-foot-tall wheel offers astounding views of the famous Smoky Mountains in comfortable, all-glass gondolas that seat up to 8 guests. The wheel, which made its debut in 2013, is the centerpiece of the Island at Pigeon Forge and is one of the tallest attractions in the Southeast!
- Tickets to the Dixie Stampede
Your parents will be blown away by this fun, memorable dinner show! This is one of my very favorite things to do, as the food is always delicious and what’s better than being entertained while eating? Dolly has such a talent for creating fun family experiences, and the fact that this dinner show is one of the most popular in the nation is proof of that!
- A family portrait session
With a little research, you can find a photographer who will take photos on location as keepsakes for your family. I know that the times I’ve given this as a gift to my parents or in-laws, it has gone over as well as any gift they have ever received. Browse around websites such as Don Fields Photography or Studio Benjamin to find the right fit for you.
- Make pottery at Fowler’s Clay Works
Let your parents take a pottery class or just purchase some amazing pottery here during their trip to Gatlinburg. Fowler’s Clay Works is a popular recent addition to the area, and your parents are sure to leave with a prized souvenir and maybe even some new skills. If they join in one of the pottery classes, they might choose to make a special (and gorgeous!) mug or bowl to take home and remember their time in the Smokies.
- Breakfast at The Pancake Pantry
My family always loves to stop by The Pancake Pantry, located at the Village in downtown Gatlinburg, for a unique pancake breakfast. It’s a good idea to get here early to avoid the line of other visitors eager for the same experience! My favorites are the sugar and spice pancakes, but other popular menu items include sweet potato pancakes, apricot-lemon pancakes, and Swedish crepes.
Whatever you decide, we hope that you and your parents enjoy a Happy Parents’ Day!