5 Winter Activities in the Smokies

1. Ski or snowboard at Ober Gatlinburg. Located on top of the mountain in downtown Gatlinburg is Ober Gatlinburg, a winter wonderland of fun in the Smokies. Make the most of your time on the mountain by skiing or snowboarding when you visit Ober. The slopes usually open sometime in mid-December and close sometime in early to mid-March. Open season depends entirely on the weather, so check back on the skiing & snowboarding page of their website before you make plans to visit. You can also check this page for session times, ticket prices, and rental fees. And even if the slopes aren’t open when you visit, you can always enjoy another wintertime activity at Ober Gatlinburg: ice skating! The rink is actually open all year round, but it’s especially fun to skate in the winter when you’re already bundled up. And ticket prices stay pretty reasonable for this attraction—only $9 per session, including your skate rental.

2. Take a scenic drive in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. While the Great Smoky Mountains National Park contains more than 800 miles of amazing hiking trails, wintertime is not always the best season to enjoy them. With slick, rainy or icy conditions and plummeting temperatures, it’s not everyone’s idea of fun to spend the day outside. But that doesn’t mean you have to miss the beauty of the park just because of the weather. Try a scenic drive though the Great Smoky Mountains instead. One popular option is the Roaring Fork Motor Nature Trail. This 6-mile paved route offers sightseeing opportunities from start to finish with 16 points of interest that include old-growth forests and Alfred Regan’s cabin and mill. Other popular driving routes in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park include Cades Cove, an 11-mile loop where you can frequently spot wildlife, and Little River Road, an 18-mile, curvy road that connects Gatlinburg with Townsend.

3. Warm up on the Rocky Top Wine Trail. For those traveling to the Smokies with other couples or a group of friends, try a favorite adult activity that’s perfect for warming up during the winter: wine tasting! The Rocky Top Wine Trail features 5 Smoky Mountain wineries within 12 miles of each other. Pick up your free Rocky Top Wine Trail Passport at your first stop, and get a free logo wine glass at your third. If you make it all the way to the fifth winery, you’ll also get a free gift for completing the trail. The Smoky Mountain wineries featured on this trail include Eagle Springs Winery, Hillside Winery, Apple Barn Winery, Mountain Valley Winery, and Sugarland Cellars. All 5 locations are open 7 days a week, so you can visit a different winery each day of your vacation—no need to complete the trail all in 1 day! Three locations also offer free tours of the wine cellars and tank rooms from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. Check out Mountain Valley Winery, Sugarland Cellars, and Hillside Winery for more information.

4. Experience the wonder of the holiday season at Dollywood. For those traveling to the Smokies with their families—including little ones—try a wintertime event that’s sure to be fun for guests of all ages. Head on over to Dollywood for their award-winning Christmas event known as Dollywood’s Smoky Mountain Christmas. With holiday shows, 4 million holiday lights, and a daily Parade of Lights, this holiday attraction is sure to bring to life the magic of the season for you and yours. Enjoy dozens of holiday shows, including a brand-new show for 2015, Dollywood’s version of the Dickens classic A Christmas Carol. There are also special attractions just for the kids where they can meet and greet with Santa and the Rudolph the red-nosed reindeer. This attraction opens November 5, 2015, and will continue through January 3, 2016. Book your tickets to Dollywood today!

5. Soak your stress away in your Smoky Mountain cabin’s outdoor hot tub. Want to know the best part about booking a wintertime escape with Cabins For You? Almost all of our Smoky Mountain cabins come with their very own outdoor hot tubs! You’ll have the perfect place to warm up, relax, and hang out with friends and family during your getaway this winter. Other amazing amenities you’ll find in our cabins include gas and wood-burning fireplaces, fully loaded rec rooms, private theater rooms, indoor jetted tubs, and so much more. Whatever you’re looking for to make your Smoky Mountain getaway complete, you’re sure to find it at Cabins For You. Call 1-800-684-7865 or chat with our reservation specialists online today to book your perfect winter cabin in the Smokies today!

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