Editor’s Note: This post was written by Lindsay Ball, Dollywood Parks & Resorts Public Relations Intern
It’s summertime! When this warm season starts, you want to spend your time having adventures, not stressing over planning them. If you’re in town for Dollywood’s incredible Smoky Mountain Summer Celebration and looking for some extra things to do for your Smoky Mountain Vacation, be sure to check out the city of Sevierville! Sevierville is jam-packed with exciting summer events and attractions. From great dining and shopping experiences to family fun and entertainment venues, this Smoky Mountain foothills town has something for everyone. We here at Dollywood spend a lot of time in our neighboring town and have a large list of the best things to do in Sevierville this summer. Let me share with you some of my favorites!
Get Out and Explore the City
If you love spending time outdoors and just exploring your surroundings, Sevierville is the place for your summer vacation. In 2021, the city held a special event in honor of their 225th anniversary (which occurred in 2020) called the 225 Challenge. The 225 Challenge tasks participants with moving 225 miles within Sevierville, whether that be walking, running, biking or another form of movement. The challenge lasts through 2025 to give visitors a chance to complete it. If you like to walk around and make decisions on a whim, the 225 Challenge is a great way to explore Sevierville-from its stunning greenways to the excitement of its downtown areas.
Visit Douglas Lake
A great activity for nature-lovers in Sevierville is a visit to Douglas Lake. Douglas Lake covers about 28,000 acres and is surrounded by the always beautiful Smoky Mountains. Visitors can see historic Douglas Dam, which was built during the peak of World War II in record time. For any fisherman visiting Sevierville, Douglas Dam is ready for you. The lake is rated in the Top 10 lakes in the United States for largemouth bass and crappie fishing. Douglas Lake also is a great spot for anyone wanting to go boating, swimming or picnicking. If the summer heat is getting to you, I would always recommend Dollywood’s Splash Country, but Douglas Lake is a great second option.
Travel Downtown Sevierville
A trip to Sevierville would be incomplete without a visit to its beautiful downtown area. Downtown Sevierville is full of things to do for the whole family, and the historic downtown walking trail is a good way to explore some of the best parts of the area. Walkers will get the opportunity to see a statue of Dolly Parton, hometown hero and inspiration for Dollywood. There also are new murals in town that are perfect backgrounds for your latest Instagram moments.
Downtown Sevierville features several unique options for shopping and dining. Creative members of your group will love The Cherry Pit Quilt Shop, which encourages customers to create their own masterpieces. If you’re looking for a good meal, don’t miss Graze Burgers. Their burgers and hot dogs can’t be beat. No matter where your interests lie, downtown Sevierville has something for everyone!
Whether you’re looking for gifts or just a special way to treat yourself, there are enough shopping options in Sevierville to find anything you need. Sevierville is proud to be home to a Tanger Outlets location. With over 100 stores to choose from, including a Lululemon pop up shop that opened in 2021, the Sevierville outlet mall has store options for groups of all sizes and interests.
The mall is located on the Parkway in Sevierville, so it is easy to access even if you’re staying in Gatlinburg or Pigeon Forge. Tanger Outlets is known for its special events and great deals throughout the summer which helps give shoppers a fun, inexpensive shopping experience. With so many options and savings, you’re sure to shop ‘til you drop!
If you’re a lover of planes, history or both, visit the Tennessee Museum of Aviation. The museum features both indoor exhibits and a hangar that guests can visit to view their planes. The museum focuses on important aviation and military history and highlights Tennessee’s contributions to that history. Because of the museum’s emphasis on military history, they are proud to offer a military discount to guests.
The Tennessee Museum of Aviation is connected to the Gatlinburg Pigeon Forge Airport, which has a big impact on the museum. This unique location allows the museum to hold flight demonstrations for some of their vintage aircrafts. The museum has so many offerings that are sure to both educate and entertain the whole family!
If you’re looking for things to do in Sevierville this summer, there is an abundance of options. No matter what you choose, your visit to town is sure to be unforgettable. Sevierville is “Where Smoky Mountain Fun Begins”, so don’t skip over it on your way to Dollywood Parks and Resorts. If you can’t make it during the summer or are excited to visit again, be sure to check out Sevierville’s autumn activities. Fall in Sevierville is filled with driving tours, corn mazes and more!