As anyone who has visited the Smoky Mountains can tell you, Gatlinburg, TN is the ultimate family vacation destination! Our charming city is home to hundreds of activities that both young children and their parents will absolutely love. To help you make the most of your getaway, Parkside Cabin Rentals has put together a guide to five of the best Gatlinburg attractions for toddlers:
1. Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies
Your children will love seeing the 10,000 + sea creatures that live in Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies! Ranked among the top ten aquariums in the United States, Ripley’s is extremely kid friendly. A favorite exhibit for young visitors is the Penguin Playhouse, a unique indoor and outdoor habitat for the aquarium’s African penguins. The Playhouse is equipped with a special see-through tunnel that kids can crawl through to get an upclose look at these friendly birds.
Ripley’s also frequently hosts mermaid shows, where talented swimmers wearing realistic costumes perform for children. Just imagine your toddler’s excitement when a “real” mermaid waves at her!
2. Ober Gatlinburg
Although it is most famous for its skiing and snowboarding, Ober Gatlinburg is also an amusement park with a number of activities that are great for toddlers. Ober’s indoor carousel is guaranteed to be a hit with young visitors, as is the park’s designated Kiddie Land. With a fun train, slides, bridges, and more adventures, Kiddie Land provides hours of entertainment for youngsters. Other kid friendly attractions at Ober include mini golf, an arcade and redemption center, an indoor ice skating rink, and a wildlife encounter with bears, otters, bobcats, and other critters.
3. Mynatt Park
Located in downtown Gatlinburg off of Historic Nature Trail, Mynatt Park is a great place to have a picnic with your little ones. Whether you make some sandwiches at your cabin, cook some burgers on the park’s grills, or pick up lunch at the nearby Parton’s Deli, your kids will love eating beside a mountain stream, under a shady tree, or at the picnic tables. With a playground, basketball court, baseball field, tennis courts, and restrooms, it’s easy to see why Mynatt Park is one of the best Gatlinburg attractions for toddlers and older kids.
4. Davy Crockett Mini Golf
Davy Crockett Mini Golf is a ton of fun for guests of all ages. This popular attraction features two 18 hole courses that are filled with cartoon animals that your toddler will love. Although it is located in downtown Gatlinburg, Davy Crockett Mini Golf boasts a beautiful mountain atmosphere. Be sure to pay extra attention when you play the final hole, because a hole in one will earn you a free game!
5. Sugarlands Visitor Center
The Sugarlands Visitor Center is a wonderful place to introduce your kids to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Children will enjoy seeing displays of bears, raccoons, skunks, bobcats, owls, snakes, and other animals found in the Smokies. The Visitor Center also frequently hosts Park Ranger-led activities where kids can earn Junior Ranger badges.
When you stay with Parkside Cabin Rentals, you will be just a short drive from all of these excellent Gatlinburg attractions for toddlers. Featuring fully furnished kitchens, breathtaking mountain views, and soothing hot tubs, our cabins have everything you need for an unforgettable vacation. To start planning your getaway, browse our selection of Gatlinburg cabin rentals!