Few experiences are more fun than renting a cozy cabin and spending some time in the Great Smoky Mountains in December. Whether you choose Gatlinburg, Pigeon Forge, or Sevierville, plenty of holiday activities are going on all over the area.
Gatlinburg will host the award-winning 40th annual Christmas Fantasy of Lights Parade on Friday, December 4, at 7:30 p.m. This mile-long parade always delights the crowd with whimsical lighted floats, marching bands, giant balloons, horse units and, of course, Santa Claus bringing up the rear.
On December 12, visitors to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park Sugarland Visitor's Center can join in the Festival of Christmas Past, a celebration of old-time Christmas in the mountains. This event features mountain music, storytelling, spinning, weaving, quilting, and basket-making demonstrations, historic toys and games, and plenty of fun things for kids. On December 19, stop by the Oconaluftee Visitors Center in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park for Holiday Homecoming, another delightful old-fashioned Christmas celebration, Smokies style.
If you love twinkling Christmas lights, don't miss Pigeon Forge's Winterfest Trolley Tour of Lights. Ride in a heated trolley and marvel at more than 5 million sparkling Christmas lights. This tour also includes Pigeon Forge history and Winterfest displays. Trolleys leave from Patriot Park every Monday through Friday the whole month of December at 6:30 p.m., 7:45 p.m., and 9 p.m. Tickets are just $5 per person. You can also pick up a free self-guided driving tour map at the trolley office.
Music lovers won't want to miss the annual Christmas in the Smokies Bluegrass Festival. You'll find all of the good things about Christmas at this festival, including delicious food and music. This 4-day festival runs from December 9 through the 12th and includes dozens of talented bluegrass musicians, jam sessions, meet-the-band sessions and more. The festival takes place at the Ramada Inn and Smoky Mountain Convention Center in Pigeon Forge.
Of course, nobody does Christmas like Dolly! Dollywood's Smoky Mountain Christmas Festival is a crowd favorite and 7-time award winner of America's Best Christmas Event. Visit during the evening to enjoy more than 4 million holiday lights and exciting holiday performances, including Dollywood's A Christmas Carol, a modern adaptation of the Dickens classic. The festival runs from November 8 through January 3.
Why not stay in town and celebrate New Year's Eve in a way you'll never forget? On December 31, join all of Gatlinburg in welcoming 2016 with the 28th annual New Year's Eve Ball Drop and Fireworks Show at the intersection of Parkway and Historic Nature Trail at the base of the Space Needle. You can also ring in the new year with fireworks, music, food, rides, games and plenty of kids' activities at The Island in Pigeon Forge.
December is a cozy, festive time to spend in the Great Smoky Mountains. Rent a cabin with someone special or the entire family, and join us in making wonderful holiday memories.
Jon Hoffman is Reservations Manager of Volunteer Cabin Rentals specializing in Smoky Mountain cabins near Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge, TN. Visit them today at http://www.volunteercabinrentals.com to book cabins for weddings, vacations, reunions and other special events.