Top 5 Outdoor Activities in Gatlinburg TN for Your Next Vacation

A family horseback riding in the woods.

11 million people visit Gatlinburg, Tennessee each year to enjoy the area’s incredible natural beauty. Located on the border of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Gatlinburg is a paradise for anyone who loves being outside. To help you make the most of your next vacation, Black Bear Inn & Suites has put together a guide to five of the best outdoor activities in Gatlinburg TN.

1. Horseback Riding with Sugarlands Riding Stables

Sugarlands Riding Stables offers excellent trail rides through the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Home to some of the friendliest and best-trained horses in the area, Sugarlands is ideal for both novice and experienced riders. During your trail ride, you will enjoy plenty of gorgeous mountain scenery, and you may even spot some of the Smokies’ signature wildlife, such as whitetail deer, wild turkey, or black bears.

2.Rainbow Falls in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Hiking in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park

The Great Smoky Mountains National Park is the most visited national park in the United States, and it’s easy to see why! The Smokies offer 800 miles of gorgeous trails to explore, with everything from ½ mile hikes to 14-mile treks. The wonderful diversity of trails in the park means that you’re guaranteed to find a hike that suits your interests and abilities. A few of our favorite hikes in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park include:

  • Grotto Falls
  • Alum Cave
  • Andrews Bald
  • Porters Creek Trail
  • Little River Trail
  • Rainbow Falls

3. Putt Putt at Hillbilly Golf

Playing a round of putt putt at Hillbilly Golf is another one of the best outdoor activities in Gatlinburg TN. This unique course is themed around the stereotypical “hillbilly” lifestyle of Appalachia, complete with moonshine stills, outhouses, and a John Deere tractor. Hillbilly Golf is located on the top of a mountain, so guests get to take a fun tram ride to reach the beginning of the course. Trust us, you’ve never played a game of mini golf quite like this!

4. Picnicking in the Smokies

Picnicking is a wonderful way to immerse yourself in the Smoky Mountain scenery. We recommend picking up some delicious sandwiches from Parton’s Deli and heading to one of the national park’s beautiful picnic areas to enjoy your meal. Some of the best spots to eat in the Smokies include:

  • Cades Cove
  • Greenbrier
  • Metcalf Bottoms

Teenager preparing to go ziplining.5. Canopy Tours at CLIMB Works

CLIMB Works offers thrilling canopy tours in the Smoky Mountains. When you go ziplining at this awesome adventure park, your feet won’t touch the ground for 2 and ½ hours. Featuring an ATV ride to the top, nine ziplines, three sky bridges, and a surprise ending, this is one canopy tour you will never forget.

When you stay at Black Bear Inn & Suites, you will be near all of these awesome outdoor activities in Gatlinburg TN. Our hotel is located in the heart of the city, just 200 yards from the entrance to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. With a complimentary breakfast each morning, an enclosed heated pool, high-speed wireless internet access, and rooms with beautiful balconies, Black Bear Inn has everything you need for a phenomenal vacation. To start planning your getaway, browse our selection of Gatlinburg hotel rooms!