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Visit Pigeon Forge, Tennessee

This week, we take you along as we check another town off of our Bucket List: Pigeon Forge TN in the beautiful Smoky Mountains!

Pigeon Forge is famous as the hometown of entertainment icon Dolly Parton. Thanks to her influence and investments, this once sleepy mountain town has become a tourist mountain resort town greeting 10 million visitors each year!

Tourists flock to Pigeon Forge for the southern hospitality, mountain air, proximity to Great Smoky Mountains National Park, family entertainment, distilleries and all things Dolly! In fact, these days, tourism is Pigeon Forge's only industry bringing in over $1.5 Billion (yes, billion with a B) annually.

In this video, we share how Pigeon Forge got its name and its start as a town, some of the restaurants we enjoyed, some of the fun things to do in Pigeon Forge, and the RV resort we used as our basecamp.

We ride a mountain coaster, visit Dollywood, take a Pink Jeep Tour, travel the Foothills Parkway and see some BEARS!!

We've been wanting to visit Pigeon Forge TN for a long time. An AIM Rally is what finally brought us here. The All Inclusive Motorhome (AIM) Club is an RV club for RVers who travel in motorhomes. They host rallies all over the country and we always have a great time with all of the friendly folks and fun activities included in their rallies. If you missed our AIM Club experience in Branson MO last year, you can watch the video on YouTube.


Mentioned In This Episode

The Ridge Outdoor Resort, Sevierville TN
Our Campsite in Sevierville TN
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FREE Things to do in Pigeon Forge TN

Stroll the shops and watch craftsmen at work in the Old Mill District.

Cruise the Pigeon Forge Parkway or wander around The Island to people watch and see the fountain light show.

Explore by foot or bicycle along the 6-mile long Riverwalk Trail, a greenway that runs along the Little Pigeon River.

Go goat watching at Goats on the Roof of the Smoky Mountains.

Take a scenic drive and look for bears along a completed section of the Foothills Parkway, the "oldest unfinished highway project in Tennessee".

Look for Dolly! You may not find the actual Dolly Parton, but references to her are everywhere in Pigeon Forge.

As a bonus for cast iron cooking fans, Tennessee's own Lodge Cast Iron has a Factory Store in Pigeon Forge! The store is like a playground for cast iron cookers featuring new products, classics, specialty products and good cookware that didn't quite make their cut as "perfect".

Our Basecamp For This Visit

πŸ“ The Ridge Outdoor Resort

For More Information on Visiting Pigeon Forge TN

Visit the Pigeon Forge Department of Tourism website.

Pigeon Forge TN Fun Facts

Approximate Population




Year Founded

Approx 1817 when the mill was built

Average Summer Temperatures

60Β° - 87Β°

Average Winter Temperatures

27Β° - 54Β°


Sevier County

Tips for Visiting Pigeon Forge TN

Memorial Day marks beginning of prime season and a BIG increase in summer crowds. We visited in mid-May and again in early June... the crowds for everything were much bigger in June.

To save money on parking at Dollywood, park for FREE in the large parking lot near the Old Mill and take a Pigeon Forge Trolley to Dollywood. During our stay, an all-day trolley ticket was $3 per person. You can also use the trolley as transportation to get around Pigeon Forge or to get to the Gatlinburg Welcome Center (where you can pick up the FREE Gatlinburg Trolley to get into and around Gatlinburg).

To beat some of the crowds, be ready to load the trolley at the transportation center for its first trip to Dollywood.

"The Strip" in Pigeon Forge is Parkway. Even in the less busy week of our visit, traffic on the Strip could get pretty thick. There are a lot of museums, restaurants, distilleries and tourist attractions along Parkway, but its not as walkable as the Gatlinburg strip. Pack your patience for traffic or take the back roads to avoid some of the crowds.

On rainy days, the museums and indoor attractions fill up! Plan to arrive early if you want to visit an indoor attraction on a rainy day (especially during Summer).

US Highway 411 TN
US Highway 411 / Dolly Parton Parkway

IMPORTANT TIP for RVERS: Your RV GPS may want you to take US Highway 411 between Sevierville and Interstate 40 (especially if you're coming from the southeast, like Asheville, North Carolina). DON'T DO IT! While we made it through successfully, several miles of US Highway 411 are narrow and windy with overhanging brush and trees and no shoulder to pull over on. It's a single lane each way with no divider between lanes and cars that often cross the center lane into oncoming traffic coming around curves. While it's a pretty drive, the less stressful route is to take Interstate 40 to Tennessee State Highway 66, dropping South on 66 (at the giant Buc-ee's).

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A Few Photos from Our Visit to Pigeon Forge

Dolly Parton's Tour Bus
Dolly Parton's Tour Bus
Brick and Spoon Bloody Marys
Brick and Spoon Bloody Marys
Pottery Studio at the Old Mill
Pottery Studio at the Old Mill
Coat of Many Colors at Dollywood
Coat of Many Colors Topiary at Dollywood
Riding a Mountain Coaster
Riding a Mountain Coaster
Dolly is Everywhere
Dolly is Everywhere!

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Tom and Stacie

Tom and Stacie Langland
"RV America Y'all"

Hey y'all! We are Native Texans and (since 2018) Full-Time RVers sharing the adventures, challenges, and joys of RV life as we travel. We love camping and hiking in State and National Parks, discovering history, visiting interesting and quirky places, and exploring small towns. We're on a mission to experience life, not just live it with our dog, Star, and our cat, Astro. You can also find us on our original RV travel website, Thanks for joining us as we RV America Y'all!

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