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1st time visitors, help appreciated :)

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Indian Trail, North...
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for Charlotte
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1st time visitors, help appreciated :)

My husband has been through the Pigeon Forge/Gatlinburg areas for work on a couple occasions and we would love to go back as a family. I am looking at the weekend of October 18th, staying one night (Saturday), and we will have my daughter who will be 4 and her cousin who is 4 1/2 with us. It'll be my daughters bday weekend. I was looking at the Hampton Inn Pigeon Forge. Basically I would like a central location in the area where we can walk around and enjoy some of the attractions and restaurants. Is the 'parkway' the main road in the area? Is there like a 'strip' where all the action is? Not sure we would do Dollywood, not this time anyway. We just want to come up and get a feel for the area, play some and have some good food. :) Thanks for any information!!

Indian Trail, North...
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1. Re: 1st time visitors, help appreciated :)

Forgot to mention we have Hilton points, so we would like to stay with a Hilton property.

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2. Re: 1st time visitors, help appreciated :)

You are picking a Saturday, right in the middle of peak Autumn foliage, season to do a one-night visit. You better reserve that room now!

The Parkway IS the main drag where all of the "action" is.

That is probably not an ideal time to get a feel for the area. There will be tons of extra people in the area, especially being a Saturday and Likely alot of slow-moving traffic in PF. Hopefully you will want to visit again for a few days so you can enjoy the Park.

Edited: 2:04 pm, July 14, 2014
Franklin, Ohio
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3. Re: 1st time visitors, help appreciated :)

It will be very busy in October, but you are going at the prettiest time of the year! Parkway is the main road in Pigeon Forge & Gatlinburg and where most of the "action" is. Gatlinburg is walkable where Pigeon Forge is more spread out. Pigeon Forge has more activities for the little ones.

Indian Trail, North...
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for Charlotte
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4. Re: 1st time visitors, help appreciated :)

I thought about staying in Gatlinburg too..either one has properties availible to us. I do realize it's a popular time of year. As of now there are rooms, and we'll book here shortly in the next week. We are not far, so we'll have a whole day and night and the next morning. :)

Indian Trail, North...
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5. Re: 1st time visitors, help appreciated :)

This is also an option...

Hilton Garden Inn Gatlinburg Downtown

cincinnati, ohio
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6. Re: 1st time visitors, help appreciated :)

Given the date you'll visit, I'll recommend using a property in Gatlinburg proper. As stated, this is Fall Foliage, which means shoulder to shoulder people and bumper to bumper traffic. You can leave the car parked at the motel and walk The Parkway (Main street US441) where all the attractions, shops, and restaurants are available by foot thus eliminating dealing with traffic.

Given the age of the kids and the length of stay, I'd recommend doing only the Aquarium and Cades Cove.

Cades Cove will be bumper to bumper so plan a tailgate lunch somewhere on the loop for a break to get the girls out of the car. Visiting some of the old buildings or the farmstead at the VC can accomplish the same end. CC is actually best at dusk when the critters come out to graze but given your circumstances earlier in the day would work better.

Hope this helps!!

Georgia
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7. Re: 1st time visitors, help appreciated :)

http://islandinpigeonforge.com/ would be a really fun place for your girls! Plus, it's fun for adults.

Wilder, KY
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8. Re: 1st time visitors, help appreciated :)

I would recommend spending as much time in the park as possible, if then girls are up for it. Also, you may want to make sure those hotels don't require a 2 night minimum stay over the weekends in October. Sometimes those don't show as well on the websites (including hhonors).

Savannah, Georgia
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for Gatlinburg, Maggie Valley, Pigeon Forge
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9. Re: 1st time visitors, help appreciated :)

The hotel is central in Pigeon Forge, but the attractions are so spread out, you won't enjoy trying to walk to them. That is, unless you're like me, and could spend all your time at The Incredible Christmas Place ;) You should plan to drive or take the trolley to get around PF. Gatlinburg is much more compact and easy to enjoy on foot.

Also, try to book your hotel as soon as possible. That's a very busy time of year in the Smokies.

I hope you enjoy your trip!

Indian Trail, North...
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10. Re: 1st time visitors, help appreciated :)

Thanks all for the great information! I'll look at the min. stay on the hotels for sure. I just can't believe I haven't been to this area before! Looks like I am missing out on a lot. This will hopefully be the first trip of many.