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“Best horseback riding”

Smoky Mountain Deer Farm & Exotic Petting Zoo
Ranked #3 of 84 things to do in Sevierville
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Owner description: Welcome to the Smoky Mountain Deer Farm and Exotic Petting Zoo & Deer Farm Riding Stables. You’re going to love our unique barnyard environment, nestled on 143 acres of a beautiful mountain property. Bring the family to meet, pet and feed our friendly animals, including goats, deer, camels, elk, reindeer, emu, zebra, exotic cattle, watusi, zonkeys, and so much more! You can even walk amongst our tame fallow deer. After the zoo, the little ones can enjoy a ride on one of our gentle ponies, led by Mom or Dad. Or, the whole family can take a relaxing horseback ride through our wooded Smoky Mountain home, led by our courteous and experienced guides. We hope to see you soon!
Useful Information: Activities for young children, Wheelchair access, Activities for older children, Bathroom facilities
Ottumwa, Iowa
Level Contributor
10 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“Best horseback riding”
Reviewed May 16, 2013

This is one of the only places that allow young children to go on the horseback rides solo. Our 4-year-old thoroughly enjoyed her experience on the 45 min. ride. Great scenery to look at and the horses were very well behaved. She said she wanted to go back. Although we're only in the area for 3 days, we're going to go back again for one of those days. The owner was super friendly and gave us a wonderful place to visit while we're in the Smokey's and cheap eating as well. Number 1 place, in my opinion, to visit if you're in the area. You won't regret it.

Visited May 2013
Thank parsonad
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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821 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • English first
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English first
Gainesville, Georgia
Level Contributor
274 reviews
76 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 88 helpful votes
“Worth the trip.”
Reviewed May 9, 2013

Well worth the trip up there. Lots of goats ready to eat out of your hand. Pen full of deer ready to get your corn and apples. Good variety of other animals. Be sure to pet the cat and bird in office.

Visited August 2012
Thank 466247
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Newport, Tennessee
Level Contributor
16 reviews
10 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“Hidden Treasure!”
Reviewed May 9, 2013

Deer farm is hidden in the foot hills of the Great Smoky Mountains! GReat place to take the kids and see the animals! oh and Awesome Riding stables too! Why not make plans to visit?

Visited June 2012
Thank cmaldridge85
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Frederick, Maryland
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Probably won't go back”
Reviewed May 3, 2013

Me, my son (3 years old), & my dad visited Deer Farm Zoon on April 18th. It wasn't hard to find but it seems like the road goes on forever. You see signs that say Almost There...Not Far Now. The driveway into the place is only one-way. There really is no sign that points in the direction of the stables so we went to the petting zoo first. We asked about horseback riding & the young girl was very helpful. She called the stables & they said for us to come right on over. However, you have to go all the way back out to the beginning of the driveway to get to the stables. Same thing when you're leaving the stables to go the petting zoo.

So, we went horseback riding first. The staff at the stables was very friendly...our guide was great (can't remember his name!). However, the only trail they had open was the 45 minutes ride. I didn't want to do the 45 minute one...I only wanted to ride for half an hour because my son gets antsy. So since we were stuck with the 45 minute ride, the least they could have done was given it to us for the 30 minute ride price...but they didn't. The trail was nice...mostly shaded...lots of hills (up, down, up, down). Me & my son rode double & you would think that they would have saddles that would accommodate this set-up (i.e. no saddle horn). But they did not so the entire ride I was trying not to squish my son between me & the saddle horn. I spend most of my time sitting on the back of the saddle (not comfortable) & keeping myself braced up (also not comfortable). The horse was very gentle but he kept stopping to eat grass.

Onto the petting zoo...I paid $11 per person & there really aren't a whole lot of animals at this petting zoo...a lot of goats, a zebra, fallow deer, a kangaroo, miniature horses, a Belgium horse (he was huge!), a zonkey, elks, a reindeer, donkeys, 2 camels, & the prettiest cow I have ever seen (can't remember what kind of cow it was!). Some of the animals looked sickly & I felt sorry for them. It was fun to be able to pet & feed some of the animals that you wouldn't be able to on a regular basis (zebra, elk, kangaroo) but it wasn't worth the money. Again, the staff at the petting zoo was really friendly but I would not go here again. I had a better experience at Virginia's Safari Park where I paid $15 a person to see 2 different animal attractions (a drive through zoo & a walk through zoo) & got to pet & feed the same kind of animals and then some!

Visited April 2013
1 Thank CountryShorty83
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SMDFDFRS, Internet Marketing Manager at Smoky Mountain Deer Farm & Exotic Petting Zoo, responded to this review, June 20, 2013
Thank you for your review and for sharing your concerns with us. We are sorry that you disliked the one-way scenic drive around our property. Unfortunately, having 150 acres of land for our critters does necessitate a drive that is longer than you would find at attractions in the city. Most folks love visiting our property in the spring, especially in April and May when our beautiful local foliage is in bloom.

Our 45 minute trail is the only one we're comfortable riding on after several days of continuous rain, and springtime in the Smokies is often a wet season for us. We shut down the 30 and 60 minute rides the moment we recognize they've become unstable due to a softening surface, and we do this for the safety of our guests, staff and horses. Our 45 minute trail is fully covered with very fine gravel that prevents mud from seeping through, and we meticulously maintain it. We do apologize for the inconvenience, but again, safety is our greatest concern.

We strongly encourage guests ages 3 and up to ride their own horses because of saddle size constraints. Our stables manager offers knowledgeable advice to parents who wish to pair their children up with them on the same saddle.

Again, thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts here, and for braving the rainy weather to come and visit us!
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dandridge, Tennessee
Level Contributor
16 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“this is great for the children”
Reviewed April 27, 2013

What a pleasent serprice to see such a nice place in the mountains. We only live 30 miles away and never were their before. We must have spent 4 hours and had the bes ttime.

Visited November 2012
Thank sherry s
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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