Now that the season is upon us, we wanted to showcase our recommendations for Christmas shopping areas and ideas for those who are looking to get something unique and distinctly Smoky Mountain for family, friends or others back home!
This is a rather wide swath, yes? Indeed, detailing downtown Gatlinburg’s shopping opportunities would be a task and require sub-sections, but we include it as one shopping “area” as you can still park and get in the same length and walking as any of the other shopping centers or proper-sized malls you have been to before. Downtown Gatlinburg is a great idea for people who want to cover a lot of bases in one trip – featuring everything from trinkets and gifts from the ubiquitous Smoky Mountain gift stores, hiking supplies, Smoky Mountain books and foods to martial arts equipment, magic, handmade clothes, Irish and Scottish goods and more you can only believe when you see it! Worth the effort and exercise!
See more Gatlinburg shopping
The other major side of Gatlinburg and a pioneer in Smoky Mountain tourism is the generations-old Arts and Crafts Community just off of Highway 321 in Gatlinburg. Well before we had Ole Smoky Moonshine, Dollywood, Ober Gatlinburg or 70% of what makes up the cities now, the reason people came to the Smokies was to see the National Park and get genuine handmade woodwork, furniture, clothing, art, stone masonry and more craftwork that continues today with the elders’ successors and subsequent generations. The Arts and Crafts Community is an 8-mile loop with several complexes and just about everything you came to Appalachia to look for.
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Consider The Old Mill something like the Pigeon Forge Arts and Crafts Community, except to a much smaller and tighter-knit degree. The Old Mill is a park-once shopping complex where you’d only need to walk to everything the area has to offer and still find an exquisite selection of handcrafted, local-artisan-supporting items like pottery, kitchen wares, jams and jellies, Smoky Mountain artwork, clothing, items for pets, boots, flowers, gifts, and more. It is also right next to Patriot Park and the central hub of the Pigeon Forge trolley system.
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Way on the other side of the county, we have a “shopping” district of sorts that is unique and often under-represented for shopping in the Smokies and that is Highway 66 from Sevierville to Kodak. This area is our area for HUGE, HUGE stores that have many things you can’t easily get in other parts of our area, or at least along the main tourism routes. This area is home to our flea markets, the Bass Pro complex, the Smoky Mountain Knifeworks, our favorite fireworks stores, thrift stores, antique stores, outlets and many restaurants well worth your lunch or dinner presence.
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We’ll conclude our recommendations for Smoky Mountain Christmas shopping with the Five Oaks Tanger Mall. While there isn’t the same kind of “unique, handmade Smoky Mountain” vibe at Five Oaks like the other listings we’ve had here (quite the opposite, in fact), this is still one heck of a shopping experience. After scouring across the county for knit jackets and locally painted portraits of Cades Cove, sometimes we just need to go back to what we’re familiar with and Five Oaks will provide that and other needed shopping opportunities in spades. Brand name fashion, books, Disney, shoes, treats and so much more that Five Oaks has its own trolley system can be found here.
See more stores at Tanger Outlet Sevierville