Mom, Dad, congratulations on raising a human being that has successfully completed their education either all the way through school or even higher learning institutions. Now that the books are put down for a while, reward your graduate with an opportunity to spend a family vacation in the Smokies!
We have a great number of older-family and more mature attractions that would make for a perfect celebration of your newly crowned adult’s milestone in life. In this article, we’ll recommend attractions in the Smokies that are exactly that!
* Whitewater Rafting *
In the Smokies, our famous river is the Pigeon River and, naturally (pun intended), we have companies in our area that provide high-adrenaline rides that let you go through them – crashing through innumerate waves, riding high crests of the river and seeing incredible views of the Smokies while doing it. You get an experienced rafting guide with you and this type of attraction is appropriate for anyone aged 8 to 80. Our recommended companies are Smoky Mountain Outdoors and Rafting in the Smokies.
Is your graduate someone who REALLY likes outdoor adventure? Then get a bunch of outdoor adventure opportunities in all at once at the Nantahala Outdoor Center in downtown Gatlinburg. On top of being a well-stocked hiking store, they provide whitewater rafting, ziplines and more.
On the other side of the spectrum, if you’ve got a graduate who’s more into the artsy side of things, you can do no better than checking out Sweet Fanny Adams Theater in downtown Gatlinburg. Sweet Fanny Adams is a major entertainment institution here in the Smokies, having been in operation for four DECADES and providing old-school, vaudeville-type humor that fans of Monty Python, Mel Brooks and other famous comedy styles of serious theater. Don’t miss it!
Wow, talk about a unique thrill! Indoor Skydiving is exactly what it sounds like – giving you the opportunity to physically experience what skydiving is like without actually jumping out of a plane half a mile above the ground! You take on a specialized suit, go into the air chamber, have an enormous fan keep you afloat for several minutes while you experience honest-to-goodness flight. There’s nothing else like this for miles around so be sure to check it out!
What’s a trip to the Smokies with an 18-21-year-old without some shopping? Tanger Outlet Mall in Sevierville is by far our biggest shopping center – a near labyrinthian design where almost (or even over!) 100 stores with clothes, foods, decorations, gifts, cool stuff and more are all waiting for you to visit. These are where the big, fashionable brand names are in town and the complex is so big that you could spend a full day here. Heck, it even has its own full-scale restaurants, golf course, and tram system!
So you’re educated now, are you? Got you a big ol’ brain in that head, do ya? Prove it with a venture through one of our many Escape Games here in Sevier County! This is a roleplaying attraction where you need to solve puzzles of many different kinds to open and advance through the room(s). Kinda like the SAW movies but without the dangerous consequences of getting them wrong. Our Escape Games in the area include:
One of the hottest topics in the Smokies, is the sudden rise in Moonshine tours. Even if you do not partake, it is incredibly interesting to see how the ole moonshiners have gone legal and how they practice their craft. Yep, no grown-up trip to the Smokies is complete without a trip to our now-famous distilleries (21 and up only!) and here’s the list of the distilleries you should check out:
We hope this is a good start to a graduate’s Smoky Mountain getaway! Come see us again when June starts up!