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Gatlinburg, Tennessee, truly stands out as a romantic destination for couples seeking an unforgettable getaway. Nestled in the heart of the Great Smoky Mountains, the town offers an array of exciting activities and tranquil moments within its beautiful landscape.

As avid travelers who visit Gatlinburg several times a year, we’ve explored this area and found some great experiences for couples to share, strengthening their bonds amid beautiful sceneries and unforgettable adventures. My hubs and I love to come here together!

As we wander through Gatlinburg, we are always captivated by its charm, from the cozy cabins and luxury hotels to the wide range of attractions and natural splendors.

Whether it’s exploring the lush trails of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, sampling local wines and spirits, or embracing the excitement of downtown Gatlinburg’s moonshine tours, we truly feel that this town has something special to offer every couple.

Together, let us take a closer look at the most romantic and enticing activities and experiences that you and your significant other can enjoy in Gatlinburg. Trust us, you’ll fall in love with this enchanting mountain town just as much as we have. So pack your bags and join us as we unveil the best things to do in Gatlinburg for couples.

Romantic Getaway in Gatlinburg

Great Smoky Mountains National Park

mountain stream in fall flowing through the smokies

One of our favorite places for couples to explore in Gatlinburg is the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. With its stunning views, hiking trails, and abundance of natural beauty, the park offers ample opportunities for couples to reconnect with nature and each other.

  • Go for a hike to waterfalls like Rainbow Falls, Grotto Falls, or Laurel Falls
  • Enjoy scenic drives through Cades Cove and experience wildlife sightings
  • Take a Pink Jeep Tour to explore the wilderness on a rugged adventure

Downtown Gatlinburg

downtown gatlinburg at night

For a more urban experience, we recommend exploring downtown Gatlinburg. This area is filled with romantic activities, dining options, and entertainment.

  • Gatlinburg SkyLift Park offers breathtaking views of the landscape
  • Share a leisurely walk hand-in-hand through the charming streets
  • Taste local flavors by visiting a moonshine distillery or trying some homemade fudge

Nearby Pigeon Forge

Just a short drive from Gatlinburg, Pigeon Forge is another perfect place for a romantic getaway. This fun-filled town boasts numerous attractions for couples.

  • Dollywood theme park offers thrilling rides and entertainment (our favorite with and without the kids!)
  • Catch a mesmerizing show at one of the local theaters

Hot Tubs

view from a smoky mountain cabin with hot tub

Of course, no romantic vacation is complete without some relaxation. One of the best ways for couples to unwind and enjoy each other’s company is by renting a cabin with a hot tub.

  • Soak in the warm water and gaze at the starry sky
  • Enjoy a glass of wine or champagne while you relax
  • Feel the soothing jets massage your muscles after a day of exploring

By combining these activities and destinations, your romantic getaway in Gatlinburg is sure to be unforgettable.

Find a romantic Gatlinburg cabin here

Exciting Attractions for Couples

Aerial Tramway and Ober Gatlinburg

The hubs and I on the Aerial Tramway

When visiting Gatlinburg, one of our favorite attractions for couples is the Aerial Tramway at Ober Gatlinburg. The tramway offers breathtaking views of the surrounding mountains and the town itself.

Once you reach Ober Gatlinburg, there are plenty of fun activities to enjoy together. We love ice skating, taking in the views from various vantage points, and even hitting the ski slopes during the winter season.

Mountain Coaster Rides

For those looking for an adrenaline rush, we highly recommend trying out one of Gatlinburg’s mountain coaster rides. These thrilling attractions are a perfect way for couples to have some fun and create lasting memories. Some popular coasters in the area include the Gatlinburg Mountain Coaster and the Smoky Mountain Alpine Coaster.

Wine Tasting and Rocky Top Wine Trail

Another great option for couples is visiting the wineries in and around Gatlinburg. You can taste delicious local wines and even embark on the Rocky Top Wine Trail, which features five wineries with free tastings and a special gift if you complete the trail. It’s a fantastic way for us to unwind and enjoy each other’s company while discovering new wines.

Ripley’s Aquarium and Great Smoky Mountain Wheel

We also love visiting the Ripley’s Aquarium in Gatlinburg, which offers an unforgettable experience for couples who enjoy marine life. After exploring the aquarium, take your adventure to new heights by riding the Great Smoky Mountain Wheel at The Island in Pigeon Forge. From the top of the wheel, you can take in the spectacular views of the Smoky Mountains and the surrounding area.

nighttime view of downtown Gatlinburg and the space needle

Iconic Gatlinburg Landmarks

Gatlinburg Space Needle

One of our favorite spots to visit in Gatlinburg for couples is the Gatlinburg Space Needle. This iconic landmark is a perfect place for enjoying quality time together while taking in stunning 360-degree views of the surrounding Smoky Mountains. At night, the Space Needle lights up, providing a romantic backdrop for a memorable evening.

Gatlinburg SkyLift Park

Another great destination for couples is the Gatlinburg SkyLift Park. As we glide up the mountain on the SkyLift, we can take in spectacular views of Gatlinburg and the National Park. At the top, there’s a beautiful observation deck to walk around and even grab a snack while enjoying the scenery.

Cades Cove

When looking for a peaceful escape and some quality time together, we can’t go wrong with a visit to Cades Cove. This serene valley set within the Great Smoky Mountains National Park offers a mix of gorgeous scenery, wildlife spotting, and historic sites. As we explore the area, we might catch a glimpse of deer, black bears, or even foxes.

View from the Cades Cove Loop road

Scenic Drives

For those who enjoy the beauty of nature from the comfort of their car, Gatlinburg and the surrounding area offer several breathtaking scenic drives, perfect for a romantic excursion.

Some of the best include the Roaring Fork Motor Nature Trail and the Newfound Gap Road. Both provide spectacular views of the Smoky Mountains, waterfalls, and lush forests. So buckle in, turn up the live music, and enjoy the ride.

fine dining place setting at restaurant

Date Nights and Special Occasions

Romantic Dinners and Restaurants

When visiting Gatlinburg, there are plenty of romantic restaurants perfect for a memorable date night or special occasion. We recommend taking a stroll along the Parkway, where you can find an array of great restaurants. For a delicious steak dinner by the river, head to the well-known restaurants on the Parkway.

While enjoying your romantic dinner, be sure to savor the picturesque views of the Pigeon River. Some of our favorite spots for a romantic dinner include:

Live Music and Entertainment

After your romantic dinner, we suggest checking out some live music and entertainment options available in Gatlinburg. From intimate acoustic performances to lively bars featuring local bands, there’s something for every couple to enjoy. Here are some ideas to get you started:

Gatlinburg has so much to offer when it comes to date nights and special occasions. With an assortment of romantic restaurants, picturesque views, and vibrant live music venues, you’ll undoubtedly create unforgettable memories with your significant other.

Anakeesta tree bridge at night
Anakeesta tree bridge at night

Outdoor Activities for Couples

Great Smoky Arts and Crafts Community

While in Gatlinburg, we highly recommend visiting the Great Smoky Arts and Crafts Community. This 8-mile loop is home to over 100 artists and craftsmen, offering unique handmade items that make perfect souvenirs for our romantic getaway.

We can stroll hand-in-hand while admiring gorgeous works of art, pottery, and wood carvings, and chatting with artists while they work their magic.

We have especially enjoyed the blown glass, soap making and hand painted cards in the past.


Anakeesta in Gatlinburg is a perfect destination for couples looking for a romantic getaway. This mountaintop adventure park offers breathtaking views of the Smoky Mountains, and an immersive nature experience.

Couples can enjoy a ride on the Rail Runner, a personal roller coaster with downhill twists and turns, or take a leisurely stroll through the Treetop Skywalk. Anakeesta also offers delicious dining options, including a romantic dinner at the Cliff Top Grill and Bar, where couples can enjoy stunning views while savoring delicious food and drinks.

Horseback Riding

Exploring the beautiful Smoky Mountains on horseback is another romantic adventure for couples. We can choose from various trail options, guided tours, and even moonlit rides through the picturesque wilderness. The experience might take us past flowing streams, lush forests, and lovely views of nature’s best.

Wildlife Encounters

The great outdoors of Gatlinburg provides ample opportunities for wildlife encounters, especially black bears! We can head to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, where we may spot bears in their natural habitat from a safe distance. Let’s not forget to bring a camera to capture these unforgettable moments, but always remember to give any wildlife a wide berth to ensure their safety and ours.


Hiking in the Gatlinburg area is a fantastic activity for couples who love the outdoors. The Great Smoky Mountains National Park offers over 800 miles of hiking trails, with options for all skill levels.

Couples can explore the park’s lush forests, vibrant wildflowers, and stunning mountain views. One of the most popular hiking experiences in the area is waterfall hikes.

The Gatlinburg area is home to numerous waterfalls, including the popular Laurel Falls, which features a 2.6-mile round trip hike to a picturesque 80-foot waterfall. Rainbow Falls is another must-see, boasting a 5.4-mile round trip hike to a stunning 80-foot waterfall.

Couples can also enjoy hikes to other notable waterfalls, such as Grotto Falls and Abrams Falls. Hiking in the Gatlinburg area provides an opportunity for couples to connect with nature and each other while experiencing the beauty of the Smoky Mountains.

couple hiking in the smokies
Hiking in the Smokies

Final Thoughts on Gatlinburg for Couples

We can confidently say that Gatlinburg is a fantastic destination for couples seeking adventure, romance, and quality time together. From thrilling activities to peaceful moments surrounded by nature, there’s truly something for every couple to enjoy in this charming town.

One activity we absolutely loved was visiting the observation tower, which offers breathtaking views of the surrounding mountains and valleys. It’s hard not to feel a sense of awe and connection with your partner when you’re both taking in such an incredible sight.

For adrenaline junkies, Gatlinburg has some mountain coasters that will surely get your hearts racing. Meanwhile, those who prefer a more laid-back activity can find numerous miniature golf courses scattered around town, perfect for lighthearted competition and laughter. Our favorite is Hillbilly Golf!

If you’re searching for more romantic activities, we suggest taking a lovely hike in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park or enjoying a cozy picnic in picturesque spots like the nearby Chimney Tops area.

Finally, no trip to Gatlinburg would be complete without a visit to the Ole Smoky Moonshine Distillery. Here, you can sample some delicious, locally-made moonshine, immerse yourselves in the heritage of the Smokies, and perhaps find a unique souvenir to remember your trip by.

So, if you and your partner are planning a visit to Gatlinburg, rest assured that you’ll have plenty of memorable experiences to share and treasure for years to come.

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