In Eastern Tennessee, gentle blue peaks rise above foggy forests riddled with enchanting wildlife, crystal clear creeks, and winding trails. No matter the time of year, this picturesque landscape makes the ideal setting for romance. Not only this but the small mountain towns of Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg offer plenty of exciting and sweet things to do. As you plan your next romantic travel adventure, consider fitting some of these Smoky Mountain date ideas into your itinerary!
Brunch & A Movie
You wake up to a beautiful morning in the Great Smoky Mountains on your first day of vacation – what do you do? If your date says they want to go out for pancake brunch and a movie, you’ll know they are a keeper.
In a day and age where movies have become increasingly expensive, the Forge Cinemas should be your go-to Pigeon Forge movie theater. All of their films are only $5. Yet, that doesn’t mean you’ll miss out on the state-of-the-art projection, 3D technology, and surround sound you’ve come to love about the cinema! Watch your favorite actors and genres on the big screen, and know that you get to save your dollars instead for pancakes and bacon!
There is only one way to do brunch in the Smokies: at an adorable pancake cabin. It doesn’t get cozier than Smoky’s Pancake Cabin, where family recipes have satisfied sweet tooths for over three generations. You’ll have a tough time deciding between all your favorite breakfast foods, from omelets and egg platters to waffles and biscuits.
Make sure to save room for a shared platter of pancakes. Smoky’s Pancake Cabin is best known for its Pineapple Upside Down pancakes and other original creations like Banana Split and Lemon Berry pancakes. If in doubt, come back again tomorrow! This homey brunch spot is conveniently located on the Pigeon Forge Parkway.
Dinner & A Show
The classic approach to date night surely never fails. Going out for dinner and catching a show afterward is as old and timeless as the theater itself. Yet, what if you could do both at the same time? Lucky for you, Pigeon Forge is the dinner theater capital of the South.
Consider booking tickets to a performance like Murder Mystery Dinner Show, especially if your loved one is obsessed with crime documentaries. You’ll get to compete for Top Sleuth of the Night as you attempt to figure out “whodunit” in any of their three shows. Was it the moonshinin’ family? Was it one of the gunslingers at the saloon? Was it the wedding planner or the in-laws? See if you can crack the case over a delicious dinner of soup, country-fried chicken, pulled pork, mashed potatoes, green beans, and more.
Hiking & A Couple’s Massage
The main reason to come to this neck of the woods is to get outside in nature. The Great Smoky Mountains National Park contains hundreds of miles of trails, scenic drives, creeks, and rivers for trout fishing, picnic spots, and campsites.
You could drive around Cades Cove and stop at all the historic churches and cabins. Maybe you’re more interested in booking a horseback riding tour at Sugarlands Riding Stables to have both comfort and novelty on your outdoor adventure. On the other hand, perhaps you are seasoned backpackers ready to rough it in the backcountry for a week with the black bears and wild turkeys. No matter your style, you’ll find plenty of ways to play in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.
That said, playtime does take its toll on the body. After an intense all-day hike, it’s no surprise that your feet and shoulders are achy from carrying a backpack. Cool off and loosen up at one of the best spas in Pigeon Forge.
The Spa at Riverstone Resort offers a variety of massage treatments, including Swedish, hot stone, foot and hand massage, and a couple’s massage experience. You can add on luxuries like CBD oil, dry brush exfoliation, aromatherapy, body treatments, facial and nail treatments, and more. Discover your most relaxed and beautified selves at The Spa at Riverstone!
Takeout & A Romantic Cabin
Who said you had to go anywhere to have a romantic date? Sometimes, the mood calls for staying in, especially when you have blankets to snuggle under, a cozy crackle in the fireplace, and a spectacular mountain view. If that sounds like a dream, start your search for lodging in the Smokies at Diamond Mountain Rentals!
You could book a charming one- or two-bedroom cabin nestled in a secluded area close to the downtown attractions of Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge. Many of their cabins offer hot tubs, pool access, fireplaces, pool tables, and pet-friendly accommodation. Get that hot tub warmed up and order takeout as soon as you have checked into your new woodland home-away-from-home. You can’t go wrong with top-rated local restaurants like Geno’s Pizza, Corky’s Ribs & BBQ, or Mama’s Chicken Kitchen!
Rocky Top Wine Trail
A shared aesthetic experience makes for the best kind of quality time. Not only is it a pleasure to engage our senses, but it also gives us something to talk about and bond over. The Rocky Top Wine Trail is an excellent date night choice for those who revel in life’s finest delights.
This free, self-guided tour will show you five Smoky Mountain wineries: Sugarland Cellars Winery, Mountain Valley Winery, Apple Barn Winery, Hillside Winery, and Mill Bridge Winery. Start at any five to pick up your passport and receive stamps at each location. Along the way, you’ll taste over 75 original wines and maybe take home a bottle or two!
Do you love the grandiosity of a classic date idea like dinner or brunch and a show? Or do you prefer staying in with your honey at a cozy cabin? Do you like adventuring around town or getting lost in nature? In the Great Smoky Mountains, a wide variety of dining and entertainment allows you to hone in on your perfect date style. You’ll find no shortage of wonderful ways to spend time together, plus a beautiful mountain backdrop to enjoy it all.
Find more travel ideas in our travel section: Travel with The Mommy Bunch.
Image credits: Smoky Mountains – Flickr