sunrise over Gatlinburg, Tennessee

4 Insider Tips for Your Gatlinburg TN Vacation

The city of Gatlinburg surrounded by mountains.
January 18, 2017

There is nowhere else in the world quite like Gatlinburg, Tennessee! Blessed with the natural beauty of the Great Smoky Mountains, our charming city is overflowing with incredible things to see and do. When you stay at Sidney James Mountain Lodge, you will be minutes away from all of the area’s very best destinations. To help you prepare for your next escape, we have put together four insider tips for your Gatlinburg TN vacation.

1. Go on a Ghost Tour

If you’ve never been on one of Gatlinburg’s ghost tours, be sure to make it a priority for your next visit! The Ghost and Haunt Tours of Gatlinburg take visitors around the downtown area to the city’s most haunted destinations. Along the way, you’ll hear stories about some of Gatlinburg’s larger than life characters and all of the mysterious happenings in East Tennessee. You’ll even have the chance to use special ghost hunting equipment as you explore the supernatural side of the Smokies. Whether you’re a skeptic or a true believer, you’ll have a blast on this tour!

2. Eat Lunch at the Wild Plum Tea Room

A tasty salmon burger.

Located in Gatlinburg’s famous Arts & Crafts Community, the Wild Plum Tea Room is one of the most unique places to eat in the Smokies. This great restaurant is inspired by the teahouses in the mountains of Austria, which are known for their freshly made food and welcoming atmosphere. When you visit the Wild Plum Tea Room, you will find delicious dishes made from the freshest ingredients and a number of vegetarian options. Popular menu items include the lobster pie, chicken salad, salmon burger, and bread pudding.

This restaurant is also great for guests with dogs, as there is a lovely outdoor porch deck where you can dine with your pooch. The Wild Plum Tea Room temporarily closes for part of the winter, so be sure to confirm that they are open before heading over.

3. Ride the Trolley

Taking the trolley is a great way to get around during your Gatlinburg TN vacation! The city’s convenient trolley system allows visitors to travel around the Smoky Mountain area without having to worry about driving or finding parking. Rides on the trolley are between 50 cents and $2, depending on your destination. The Gatlinburg Trolley travels to the downtown Parkway, the Arts & Crafts Community, the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Dollywood, and other great locations. Guests at Sidney James Mountain Lodge can catch the trolley right in front of our main lobby!

4. Enjoy the Salt and Pepper Shaker Museum

Shakers on display at the Salt and Pepper Shaker Museum in Gatlinburg.

The Salt and Pepper Shaker Museum is truly a one-of-a-kind attraction. This unusual museum is home to over 20,000 sets of salt and pepper shakers from all over the world and every decade. The best part of visiting the museum is seeing all of the creative designs for the shakers. With salt and pepper shakers that look like animals, aliens, cowboys, cars, U.S. Presidents, and just about anything else you can think of, the museum’s collection is a ton of fun. Admission to the museum is only $3, and that money is applied to the purchase of any salt and pepper shaker in the gift shop.

Guests at Sidney James Mountain Lodge will love being close to all of the best things to do in the area. With private balconies, an onsite cafe, indoor and outdoor pools, pet friendly accommodations, and even more great amenities, our hotel has everything you need for an unforgettable Gatlinburg TN vacation. To start planning your escape, browse our selection of Gatlinburg hotel rooms!