Everyone can envision their ideal vacation: restful serenity with quiet downtime, sightseeing activity with scheduled entertainment and retail therapy, or a combination of both for a family getaway. As I plan for extra drive time to reach our son’s soccer game over the weekend, I realized it is vitally important to consider calendar dates for maximum enjoyment of your vacation.
Specifically, there are two weekends each in September and April (with a sandwich week between) that bring classic car shows (aka rod runs) to the heart of the county in Pigeon Forge. Beautifully restored, custom vehicles line the streets and parking lots, and a substantial crowd of car enthusiasts come to town to admire them. These weekends bring very high traffic and visitor counts to the otherwise more laid back late summer and spring months. Passing through Pigeon Forge and continuing to Gatlinburg becomes challenging, with extended travel times during these events. My best analogy would be spring break in a small beach town, a high volume of people thoroughly enjoying themselves, and not in any hurry to get somewhere else.
This is not another diatribe on pros and cons, but merely a bottom line to say: plan accordingly. Want to join the fun? It’s never dull, whether to view the cars or watch the people. Want a restful, quieter vacation weekend? Come visit us at Volunteer Cabin Rentals, and choose cabin rentals in Wears Valley, which can be accessed from the more bucolic Townsend area, in addition to easy access from Pigeon Forge. We have an ideal location for both vacation worlds.
The major shows are typically in September and April, but can vary each year. To determine dates for these car show events, visit travelguide.reservepigeonforge.com/2013/01/pigeon-forge-car-shows-gear-up-for-2013.html.
Use this reference for future vacation planning in 2014, and make the correct choice for maximizing your family’s enjoyment.
Most guests to Wears Valley cabin rentals plan to visit several attractions while on vacation in our area. The largest and most well-known attraction in Pigeon Forge is the Dollywood theme park. This week Dolly Parton announces a monumental change to the concept of Dollywood. The park attraction will now become a resort destination with the planned addition of a 300-room hotel. Dolly has named it “DreamMore” with a reference to the Biltmore, the grand Vanderbilt estate in nearby Asheville, North Carolina. The luxury resort facility will present a comfortable opportunity “for families to unplug and connect with each other”, says Dolly. To be completed by summer 2015, the hotel property will have multiple amenities and is indicated to be the first of more to come. This alludes to the Disney-type destination experience, which provides lodging, dining, and entertainment all within the boundaries of resort properties.
The newest FireChaser Express coaster ride at Dollywood was also debuted, expected to open next March for the 2014 season. The Express is billed as a family coaster, so everyone can ride together. Minimum height requirement is 39″, which will allow 4-year olds to ride along, as the dual-launch coaster runs both forward and backward for a little less than a winding half mile each direction. This indicates a milder ride than the popular Wild Eagle wing coaster, which is located adjacent to the new Express ride. The Express also renews the firefighter theme, also found in the nearby small vintage indoor coaster, the Blazing Fury.
Dolly Parton has truly given back to her hometown, through her unique and beloved properties of Dollywood, Dollywood’s Splash Country Waterpark, and Dixie Stampede Dinner Theater. All of us at Volunteer Cabin Rentals are glad that Dolly continues to “dream more” for the future of our shared Tennessee mountain home. Come visit us all soon!
Now that we’re getting into the season when folks are getting serious about their vacation planning, we thought it would be a good idea to remind you that we usually have some kind of seasonal special going on our Wears Valley cabin rentals.
Right now, we’re offering free nights in April and May, depending on how many nights you book with us. For reservations on stays through May 30, you’ll get a 10-percent discount on a three-night stay, you’ll only pay for three nights with a four-night stay, you’ll pay for four nights with a five-night stay, and if you book a six- or seven-night stay, you’ll only pay for five.
Keep in mind that this is a special Internet deal, so you’ll need to mention that when calling to make your reservation. It only applies to currently available cabins and not any previous bookings. Unfortunately, this deal does not apply to any holiday nights.
And by booking your trip for April or May, you’ll enjoy the warmer weather here in the Smokies, but you’ll get to enjoy the area before the crowds of peak season start arriving. We hope to see you soon!
While the majority of folks traveling to the Great Smoky Mountains travel here by car, there are other ways of getting to Gatlinburg, Pigeon Forge and Sevierville. For those who want to let someone else do the driving (or flying), here is a quick overview of what’s available.
• McGhee Tyson Airport – This regional/national airport is your best bet for flying in. A number of major and budget airlines serve the facility. Once you’re on land, you can either rent a car at the airport or pay a shuttle service to transport you to your lodging destination in the Smokies.
• Megabus – This very affordable bus service has become a popular method of traveling from city to city. Those arriving in Knoxville get off the bus at the downtown transit station and then must arrange for a taxi or shuttle service to get to their final destination.
• Gatlinburg-Pigeon Forge Airport – This local air facility is actually located in Sevierville but offers handy proximity to Smokies accommodations and even can offer rental car services on site.
Once you make it to the Smokies, our cabins in Wears Valley, TN are easy to find. Just check in at our rental office, and we’ll provide you with a map to get to your individual cabin unit.
Looking for a fun hike to a cool waterfall destination this winter? Consider one of the better-kept secrets in the Smokies—Spruce Flats Falls. One of the best things about this hike is that you don’t have to venture terribly far into the national park to find it, which makes it convenient to most of our cabins in Wears Valley.
You can go through either the Wears Valley or Townsend entrances to the national park. Once you’re in the park, head west toward the Great Smokies Institute at Tremont. Park in the lot and start up the gravel road, following the signs toward the falls. You’ll make a couple of turns along the way at various signposts, but as long as you follow the arrows toward the falls, you’ll be OK.
This trail, which is about a mile from start to finish, isn’t marked on most maps, but the path is unmistakable. The first two-thirds is moderately uphill, and once you crest the ridge, you’ll have a slightly steeper downhill trek as you near the falls. The falls themselves are 40 to 50 feet in height and cascade down multiple tiers of hillside before collecting in a pool at the bottom. You can approach as far as the pool itself at the bottom of the falls.
This is a moderately strenuous hike with some fairly steep uphill and downhill sections and sharp trail drop-offs. But most folks shouldn’t have trouble with it, and if you bring a camera, you’ll get some great pictures in the process. There are even some decent mountain views along the way. Happy hiking!
If you’re staying in one of our Wears Valley cabin rentals this weekend, you might be interested to know that you won’t be very far away from one of this region’s premier annual festivals. The Foothills Fall Festival, October 12-14 is a weekend full of world-class concerts, juried arts and crafts, kids’ activities and much more.
The event, which takes place in downtown Maryville, is presented on such a large scale that it can’t be contained in one area. The concerts are staged at the outdoor amphitheater at Jack Green Park, and the arts and crafts fair will be set up along Broadway street downtown. The kids’ Adventure Lane area—featuring rides, inflatables, activities and games—occupies 16 acres along the Maryville-Alcoa Greenway.
The festival is popular, in part, for the big names that take the concert stage each year. This year’s headliners include Gary Allan, Train and Darius Rucker. Meanwhile, the arts show features nearly 100 selected vendors from around the Southeast. All participants feature creative, hand-made products in a wide range of media, including pottery, baskets, photography and fine art, jewelry, woodworking and much more. Free entertainment such as craft demonstrations, street theater, face painting, musicians and more can be enjoyed by guests visiting the arts fair.
Learn more at www.foothillsfallfestival.com.
Anyone who makes a reservation to stay in one of our Wears Valley cabins through September 30 qualifies for a number of special moneysaving deals. If you book a three-night stay, you get half off the third night; if you book four nights, you only pay for three; if you book five nights, you only pay for four, and if you stay six or seven nights, you only pay for five. So if you’re staying a full week that’s a savings of nearly 30 percent.
To receive the discount, please mention the special Internet deal when you make your reservation. This offer is valid only for remaining cabins, and unfortunately, it cannot apply to a booking you may have already made within that time frame. The offer cannot be combined with any other offers or specials, and it does not apply to holiday nights.
And we think that Wears Valley is the perfect setting for a September visit. Our cabins take advantage of the beauty of pastoral valleys and towering mountains, which are all right outside your window. You’re also just minutes from a handy, infrequently used entrance to Great Smoky Mountains National Park, giving you easy access to picnic areas, hikes and the historic Cades Cove community.
Once you check into one of our cabins in Wears Valley, you may find it hard to pull yourself away. After all, our properties generally feature all the comforts and amenities that visitors to the Great Smoky Mountains seek in their vacation accommodations.
When you do venture out into nearby Pigeon Forge, Gatlinburg or Sevierville, however, you’ll find yourself faced with dozens of choices when it comes to attractions and things to do in the Smokies. But before you buy your tickets from any of these destinations, take a look at the deals we have to offer at Volunteer Cabin Rentals.
We can set you up with discounted tickets for all the Ripley’s attractions as well as theater venues like Country Tonite Theatre, WonderWorks, Smoky Mountain Opry and The Comedy Barn. Or if some outdoor adventure sounds exciting, you may want to take a look at our whitewater-rafting package.
Just go to the Discount Tickets tab on our home page, and you’ll be directed to great deals on all this and more for the specific dates you plan to visit us here in the Smokies.
Guests who check in to one of our Wears Valley cabin rentals this summer are bound to face some warm temperatures, but we’ve got just the ticket for keeping your cool and doing some major de-stressing in the process.
Beneficial To Life Therapeutic Massage offers massage services to our guests right in their cabins! If you’re tired, stressed, tense or have sore muscles, these professionals’ trained hands can help you refresh and rejuvenate in the cool comfort of your vacation accommodations. There’s no need to get into heavy traffic or go to another location.
Pamper yourself with an hour or more of a wide range of treatments, including Swedish and deep-tissue massage, hot-stone massage, spa services, aromatic salt scrubs and steam tunnel therapy. Prices are structured to accommodate side-by-side couples with one-hour massage/scrub packages for two starting at only $270. Add a candlelight dinner to any of the packages for only $115.
When you call us to book your cabin, be sure to ask about the massage and spa options we have available, and we can set those up at the time you reserve your lodging.
Perched atop Wonderland Ridge in Wears Valley, this four-bedroom getaway in the Smokies is more than just a cabin. It’s a full mountain lodge, offering four full baths, two half baths and sleeping as many 16 adults.
One of the showpieces of this three-level palace of wood is its abundance of spacious covered decks and rocking chairs, from which guests can soak in views of the nearby valley and Great Smoky Mountains National Park in the distance.
Spacious living areas, including a fully stocked kitchen, make daily living and socializing a breeze, and the game room offers plenty of fun in the form of a pool table and air hockey table. Recreation also comes courtesy of one big-screen TV and a total of five satellite TVs and DVD players.
Other amenities include an outdoor hot tub, two indoor whirlpool tubs, two indoor gas fireplaces and an amazing-looking gazebo with its own gas grill, fireplace and refrigerator. The gazebo alone could be a potential party place in the mountains.
Contact us at Volunteer Cabin Rentals today to book this mountain showplace for your next visit to the Smokies.
Lid’l Gluckstadt cabin