For a few glorious weeks, autumn crowns the Smoky Mountains with spectacular color. It’s a sight well worth traveling to see – especially when you take a few roads less traveled. This year, consider an alternative scenic drive with plenty of foliage along the Middle Prong of the Little Pigeon River in Sevierville, Tennessee.
Peak season for leaf viewing is typically mid-October through mid-November. For those seeking a fall experience they’ve not enjoyed before, Sevierville’s two fall foliage self-driving tours offer little known points of interest and beautiful views. Sevierville’s Middle Prong Fall Driving Tour winds its way through the Smoky Mountain foothills after beginning at the iconic Dolly Parton statue in historic downtown Sevierville.
Those driving the tour will enjoy stops at a Civil War battleground, swinging bridge views, stops at historic churches, and more. Sevierville also offers its English Mountain Fall Driving Tour with stops at a historic cemetery, old grist mill, and a drive through a covered bridge. Both tours can be found online at VisitSevierville.com/fall.
Fall events stretch from September through October and provide even more opportunities to celebrate the harvest season in Sevierville. Plan a weekend at Dumplin Valley Bluegrass Festival (Sept. 13-17) enjoying great bluegrass concerts from up-and-coming artists and living legends. That same weekend (Sept. 15), downtown Sevierville hosts is 3rd Annual Bruce Street Brewfest, an event celebrating regional craft breweries. The end of September is also the beginning of the season at Kyker Farms Korn Maze, a family-friendly attraction that also offers a more thrilling Zombie Blasterz experience (think shooting zombies with paintball guns while in a corn maze) on weekend nights. Robert Tino’s Smoky Mountain Fall Homecoming (Oct. 5-7) brings today traditional craftsmen and artists at the old Andes house, now the Robert A. Tino art gallery, for three days of fun. Car enthusiasts will love the Great Smoky Mountain Auto Fest event (Oct. 12-13) at Smokies Stadium. Finally, have some Halloween fun with three great events including. Who says only the kids can Trick-or-Treat? Adults age 21 and older can buy tickets for the Rocky Top Chocolate Wine Trail (Oct. 27) and pair locally crafted wines with delicious candy at three wineries. Then enjoy History & Haunts in downtown Sevierville that night (Oct. 27). This first-ever event will feature two haunted history tours with county historian Carroll McMahan. There will also be a carved jack-o-lantern contest and a family-friendly Halloween dance party. Then on Halloween night (Oct. 31) head back downtown for the Sevier Co. Sheriff’s Office Halloween Spooktacular where children can Trunk-or-Treat with city and county services in a safe and friendly environment.
Dine + Sip
No fall trip is complete without some hot, southern comfort food. Make a visit to Flapjack’s for their famous Sticky Bun Pancakes, then plan dinner at Applewood Farmhouse Restaurant. Located on a working apple orchard the restaurant serves up fresh apple fritters and non-alcoholic Applewood Julep with each meal. Favorite menu items include the fried chicken and the Chicken Pot Pie (which just happens to be the size of a whole pie) – delicious!
Sevierville’s distilleries are hot-spots for seasonal cocktails. Stop in at Sevier Distilling Company, home of a 1,000 gallon still dubbed “The Colonel”, for flavorful cocktails at the bar. Then take home a bottle of your favorite handcrafted Sevierville spirit with names like Tennekeela, Ginessee, and Yenoh.
Fall leaves are the stars of the show – so why not surround yourself with them? Choose a beautifully appointed cabin with great views – but still only minutes from all the fun. Hidden Mountain Resort and Oak Haven Resort are both great fall lodging options whose offerings include beautifully appointed log cabins with full kitchens, hot tubs, game rooms and more providing tremendous value for your stay. Find a complete list of Sevierville cabins at VisitSevierville.com.
Find other authentic accommodations closer to the action – including the newly renovated Lodge at Five Oaks on the Parkway directly across from Tanger Outlets Sevierville. The Lodge at Five Oaks honors the Ogle family whose farm stood on the property many years ago. Get to know the family and their legacy through beautifully designed shadowboxes and paintings located throughout the lobby.
Families with kids will find Sevierville’s two water park resorts a thrilling way to enjoy fall. Both Wilderness at the Smokies Water Park Resort and The Resort at Five Oaks offer indoor water park fun – perfect for chilly fall days.