Located in the Great Smoky Mountains of Tennessee, it’s easy to see why Dollywood is a year-round favorite with over 2.5 million visitors per year. With unique rides and attractions, down-home comfort food, and friendly Southern hospitality, any time of year is a great time to visit. Fall is an especially exciting time to visit for several reasons, one of them being it’s great entertainment value.
1. Beautiful Fall Colors
Dollywood has a gorgeous backdrop of fall foliage being nestled in the Great Smoky Mountains. The theme park itself is beautifully landscaped with tree lined paths meandering throughout the park. The atmosphere at Dollywood in autumn is a delight to behold: between the fall colors, brisk, cool mountain air and the smell of their freshly baked cinnamon bread, this could easily be your favorite time of year to visit! Make sure to set aside some time to see the foliage in the Great Smoky Mountain National Park (America’s most visited national park) while you’re in the area. As peak foliage season nears, expect lots of visitors along the parkway.
2. Harvest Festival
Each Fall, Dollywood comes alive with colorful Autumn decor against nature’s already spectacular backdrop of vivid foliage. This year, they’ll be adding tons of pumpkins (literally) with their colossal pumpkin displays–some pumpkins will weigh in at 1,000 pounds apiece! Tasteful landscaping and whimsical pumpkin statues make the perfect backdrop for fun family photo opportunities.
The real heart of the Harvest Festival is the dozens of craftsmen displaying their talent for creating handmade goods. Dollywood is known for having artisans year-round display skills such as ironworking, glassblowing, and pottery making, but the Harvest Festival kicks that up a notch by adding even more talented crafters demonstrating everything from water marbling to wood carving by chainsaw. It’s also a great way to check some items off your Christmas list since their handmade goods are for purchase.
3. Live Entertainment
One highlight of the Dollywood’s Harvest Festival is the live musical entertainment. This year, there will be bluegrass in addition to perennial gospel favorites performing onstage throughout the day. I’m super excited that there will also be strolling musical performances throughout the park. Sounds like such a fun way to infuse music and atmosphere to the experience. According to Dollywood’s website, this fall there will be a whopping 800+ concerts among their 10 outdoor stages. All included with the price of admission 😉
4. Great Pumpkin LumiNights
Okay, I can’t even begin to hide my excitement over this one! Great Pumpkin LumiNights is THE theme park event of the Fall that you won’t want to miss. And that isn’t just my opinion since USA Today named it the #1 Theme Park Halloween Event in 2019! At sunset, the park is aglow with thousands of spectacular carved jack-o-lanterns on display. Family fun for all ages (nothing overly spooky) with a picture perfect backdrop. Wind your way through Wildwood Grove for new pumpkin displays this year, complete with narration by Dolly herself! Another must-see is the massive 40-foot Pumpkin Tree in the center of the park. Pick up one of the many pumpkin-themed treats to enjoy as you wind your way through the rest of the displays in Craftsman’s Valley, Timber Canyon, and Wilderness Pass.
5. More For Your Money
In case you hadn’t noticed, there’s a lot included with your ticket while visiting Dollywood in the Fall! In addition to your regular park attractions and shows, you also get more live entertainment, the Harvest Festival, and Great Pumpkin LumiNights! That’s a more bang for your buck considering you don’t have to pay extra to experience these seasonal offerings. Tickets start at $79.00 before tax for adults and $69.00 for children and seniors. All of the Great Pumpkin LumiNights fun is included in the price of your admission for the day, so you could ride the attractions, shop, and see the shows by day and see the amazing pumpkins glow by night! Want to just see the Great Pumpkin LumiNights? Dollywood has you covered with the Harvest ticket priced at $35 plus tax for visits after 5 p.m. Both the Harvest Festival and Great Pumkin LumiNights start September 25 and run through October 31, 2020.
I also wanted to mention I am not sponsored by Dollywood or compensated by them in any way for this post. In my opinion, it’s just a great time to take your family for a visit and really make the most of your park admission! Have you been to Dollywood or experienced the Harvest Festival and Great Pumpkin LumiNights? I’d ❤️ to hear your thoughts or if you have any questions about visiting the Smoky Mountains!