10 Great Things To Do In Gatlinburg in February

With the holiday season behind us and spring fast approaching, you might be wondering if there is anything interesting to do in Gatlinburg in February.

There’s always a cold front in the Smoky Mountains during the winter months, and that can be quite the challenge when things like snowfall are so unpredictable.

Fortunately, Gatlinburg is more than just a snow destination. In February, you can still enjoy all the fun of the snowy season without worrying about how to stay warm.

From seeing frozen waterfalls to snow tubing down a hill, you will find your schedule packed with adventure here in Gatlinburg during the shortest month of the year! Here are some great things to do in Gatlinburg in February.

Top 10 Things To Do In Gatlinburg in February

  1. Take a Winter Hike in the Great Smoky Mountain National Park
  2. Enjoy the Snow at Ober Gatlinburg
  3. Take Your Better Half to the Gatlinburg Skylift Park
  4. Visit the Local Museums
  5. Find Comfort in a Secluded Cabin
  6. Beat the Cold with Some Moonshine and Wine
  7. Get Active at Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies
  8. Witness the Winterfest Lights Display
  9. Explore Your Artsy Side at the Arts & Craft Community
  10. Take Advantage of Post-Holiday Discounts on Shopping
winter hike in the great smoky mountain national park
Image: Michael Hicks

1. Take a Winter Hike in the Great Smoky Mountain National Park

The Great Smoky Mountains National Park offers some of the most beautiful and unspoiled hiking trails in the country. Hikers come from all over the world to explore these trails, which are lined with ancient hardwood trees and offer spectacular views of cascading waterfalls, rushing streams, and lush greenery!

The park has more than 150 hiking trails that vary in length from one mile to more than 100 miles. These trails range from easy strolls to difficult hikes that require careful preparation and experience. The park has a wide variety of trails and elevations, from short walks to mountain summits to hikes that can take several days to complete.

Winter hiking is a great way for families to get outside and enjoy nature at its best. It also offers an opportunity for beginners to learn more about the outdoors, as well as experienced hikers who want to explore new areas.

Here are a few of the top picks for the best hiking trails in winter!

  • Trillium Gap Trail: This incredibly forested trail might be challenging for beginners with its 14 miles round trip and a steep elevation gain of 3,400 feet, but it leads to the remarkable sights of Mt. LeConte summit.
  • Alum Cave Trail: This 11 miles return trip hike begins with a 2.3 miles hike leading to gorgeous streams, Arch Rock, and breathtaking views from the Alum Cave Bluffs.
  • Laurel Falls Trail: Winter is the perfect time to experience the serene landscape of this exceptional 2.6-mile paved hike, leading up to the stunning views of the 80 ft. high cascading fall!

2. Enjoy the Snow at Ober Gatlinburg

the snow at ober gatlinburg
Image: Dystopos

If you are looking for a great winter adventure to get the adrenaline pumping, then look no further than Ober Gatlinburg! The snow is falling, the temperatures are dropping, and the slopes are starting to open for business!

Ober Gatlinburg is often dubbed “the best ski resort in Tennessee” by many people who have visited the area. The town of Ober Gatlinburg is full of excitement and energy when it comes to skiing and snowboarding. If you are looking for an adventure that will take your breath away, this is definitely the place you want to be in February!

The adventure kicks off at the Aerial Tramway, which takes visitors through panoramic views of downtown Gatlinburg and the Great Smokies! Ober Gatlinburg has two mountains that offer some of the best skiing experiences in the country.

They have over 10 ski trails, including beginner slopes and intermediate runs as well as expert slopes and advanced runs. If you have never been skiing before but would like to try it out this winter season, there are plenty of lessons by professional skiers who will help you learn how to ski in no time!

You can also go snow tubing on a smaller hill that offers the same level of excitement and thrill as skiing, and the best part is that you don’t have to walk all the way to the top; just hop on the Magic Carpet and sway away!

3. Take Your Better Half to the Gatlinburg Skylift Park

take your better half to gatlinburg skylift park
Image: Steve Harwood

Visiting Gatlinburg in February means it’s the perfect time for a romantic getaway with your better half!

The best way to celebrate romance on Valentine’s Day is to head to Gatlinburg Skylift Park’s special event for lovebirds, Love is in the Air. During the event, the entire park is well lit up with red and white decorations and lighting, representing the month of romance.

The best part of the evening is the “Tunnel of Love”, a 300 ft. bridge decked with more than 18,000 lights, creating a stunning display for couples to enjoy and relish each moment! If you’re planning on popping the big question to your significant other, then the SkyBridge offers the perfect location with a striking backdrop of the Smokies!

The SkyDeck is also a hot spot for bachelors to propose and make their special moment an unforgettable memory!

4. Visit the Local Museums

visit the local museums
Image: Tom

If you’re not feeling as adventurous and want to spend some quality family time indoors, then Gatlinburg has the perfect place for you!

All over town, you will find many local museums that hold an impressive collection of artifacts and innovative visual illusions. One of these popular spots is the Hollywood Star Cars Museum, a haven for film buffs where you will find some of the most iconic automobiles portrayed in your favorite movies!

Another great attraction around town is Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Odditorium is a hotspot dedicated to all the quirky nerds and weirdos out there! Here, you will find everything out-of-the-box from strange optical illusions to life-size skeletons.

If you happen to head to Pigeon Forge, then don’t forget to visit the famous Hollywood Wax Museum and strike it off your bucket list!

5. Find Comfort in a Secluded Cabin

comfort in a secluded cabin

There are few things more romantic than a cabin in the woods, and Gatlinburg is the perfect place to find one! With so many cabins to choose from, you’re sure to find the one just for you and your loved one.

Plus, what’s better than cuddling up by the fireplace after a long day of exploring the Smoky Mountains? You can get a cabin near the Great Smokies and spend your time relaxing, watching movies, or reading a book. It’s a great way to get away from the cold weather and enjoy some peace and quiet!

Another thing that makes renting a cabin in Gatlinburg during winter so attractive is that there are plenty of things to do once you get there. There are plenty of hiking trails that you can take advantage of as well as places where you can go fishing or hunting if you want some fresh food for dinner!

There’s nothing better than enjoying some downtime with friends and family on your vacation. You can’t beat having an entire house full of people who all love being together!

Renting a cabin is the perfect way of bringing families together.

6. Beat the Cold with Some Moonshine and Wine

moonshine and wine
Image: PunkToad

The most effective way to warm up during the cold months is by spending a day wine and moonshine tasting in the Smokies with your friends!

Gatlinburg is home to several fantastic wineries and distilleries, each with its own unique offerings. From sweet dessert wines to dry reds and multiple variations of the classic moonshine, there’s something for everyone to enjoy.

Moonshine is a popular Appalachian spirit that has a dark and mysterious origin. Moonshine tasting is a great way to get a little taste of what life was like during the prohibition era. Moonshine was illegal, so it was against the law to even make or sell it, but people were still making it just outside the city limits.

There’s no better way to experience this than by actually going out on a moonshine run with friends. You’ll have the opportunity to see some amazing scenery, meet new people, and learn about history at the same time!

The town has many options for moonshine tasting that offer different experiences, but you should be sure to choose one that fits your needs and preferences.

Ole Smoky Moonshine, Sugarlands Distilling Company, and Doc Collier Moonshine are a few hotspots for premium quality moonshine tastings and you can even overlook the incredible production process behind the Appalachian spirit!

7. Get Active at Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies

ripley’s aquarium of the smokies
Image: Joel Kramer

Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies is a top Gatlinburg attraction for good reason! The world-renowned aquarium is home to more than 10,000 exotic sea creatures. You can get up close and personal with many of them on Ripley’s interactive swim programs.

There are plenty of animal exhibits throughout the aquarium that will keep everyone entertained for hours on end. There are also plenty of educational exhibits that tell visitors about sea life and conservation efforts around the world.

The kids can find out if sharks can sleep underwater or not by doing a sleepover at the aquarium and spending a fun-filled night packed with many interesting activities!

If you’re feeling brave, sign up for the Penguin Encounter where you can waddle around with real penguins and even get the chance to pet one!

8. Witness the Winterfest Lights Display

winterfest lights
Image: Peter Ciro

Winterfest is a Gatlinburg tradition that you don’t want to miss! It’s a fun event that offers lots of entertainment for the whole family.

It’s the time of the year when the entire Great Smokies and beyond is draped with an array of stunning and sparkling lights and displays, covering every inch of Gatlinburg!

Winterfest takes place each year in Gatlinburg from November to February. It’s a great time to go around town and explore it on your own or with your family. The lights of Winterfest are also beautiful, making for an amazing night out. The lights are so bright that they make you feel like you are walking on the moon!

Take out your tacky holiday sweaters and take a trip downtown, eating and drinking your way through a memorable night studded with starry lights!

9. Explore Your Artsy Side at the Arts & Craft Community

great smoky arts and craft community

The Great Smoky Arts and Craft Community is a community center on an 8-mile loop trail studded with shops, art galleries, studios, and cafes.

The Arts and Craft Community is a great place for people who enjoy shopping for unique handmade items or who want to learn about different cultures through their arts and crafts. The drive to the loop is especially fun during winter because the landscape is draped in snow and makes for a fantastic view!

You can buy souvenirs and gifts for friends back home as a memorable reminder of the creative side of Gatlinburg. Visitors can also take part in a variety of workshops that teach them how to create their own pieces of art using stone beads, wood carvings, clay bowls, and more!

These workshops are conducted by local experts who have been working at the Great Smoky Arts and Craft Community for years and have earned their stripes as master craftsmen themselves!

10. Take Advantage of Post-Holiday Discounts on Shopping

shoppers in gatlinburg

It’s no secret that Gatlinburg is a winter destination. The town is filled with fun things to do in winter. If you’re looking to spend some time indoors and avoid the cold, then one of the major attractions offered by Gatlinburg is shopping!

If you love shopping, Gatlinburg has some of the best shopping locations in Tennessee. You’ll find malls with hundreds of stores where you can find almost anything you want at a discounted price since the holiday season has passed. And if you’re looking for something unique, there are also plenty of art galleries and antique stores where you can find items from all over America!

There are also many places where you can get your hands on some local crafts as well as artwork made by talented artists from Gatlinburg.

Hit any of the nine malls on Parkway, with an array of shops that sell jewelry, spirits, souvenirs, accessories, clothing, and food items.

Free Things to Do in Gatlinburg

free things to do in gatlinburg

February is the perfect time to visit Gatlinburg and experience the beauty of the Smoky Mountains. Here are some suggestions for things to do in Gatlinburg during the winter that won’t cost you a dime!

Take a Walk along the Gatlinburg Parkway

If you want to get the most out of your family vacation to Gatlinburg, then take a scenic drive through the Gatlinburg Parkway and explore the shops, dining options, and unique art studios all in one place!

Take a trip up Mount LeConte

The mountain is located just outside of Gatlinburg and is one of the highest peaks in Tennessee. You can hike up this mountain on your own or take one of several trails leading up to various summit points that offer breathtaking views over the surrounding area.