Looking for wide open spaces and small town charm? Sevierville, in Tennessee’s Great Smoky Mountains, is place to go. Best known as country music legend Dolly Parton’s hometown, Sevierville is a great home base for families who want to explore one of America’s greatest National Parks. The best news? It’s a super fit for families traveling on a budget because of the many fun and FREE things to do. Read on to discover TravelingMom’s top things to do in Sevierville, TN with kids.
Welcome to Sevierville!
Sevierville, TN is more than just the birthplace of Dolly Parton. The small town in the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park is an essential stop on a southeast road trip. Sevierville is a short drive from Gatlinburg and offers active adventures and more laidback pursuits. Best of all are the free things to do in Sevierville. Country music fans and families should head to Tennessee for their next family vacation – no matter what their budget!
Sevierville: the quintessential American small town
Dollywood, the Nascar speedtrack and mini golf are just some of the fun things to do in the area. But these will cost you. By concentrating on the many free things to do in Sevierville, you can save some cash for your favorite paid attractions. Check out our favorite free things to do in Sevierville, TN.
Outdoor free activities in Sevierville
Dolly Parton statue
Pay homage to local gal Dolly Parton. Her statue is in downtown Sevierville on the Sevier County Courthouse lawn. Take a selfie and visit the Sevierville Chamber of Commerce Visitor Center to learn more about the Tennessee-born superstar and other Sevierville attractions.
Check out the gorgeous Sevier County courthouse.
The architecture both inside and out is worth a close look.
Historic downtown Sevierville
Pick up a free guide at the Sevierville Chamber of Commerce to more Sevierville attractions. The historic downtown dates to the mid-1800s. Take a self-guided tour of 20 historic sites throughout the city.
More Active Things to in Sevierville
Hike through the Great Smoky Mountains National Park
The National Park, a short drive from Sevierville, is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The diverse plant and animal life includes black bears and wildflowers. There are miles of hiking trails, many of them easy to moderate. You can see waterfalls, flowering trees and remains of old buildings.
Clingmans Dome, the peak of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park
This short, strenuous hike begins at an altitude of 6,000 feet. Clingmans Dome is the highest point in Tennessee and the second highest point east of the Mississippi. If you can’t do the hike, you can drive up to the trailhead and still get amazing views.
Mt. Ton of Fun playground
This playground is for all abilities and ages. It addresses physical, social-emotional, sensory, cognitive and communication development. The climbing structures for toddlers and fitness equipment is designed for teens to adults.
Sevierville’s Greenway System
Stroll along Sevierville’s Greenway system, which extends throughout the city. Take a self-guided tour of the arboretum, which includes 73 species of trees. The greenway runs for over six miles. So if you are training for a marathon, this is an ideal place to run.
PetSafe Unleashed Dog Park
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Bring your family pet to this new park. It has separate large and small dog areas, dog agility equipment, water, shade, WiFi and benches. If you want to see how your toddler reacts around dogs, this is a good place to test the waters.
Indoor free activities in Sevierville
The winery offers free family-friendly tours daily. Free wine tasting is limited to those 21 and over, but children can sample the cheese and meat. Apple Barn Winery also has free tastings but does not offer tours. I have great memories of family vacations as a kid where we went to wineries, and we took our children to them before they could legally drink.
The Tennessee Legend Distillery
This distillery offers free tastings to those over age 21. There is moonshine of course, along with whiskey, vodka and rum. Tennessee Legend Distillery is part of the Tennessee Whiskey Trail.
The Relic Room at Smoky Mountain Knife Works
This retail store has a room where it sells arrowheads, fossils and other artifacts. You don’t have to buy anything, and it’s interesting to look.
Drive Cades Cove
This 11-mile scenic drive through the Smoky Mountains can be very crowded, and the winding roads make it unsuitable for car sick prone toddlers. But older kids can appreciate the beautiful scenery and chance to see wildlife (from the car!).
Annual – and Free – Events in Sevierville
Sevierville’s Bloomin’ BBQ & Bluegrass
It’s not all country music in Tennessee. This annual bluegrass festival features free admission and free concerts throughout the day. The family-friendly Bloomin’ BBQ & Bluegrass is set for May 20 and 21 this year.
History & Haunts
Held in October, the History & Haunts festival includes haunted ghost tours, a family-friendly Halloween dance party, and a pumpkin carving contest [the carved pumpkin entries decorate the event]. The evening event is completely free.
Rose Glen Literary Festival
Published authors from around the country gather at this annual free festival devoted to the written word. The daylong festival, held in February, includes workshops, panels and opportunities to meet writers. There is a charge for the lunch, with the keynote speaker. But you can attend all the workshops without spending any money.
Not Totally Free – But Definitely a Bargain
Okay, these don’t technically qualify for my free list. Still, these attractions are a bargain for traveling families, as they offer free or low price admission for the little ones.
- The Floyd Garrett’s Muscle Car Museum is free for kids under age 8. See over 90 cars on display – just remind the kids to look, not touch!
- The Tennessee Museum of Aviation admits children under 6 for free.
- Smoky Mountain Deer Farm and Exotic Petting Zoo charges just $.09 for kids under age one and $.99 for kids ages one to two.
Do you have other favorite free things to do in Sevierville? Comment below.