I guess it’s about that time again when I do a travel review! Not sure why I put this one off so long but here goes:
Top 11 Best Things About Dollywood (in my opinion)
- The Country Fair Section. The fair that comes to town once a year is a must for me, so having a fair like setting that I can visit anytime is awesome! This sections is chocked full of kid friendly rides and familiar carnival rides so it’s a great place for the littler kids, including May, to get their fill of thrills. One down side is that the Ferris Wheel is not there now. I think there are plans for one in the near future though.
- The Carousel. Once again, just something from my childhood that I love to do…and I actually fit in because lots of adults are riding it too.
- The Train. Trains are another great love of mine so riding “Cinderella”, an authentic steam engine who was used in World War II, is one of my favorite ways to slow down while at Dollywood. The ride takes you up the mountain for a beautiful view. Be warned that Cinderella earned her name and that means lots of cinders flying around. It’s best to take sunglasses to keep them out of your eyes.
- The Food. With lots of food options and all of the smells, I pretty much stay hungry at Dollywood. One of our favorite places to eat is Aunt Granny’s. It’s an all-you-can-eat buffet and when I was there they had lots of good choices for our picky toddlers (and my vegetarian Dad.) Some days are different from others though, so it may be worth asking about the menu before you actually eat. Food is also on the “not-so-good” list because of the price…especially if you want to eat all day like me. Oh, and did I mention cotton candy?
- Music. There’s always music going on in Dollywood, whether it’s live music or music playing over the speakers. The musicians are always so talented and the sound track is upbeat and makes you feel happy.
- Shows. It’s pretty much impossible to see every show Dollywood has to offer because they are always changing and usually several going on at one time. My parents’ favorite is the gospel show. Some of my past favorites are Sha-Kon-O-Hey (telling about the Native Americans who lived in the “Land of Blue Smoke”), Gazillion Bubbles, and Wings of America.
- Zip-lining. My brother-in-law talked me into this one and I’m so glad he did! The views are beautiful (if you can get past being nervous) and the employees are really nice and make it even more fun. You don’t even have to worry about stopping yourself because they do it for you. The last line soars over 3 roller coasters! However, the first time I went, my butt “kissed the ramp” as one of the workers put it and ripped a huge hole in my pants. My sister now calls it the “rip-line.” As long as you’re prepared to keep your butt off the ramp and able to hike up the hill, you should definitely give it a try. *It is an extra fee and not included in the pass.
- The Water Rides. There’s a couple rides in the park that will get you soaked and cooled off, which is exactly what you need when it’s a thousand degrees outside. There’s even a splash area for the kiddos.
- The Roller Coasters. Okay, so I’m not as much of a thrill seeker as I used to be, but I still enjoy riding a few of the roller coasters. It’s nice to have so many to choose from so you can pick just the right level of scary. There’s even a mini coaster that May can ride. She loves it but I have to admit that it’s pretty intense for a two-year-old.
- Festivals. This one is a little double-sided. The festivals offer lots of fun things to do and special events, but with it comes bigger crowds. You can use this schedule to your advantage though and plan a trip between festivals and hit the park at a slower time of year.
- Painted Rocks. There’s lots of fun places to hide painted rocks and we’ve found a few on our trips to the park. With so many people from all over the world there, it’s hard to tell where they could end up at!
Overall, I’d give Dollywood a 9/10. (Minus .5 points for the price and .5 points for how tired my feet are at the end of the day!)