The Great Smoky Mountains are home to a wide variety of outdoor activities … but there’s also plenty to do indoors (other than enjoying a hot tub at your Gatlinburg cabin).
Looking for something out of the ordinary to add a twist to your mountain vacation? Look no further than the museums of Gatlinburg. You’ll find an amazing and quirky collection of attractions that offer everything from one-of-a-kind collections to Hollywood connections.
1. Check out the cars of the stars! It doesn’t matter if you’re a motorhead, a TV and movie fan, or just long to drive like the rich and famous, there’s a car just for you at the Hollywood Star Cars Museum. You’ll find over 40 vehicles ranging from the exotic to the absurd in this revved-up collection that includes the General Lee from TV’s Duke’s of Hazzard, Herbie “The Love Bug”, the Batmobile from “Batman Returns”, Fred’s car from “The Flintstones” movie, and K.I.T.T. from “Knight Rider”. Plus, there are vintage autos once owned by Michael Jackson, Dolly Parton, Bob Hope, and Mike Tyson.
2. Visit the strangest place in Gatlinburg! That’s right, an official Ripley’s Believe It Or Not Museum is waiting to freak you out, right here in the Smokies. Check out the 500 astonishing and unusual artifacts collected from the far-corners of the world in Ripley’s Odditorium. All of the attractions are guaranteed to be real and mind boggling. Next, explore the mysterious Grimsby & Streaper Casket Company, whose owner mysteriously disappeared along with several townspeople. Learn all about it during an unbelievably scary tour at Ripley’s Haunted Adventure. Live actors and dozens of gory, scary and mysterious scenes and galleries greet all visitors!
3. Shake it up! If you love crafts and collectibles, then you don’t want to miss Gatlinburg’s own Salt and Pepper Shaker Museum. Where else can you find over 20,000 sets of shakers from across the globe, plus the world’s largest Pepper Mill collection? Get a glimpse of popular culture and family dining as you check out tabletop decorations that include animals, cartoon characters, cars, and an assortment of figures that you’ll probably remember from your childhood. During winter months, tours are available by appointment with just a few minute’s notice, so call ahead.
4. Hang out with the Dukes of Hazzard! You might remember him as a US Representative from Georgia, but to TV fans, Ben Jones will always be “Cooter” from the Dukes of Hazzard. Join Jones and friends for a trip through TV land at Cooter’s Museum and Fun Time Place. You’ll find a celebrity-filled collection of props, costumes, and other memorabilia from the classic show. Plus you can race General Lee go-karts (equipped with the finest safety features) at the region’s only indoor slick track and play miniature golf at “The Hazzard Country Club.”
From the amazing to the obscure, it’s a sure bet that fun for the whole family is waiting right “inside” one of these doors!