Dollywood parks offer a spectacular experience and escape into the Great Smoky Mountains with thrilling rides, a water park, food and the high-energy entertainment and the expert craftspeople the park was built on. All of it easily accessible from your cozy cabin rental. Like other popular amusement parks, Dollywood can be crowded and expensive – but we’ve got some tips and hints for getting the most out of your fantastic Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, trip – from discounts to best days to visit to multi-day passes and even more hints to save money.
Spanning 150 acres, Dollywood offers more than 40 world-class rides, high-energy entertainment, award-winning dining and the “friendliest park atmosphere in the world.” Dollywood wins awards for its friendliness – In September 2018, the park won Friendliest Park at Amusement Today’s annual Golden Ticket Awards for the seventh year in a row.
A regular priced one-day adult fare is $74 plus $10 to add the water park. Children are $61 plus $10 to add the water park.
Everyone loves a discount, so let’s find you some.
For starters, follow the Dollywood Facebook page and Dollywood Fanatics – this page shares promo codes when they find them, along with photos and fun things and special events at the parks.
Another way to save is through deals at local restaurants and retailers.
Dollywood often partners with Coca-Cola to offer some sort of discount on tickets. For 2019, you can find a coupon on specially packaged bottles of Coca-Cola offering $40 off when buying 4 or more tickets. That’s a $10 discount per ticket. These bottles can be found in grocery stores throughout Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg when you arrive in town.
Local McDonald’s fast-food restaurants also offer discount tickets with special rates from July 24-Aug. 4.
Dollywood offers a 30% discount for military and their families – make sure to bring proper identification.
Dollywood offers senior pricing – $69 instead of $74 – be sure to ask for this discount if you are 62 years or older.
AAA members can save up to $5 per ticket. Members can redeem the offer via the AAA Website.
AVOID PARKING FEES
Take the trolley.
At the Dollywood parks, a standard vehicles costs $12 to park, and oversized vehicles cost $18.
You can easily save that money by parking your car for free at Patriot Park in Pigeon Forge and catching a ride on the Pigeon Forge trolley. The trolley for the Dollywood route costs $2.50 per person — you’ll get the experience of riding the trolley, which is unique and a treat, plus the trolley will drop you off right at the main gate. When you park in the parking lot, you can either walk to the main entrance or wait for the tram to pick you up at one of the designated tram stops.
Get the Most Out of Your Visit – In Other Words, Get Your Money’s Worth!
Buy Tickets Online
Spend less time in line and more time having fun and making memories by purchasing your Dollywood tickets online. You’ll get the tickets in an email and be ready to bypass the long lines when you arrive at the park.
Consider buying a gold pass – you get a full season with added perks such as free parking, discounts on food and merchandise. It only takes three visits to cover the cost of the gold season pass.
If you are a season pass holder, take advantage of the super-short lines during early Saturday entry. Each Saturday, a popular ride or area of the park will be open one hour before normal opening.
Choose Less Crowded Days
The best days to visit Dollywood vary based on the time of year. If you’re looking to see fewer crowds at the park in the peak summer months, try visiting on Wednesday or Thursday. In the fall and winter season, weekdays are best, and in the spring, Thursdays are typically less busy.
On crowd-surging days in the always busy summer months, it’s a good idea to get a TimeSaver Pass. With this pass, you can schedule time for rides, get alerts for when you can arrive and then skip to the front of the line. TimeSaver devices are available on a first-come, first-served basis and are limited daily. Cost is $35 per person. You can get a TimeSaver for the theme park and/or the water park.
Another way to save is by buying a 2-day or 3-day pass. You have 5 days to use the passes.
See Shows, Craftspeople Demonstrations, Fireworks
Since 1986, people from around the world have been visiting Dollywood for its name and experience. However, the entertainment park actually traces its roots back to 1961. Rebel Railroad first opened on the site that, over time, has expanded and grown into Dollywood. Dollywood was created in partnership with the famous Dolly Parton and the Herschend Brothers.
In between, there have been a lot of changes. Silver Dollar City, as it was known, expanded beyond a craftsman valley and train depot and added several rides. Dolly Parton, a Sevier County, Tennessee native, joined the Herschends in 1986 . She shared her entertainment experience, her love of the Great Smoky Mountains and her name to the theme park.
Dollywood now ranks in the Top 50 most attended theme parks worldwide. The park has more than doubled in size. An entirely new area, Rivertown Junction, was added for Dollywood’s first season. Included in this area were Aunt Granny’s-still Dollywood’s most-visited restaurant-Dolly’s Tennessee Mountain Home; the 450-seat Back Porch Theatre and the Smoky Mountain Rampage.
As Dollywood says and so do its patrons: “By offering a blend of thrilling rides, spectacular shows and master craftsmen in the Great Smoky Mountain and presented by employees with a genuine interest in the guest’s experience-all sprinkled with Dolly’s own special brand of charm and appeal-Dollywood more than delivers.”
In summer, there are nightly fireworks displays cleverly named “Dolly’s Nights of Many Colors.”
Synchronized to music, each evening June 22 – Aug. 4, the fireworks feature Paint Your Dreams across the Sky, an inspiring musical crescendo written specifically for the occasion by Dolly, along with other songs that underscore this colorful summertime celebration.
Guests can get the best view of the show near Wildwood Grove; Timber Canyon / Wilderness Pass; Country Fair in front of Grandstand Café; Adventures in Imagination between Dolly’s Closet and Dreamsong Theater; and The Front Gate in front of the Southern Gospel Music Association Hall of Fame.
New Faces of Country series features some of the most exciting new country artists at Back Porch Theater. In conjunction with WIVK 107.7, the third annual series is a great perk to your ticket.
🎵 June 27 – Adam Craig (4 p.m.)
🎶 July 11 – Caylee Hammack (4 p.m.)
🎵 July 18 – King Calaway (4 p.m.)
🎶 July 25 – Dakota Danielle (4 & 6 p.m.)
🎵 Aug. 1 – Janelle Arthur ( 4 & 6 p.m.)
Another musical treat that is part of regular admission is live music by the wave pool in Splash Country every Saturday in July and August. It’s a Splash Bash!
🥁 Aug. 3 – Soup of the Day
🎶 Aug. 10 – K-Town
🎷 Aug. 17 – Natti LoveJoys
🎧 Aug. 24 – Land of Color
🎺 Aug. 31 – Flashback
Dollywood has a festival for every season. Along with special décor, these seasons bring new music performances and special events:
- March – Festival of Nations
- Late May – Barbecue & Bluegrass
- Late June & Early August – Great American Summer
- October – National Southern Gospel and Harvest Celebration
- November & December – Smoky Mountain Christmas
More Money Saving Tips
Often the little things add up to big savings.
Water is free at Dollywood so bring a water bottle of buy a souvenir one and use it all day, all weekend or all season.
The best part–water is free! You can stop by any food or beverage stand in the park and ask for a cup of water, and it’s completely free. There are also water fountains located throughout the park near any of the restrooms. If you absolutely must splurge on sodas, pick up one of the refillable bottles, so you save money throughout the day (or if you plan on visiting Dollywood regularly, bring it back throughout the season for cheaper refills).
Eat before you go – at least breakfast!
Outside food and snacks aren’t permitted inside the park, but you can always store snacks in your car. Get stamped so you can go to your car for a picnic and then return.
Lather up before you go and take sunscreen with you – especially if you are going to Splash Country.
Take your own instead of renting one.
Dollywood is open every day in the summer and for longer. See the seasonal calendar.
Book Your Adventure
Ready to book your adventure in the Smoky Mountains? Give American Patriot Getaways a call at 800-204-5169. Let our experts help you find the right cabin and all the right fun and food near Dollywood!