There are many millions of colored and animated lights that come alive during the Winter Magic and Winterfest celebration seasons of Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge. One of the best ways to see all the different lights is by trolley.
The trolley system of Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge is one of the great transportation experiences in the area for simply relaxing and sightseeing without having to worry about watching traffic instead of the sights.
UPDATE – As of 2015, Pigeon Forge is no longer offering the Winter Tour. The City provides a map of the best lights and a recommended, self-drive tour. The trolley system is still as great as ever!
In Gatlinburg you can take a short and inexpensive tour – 45 minutes for around $5 – and be shown the lights of the town with engaging commentary by an experienced tour guide who knows the history of the places and the famous displays.
The trolleys are state-of-the-art people movers, wheelchair accessible, with lots of glass for unobstructed views, and with plenty of heat for those cold winter evenings. Be prepared to see animated animals, characters, dancing fountains, and any number of Christmas scenes.
The tour of lights starts with a free service for the kickoff evening of Winterfest in Pigeon Forge (usually on Veteran’s Day), and Winter Magic in Gatlinburg the following day. The Gatlinburg tours run three times each weekday evening through December, winding down the frequency and ultimately ending during January.
Tours leave from and return to Ripley’s Aquarium in Gatlinburg. You can buy tickets for the tour in advance or on the same day, but groups of 10 should make a reservation, and note that there has to be a minimum of 15 riders for a tour to run.
Information about the Winter Tour of Lights
Gatlinburg Trolley web site or call (865) 436-3897
Pigeon Forge Trolley web site or call (865) 453-6444
For full information about the trolley system in the area see our comprehensive page: The Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge Trolley: Getting Around Town and also check our 2017 Tour of Lights page.
Whichever town you prefer to be closer to, we have cabins all over the area that can put you where you want to be. Check out our Gatlinburg Cabins and our Pigeon Forge Cabins pages, or for a little quieter (and very scenic) area, try the Wears Valley Cabins page. And all cabins get our Free Ticket “TripCash” book of Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg Coupons, worth over $400!