Things To Do In Gatlinburg, TN – Ripley’s Attractions
When most of your children’s book collection runs hand in hand with fun attractions… SCORE!!! Every year for Christmas, my oldest son asks for the latest Ripley’s and Guinness Book of World Records books. Over the years, our boys have compiled quite the Ripley’s collection! While we were in Gatlinburg last week, we took the boys to quite a few of the Ripley’s 8 Attractions! You can purchase Ripley’s Books HERE!
If you go online, you can purchase tickets for the aquarium plus 2-7 other attractions for a discounted rate! You really do not pay very much extra to be able to take advantage of ALL Ripley’s attractions compared to the aquarium ticket ONLY. I would highly recommend looking into the combo passes HERE!
While we were at the 5D Moving Theatre, they were showing a Looney Tunes production of Wile E. Coyote trying his hardest to catch the Road Runner. The 5D experience was fantastic with a combination of great sound effects and motion seats, we felt just like a part of the movie!
Since the tickets are to watch 2 shows, we also watched Angry Birds. The angry birds are trying to constantly trick the mischievous piggies. While the effects were great and coordinated really well with the movie, the smiles and laughs of my children made this show worth while. Since they change the shows periodically, it is an attraction you and your family could do over again and get a whole new experience with each new show!
Ripley’s Themed Mini-Golf
Old MacDonald Farm Mini-Golf
Davy Crockett Mini Golf
This is a classic game of Mini-Golf with a fun themed course tow two different classic childhood characters making it not so classic. Choose between Old MacDonald or Davy Crockett (which is the one we did)… or do BOTH! We do plan to go back to the Old MacDonald one but just ran out of time! It will be on our to-do list for next time our family is in Gatlinburg.
For the Davy Crockett course, it was nice that they had two separate 18-hole courses to choose from. The staff member made sure he explained the difference in the two courses making it a no-brainer for us which course to choose on a hot, sunny day. One course was mostly shaded and one was mostly sunny which makes it perfect for all seasons. Of course, we chose the shaded course for this time of the year.
They also offer free parking while playing which is definitely a perk if you have been around Gatlinburg!
The course decor was entertaining and the holes themselves were fun, yet challenging. A couple of the holes even feature interactive characters making it extra fun for the kids.
A maze of mirrors and only one way out, with dead ends, strobes, color changing lights and what seems like infinite reflections try to confuse you. Participants enter and exit through the candy shop allowing you to take care of that sweet tooth as well!
This did not take our group long but if you get lost, they send in “search crews” every half hour.
Guinness World Records Adventure
For some, the Guinness World Records Adventure can be a place to see just how fast you can be, how strong you are, or even how many baskets you can make in a specific amount of time. My family, probably like many others, took it to another level. It wasn’t just competing against our own self but it became a competition between family members! A FUN competition but a competition to say the least.
There was a giant pogo stick and I almost broke a record! I also really like the “quick draw” which you had to pull the gun out of the holster as quick as you could and shoot. ~Ryan, age 10
Upon arriving, we received wrist bands that are to be used at each station to record your best scores. In the end, you will find out how you matched up to others!
A few of our favorite stations are pictured above. The entire building is full of fun, interactive activities. Of them all, only ONE station was out of order which is pretty impressive to me considering that typically when there is that much technology based things involved, there are typically a lot of out of order signs up… not here though! This was probably the next favorite attraction after the aquarium for our family. There is something for ALL ages here!
The aquarium is and has been one of our family’s favorite places to go! Partly, it is because my kid’s especially have such a deep knowledge and love for aquarium life. Their favorite sections include:
- The Penguins (where they can crawl through a tunnel to get up close to the penguins)
- Splash with the Stingrays (for an additional charge, anyone can get in the water with the stingrays to pet and be splashed by them. For those not wanting to get in the water, there is a place you can lean into the water with just your hand to pet and feed them without any additional charge)
- Firefly Fish (Underneath the big tree in the kid’s section, there is an exhibit not many see. Firefly Fish are truly a unique type of fish you just have to see for yourself!)
- Jelly Fish and Horseshoe Crabs (This is the place you can ask questions to the marine life specialists and have the opportunity to TOUCH jellyfish and horseshoe crabs!)
- Shark Lagoon (Take a ride on the moving sidewalk to watch as sharks swim above and beside you in this massive aquarium tunnel!)
Check out my full review HERE!
Do you DARE to enter?! Live actors, dressed to scare, are ready to give you a thrill AND a major scare. Can you handle it? Only for ages 6 and up. We did not go through the Haunted Adventure since our daughter is only 4 years old but I did want to mention it!
Yet another one of our favorites! This ranked third on our list of favorites. This is the place to go if you love more of the museum feel. It is full of Ripley’s artifacts as well as interactive stations. One of MY favorites here was the Shadow Room. I can remember going to one when I was a child and have such great memories of seeing how I could walk away from my very own shadow. My 4 year old especially was in awe in this one!
It felt like all my Ripley’s Books came to life in the Odditorium! It was really neat to get to see first hand the different stuff that people have broke records with! ~Cameron, age 14
Whether you choose to go to one or all of the Ripley’s Attractions, you are bound to have fun and make memories to really last! I would love to hear about YOUR Ripley’s fun in the comments below!
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