One of the most popular attractions in Gatlinburg, offering fun for the whole family, is Anakeesta.
Anakeesta is Gatlinburg’s Mountain Theme Park
A visit to Gatlinburg promises adventure and family fun. Whether you’re ziplining, exploring one of the country’s best aquariums or visiting a year-round amusement park, there’s so much to do in Gatlinburg. One of the most popular attractions in Gatlinburg, offering fun for the whole family, is Anakeesta.
Derived from the Cherokee word referring to high ground, Anakeesta offers not only some of the best views of Gatlinburg and the Smoky Mountains, but also plenty of activities for all ages. Nestled in the mountains of downtown Gatlinburg, conveniently located on the Parkway, Anakeesta aims to provide guests with an experience authentic to the Smokies. Anakeesta is the perfect place to create long-lasting memories in the mountains.
Things to Do at Anakeesta
The 72-acre adventure theme park features plenty of activities, including a ziplines, a mountain coaster, treetop canopy walks, shopping, restaurants and spectacular views of the area.
Your Anakeesta adventure begins with a ride on the Chondola. This open-air chairlift takes guests on a scenic ride from downtown Gatlinburg to Anakeesta’s summit. You’ll ride 600 feet up Anakeesta Mountain then arrive at Firefly Village. Firefly Village is where you’ll find Anakeesta’s shopping and dining options, as well as panoramic views of the Smoky Mountain range and Mt. LeConte.
Anakeesta offers a number of exciting activities that everyone from children to adults will enjoy.
Anakeesta’s Mountain Coaster
For some adrenaline-pumping fun, take a ride on the Rail Runner Mountain Coaster. This single-rail coaster is the first of its kind in the U.S. Riders will go down the mountain and through the trees at speeds of up to 25 mph. You’ll twist and turn for 1,600 feet before enjoying a more relaxing ride back up the mountain. This mountain coaster can accommodate solo riders or an adult and a child, from age 3-7.
Children’s Activities at Anakeesta
While Anakeesta has activities for the whole family to do together, there are also attractions designed specifically for kids. They can play among the trees at the Children’s Treehouse Village Playground. This treehouse-themed village features mazes, places to climb and wooded homes to explore.
Children can also partake in some old-fashioned gem mining at Anakeesta. Kids will love searching for a precious gemstones or fossils.
Anakeesta Tree Canopy Walk
There are plenty of places at Anakeesta to take in the gorgeous scenery. Fully immerse yourself in the beauty of the area along the Tree Canopy Walk. You’ll be 40–60 feet above the forest floor as you traverse these 16 suspended bridges. You can even spot some of the local wildlife.
Ziplining at Anakeesta
Race your family and friends through the treetops on the Dueling Zipline Adventure. High above the forest floor, these ziplines offer a breathtaking view and an adrenaline rush. On the course are challenge stations where you’ll have to rappel off platforms. This high-flying adventure takes less than an hour.
Anakeesta’s location on the Parkway puts you close to a number of Gatlinburg’s best restaurants, but you may not want to leave the mountain for meal. Anakeesta boasts several eateries to satisfy every appetite.
Enjoy some down-home-style Tennessee barbecue at Anakeesta Smokehouse. Or, enjoy a meal with a view at Anakeesta’s newest restaurant, Cliff Top Grill & Bar. Menu items include burgers, salads, sandwiches and more, with a fantastic view of the mountains. Finish your meal with a dessert from Pearl’s Pie in the Sky. Satisfy your sweet tooth with an old-fashioned pie, hand-dipped ice cream, milkshake and more.
Adults will want to unwind with an adult beverage at The Bar at the Top of the World. This spacious bar is located next to Cliff Top Grill & Bar, allowing you to sip a handcrafted cocktail, beer or wine while taking in some fantastic views.
Shopping at Anakeesta
Anakeesta has two shops to peruse for one-of-a-kind items, souvenirs, apparel and more. Visit Great Outdoors Trading Company for a variety of items, including home goods, jewelry, clothing and more, that any outdoor enthusiast would enjoy. Peruse the whimsical items at Catching Fireflies, Anakeesta’s on-site boutique.
A photograph of your Anakeesta adventure is the perfect keepsake. Visit the Information Booth at Firefly Village to ask about having a photographer capture these special memories. These professional photos can be taken on the Chondola and on the Dueling Zipline Adventure.
General Admission Prices
Anakeesta charges a general admission price that includes the Chondola ride and access to the following activities and attractions: Tree Canopy Walk, Children’s Treehouse Village Playground, Vista Gardens Walk, Memorial Forest Walk and the restaurants and shops within Firefly Village.
Adults (ages 12–59): $21.99 | Children (ages 4–11): $17.99 | Seniors (ages 60 and older): $19.99
Anakeesta Annual Pass
Annual passes are also available for purchase. This is a great way for those who visit Anakeesta multiple times a year to save some money. Annual Passes include the same activities and attractions as the general admission
Adults (ages 12–59): $43.98 | Children (ages 4–11): $35.98 | Seniors (ages 60 and older): $39.98
Individually Priced Activities
Rail Runner Mountain Coaster
Single rider: $12.99 | Tandem rider: $14.99
Dueling Zipline Adventure
Adults (ages 12–59): $29.99 | Children (ages 4–11): $25.99| Seniors (ages 60 and older): $27.99
Anakeesta offers discounts to AAA members, active and retired military and their immediate families, and Sevier County locals.
Groups of 20 or more can also save on their visit to Anakeesta.
More Information about Anakeesta
Anakeesta is located at 576 Parkway at traffic light #5 in downtown Gatlinburg.
Since Anakeesta is on the Gatlinburg Parkway, those staying at a hotel in downtown Gatlinburg can walk or use the inexpensive Gatlinburg Trolley.
Those driving can park in the city parking lots that are located walking distance from Anakeesta.
There is also a Premier Parking paid lot right next to Anakeesta’s Chondola ride entrance.
Anakeesta Weather Policy
Anakeesta is open rain or shine. The Chondola, mountain coaster, zipline, playground and treetop canopy walk all remain open during inclement weather. However, dangerous winds, lightning, extreme cold or heavy rain can cause the park to close.
Images provided by Anakeesta