Plan A Smokey Mountains Dollywood Vacation
Special thank you to the Dollywood marketing team who hosted our Dollywood Vacation, in exchange for our review. All opinions are my own.
Imagine sipping a mason jar of lemonade, on a porch rocking chair, while enjoying the breathtaking Smokey Mountains and listening to the classic music of Dolly Parton in the background. There’s nothing quite like a Dollywood vacation because there’s something for everyone. Dolly’s Dream More Resort offers the perfect retreat after a day of thrills at the Dollywood park.
Related: FREE Printable Travel Bingo For Kids
The Ultimate Guide To Planning Your Dollywood Vacation
Streamline Your Trip And Stay At Dolly’s Dream More Resort
The city of Pigeon Forge offers plenty of lodging options, but none are quite like the Dream More. Every room has either a mountain view or pool view and staying there allows you to maximize your time. Among many family amenities, the resort offers a trolly ride to the park every 15 minutes. So you’re not paying for theme park parking while you leave your car parked at the resort.
Resort guests also receive complimentary TimeSaver passes (valued at $35 per person) which allows for shorter queue times in the park. For our family, those alone make the Dream More our top choice of where to stay.
Other amenities include a gorgeous zero-entry pool with a splash pad for young kids, playground area, on-site dining options, indoor pool and spa. Upon check-in, be sure to grab an event calendar so your family can take full advantage of everything the resort offers. Our kids loved fireside s’mores and the bedtime story, which were both featured activities.
I love that the Dream More Resort offers diverse room accommodations. We stayed in the King Room With Bunk, which was nicely appointed and the kids loved it. Next time, I will opt for a bit more room with a suite. Their suite options offer a bit more space and the kid’s bunk beds are divided to offer more privacy. Dollywood even has cabins if you’re traveling with extended family members or need more comforts of home.
Dollywood Pro Tip: The only restaurant on property that takes reservations is Song and Hearth: Southern Eatery. It’s the on-site buffet style restaurant. You can book it online with Open Table. Another great option is ordering your food ahead of time with the DM Pantry (where you can find THE Cinnamon Bread). Your family’s food can be ready when you return from the parks.
Overall, The Dream More offers convenience and added relaxation during your Dollywood vacation. Look for seasonal Stay & Play Dollywood Packages which allows you to bundle your park tickets together with your hotel stay.
Enjoy The Thrills Of Dollywood Or Explore On Your Own Time
What I love about Dollywood is how it’s designed for all ages. Whether your interests are taking in the world-class shows, riding all of the roller coasters or just eating your way around the park, they’ve got something for everyone. With small kids, we explore on our own leisurely time, but parents can still enjoy the thrill rides with their Parent Swap Program. It allows one parent to wait with the kids while the other parent rides, and vice versa. It’s offered for most rides with minimum height requirements.
My Must-Do Dollywood Attractions & Food Picks
New for 2019, you’ve got to check our their largest expansion to date: Wildwood Grove. The area is themed after Dolly’s childhood imagination. The beauty of the new area is definitely Dragonflier, which is a high-speed suspended family roller coaster. Centered in the area is a beautiful Wildwood Tree that has illuminated butterflies and hidden musical instruments carved into the trunk. Definitely take time to explore all of the details of this must-do area.
Of all the sights and sounds that Dollywood offers, you can’t miss hearing the Dollywood Express. It’s a whopping twenty minute train ride throughout the park that offers unbeatable views of the surrounding mountain area.
When we picked up our TimeSaver, Concierge made sure to mark our park map with the exact locations you can find the famous Cinnamon Bread. The pillowy bread is baked all day long and the smell of it is tempting enough to make the purchase.
In true Dolly style, you can find entertainment around every corner of Dollywood. While you can enjoy the sounds of the park by simply walking through the different areas, our family loved the “Wings of America Birds of Prey” show, where you can see the biggest birds take flight above your head. Dollywood Pro Tip: you can enjoy these birds, in their sanctuary home, anytime when they’re not doing the show.
Most questions you have about exploring the park can be answered by downloading their Dollywood App. If you’re visiting Dollywood with kids, like we did, I think it’s a great way to plan ahead. You can find a virtual map of the park, details on food spots, all of the height requirements and so much more! Download it before you go.
Stay Cool With Dollywood’s Splash Country Water Park
Dollywood’s Splash Country is home to Tennessee’s first water coaster. You can be lazy in one of their pools or find even more thrills with their slides. The 35 acre park includes area appropriate for young kiddos and plunging rides that have height requirements.
Dollywood Pro Tip: Order your Picnic In The Park at Splash Country. New for 2019, families can order a picnic ahead of time (for a family of 4) that’ll be ready whenever you want. You just order online 24-hours ahead of time and pick up in the park. They have two different picnic options to pick from.
Other food options at Splash Country are casual walk-up eateries. They’re scattered throughout the park and offer sandwiches, burgers, tacos, vegetarian options and plenty of sweets. Save money and even checkout line time, by purchasing a Splash Country refillable mug. So many guests rave that it’s the best deal offered at Dollywood!
Dolly Parton’s Stampede Dinner Show
You can purchase your Dolly Parton’s Stampede Dinner Show tickets in advance online, at Dream More Resort concierge or you can even purchase tickets for the show around Pigeon Forge. It’s a very popular dinner show that combines great food with visual effects and spectacular stunts. It’s got a bit of comedy, a bit of suspense and the kids love it. They serve kid’s meals and special request vegetarian meals. Children under 3 are free, if they’re sitting in your lap, and sharing your meal.
How To Save Money On Dollywood Tickets
If you love your Dollywood vacation, or live nearby, consider purchasing a Dollywood Annual Pass. They offer an online payment plan and you can visit as often as you want, whenever you want. The annual passes have three different tiers to select from:
- Unlimited Admission to Dollywood
- Unlimited Admission to Dollywood & Splash Country
- Unlimited Admission to Splash Country
Each tier offers a gold version, for an upgraded price, that includes free parking as well. The more often you visit, the more money you save. At the highest level, prices for unlimited admission to Dollywood & Splash Country Gold Super Pass is $254 + tax (for 2019 prices). Either way you look at it, you can save money by purchasing the pass if you plan to go multiple times throughout the season.
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