One Day at Dollywood? Everything You Must See, Do, and Eat

If you had just one day in Dollywood, what should you see? What should you do? Where should you eat!? While there are days upon days of fun and excitement – and great food – on tap at this Smoky Mountain treasure, it’s still possible to get a taste of it all in just one day. To help you do just that, here’s a look at all the top things to see, do, and eat during your single-day theme park adventure.

Things to See

With over 150 acres of attractions, shops, and so much more, this theme park offers nearly endless things to see. But since you only have a day, here’s where to focus your attention.

Dollywood’s Tennessee Mountain Home
Dollywood’s Tennessee Mountain Home is a beautiful replica of the two-room Locust Ridge home Dolly Parton grew up in with her family. As you glance around each room, you’ll get to see how her family lived, loved, and got by without electricity and running water. Make sure to take a moment to pour over the classic newspapers that served as wallpaper and reading material all in one.

Robert F. Thomas Chapel
The Robert F. Thomas Chapel is also a sight to behold with its single room devoted to worship every Sunday morning. As you stroll along the wooden pews, test out your singing voice to see how the wondrous hymns bounce off the hardwood floors and walls. If you’re here on Sunday, don’t hesitate to come in at 11:30 am for service.

Eagle Mountain Sanctuary
Bald eagles galore call the 30,000 square foot Eagle Mountain Sanctuary home and happily enjoy visitors coming through on the regular. American Eagle Foundation members come through often to care for the birds and offer educational opportunities to all the guests at the park.

Once you get your fill of these amazing sights, it’s time to go have some fun elsewhere in the park.

Top Attractions

Dozens of exciting attractions pepper the landscape at Dollywood. So many, in fact, that it’s virtually impossible to get through them all even on a full three-day weekend at the park. So, here’s three that promise to make your single-day trip wholly memorable.

Dollywood Express Train

Nothing compares to the magic of seeing the Great Smoky Mountains foothills from the comfort of the Dollywood Express Train. You just have to wait at the depot for the train to arrive, then snag your seats to enjoy a 20-minute ride to remember. Just remember to grab a good window seat for a front-row view of the scenery passing you by with quickness.

Daredevil Falls

Daredevil Falls will put your mettle to the test as it takes you on a wild trip past bears and lumber machinery of all kinds. Then, just once you think you’re safe, you’ll go flying down the waterfall at a blazing 50 miles per hour. Although it’s just a 60-foot drop, you will undoubtedly feel like you’re falling for days as the wind and water droplets whip past you.

Wild Eagle

To see what all those beautiful eagles in the sanctuary feel as they fly around, grab a spot on the Wild Eagle coaster. As the first wing coaster in the United States, this ride promises to take you on an exhilarating flight unlike any other. As you hold on tight and enjoy the twists and turns, remember to take a look around to see the beauty of the Smokies from all angles.

After you’re done with the rides, you’re undoubtedly ready for a hot meal and plenty of rest. Thankfully, there are tons of eateries to choose from offering just that.

Must-Try Eateries

Dollywood boasts all the best eateries filled with homecooked meals that stick to the ribs and leave you dying for more. If you can only visit a few during your day trip, here’s where you need to go.

Front Porch Café

Located on Front Street, the Front Porch Café proudly rolls out all of Dolly’s favorite dishes, including the ever-popular Smoky Mountain Breakfast Skillet. When you start your day out with that dish, you get a bellyful of tasty hash brown casserole, crispy bacon, and eggs just how you like them. As if that’s not enough, they also give you a side of stoneground grits, a cheddar biscuit, and enough cheese for a lifetime.

Aunt Granny’s Restaurant

Aunt Granny’s Restaurant is the perfect place to snag a decadent lunch, dinner, or both. There are always homecooked delights available, like fried chicken, mashed potatoes, and green beans. The cornbread and biscuits are good enough reason to visit all on their own, especially when slathered with fresh butter and honey.

Crossroads Funnel Cakes

Whether you just want a scrumptious dessert or an ultra-sweet snack, you cannot go wrong with a visit to Crossroads Funnel Cakes. At this dessert factory, they take flavored batter of all kinds, including tantalizing red velvet, and fry them up to perfection. Then, they add all the toppings of your choice. You can go with a classic dusting of cinnamon sugar or reach for the stars with hot fudge, strawberries, and bits of candy to top it all off.

If you have any time left once you’ve finished this itinerary, get on over to the shops for a look around. There are tons of handmade goods and treats on sale for you to take home and share with friends, family, and neighbors. You don’t even have to carry it all through the park once you’ve bought your fill. Instead, just send your purchases to the front gates for pick up as you head out at the end of the day.

Although this itinerary treats you to all the best of Dollywood, the theme park will undoubtedly continue calling your name forevermore. Thankfully, you can always return to the Great Smoky Mountains on all your vacations and make visiting this theme park an annual tradition.