While Dollywood is well known for thrilling roller coasters, world-class shows, and delicious southern cooking, there are also many other unique aspects to the park! When you are walking through it, be sure to check out all of the nooks and crannies as you never know what fascinating attraction you might find around the corner! Here are the top 5 hidden gems that you should visit while exploring the Dollywood theme park:
1. Calico Falls Schoolhouse
The Calico Falls Schoolhouse is a one-room schoolhouse that offers a glimpse into the typical schools that existed in East Tennessee during the 1890s. This was a simpler time when there were slate boards rather than pens and paper! If you have young children in your family, they will be especially interested to compare this schoolhouse to their own learning environment back home!
2. Chasing Rainbows
Another hidden gem in Dollywood theme park is Chasing Rainbows, a wonderful, interactive museum featuring behind-the-scenes collections, stories and memorabilia from the life and career of Dolly Parton. You’ll have the opportunity to see some of the costumes from Dolly’s movie career as well as many of her lavish gowns worn during concerts, award shows, and special appearances. Don’t miss the case filled with some of Dolly’s awards, such as her Grammy, Country Music Association and People’s Choice awards!
3. Dolly’s Home on Wheels
If you ever wanted to know what it was like to travel cross country as a performer, check out Dolly’s Home on Wheels! After taking Dolly all across the USA, this 1994 Prevost is now parked at Dollywood so that you can take a look inside! The vehicle was designed by Dolly’s friend, longtime road manager, and bus driver Don Warden and his wife, Anne. The interior features hand-tooled leather from Germany, cherry cabinets, brass fixtures, 3 bunk beds, 2 bathrooms, and a shower!
4. Robert F. Thomas Chapel
While it may seem unusual to find a church inside of a theme park, that is exactly what you will find at Dollywood with the Robert F. Thomas Chapel! This one-room country church features simple wooden pews and hardwood floors, and it is named after the doctor who delivered Dolly Parton. You can even attend services at the chapel, which take place on Sundays at 11:30 a.m. during the regular season, and at 5:30 p.m. during the Smoky Mountain Christmas.
5. Southern Gospel Museum and Hall of Fame
Many guests at the Dollywood theme park are surprised to find out that the park is home to the Southern Gospel Museum and Hall of Fame! However, since the roots of Southern gospel music run deep in the Smoky Mountains, it is only fitting that the museum is located at Dollywood! While touring the facility, you can learn about the pioneers who brought gospel music to audiences around the world. You can also see how the legends of this wonderful music genre paved the way for today’s artists.
Check out all of the rooms at our hotel in Pigeon Forge TN today to plan your vacation near the Dollywood theme park, and be sure to visit all of these hidden gems! We hope to see you soon at the Park Grove Inn!