adventure park in gatlinburg

Have you ever wondered what it’s like to soar above a lush forest or gaze at the expansive beauty of the Smoky Mountains from a different perspective? At Anakeesta in Gatlinburg, Tennessee, you’re invited to elevate your experience with adventures that blend thrill with natural beauty. Imagine stepping onto the Treetop Skywalk, where you dangle above the ground, surrounded by breathtaking views. Or, perhaps the rush of the Dueling Zipline appeals more to your adventurous spirit. However, it’s not just the activities that captivate; there’s an element at Anakeesta that might just change your view on what it means to truly live high on life. What could that be, you ask?

Key Takeaways

  • Experience exhilarating heights on Anakeesta’s Chondola and Ridge Rambler, offering stunning views of the Great Smoky Mountains.
  • Traverse the Treetop Skywalk, featuring 14 suspension bridges, providing a unique aerial perspective of the lush landscape.
  • Ascend AnaVista Tower for a breathtaking 360-degree panorama of the surrounding mountains and forests.
  • Engage in thrilling activities like the Dueling Zipline Adventure, rappelling through trees, and exploring additional adventure add-ons.
  • Immerse in the natural and artistic beauty of Vista Gardens, home to over 3,000 plants and creative sculptures.

Discovering Anakeesta’s Charm

Nestled in the heart of Gatlinburg, Tennessee, Anakeesta offers a magical escape where adventure and tranquility beautifully intertwine. As you step onto the Chondola or the Ridge Rambler, you’re whisked away to a mountaintop that promises breathtaking panoramas of the Great Smoky Mountains. Here, the air feels fresher, and the hustle of daily life fades into the serene whispers of nature.

Upon your arrival at Firefly Village, you’re greeted by an enchanting blend of local shops and dining options, each offering a taste of Appalachian culture. It’s more than just a place to eat and shop; it’s a vibrant hub where laughter and conversations flow as freely as the mountain streams.

A stroll along the Treetop Skywalk takes you on a journey through the treetops, with 14 suspension bridges that hover 50 to 60 feet above the ground. This sky-high adventure gives you a unique perspective, allowing you to gaze over the lush forests that blanket the region.

For a panoramic view that captures the essence of the Great Smoky Mountains, climb the AnaVista Tower. From the top, the 360-degree views are simply unmatched, enveloping you in the vast beauty that defines Anakeesta’s charm.

Thrilling Zipline Adventures

Feel your heart race as you begin Anakeesta’s Dueling Zipline Adventure, soaring over 2,400 feet of exhilarating ziplines that promise both thrill and stunning mountain vistas. As you glide side-by-side with a friend, you’ll witness the breathtaking scenery of the Smoky Mountains, making every moment unforgettable. This thrilling race isn’t just about speed; it’s about savoring a bird’s-eye view of nature’s grandeur.

As you advance through the course, prepare for an extra dose of adrenaline as you rappel through the trees. This unique element adds a layer of excitement and challenge, ensuring that your adventure is as engaging as it is electrifying. The experience is designed not only to thrill but to create lasting memories amid the beauty of Gatlinburg.

For those looking for more, Anakeesta offers additional add-on adventures. Each activity is tailored to elevate your experience and provide that adrenaline rush you crave. Here’s a quick overview of what’s waiting for you:

Adventure Type Description
Rappelling Descend through the trees on a guided drop
Coaster Pass Ride the Hellbender or Rail Runner
Astra Lumina Enchanting night walk among the treetops

Dive into these adventures for a truly great experience that goes beyond the ordinary.

Scenic Chondola Rides

charming mountainside chondola rides

Experience the stunning vistas of the Smoky Mountains as you ascend on Anakeesta’s unique Chondola ride, a serene journey that combines the thrill of a chairlift with the comfort of a gondola. As you glide upwards, you’re not just moving through an expanse of fresh air and scenic beauty, but also stepping away from the everyday hustle. It’s a perfect moment to unwind and bond, surrounded by the breathtaking panorama that only Gatlinburg can offer.

This ride isn’t just about the destination; it’s about the shared moments between you, your family, and friends. Whether you choose the open-air joy of a chairlift or the enclosed comfort of a gondola, each offers a distinctive way to appreciate the lush landscapes and distant peaks. It’s a communal experience, fostering laughter and conversation against a backdrop of expansive mountain skies and dense green forests.

Included in your ticket, this all-day access lets you savor these heights as often as you’d like. Each ascent invites a new perspective of the Smokies, ensuring that every ride up with your loved ones is as memorable as the last. Don’t just take the trip; let the journey elevate your spirits and deepen your connections.

Navigating the Treetop Skywalk

After your scenic ascent on the Chondola, continue your adventure by stepping onto the Treetop Skywalk, where 14 bridges suspend you amidst the towering trees for a spectacular aerial view of the Smoky Mountains. Each bridge, hanging 50-60 feet above the ground, offers a unique vantage point over the lush landscapes that stretch into the horizon. As you navigate these sky-high pathways, you’re not just walking; you’re part of the skyline, moving through the canopy with a bird’s eye view of the forest floor below.

This thrilling experience isn’t just about elevation; it’s about immersion. The Skywalk’s design lets you feel the breeze and hear the subtle sounds of nature that resonate from the treetops to the valleys below, including those that stretch towards North Carolina. It’s a blend of thrill and tranquility, hanging in the balance above Gatlinburg’s vibrant ecosystem.

Throughout your journey across the Skywalk, pause at various points to soak in the panoramic views. Each step brings a new scene, a fresh perspective of the Smoky Mountains, making this walk not just a passage, but a discovery of aerial artistry.

Can Altitude Sickness Occur at Anakeesta in Gatlinburg Tennessee?

Yes, altitude sickness can occur at Anakeesta in Gatlinburg, Tennessee, especially for visitors coming from lower elevations. To prevent and manage altitude sickness symptoms such as headaches and fatigue, it’s important to stay hydrated, avoid alcohol, and allow the body time to acclimate to the higher altitude.

Exploring Gatlinburg’s Natural Beauty

nature in gatlinburg shines

As you wander through Anakeesta, you’ll discover Gatlinburg’s natural beauty, often hidden in the expansive views from the AnaVista Tower and the lush, vibrant pathways of Vista Gardens. Standing atop the tower, you’re treated to a breathtaking 360-degree panorama of the Smoky Mountains, enveloping you in a world where the horizon stretches endlessly. The gardens below are a tapestry of color, with over 3,000 plants and artistic sculptures, including the towering forest keeper, Willow, who seems to whisper tales of the forest with the wind.

Strolling further, the air fills with the sounds of adventure—from the thrilling echoes of the Dueling Zipline racers overhead to the distant rumble of the Rail Runner Mountain Coaster. Each element of Anakeesta is designed to immerse you in the wild majesty of the Smokies.

Don’t miss exploring Firefly Village within Anakeesta, where great places to eat offer locally-inspired cuisine, perfect for refueling after your adventures. Here, the rustic charm of Gatlinburg meets modern culinary delights, making every meal a memorable part of your mountain escape. Engage all your senses as you dive deeper into the natural splendor that Anakeesta and Gatlinburg generously offer.


As you wrap up your adventure at Anakeesta, it’s clear you’ve discovered more than just thrills. The breathtaking views from the Chondola and the exhilaration of ziplining with friends have deepened your connection to nature and those around you.

Strolling the Treetop Skywalk, you’ve stepped into the heart of the Smokies. Anakeesta isn’t just a visit; it’s a vivid, unforgettable embrace of life’s highest peaks. Carry this spirit with you long after you descend.

By Bibi Jordan

Bibi Jordan is a seasoned travel writer and photographer with a passion for exploring the world's most captivating destinations. At 65 years old, Bibi has traversed the globe, documenting her experiences with vivid storytelling and stunning imagery. Her work celebrates diverse cultures, unique traditions, and the beauty of the natural world. With over three decades of travel writing under her belt, Bibi brings a depth of knowledge and an insightful perspective to her readers, encouraging them to embark on their own adventures. Her website, Travels with Bibi, serves as a treasure trove of travel tips, detailed guides, and inspiring narratives that resonate with seasoned explorers and new adventurers alike.

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