Dollywood was one of the last major theme parks that I always wanted to go to just never had the time to fit it in before. Well since the park is open into January it makes a great trip driving down from Ohio when most of the parks up north have already closed down for the year. Another chance to ride some more coasters and get that theme park fix! So let’s check out Dollywood!
Since the sun was setting on the first night we got there a lot of coaster pictures from this day will be dark so I’ll save talking about them until later in this post when I have pictures of all the rides during the day.
Blazing Fury was fun and smoother than the original over at Silver Dollar City, but I still love the splash ending that Silver Dollar City’s version still has in which they yell Fire in the Hole!
After Dollywood closed for the night, we ventured to the Island. The Island is a rather new entertainment area in Pigeon Forge full of retail shops, restaurants, and attractions such as a giant Ferris wheel.
Dollywood the next day didn’t open until 2 pm and since the Pigeon Forge area is quickly becoming the alpine coaster capital of the world we decided to check the alpine coasters out in the morning.
The other alpine coaster was located in Gatlinburg so naturally we made the trek down to Gatlinburg next.
Since our first visit to Dollywood occurred basically at night, I was definitely excited to see it in the daylight.
Thunderhead is awesome! Definitely one of the gems of Dollywood, it’s easily one of GCI’s best coasters and some people argue it is their best. Personally I still think Prowler at World’s of Fun tops it but they are very close in terms of fun. Definitely a coaster not to miss at Dollywood.
Mystery Mine is a unique coaster, while the actual coaster part isn’t too good, its bumpy and head banging, the themed aspects of the coaster are excellent. This type of coaster is called a Euro Fighter and while I’ve heard mostly all Euro Fighters are bumpy and headache causing, this one is tame enough that it’s enjoyable due to the added theme. Plus that finale is killer! Definitely check it out while at Dollywood, just don’t expect to ride it over and over.
After checking out Wild Eagle from afar, let’s go for a ride shall we?
Wow! Wild Eagle surpassed my expectations. To be fair my expectations were pretty low as I had already ridden the other two wing coasters in the US X-Flight and Gatekeeper and wasn’t really impressed by either. Wild Eagle does it right! This ride totally gives me hope that the wing coaster concept can be really good if executed right. The mountain views on this thing make it truly one of a kind. Watching the Smoky Mountains flip upside down as you’re soaring on the wing truly does make you feel like an eagle. Now while this coaster is good a night, it might be the rare exception of being a ride that’s better in the day just for the views of those mountains. Don’t miss Wild Eagle!!!
Firechaser Express is a great family coaster and an awesome addition to Dollywood. The coaster has enough in it for thrill seekers to enjoy it but it’s not too scary so the little ones can still have fun too. Definitely the perfect definition of a family coaster.
Tennessee Tornado was a coaster I would have easily brushed off at best an OK coaster, surprisingly it was very good. Arrow coasters have generally not aged well, but this one is still a great coaster, and fits in perfect with the rest of Dollywood’s great collection.
Before we ended the night we decided to check out some of Dollywood’s Christmas shows. First up was the highly acclaimed Dollywood’s Christmas Carol.
Dollywood’s Christmas Carol was one of the best theme park shows I’ve ever seen. The production quality is top notch and definitely the type of show you’d expect to see on Broadway. Don’t miss it!
Another great show at Dollywood, a park that is definitely well known for their top notch shows.
Dollywood’s Smoky Mountain Christmas is definitely the best theme park Christmas event I’ve ever been to. If you’re looking to go to a theme park during Christmas season, this would be the place to choose!