Best Water Parks in Tennessee
Are you up for a water-soaked adventure with friends or family? Waterparks in Tennessee have plenty to offer, including mountain-sized water slides, gigantic wave pools, thrilling raft rides, and relaxing lazy pools.
Waterparks have been around since time immemorial. They’re popular destinations in summer when people are looking for something fun to do while beating the heat at the same time. What began as simple swimming pool attractions have turned into mega-parks, filled with wet and wild slide rides, artificial waterfalls, and thousands of gallons of water for splashing about. If you’re planning on hitting the best waterparks in the state of Tennessee, then you’ve come to the right place. We’ll show you the ropes so you’ll know what to expect when you get there.
Best Waterparks in Tennessee
Dollywood’s Splash Country in Pigeon Forge
Dollywood’s Splash Country is a huge, 35-acre water park situated right beside the Dollywood Theme Park. It’s named after famous entertainer and US personality Dolly Parton and inspired by the childhood story of her swimming in the Great Smoky Mountains’ rivers.
The family-friendly waterpark has something for everyone, regardless of age. It’s also one of the few water-themed destinations that have certified lifeguards, ensuring a worry-free experience. You can jump ahead of the queue with the TimeSaver H2O service and get to ride all your favorite attractions with minimal waiting.
The number and variety of waterpark rides here are astounding. You can take a small trip down a tube or experience what it’s like to go on the rapids, albeit in a safer and more controlled environment. Thrill-seekers should find plenty of rides to test their mettle with, from the Wild River Falls and Mountain Twist to Mountain Scream, Fire Tower Falls, and more. The little ones will be busy navigating through the Bear Mountain Fire Tower, taking a shower at Little Creek Falls, or just splashing merrily about in The Cascades.
Afterward, you can relax and spend time catching up in private canopies or retreat spots and order beverages while hanging out. The food deserves special mention as it’s made with heart and is delicious, to boot. Dollywood’s Splash Country is located at 2525 Dollywood Parks Blvd. in Pigeon Forge.
Nashville Shores in Nashville
Nashville Shores is aptly named because the moment you arrive, you’ll see nothing but a great expanse of water. It’s Nashville’s biggest waterpark, with more than a million gallons of water spread out over its pools, rides, and water-themed attractions.
If you’re looking for a relaxed kind of play, then it’s recommended that you float on the lazy river or catch some rays on the beach. On the other hand, for those who think waterparks equal slippy slides and massive thrills, you won’t be disappointed. Nashville Shores will satiate your thirst for watery adventure.
Notable standouts include the Kowabunga Beach, eight unique slides, and a wave pool. Explore a four-story sprayground and water treehouse, or brave the Big Kahuna raft slide with family members. The Mega Mayhem easily steals the show — it’s a 6-story water slide platform that sends you through a series of dizzying drops, zero gravity moments, and finally, up and across a near-vertical wall to a waiting splash pool. The ride has the distinction of being the biggest slide in any park, and it’s one of only six in the world.
Nashville Shores also has a lake activity right at Percy Priest Lake. Here, you can play a game of volleyball, dip your toes, or experience the interactive playground Aqua Park. Nashville Shores Lakeside Resort is located at 4001 Bell Road in Hermitage, Tennessee.
Soaky Mountain in Sevierville
With a name like Soaky Mountain, you can expect to get soaked again and again (make sure to bring some extra clothes). The attractions are so thrilling and enjoyable that you’ll want to try them all… and get back in line for seconds.
Nearly every water ride at Soaky Mountain will challenge and dare you. The Edge Dueling Watercoaster is easily the park’s highlight. At first glance, the wild and twisting loops will make you think it’s a rollercoaster, but then you realize that it’s an immense waterslide with crazy twists and turns. AquaLucent rings lull you into thinking that you’re safe, but then you suddenly drop to another segment and into Boomerango walls that are nearly parallel. The G-force gives way to a few seconds of weightlessness, then riders go over “The Edge.” As for the dueling part, either of the two parties will emerge as the first one who passed and will be declared the winner via lights and effects.
Other notable rides include the Slippery Salamanders, a water-themed obstacle course that requires agility, the Soaky Surge, a 35,000-square-foot wave pool that can generate six-foot waves, the Cottonmouth Coils, and the Blue Mountain Mayhem, which features gravity-defying walls to give you a sense of weightlessness before you crash into the water. Soaky Mountain is located at 175 Gists Creek Rd in Sevierville.
Wild Bear Falls Water Park in Gatlinburg
Wild Bear Falls in Westgate Smoky Mountain Resort & Water Park offers a heated and indoor attraction right in the heart of Tennessee. It’s a mountain-themed park (hence the name) and has corresponding rides that complement the decoration well.
Retractable roofs fan out during the summer and are placed on when the season gets colder. There are two major water slides to try, as well as an interactive treehouse if you want to experience something unique. Water flows out in fountains, and little kids can splash in shallow spots and play with toys in relative safety. You can also let the water take you wherever it wants on the lazy river.
Water enthusiasts can easily spend a day or two and not experience the whole of Wild Bear Falls Water Park. As an added bonus, you won’t have to deal with cold water dampening your spirits and can stay in as long as you like. Afterward, you can visit The Roaring Fork and dine on popular dishes with family or friends. Wild Bear Falls Water Park is located at 915 Westgate Resorts Rd in Gatlinburg.
Take a Trip to the Best Waterparks in Tennessee Today
Waterparks in Tennessee have that world-class feel, and the rides are as thrilling as you want them to be. When you’re in the state and looking to cool down, then we’d recommend you round up your family members or invite your friends to take the plunge.
Remember to read up on the rules and regulations of the waterpark for a seamless and enjoyable experience. Some of them might have limits to the type of swimwear attire that’s allowed, and other things you should bring with you to the waterpark. Other than that, feel free to pack your favorite swimwear, towel, and sunscreen, and experience a whole day of splashing and laughing.
Be sure to also check out our list of the best indoor water parks where you can enjoy amazing water slides and pools year round!