Dollywood Tips for 2020
Our family just returned from another trip to Dollywood and it was incredibly refreshing after a very uncertain six months.
Does your family need a quick, get-a-way to unwind, relax, and have some incredible fun?!
We highly recommend taking your family to Dollywood. We felt safe, made memories, and wanted to share the BEST tips for making your Dollywood vacation the best ever!
BEST TIPS FOR VISITING DOLLYWOOD
Dollywood Tip #1: Download the Dollywood App
This app is super helpful and tell you wait times, show times, and even has a park map!
It makes planning and experiencing Dollywood so much easier!
Dollywood Tip #2: Bring ponchos or umbrellas.
Weather is unpredictable, so always pack a small umbrella or poncho.
If it rains, people still walk around in the rain and many rides are still running unless there’s a thunderstorm.
The last time we went to Dollywood, it rained in the morning off and on and was super sunny in the afternoon.
Dollywood Tip #3: Use the Rest Room Before Entering a line that has a 20 minutes or Longer Wait
Sometimes kids get distracted and forget to mention they have to potty…and so do adults!
I was very happy with the restrooms in Dollywood.
They were the cleanest I’ve been in for several months.
The ladies restroom smelled like essential oils and there was plenty of good-smelling hand soap.
Dollywood Tip #4: Wash Hands Often
Dollywood has many hand-washing stations around the park ( and sanitizer!)
It makes cleaning up super convenient!
All rides require you to sanitize your hands before the ride. Don’t worry…they provide the hand sanitizer every time!
Plus, before you ride the trolley to enter the park, you have to sanitize your hands and make sure your mask is covering your mouth and nose. They will not let you board until this is completed.
Dollywood Tip #5: Enjoy the Scenery!
Dollywood put lots of detail in the surrounding scenery of the theme park.
There are gorgeous flowers, beautiful statues with important quotes, and even a Dogwood Tree legend posted.
Instead of rushing through the park, take some time to just stroll and enjoy all the beautiful details around you!
In fact that’s one of my favorite things about Dollywood, all the thought and details that go into the rides and attractions.
For instance, see this adorable, bear ride?
On the way to the ride, there are “Bear tracks” (pictured below) to follow! So cute!
Dollywood Tip #6: Make a Candle!
Kids can learn how to make candles and wash many different craftsman create unique pieces throughout the park.
Plan on fitting in one of those learning adventures with your kids to create a fun memory of Dollywood!
Dollywood Tip #7: Don’t Worry About Hand Sanitizer
I bought an over-priced hand sanitizer to take on our trip.
That was a mistake.
They were literally giving guests hand sanitizer before every ride.
Dollywood Tip #8: Follow the Rules
Dollywood staff is enforcing mask rules and social distancing.
I heard many people called out on the intercom if they were not six feet away from the group ahead of them in line.
Be sure to follow the rules while you’re visiting their theme park!
Dollywood Tip #9: Encourage Kids to Practice Wearing Masks at Home Before Your Trip
Let kids get use to wearing masks for a few hours so they’re prepped for your fun day at Dollywood.
I recommend the thinner, disposable, surgical masks because it was much easier to breathe in those.
The cloth ones were super cute, but much harder to wear during the heat of the day.
Test a few masks out before your trip and even take a few different kinds with you so you can always switch them out if you get uncomfortable.
Dollywood Tip #10: Bring your own water bottles
You’re allowed to bring in one water bottle per person.
You can get free cups of ice water throughout the park and pour these into your water bottle if you’d rather fill up all at once instead of every 20 minutes.
Also, there are some smaller snack stations and food carts that are closed. Sometimes it was a bit tricky finding the free cups of water.
Basically, any place that sells fountain drinks will have free cups of water. We
got several cups of water and they were refreshing and even had ice cubes!
If you want to bring a stroller, we highly recommend grabbing the cup holders below to use in ANY theme park!
They make carrying your drinks around so much easier!
You can find the cups here!
Dollywood Tip #11: Eat a Picnic Before Entering the Park.
Park hours differ based on the season.
Dollywood may open at 10 or 2, so eat a large picnic (pack these pizza quesadillas!) before entering the park so you can focus on the rides and outdoor entertainment.
If you love theme park food, then you can totally skip this tip.
But eating before we entered the park saved us a lot of time so we got to ride every ride we planned on!
Plus, it saves us money so we can buy treats or drinks.
Dollywood Tip #12: Pack Sunscreen
Dollywood is perfect for butterflies, but sometimes it can get a little extra sunny for families!
Rubbing on some sunscreen before you enter the park will save you from painful sunburn later.
There is a good bit of seating and shade in Dollywood, but we often forget how much we’re out in full sun while we’re exposed to the sun while walking to all the roller coasters and rides!
But there’s some other good news concerning the sun and heat.
I noticed several rides with misting fans or powerful fans placed in the BEST spots to keep you cool. Many of them were in lines for rides and may our day much more pleasant!
Dollywood Tip #13: Have All Adults and Teens Take Pictures
You can grab an awesome deal with the Memory maker at Dollywood. It’s $49 and includes pictures of your entire group on all the rides that have cameras.
It’s a fun option for capturing memories!
It’s also a huge help to encourage teens and adults to take pictures and videos throughout the day.
You can compile all the pictures later for some great memories!
Dollywood Tip #14: Decide Ahead of You’ll Split Up
If you’re in a group of four or more, you may want to split up into two groups.
One group for the daredevils who want to ride every thrill ride (like the Wild Eagle!) and one group for those that never ride the thrill rides.
This ensures everyone gets to enjoy what they really came for!
Dollywood Tip #15: Use the Parent Swap
If you want to stay together, but some of you want to ride the bigger coasters, then you can use the Parent Swap Option.
The Parent Swap option works like this: one parent stays with the child who doesn’t want to ride, and when the other parent is finishes the ride, they can swap out and let the next parent ride without having to get back in line.
Dollywood Tip #16: Wear Clothes That Dry Quickly
If you plan on riding the water rides, consider wearing clothes that dry super quick.
The quick drink sporty type shirts or even the modest active wear (the athletic skirts with leggings built in underneath) are great options.
Dollywood Tip #17: Break in Your Shoes Before Your Trip
Don’t wear your new gym shoes or new, comfy sandals for the first time on your park day.
Break in new shoes at least one week before heading to Dollywood.
When we tracked our steps last Dollywood trip, we averaged 7 miles a person.
That’s a lot of miles to cover in a new pair of shoes that might welcome your feet with blisters!
Dollywood Tip #18: Eat dinner early in the park.
At 5:30 our favorite restaurant was closed and we had planned on a nice dinner in the park.
If that happens to your family, just remember there are lots of good restaurants in Pigeon Forge that are still open.
We tried our best to eat in the park, but most sit-down dining places were already closed.
Dollywood Tip #19: Be Careful about the New Packing of the Famous Cinnamon Bread from Grist Mill
Dollywood now serves the cinnamon bread in a cardboard container now.
It needs to be held flat or all the butter and cinnamon you were looking forward to will drip out of the box and onto the ground, your clothes and your hands.
All that yumminess can drench the container so bad that the container can rip.
Be extra careful because that cinnamon bread is still amazing!
Dollywood Tip #20: Where to Get Iced Coffee
If you’re an iced coffee gal like me, you’re going to have a hard time finding exactly what you like to drink on vacation at Dollywood.
However, after asking around, I found out that there’s a small snack shop beside the Wild Eagle entrance that sells the bottled iced coffees from a popular brand.
Or you can drink one before you enter the park to still get your vacation, iced coffee craving met.
If I don’t get iced coffee, it’s not a vacation…ha!
Ready to Visit Dollywood in 2020?
Tell us your BEST tips in our Parents Connect group!
Our family was given free tickets to Dollywood so we could share our experience with you! Thank you Dollywood for giving our family a fun trip!
Watch our LIVE video from Dollywood here, but ignore my hair because I walked in the rain before ether sun came out..ha!
Always make time for a vacation and definitely consider Dollywood and its amazing staff, attractions, and food for your next family adventure!