Bavaria In The Smokies

By Leif Palmer
Posted on September 21, 2021

Ober Gatlinburg has Octoberfest.

It's not quite October yet, but that hasn't stopped the good folks at Ober Gatlinburg from kicking off their 12th Annual Oktoberfest celebration, which runs through October 31. This event celebrates the time-honored traditions of the original Oktoberfest celebrated in Munich, Germany. As the colors of the foliage change throughout the timberlands surrounding Ober Gatlinburg-which sits atop Mt. Harrison, overlooking downtown Gatlinburg-it creates the ideal setting for this annual cultural observance of music, food, beverages and more.

One of the highlights of Oktoberfest is the German-inspired cuisine, which is derived from recipes that date back to traditional Bavarian festivals. Items include, but are not limited to, schnitzel, bratwurst, strudel, turkey legs, salted pretzels and sauerkraut. And you can nosh on these regional treats while listening to the authentic sounds of the Smoky Mountain Oompah Band. Dressed in lederhosen and other traditional attire, this group partakes in an array of Bavarian folk dances while performing oompah music, sing-alongs, yodeling and more. Look for daily performances at Ober Gatlinburg throughout Oktoberfest. This year, special guest band The Musik Meisters will also be performing October 22 through 24.

While you're on the mountaintop, you can still enjoy all the other fun aspects of a day at Ober Gatlinburg. Look for activities and amusements like ice bumper cars, a rock climbing wall, the Ski Mountain Coaster, indoor ice skating rink, alpine slide, chair swing, scenic chairlift, mini golf and more. And don't forget to snap some pics of the gorgeous views you'll see while looking out over Gatlinburg and the Great Smoky Mountains. A few months down the road, when the weather turns wintry, the attraction will switch over into full ski-resort mode.

If you plan to attend Oktoberfest at Ober Gatlinburg, you could drive and take Ski Mountain Rd. to the top of the mountain. The easier thing to do, however, would be to take advantage of our Gatlinburg parking prices and park in one of our many downtown lots. From there, all you have to do is hop on Ober Gatlinburg's Aerial Tramway, located right on the Parkway. That will whisk you from downtown to the top of the mountain. Your admission includes round-trip fare. When you return from the festival, you can still explore the rest of downtown Gatlinburg while your vehicle remains safely parked nearby.

Leif Palmer - Gatlinburg blogger

About Leif Palmer

Leif Palmer loves residing in Gatlinburg. He is an avid outdoorsman: rowing for exercise on the lake, trail hiking, and free climbing rocks in the mountains. He indulges his arty side by periodically beating up pieces of marble by sculpting. He is always frustrated by his inability to sink long putts, and hates his curly hair (but his wife loves it). Leif has been known to muster enough courage to change a diaper, and hopes his son will become a chip off the old block.


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