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The Island in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee

This past year my husband and I decided to take a trip to Tennessee to return to a place where we have stayed before, at Jimmy Buffett’s Margaritaville Island Hotel on The Island in Pigeon Forge.

We have visited here with the children before, and I have been here for a girlfriends’ getaway to celebrate some special birthdays; but I really enjoyed it when it was just the two of us.

Here are some cool features we enjoy when we stay at the Margaritaville Island Hotel.  Every room has a ‘Margarita Concoction Maker.’ You can bring your own liquor, salt, and Margarita mix, or you can purchase it at the front desk.

Margarita Concoction Maker

The hotel has standard rooms, luxury suites, and celebrity suites.  My family and I have only stayed in the standard rooms. They all have a gas fireplace that we use during our visits in the winter. 

We have always had a room with a balcony situated over the shops on The Island; other rooms overlook the Little Pigeon River. The rooms are spotless and roomy. 

They all have a wet bar with a sink, a mini-refrigerator, a coffee maker, and a microwave, as well as complimentary Wi-Fi.

Bites and Margaritas at the Island Margaritaville Hotel

The Hotel has a rooftop pool where you can sunbathe, or you can get some shade under one of the cabanas.  The rooftop also has the Chill Bar; here you can get sandwiches, burgers, nachos, cold beverages, and of course, Margarita’s. The rooftop bar and pool overlook the fountain and most of the common area on the island. 

You can find the Changes in Latitudes Bar on the lobby level. There is inside seating by the stone fireplace and outside seating near the fire pit.  You can choose from their limited menu for something light to eat with your cocktail or Margarita.

Looking for a cup of Joe? Well, you can find that at Margaritaville Coffee Shop; it’s a great place to grab a muffin or baked goods, and if you have to work a little bit on your computer, you can do that here.

The lobby of Hotel right outside the door from both the Coffee Shop and Bar

Just across the way from the hotel you will find Margaritaville Restaurant. This two-story music-filled paradise has a live stage for entertainment and several bars.  Grab a seat inside or outside on the patio that overlooks the Little Pigeon River where you will find a fire pit. Here they serve their signature dishes like the Cheeseburger in Paradise, Volcano Nachos, Jimmy’s Jammin Jambalaya. Grab a Somewhere It’s Five O’Clock Rum cocktail or one of their signature Margaritas!

Outside of Changes in Latitudes Bar on the Lobby Level

The hotel has the St. Somewhere Spa.  It has six luxurious treatment rooms, a full-service hair salon with makeup bar, a nail salon, a spray tanning room, and a retail shop with product lines such as Bare Minerals Make-up, Kevin Murphy, Moroccanoil and more!  I have not yet experienced the spa, but I plan to on my next visit!

The Great Smoky Mountain Wheel

There is so much to do at The Island: shopping, dining, a little amusement with The Great Smoky Mountain Wheel and a few other rides and games for children and kids at heart.  For a full list of the restaurants and places to eat, you can see them here.

My husband and I enjoyed the music which is on stage in front of the Ole Smoky Tennessee Moonshine Barn. 

The first night we ate at Timberwood Grill, and the second night we thought we could get away with eating something light.  But while we were sitting outside listening to the different bands, I decided to walk over to shop at Paula Deen’s Kitchen.

This photo was taken on one of our Winter Visits – Both the Bear and I had our Coats on!

When I joined my husband, who was sitting in a rocking chair, I said, “I think we need to eat at Paula’s.” I could smell her fried chicken while I was shopping.  He said he wasn’t super hungry, but I said, “Then let’s go and get something small. ” Well, you can’t do that when you are at Paula Deen’s Family Kitchen.

Paula’s Famous Fried Chicken

They serve dinner family-style, and it’s all for one price per person. You can order either two or three entrees, four side dishes and each of you gets a dessert.  They start you off with their cheese biscuits; they are fluffy and big! Our children love them; I only had a bite or two because I was saving room for the main dishes.

Paula Deen’s Complimentary Cheese Biscuits
Broccoli Casserole and Mashed Potatoes

We ordered the fried chicken, beef pot roast served over buttered rice; and the sides we had were creamed corn, broccoli casserole, mashed potatoes, and green salad. 

Family Style at Paula Deen’s Family Kitchen
Great Views of the Great Smoky Mountains Wheel from Paula Deen’s

The Island has a lot of shopping, but it also has a lot of rocking chairs that surround the vast fountain that is in the middle of the Island so that you can enjoy a time of complete relaxation.  

The Island is a great place to visit, even if you live in the area. Many do come from Gatlinburg and Knoxville, which are not far away.

Overlooking the Shops and Fountain from the Chill Bar Rooftop

Enjoy some of the picks of the banjos by just watching the video below to get a little taste of the Island in Pigeon Forge.  Sorry, I can share the food pickings only in photos! Enjoy!

Let me know if you have been to The Island in Pigeon Forge or to any of Paula Deen’s Family Kitchens.


    • Definitely visit, lots to see and do in that whole area and only 35 minutes from Knoxville. I have a post on Knoxville too, fun places to visit there.

  • That comfort food looks really amazing and now I’m hungry! Looks like a great place to have a great time and also relax and recharge.

    • Yes, you can keep busy or drive to Gatlinburg around 20 minutes away and visit the National Park and sit by the creek for some even more relaxation.

  • We’ve been to the Island before. It’s super fun. I wanted to eat at Paula Deen’s but we ate at a different restaurant instead.

  • We have driven thru Pigeon Forge 2 times and not been able to stop. I so want to vacation there but wasn’t sure where to stay. Thanks for this post because I have it on my list as it looks amazing, relaxing, and fun all at the same time.

  • We had a run of about four or five years where we would go to Sevierville with friends every Christmas break and we always hit up this area for an afternoon of shopping and walking around. I’ve always wondered what the rooms looked like, so thanks for sharing!

  • Wow Margaritaville that is awesome. I would love to visit and do the Ferris wheel with the kids. Such a great place. Great photos of the whole place!!!

  • I love Paula Deen’s recipes and have always wanted to try her restaurant, I thought you had to go to Savannah to try it, I had no idea she had one in Tenn. Smoky mountains was never on my radar until recently!

    • She has many of these called Paul Deen’s Family Kitchen restaurants. Only the original is in Savannah and they serve à la carte and buffet style.

  • We stopped in Pigeon Forge on our honeymoon 23 years ago and loved it, but this looks completely different! It appears to have a very fresh vibe to it.

  • As many times that I have been to Pigeon Forge, I can not believe I haven’t seen the Island! I WILL be visiting sometime soon.

    • Yes, it’s kind of hidden, but google it and you will find it for sure! The whole family will have a great time.

  • The food looks amazing, as does the hotel. What a great room. I love the balconies and how colorful everything is.

  • The hotels are awesome! I love the style of them and they can give me comfort and safety.
    So, I want to know if this park is still open now.

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