The Smoky Mountain experience is one of the biggest reasons brides choose Gatlinburg for their destination wedding. The natural landscape makes weddings effortlessly beautiful while the attractions and other things to do in the Smokies make weddings fun! Anakeesta in Gatlinburg offers both beauty and lots of exciting things to do. 

Surprise your guests and host your wedding at Anakeesta. One of the area’s top attractions, Anakeesta is an outdoor paradise in the center of Gatlinburg and it is a beautiful setting for weddings. Additionally, this mountaintop park offers guests as much excitement or relaxation as they wish. It’s a completely customizable experience!

Anakeesta is a Native American term from the Cherokee meaning “high ground.” The ultra-romantic setting includes fresh mountain air and scenic views in every direction. Does that sound like the Smoky Mountain wedding you’ve been dreaming of?

Let’s look at Anakeesta’s venues and how the park can provide an unforgettable day for you and your guests.

Your Wedding at Anakeesta

Weddings at Anakeesta
Photo courtesy of Anakeesta

Anakeesta is a sprawling mountain park. Wedding guests love its array of activities to enjoy before and after the ceremony. The park’s wedding packages include all-day admission for guests, which is a huge value!

Each wedding includes a coordinator. For the wedding party’s convenience, Anakeesta offers a private shuttle. Furthermore, the packages include an officiant, a photographer, and a choice of venue.

Anakeesta’s Wedding Ceremony Venues

Vista Plaza

Plan your Smoky Mountain wedding at Anakeesta in Gatlinburg
Photo courtesy of Anakeesta

If you’re looking for natural elegance, Vista Plaza is the venue for you. This area can accommodate up to 200 guests and it offers some of the best views in the Smokies.

Before or after your ceremony, climb to the top of the highest point in Gatlinburg: AnaVista Tower. The 360-degree views will make for the most amazing wedding photos, and your guests will love this unforgettable experience.


Twigloo Wedding at Anakeesta
Photo courtesy of Anakeesta

Anakeesta’s famous Twigloo is a heart crafted from branches by a local artist. This backdrop is a photo-worthy hot spot in the Vista Garden’s section of the park, especially during weddings. Through the heart, sweeping views of the Smoky Mountains and Mt. LeConte create an unparalleled atmosphere for weddings. This spot is a sweet place to get married in the Smoky Mountains. It accommodates up to 15 guests, making it a great option for elopements and micro weddings.

Anakeesta’s Wedding Reception Venues

Photo courtesy of Anakeesta

Smokehouse Restaurant

Following your ceremony, treat guests to an unforgettable reception. Anakeesta’s Smokehouse Restaurant is in the Firefly Village section of the park. It offers epic mountain views and overlooks downtown Gatlinburg. Smokehouse Restaurant is covered, which reduces the weather’s ability to spoil wedding plans. It is an excellent choice for larger weddings because the space accommodates up to 200 guests and allows for a full bar. Discuss this option with an Anakeesta representative to learn more.

Lumina Pavilion

This wedding reception venue at Anakeesta offers similar amenities as the Smokehouse Restaurant, although it is suitable for up to 100 guests. The floor-to-ceiling windows of the pavilion bring the outdoors in, giving you that outdoor feeling while you enjoy the pleasures of an indoor reception.

The Anakeesta Experience

Mountain Coaster in Gatlinburg
Photo courtesy of Anakeesta

Anakeesta is a mountaintop attraction bordering our nation’s most visited national park. With the Great Smoky Mountains National Park surrounding the site, Anakeesta offers solitude for guests who wish to relax before or after a wedding. At the same time, adventure awaits! Host your wedding at Anakeesta and allow your guests to make memories any way they wish!

Some of Anakeesta’s activities are included while some can be added to guests’ daily admission tickets. Ask your coordinator for more information on customizing your guests’ experience. Here’s a look at what this Gatlinburg attraction has to offer:

Treetop Skywalk

For the adventurous at heart, Treetop Skywalk is suspended 50-60 feet in the air. With over 800 feet of connected bridges, the opportunities to take in the sights are limitless.

Anavista Tower

AnaVista Tower is the highest point in Gatlinburg. Visit the tower for a 360⁰ view of the Smokies. Guests can take in mountainous peaks as far as Kentucky!

Vista Gardens

Home to thousands of plants, unique sculptures, and colorful flowers, Vista Gardens is a gorgeous oasis. Let the sounds of nature set the mood for your big day. Songbirds, waterfalls, and the gentle mountain wind blowing through wind chimes will be the soundtrack for your Smoky Mountain wedding. This special area within Anakeesta is an ArbNet-accredited level II arboretum. All in all, Vista Gardens is a spectacular place to take in the great outdoors.

Astra Lumina

The first of its kind in the United States, Astra Lumina is an awe-inspiring night walk among the stars. Anakeesta officials describe the experience as “an illuminating encounter of lighting, projection, and sound.”

Watch this video for a sample of how adding the Astra Lumina experience is an impressive way to wow your guests.

Anakeesta Offers Adventures for All

AnaVista Tower - Gatlinburg's highest point
Photo courtesy of Anakeesta

Interactive courses and multiple play areas allow children of all ages to climb and explore to their heart’s content. Meanwhile, the adults can enjoy the views and the gardens. The Dueling Zipline Adventure is an adrenaline-pumping course that gives families and friends the chance to race one another side-by-side down the mountain. Those looking for more speed should check out the Rail Runner and Hellbender mountain coasters.

In addition to these exciting activities, Anakeesta offers gem mining, dining, shopping, and live entertainment. Spending a day at this outdoor park is a magical way to celebrate your new marriage with loved ones. Start planning your wedding adventure today!

More about Anakeesta

Photo courtesy of Anakeesta

Anakeesta opened its doors in 2017 and quickly became one of Gatlinburg’s top attractions. The park offers an enchanting experience and is a beautiful addition to Gatlinburg’s amazing lineup of attractions. This award-winning business continues to grow and provides some of the best experiences in Gatlinburg.

Learn more about weddings at Anakeesta here. Plan a site visit to determine which ceremony and reception venue at Anakeesta is best for your Smoky Mountain wedding. While there, indulge in the food and activities so you can plan the ultimate wedding day for your guests!

Anakeesta is a member of the Smoky Mountain Wedding Association. Our group is made up of local businesses in the Smoky Mountain wedding industry. Our goal is to work collectively towards providing the ultimate dream weddings for couples getting married in the Smoky Mountains. Learn more about us here and contact us for customized quotes and advice for your upcoming wedding.

Authored in Appalachia || Amy Morton


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