There’s a relatively new waterpark in Sevierville, TN called Soaky Mountain Waterpark. The park is right outside of Gatlinburg and we have all the details. Kristina took her kids to Soaky Mountain and shares information about the park and tips on how best to enjoy it with your family so you can plan your own visit to Soaky Mountain Waterpark.
Media tickets were provided for this review.
I love a good waterpark with lots of thrills and excitement and cool water on a hot day. This is exactly what Soaky Mountain in Sevierville, TN, less than three hours from the Upstate, delivers.
The waterpark opened in 2020, cost $90 million to build, and employs 500 people, so it was a great boost to the local economy. It’s located directly across the street from Wilderness at the Smokies, which is a great resort to stay at. You can buy discounted tickets to Soaky Mountain if you stay there.
Attractions at Soaky Mountain Waterpark
The 50-acre park has some serious waterslides and play areas. Our favorite ride was the head-first, mat racing slide. We must have ridden that one six or seven times. It was a blast! The 35,000 square foot wave pool was a lot of fun because the waves truly mimic those at the ocean – but no sharks or jellyfish or weird ocean animals. Big win. The pool is able to generate waves up to six feet high.
My kids (ages 10 and 6) loved The Hive, a multi-story water playground with several age-appropriate slides for kids, although lots of adults were playing with their kids on it.
The ride we went for first was Rainbow’s Revenge, a huge, multi-passenger raft ride through a bright, colorful, and semi-fast tube. That one was a blast and getting in line early made it a fun start to the day. After that adventure, we hit the Avalaunch, which the waterpark describes as “a first-of-its-kind water coaster with four flying saucer features that create a drop-and-dive sensation and one wave curved wall.” I can confirm that is quite the sensational ride. I did it twice and had adrenaline pumping the rest of the day. Awesome.
After that, we basically tried to do everything that my youngest, at about 46”, was tall enough to do, which was almost every ride. The faster rides have a height requirement of 48”.
We hit the lazy river – which turns into a big wave river for certain time blocks during the day, the copperhead and rattle tail snake tube rides, the wave pool, and lots of slides at The Hive playground area. We passed the smaller kids’ play area with several waterslides and water features with a zero-entry pool. It looked like the kids were having a lot of fun with their parents.
One of the things we weren’t able to get to was the water obstacle course, kind of like the show Wipeout except most of the kids were able to stay on the course. It looked so fun!
For a list of all the rides, watercoasters, slides and height and weight requirements, see the Soaky Mountain website.
Food at Soaky
There are no shortage of food options at Soaky Mountain. Here’s a list of all eateries available at Soaky Mountain, which include a taco truck, frozen yogurt shop, and several snack bars serving nachos, pretzels, popcorn, hot dogs, novelty ice cream, cookies, fresh-squeezed lemonade, bottled water, Icees and fountain drinks. No alcohol is sold there.
Guests are allowed reentry with their daily ticket if they’d like to bring lunch and eat it outside the park. Outside food and drink are not allowed except for a sealed water bottle.
Cabana rentals start at $50 for a two-person rental and go up to $230 fo ra 20-person rental. These are private shelters around the park that include access to a server and a limited menu (food and beverage are extra).
I saw a lot of families utilizing these. They are great as a home base to relax, eat, rest, change diapers, etc. And you rent them by the day.
In 2022, Soaky Mountain introduced The Edge, a first-of-its-kind water coaster that spans two football fields in length and rises 70 feet in the air. If you love thrill rides, this is it.
On our second visit to Soaky Mountain in 2023, my family road The Edge and oh my gosh, it was unreal. I screamed my head off because immediately you are sent into a stomach-churning drop, then launched into tubes with AquaLucent light rings, then another drop, then speed into more tubes with more lights. The final, three-story drop sends you high up on a near vertical launch on the Boomerango wall. I was terrified and wanted to do it all over again.
The park also added more than 1,000 seats plus new umbrellas around the park and expansion of two decks. Even though the park was packed when we went, we had no issues finding seats when we wanted them.
Tips on visiting Soaky Mountain
Get there early: While the park wasn’t packed when we went on a summer Tuesday, we had a lot fewer wait times earlier in the day for rides. They open at 10 am. The second time we went was on a really hot summer Saturday in July, typically one of the busiest months of the year for the area, and got there early afternoon. We didn’t have to wait too long for anything, which was awesome.
Grab a locker: If you’re bringing in a towel, extra clothes, your wallet, etc., a locker (the smallest are $13 for the day), definitely get a locker.
You may not need water shoes: Several waterslides require no shoes so we just ended up putting our shoes in our locker and didn’t find the ground too hot. In some places, I’d definitely recommend wearing sandals or some kind of water shoes but I didn’t find it necessary here.
Prepare to climb stairs: Our favorite mat waterslide ride and lots of the tube slides had a lot of stairs you needed to climb to get to the top of the slide. I don’t mind a good workout but if you need to stop and take a breather, do it. The mat tube ride had about 100 steps and we did it six times. My legs hurt the next day but it was worth it.
Tickets and Hours
A one-day ticket online for adults (over 42”) is $47.99 and tickets for kids under 42” are $39.99. Ages 2 and under are free. Season passes are $129.99 a person. If you go after 4 pm, tickets are $39.99.
If you stay at Wilderness at the Smokies resort across the street, you can purchase discounted tickets or even get them for free during some specials. A season pass also includes discounted rooms at Wilderness at the Smokies.
Hours vary so look at the calendar to see updated hours before you go. They are open mid-May through August and with select dates in September weather permitting. The 2023 season opens on May 13, 2023.
Parking is $13.75/car when bought online and $18.25/buses and RVs. If you’re paying at the gate, it’s $20/car.
Would you like to go to Soaky Mountain Waterpark?
Soaky Mountain Waterpark
175 Gists Creek Road, Sevierville, TN
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