Aerial Dollywood Photos from Those Cabins

No, Dolly Parton doesn’t live in those sky-high cabins that you can see from Tennessee Tornado and the Dollywood Express train. But if she did, she’d have some amazing views of her theme park. Earlier this year, I visited the park and woke up early to fly my drone for some rarely-seen vantage points of Dollywood.

Disclaimer: I am an FAA Remote Pilot Certificate-holding drone pilot following FAA‘s Small UAS Rule (Part 107) and did not fly the drone over Dollywood property.

A long winding road leads to the hilltop cabins.

The unobstructed view of the Smokies is incredible.

Aerial Dollywood Photos

The Pigeon Forge Parkway isn’t too far away.

This shot captures nearly the entire park from its eastern border looking west.

Most of this view is “new” Dollywood — everything to the right of Tennessee Tornado and the large Blazing Fury show buildings was built in the last 20 years.

The trees had not yet bloomed during my visit — otherwise, Tennessee Tornado and the surrounding structures would have been much less visible.

This angle shows how odd Tennessee Tornado’s towering “spiro-loop” looks as compared to typical vertical loops found on Arrow coasters.

Pictured above is Wildwood Grove in its entirety, including the new-for-2023 Big Bear Mountain, the longest coaster at Dollywood.

I was a little too far from the other side of the park to capture many details, but Lightning Rod’s lift (formerly launched) hill stands tall above the Jukebox Junction area of the park.

The buildings behind Lightning Rod comprise the International Residence Hall, which provides on-site housing for international employees.

Lightning Rod and Wild Eagle are the two tallest coasters at Dollywood, but I’ve always thought that Lightning Rod makes much better use of the terrain.

Wild Eagle’s lift hill stands approximately 210 feet tall, yet due to the terrain, its first drop is only 135 feet. Don’t get me wrong, though, it’s still an incredible coaster.

Aerial Dollywood Photos

If you look just left of the bottom center, you can see the former Plaza at Wilderness Plaza area, which has been cleared for a rumored new restaurant.

Dollywood is breathtaking from the ground, but seeing it from above gave me a new level of respect for the park and how much it has grown since my first visit over 20 years ago.

If you want to see what one of the Dollywood Cabins looks like from the inside, watch the video below:

And if you’re in the area, ride one of the thrilling alpine coasters but if you’re not sure which one then check out our comprehensive guide to the alpine coasters of the Smoky Mountains. 

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