Sometimes the only way to find out surprising facts about yourself is through trial and error.
For instance, am I the type of history nerd that would pay good money to see the recovered artifacts from the world’s most infamous luxury cruise liner?
Why yes. Yes, I am.
To be clear, the collection is from the legendary doomed ship that sank in the North Atlantic in the early morning hours of April 15, 1912 – 110 years ago.
Recovered items – like a battered deck chair, china and personal belongings – are among the many diverting and interesting displays guests can enjoy at one of the more improbably successful attractions in the history of tourism: The Titanic Museum Attraction in Pigeon Forge, Tenn.
Is the Titanic in Pigeon Forge the actual size of the original?
The Titanic Pigeon Forge Museum Attraction is hard to miss when driving down the Parkway. The attraction is nothing if not noticeable driving into the gateway to the Great Smoky Mountain National Park.
The outside of the Titanic Museum is, in fact, half the size of the real RMS Titanic.
What is it you may ask? It’s a celebration of the ill-fated ship, its passengers and crew.
Is the Titanic Museum worth it?
But is it worth the price of admission? Let’s dive in and find out.
You can spend many an hour contemplating why a giant replica museum of RMS Titanic exists in the Great Smoky Mountains of Pigeon Forge – or in Branson, Missouri for that matter.
But ultimately that question is irrelevant for the simple fact that Titanic exists in Pigeon Forge and the whys and wherefores cease to exist once you climb aboard, so to speak.
Worth is always in the eye of the beholder, but climbing aboard the Titanic Pigeon Forge is likely to be an experience you won’t regret.
It’s worth it alone to see the detail that you will find throughout this attraction. The museum is inextricably linked to the blockbuster movie, though not affiliated in the least.
It’s hard to imagine – that even with Titanic’s historic legacy – the museum would exist without the movie.
As such, the grand staircase – which was such a central part of the movie – is also the central part of the museum, serving as a perfect replica complete with elaborate railings, an intricate vaulted ceiling and a cherub statue.
But to limit the appreciation of the museum to those who wish for a “King-of-the-World” moment is to dismiss the history nerd that exists in so many of us.
The displays, some of which are rotating, are diverting and informative.
The rooms are exact replicas of Titanic’s quarters and are akin to touring Versailles, Napoleon III’s quarters in the Louvre or the tours at Biltmore.
What do you do at the Titanic in Pigeon Forge?
Like with many museums, you look at the displays, enjoy a variety of interactive exhibits and learn about its history.
Interactive exhibits include shoveling coal in the boiler room and learning how to send an SOS signal.
You can take a guided tour on the sloping decks and see the oak carvings.
You can also shop at the souvenir gift shop and soak in all the interesting information.
The displays are authentic Titanic items – and there are many. In fact, the museum houses nearly 400 Titanic artifacts.
There’s a power of being so near to those things that carry you across time and distance so that you don’t feel exactly that you are in a strangely located tourist attraction, rather a legitimate museum with a legitimate connection to our collective past.
And finally, you can walk through life-size replicas of some of the ship’s compartments and features including the grand staircase and the third-class hallways.
The employees and team members in crew costumes are excellent in adding to the experience of putting you aboard history’s best-known ship.
There is a delicacy that goes along with building a tourist attraction on the back of a great tragedy, even one that happened so long ago.
Titanic, somehow, walks that line.
I think a lot of that credit goes to a fairly obvious gambit.
When purchasing a ticket, visitors are given boarding passes with the names of passengers and crew – like Molly Brown, for example.
At the end of the tour, you find out whether or not your passenger lived.
It’s a very effective way of reminding you that there were real people who sank along with the Titanic, who desperately clung to that collection of life vests, mostly hoping in vain to survive the icy 28-degree water.
How long does it take to go through the Titanic Museum in Pigeon Forge?
This isn’t necessarily an “entire day” type of attraction. But I’d say it could at least be a half-day attraction if you stretch it out.
This also depends on what type of vacationer you are. I like to stretch my dollar and take my time.
At the very least, I would say plan to spend at least 2-3 hours at the Titanic Museum.
Anything short of that, and you may not be getting your money’s worth.
Can you take pictures inside the Titanic Museum?
Yes, you can now take photographs inside the Titanic Museum!
Both Titanic Museum locations in Pigeon Forge, TN and Branson, MO recently reversed their previous ban on personal photography inside the museum.
What attractions are near the Titanic Museum in Pigeon Forge?
The Titanic Museum in Pigeon Forge is located right along the main strip in Pigeon Forge – a popular tourist area. So there are many attractions nearby.
How much do Titanic Museum attraction tickets cost?
If you’re planning a trip to the Titanic Museum, we highly recommend that you book in advance online.
Tickets can be booked either directly on the Titanic Museum website or on Tripster.
Occasionally, Tripster even offers discounts on admission.
At the time of this writing, general admission is $35 for adults and $15 for children ages 5-12. Children under 4 are free.
Sometimes, you can find tickets on Tripster for as low as about $30 per adult.
For some quick math, that’s roughly $100 for about a half day’s entertainment for a family of four.
So is the Titanic Museum “worth it”?
Considering the fact that there are quicker ways to spend your money in Pigeon Forge in three hours, I would say yes, it’s worth checking out at least once.
The Titanic Museum is located at 2134 Parkway in Pigeon Forge, TN. For more information, visit the attraction’s website.
Have you been to the Titanic Museum in Pigeon Forge? Was it worth it? Let us know in the comments.