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Dollywood is Reopening! Here’s What You Need to Know for 2023!

It’s the day we’ve all been waiting for… or at least in my family and just about every other family in East Tennessee and surrounding areas. Dollywood opened for the 2023 season on March 11th!

Prior to your visit, be sure to read about all the changes as well as Dollywood hours of operation!

Dollywood Reopening on March 11th

Dollywood is set to open for Season Pass holders only on March 10th for Passholder Preview Day. The park will be open from 10 am – 6 pm.

Dollywood will be open for all guests starting, Saturday March 11th and will operate during the hours of 10 am – 8 pm.

“We are excited to get open and to welcome families back to the Great Smoky Mountains. Brighter Days are here!” Dolly Parton said.

family on dollywood ride

The BIGGEST change for Dollywood in 2023 are the Dollywood Season Pass Levels. There are now 3 Dollywood season pass options. I’ve broken them all down in this detailed blog post to help you decide which Dollywood season pass is right for your family.

But the BIGGEST news for Dollywood in 2023 is the opening of Big Bear Mountain!

Being the newest of the Dollywood rides, I’m expecting BIG things from this new family-style coaster. I caught glimpses of it before Dollywood closed for the 2022 season and rumor has it that the last bit of track has been laid.

I’m so excited for the opening of Big Bear Mountain in Spring of 2023!

As a Dollywood Insider, I sometimes have a chance to visit Dollywood to see the construction that happens during the off season to get ready for opening day. Crews work hard during this time, making changes that you might not even notice visually, but will make a big impact on guest experience.

In fact, these changes are being made because of you! If you have ever visited Dollywood, you’ve likely been emailed a survey. Dollywood takes feedback very seriously and has implemented a lot of that into the parks’ 37th season!

constructions around dollywood

According to the Dollywood Blog, here are some changes that Dollywood is making for 2023:

dollywood rollercoaster lightning rod with yellow car and old gas pumps

Space – and lots of it! Just like last year, Dollywood listened to guests and are adding more space around the park.

dollywood train and grist mill with flowers

Eating Areas – Dollywood boasts a ton of restaurants and the food is excellent, as you know if you’ve been. But, guest experience surveys showed that people wanted more places to sit and eat the delicious Dollywood food.

new construction

This chapel is definitely one to be preserved because it makes the theme park super unique and it made my list of Things You Didn’t Know About Dollywood – do you know why?!

dollywood chapel construction

Dollywood is kicking off a BRAND NEW celebration for 2023 on opening day – March 11th. The “I Will Always Love You” Celebration is all about the 50th anniversary of Dolly’s most famous song. I’ll share more details as they are released – but I expect fabulous things for this celebration!

With that opening date, you’ll have just a little over a month before the first official Dollywood festival. Flower & Food Festival is the first full festival of the 2023 season and will kick off on April 21st and run through June 11th. It’s one that you definitely don’t want to miss and one of my new favorites!

funnel cake waffle with cream and flowers dollywood flower and food festival food item

You can read more about the Flower & Food Festival here. You can learn more about all the other Dollywood festivals and when they will be happening here.

Exciting news to announce: Dollywood is no longer making any changes to regular operating and all COVID restrictions have been dropped!

Dollywood Season Passes explained
  • Guests are NOT required to wear masks.
  • You are NOT required to be vaccinated to enter the park.
  • All operations will adhere to the Tennessee Pledge and state operational restrictions. 
dollywood market square

Dollywood Season Pass Reservation NEW Information

If you are a Gold or Diamond Dollywood Season Passholder, you have unlimited visits to the park in 2023 AND YOU NO LONGER NEED TO MAKE A RESERVATION – WOOHOO! So many of us have been waiting for that to change and it has changed now!

I’m also so happy to report that all the Bring a Friend passes that you receive with the Gold and Silver season passes have NO blackout dates this year! Essentially you are getting FREE Dollywood tickets!

It is important to remember that if you are a Silver Dollywood season pass holder, you will have blackout dates to your season pass. Be sure to check that operating calendar on the Dollywood website.

Have questions about Dollywood reopening? Let me know and I’ll try to find the answers for you!

Janis Mitchell

Monday 31st of July 2023

Can I rent any kind of mobile device for handicapped


Wednesday 2nd of August 2023

Yes! Dollywood has both motorized ECVs and traditional wheelchairs. To be sure you get one, I would recommend booking online rather than waiting the day of your trip to rent that day. I wrote an article all about that on the Dollywood Insiders blog here -

Marsha Pettitt

Thursday 11th of August 2022

Can we use gift certificate with no expiration date? I have called park but cannot get a live person to talk to.


Tuesday 23rd of August 2022

I am not really sure what type of gift certificate you have. It would be best to continue to try to call the park. Good luck!


Friday 5th of August 2022

Is there anyway to get discount tickets


Thursday 25th of August 2022

Hi Debbie! They just released the Everyone Pays Kids Prices promo. You can find more info here:

Dee Jones

Tuesday 26th of July 2022

Are there dates for the everyone pays kids prices yet for 2022? Thanks


Thursday 25th of August 2022

Hi Dee! The Everyone Pays Kids Prices promo has been announced! Get all the details here:

Linda Sargent

Wednesday 8th of June 2022

Why doesn't Dollywood publish the artists who are appearing at Dollywood other than those who are normally there. I would schedule more visits if this was done. Entertainment by other artists is not what it used to be, or it isn't advertised unless you get it from the artist. And then you don't have time to schedule.


Thursday 25th of August 2022

Hi Linda - I'm not sure about that. I know you can check Dollywood's website for show schedules. They definitely don't have as many outside artists in the park like they used to. I agree on that.