One of the most breathtaking destinations in the United States lies between Tennessee and North Carolina – the Smoky Mountains. With over 500,000 acres of untouched wilderness, the Smokies offer visitors a unique opportunity to experience the beauty and majesty of nature.
Hike through dense forests, kayak on crystal clear rivers, or take it easy with scenic drives, leisurely strolls, and cozy cabin retreats; there are endless options for fun.
Whether you’re looking for a mountain adventure or simply looking to escape the hustle and bustle of daily life, the Smokies provide a peaceful and awe-inspiring getaway that will leave you feeling rejuvenated and refreshed.
Keep scrolling to explore some of the must-dos on your trip to the Smoky Mountains.
Six things to experience in the Smoky Mountains
1. Visit the Smoky Mountains National Park
The Smoky Mountains National Park is a treasure trove of natural beauty that draws millions of visitors annually.
The park is a treasure trove of natural beauty and adventure, from stunning vistas and cascading waterfalls to dense forests and vibrant wildlife.
Spanning over 800 square miles, the park is home to a diverse range of plant and animal life, offering an opportunity to experience the wonders of nature up close.
Drive along the 384-mile-long network of roads while taking in the beauty of your surroundings, or get up close and personal with nature by hiking along the picturesque trails; your options are endless.
One of the best ways to experience the national park is by booking a cabin that offers breathtaking views of your surroundings. After all, Smoky Mountain cabins with a view allow you to take advantage of the stunning vistas and hidden waterfalls throughout the Smoky Mountain National Park.
Whether you prefer scenic drives, hiking, wildlife watching, history, or just relaxing in a cabin with a view, the park has it all. A visit to the Smokies is an unforgettable experience that will leave you with a deeper appreciation of the beauty of nature.
2. Go Hiking
With over 800 miles of trails, hiking in the Smokies is a great way to explore the area’s natural beauty, from mountain streams and cascading waterfalls to lush forests and stunning vistas.
Moreover, hiking in the Smokies allows you to observe wildlife in its natural habitat. The park is home to black bears, white-tailed deer, and wild turkeys. With a little patience and a keen eye, you may be lucky enough to spot one of these majestic creatures during your hike.
Whether you’re looking for a short hike to a waterfall or a challenging all-day trek to the summit of a mountain, the Smokies have something for everyone.
Some popular trails include the Alum Cave Trail to Mount LeConte, the Laurel Falls Trail, and the Chimney Tops Trail. No matter which trails you choose, hiking in the Smokies is an incredible way to connect with nature and experience the beauty of the mountains firsthand.
3. Explore Gatlinburg
Gatlinburg is a charming town located at the foothills of the Smokies that offers a unique blend of natural beauty and entertainment. Gatlinburg is an ideal destination for a Smoky Mountain getaway with its quaint shops, restaurants, and family-friendly attractions.
It’s a must-visit destination when visiting the Smoky Mountains. You can explore the town’s numerous boutiques and galleries, stroll down the scenic Riverwalk, or enjoy an afternoon picnic in one of the town’s picturesque parks.
The town has several amusement parks, mini-golf courses, go-kart tracks, and museums to enjoy with friends and family.
If you’re looking for a taste of the local culture, check out one of Gatlinburg’s many restaurants serving traditional Southern cuisine. From classic BBQ to homemade biscuits and gravy, Gatlinburg’s dining scene offers something for everyone.
Gatlinburg also has a thriving arts scene, with numerous galleries and studios showcasing the work of local artists and artisans.
Whether you’re looking for outdoor adventures or a laid-back mountain retreat, Gatlinburg has something for everyone.
4. Attend a Crafts Fair
Attending a craft fair is an experience you can’t miss when visiting the Smoky Mountains. This unique opportunity allows visitors to immerse themselves in the region’s rich crafts heritage and support local artisans while taking home a one-of-a-kind souvenir.
Visitors can browse handmade pottery, quilts, baskets, and other items from skilled local artisans. The items for sale are often unique, and many are made using traditional techniques passed down for generations.
Visitors can stroll through the booths, enjoy live music and food, and take in the beautiful surroundings of the Smoky Mountains. Plus, it’s a great way to support local businesses and preserve the region’s rich cultural heritage.
Whether you’re interested in art and history, supporting local businesses, or simply having a good time, a craft fair is among the best ways to immerse yourself in the culture of this beautiful region.
It’s a great way to spend an afternoon, and visitors of all ages will surely find something they love.
5. Take a Scenic Drive
The Smoky Mountains are a breathtaking destination offering abundant natural beauty and wonder. And one of the best ways to experience the splendor of this region is through a scenic drive. With various picturesque routes, visitors are sure to find a driving route that suits their preferences and schedule.
Driving through the Smoky Mountains is a truly unforgettable experience. The winding roads take visitors on a journey through some of the country’s most beautiful and awe-inspiring landscapes.
Whether you’re driving up to the highest point accessible by car or cruising through a historic settlement, the views from the car window are simply breathtaking.
You can explore historic settlements, visit museums and cultural centers, and learn about the area’s rich heritage. You can also stop at local shops and restaurants to experience the unique flavors and crafts of the region.
From hiking trails that lead to stunning views to charming mountain towns that offer an array of attractions, there is no shortage of things to do in the Smoky Mountains.
Whether you’re seeking adventure, relaxation, or a little bit of both, the Smoky Mountains have something for everyone. There are breathtaking natural landscapes, rich history and culture, and endless opportunities for exploration and adventure.