The Smoky Mountains are one of the most beautiful sights in the world. The Great Smoky Mountains National Park, which has the highest number of tourists in the US, is located there. It was included in AFAR’s list of must-see national parks, and it has diverse plant life, with more than 100 native shrub species and native tree species.
The ancient mountains are also renowned for their rich history of southern Appalachian mountain culture. The proximity of small holiday towns that offer a variety of accommodations and dining options makes this place the best destination for your next vacation. Here are a few tips to help you plan your vacation in the Smoky Mountains.
Choose Your Travel Dates Carefully
The time of the year you choose to visit the Smoky Mountains will greatly impact your vacation. Summers is the season when most people plan their trips to this area, making it very crowded. However, a winter trip will allow you to explore the area peacefully, away from the crowds. But snowstorms can sometimes lead to the closure of roads, which can hamper your experience.
Try the Local Food
Southern food is well-known all over the US, and there is no better time to indulge in food than when you’re on vacation in the Smoky Mountains. Many options are available if you’re craving biscuits and gravy or some fried chicken. You can also see live shows in Pigeon Forge TN, like Lumberjack Feud, while you enjoy your food. Almost every establishment provides live entertainment for diners, from high-end restaurants to family-owned eateries. Although Paula Deen’s Lumberjack Feud doesn’t serve food, you are welcome to bring your own. You may bring your food or refreshments because the theater is outside.
Create an Itinerary and Make an Online Booking
A well-planned trip needs an itinerary. It ensures you have a plan of the activities you want to do and the places you want to visit on your trip. Without an itinerary, you will be deciding what to do on the go, which can lead to wasting a lot of time. The best approach is to research the Smoky Mountains and list all the things you want to do. Additionally, you may book accommodations and entertainment venues. Whether you want to watch the popular family-friendly lumberjack feud show, Country Tonite Pigeon Forge or a murder mystery show are all available to see. You can make a reservation for a seat online right now to skip those lengthy waits. Make a program that details what you will do each day, but avoid scheduling your days to the minute. Leave some room for flexibility, and if you happen to come upon something new when you are there, feel free to veer off your plan and try it.
Rent a Cabin
The accommodations you choose for your trip can make or break your vacation. That is why it is so important to make this decision after careful deliberation. Hotels are usually the first choice, but the towns around the Smoky Mountains boast a variety of cabins that will give you an experience you will always remember. You can choose small cabins that accommodate couples and solo travelers or go for one of the bigger options if you’re traveling with a large group.
Camping is a great way to get close to nature and has a lot of health benefits. The Smoky Mountains have designated spots for campers, but most of them require you to make early reservations. There are backcountry campgrounds that necessitate hours of hiking and will also require you to have a permit. If you want to camp close to your vehicle, you can choose from 10 available spots in the park. Groups of seven or more people can camp in group campgrounds. If you have a horse, you can also camp in one of the five horse camps in the area.
Think About How You Are Going to Get Around
The Smoky Mountains are said to be very car-friendly as the area is fairly easy to navigate by car. There are many options for car rentals at the airports and the mountain towns, making renting a car your best choice. A car will also enable you to experience one of the scenic drives in the area, like the Cades Cove Loop Road. It is an 11-mile one-way loop that gives you the perfect opportunity to witness the beauty of the Great Smoky Mountains. You can also rent a bike as this area is very popular with motorcyclists. Additionally, the city of Gatlinburg has a trolley service that offers pick-and-drop services from more than 100 locations.
Take a Hike
Hiking is a must when visiting any mountainous region, but this is especially true for the Smoky Mountains. There are several hiking trails in this area, all offering breathtaking views that will make the hike worth your while. You can choose a steep hike like the Clingmans Dome if you feel you’re up for it, or go for a gentler, kid-friendly option like the Kephart Prong Trail. Another option is the Gatlinburg SkyBridge, the longest pedestrian suspension bridge in North America and has the best views of the Smoky Mountains.
Plan a Visit to Dollywood
Dollywood is a theme park opened by the living legend Dolly Parton in the 1980s. It attracts more than 3 million visitors each year, and rightly so. It is one of the biggest tourist attractions in Tennessee that offers a variety of rides like roller coasters, carousels, bumper cars, and giant swings. You can go on rafting adventures or ride the Dollywood Express steam engine from the 19th century. This theme park also has a museum that displays the many accomplishments of Dolly Parton’s decade-long career, making it a must-visit site for any Dolly Parton fans.
Most people look forward to their vacations all year, as it offers them a chance to relax and unwind away from their daily life. The Smoky Mountains are an ideal destination for a relaxing trip, but you should choose the dates for your trip wisely if you want to make the most of your vacation. Make an itinerary and think about how you will get around on your trip. Instead of staying in a hotel, rent a cabin or try to go camping. Immerse yourself in the local culture by trying the different types of food the area has to offer. Take a hike to see some magnificent views and don’t forget to visit Dollywood.