Whether you’re on vacation, seeking adventure, or want an escape from your mundane life, the Great Smoky Mountains are the perfect spot to visit. After all, the Smoky Mountains are home to some of the most mesmerizing natural attractions, surrounded by countless activities. It’s not surprising to see myriad tourists visit the Smoky Mountains each year, making it one of the most popular tourist spots in the US.
So, if you’re planning a trip to the Great Smoky Mountains, you might be in for an experience that you will remember throughout your life. However, it’s best to make your plans beforehand to be armed with a list of key points to visit and the experiences you want. With a spelled-out itinerary and all the necessary passes to beat the summer vacation crowds, you can see the Great Smoky Mountains and truly have fun. So, to help you enjoy a memorable traveling experience, here are five attractions you should stay in the Great Smoky Mountains.
Smoky Mountain Cabins
You can’t explore the attractions of the Great Smoky Mountains in a single day. To ensure your trip is worthwhile, it’s best to take your time and explore the mountains thoroughly. Therefore, it’s essential to consider getting suitable accommodation. The Smoky Mountains cabins are one of the best places to stay, as they are close to attractions and offer high-quality services and living areas. You can choose cabins right in the mountain range or the city center. So, check the smoky mountain cabin rentals in advance to prepare for a memorable traveling experience.
If you consider yourself an admirer of nature, Cades Cove might be the ideal destination for you as it’s one of the best examples of scenic beauty in the Smoky Mountains. Located between beautiful Mountain trails, Cades Cove is a lush, fertile valley that is appealing and has a rich history. Those interested in the area’s history can visit historic buildings such as churches, 19th-century cabins, and grist mills. However, you won’t complete your Cades Cove visit unless you go for a drive on the Cades Cove loop road. During your journey, you will be able to view the diverse wildlife of the national park while touring the valley.
The Smoky Mountains national park stretches across hundreds of square miles, covering a vast area. It’s not possible to see it all on foot. To see the dense forests and scenic landscapes surrounding the seemingly endless mountains, you can go for a sightseeing tour on the Cherohala Skyway. Running over 23 miles, the Cherohala Skyway can take you as high as 5,390-foot-tall mountains. At the highest point of the road, you can stop to admire the Santeetlah Overlook, which is a great picnic spot.
The Smoky Mountains national park offers several convenient services to improve the experience of its campers. Throughout your drive, you will encounter beautiful landscapes around almost every corner. If you enjoy exploring nature, you can look for camping areas and take your camping equipment along. However, along with camping spots, you can also use the skyway to find hiking trails to explore the mountains further.
Some of the most popular natural attractions in the Smoky Mountains are its waterfalls. While exploring the 2000 miles of rivers and water bodies, you can find more than 100 waterfalls. However, some of the most attractive waterfalls are the Laurel, Rainbow, Abrams, Grotto, and The Sinks waterfalls. The Rainbow Falls is an 80-foot-high waterfall known to form stunning rainbows in bright sunlight. On the other hand, Abrams falls is a unique waterfall that descends into a spectacular river gorge home to otters. You can plan a hiking trip through the mountains and visit some of these waterfalls on the way for a fun experience.
For thrill-seekers and adventurers, waterfalls are the perfect spot to participate in kayaking, diving, and swimming. For example, the sinks are a series of waterfalls home to a popular swimming hole often used by hikers. You can also take advantage of the rapid series of waterfalls to enjoy a thrilling kayaking experience. However, it’s crucial to be cautious around such areas for your safety.
Mountains trails, rivers, and valleys are not the only natural attractions of the Great Smoky Mountains. Underneath the scenic landscapes of the national park, there awaits a dense network of caves for you to explore. The Forbidden Caverns are among the best areas to visit if you want to go caving. For a small fee, tour guides can help you explore the stunning cave trails illuminated by special lighting effects and teach you the area’s historical background.
However, you can also visit the Tuckaleechee caverns, as they are known to be the highest-rated caverns in the east of the US. These caverns are approximately 20-30 million years old and are incredibly rich in history while also a stunning sight to see. The Big Room, known for its exceptionally large size, is one of the most popular attractions within the Tuckaleechee caverns and is home to several unique rock formations. The Tuckaleechee caverns are also home to the SilverFalls, the tallest underground waterfall in the eastern US, falling 210 feet from the bottom of the caves.
The Smoky Mountains are home to countless natural attractions ranging from hiking trails to waterfalls and caves. However, natural attractions are not all there is to the Great Smoky Mountains. Your trip to the Smoky Mountains will be incomplete if you don’t visit the incredibly popular Dollywood amusement park. It’s not surprising that the theme park can attract as many as three million visitors each year, making it the most popular tourist destination in Tennessee. Whether you’re traveling with kids or not, Dollywood won’t fail to give you the most memorable trip of your life.
Covering an area of 150 acres, the Dollywood theme park is best known for its fun activities and amusement rides. Adults can enjoy rides such as the lightning rod, one of the fastest rollercoasters in the country. It can reach speeds up to 73 miles per hour while reaching heights as much as 3,800 feet. On the other hand, children can experience rides such as the Dollywood express train. However, alongside amusements rides, you can also watch live shows while eating delicious food from the several high-quality restaurants within the park.
From natural attractions and outdoor activities to amusement parks and historical sights, the Great Smoky Mountains are filled with countless destinations. If you’ve been planning to find some time to relax and enjoy, the Smoky Mountains are undoubtedly the best area to visit. However, to ensure you make the most out of your trip, it’s best to know what places to visit. So, keep in mind the destinations mentioned above and plan an exciting travel experience.