Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Gatlinburg

4.9
#2 of 9 in Parks in Gatlinburg
Great Smoky Mountains National Park is an American national park in the southeastern United States, with parts in Tennessee and North Carolina. The park straddles the ridgeline of the Great Smoky Mountains, part of the Blue Ridge Mountains, which are a division of the larger Appalachian Mountain chain. The park contains some of the highest mountains in eastern North America, including Clingmans Dome, Mount Guyot, and Mount Le Conte. The border between the two states runs northeast to southwest through the center of the park. The Appalachian Trail passes through the center of the park on its route from Georgia to Maine. With 12.5 million visitors in 2019, the Great Smoky Mountains National Park is the most visited national park in the United States.

The park encompasses 522,419 acres (816.28 sq mi; 211,415.47 ha; 2,114.15 km2), making it one of the largest protected areas in the eastern United States. The main park entrances are located along U.S. Highway 441 (Newfound Gap Road) in the town of Gatlinburg, Tennessee and Cherokee, North Carolina, and in Townsend, Tennessee. The park is internationally recognized for its mountains, waterfalls, biodiversity, and spruce-fir forests. In addition, the park also preserves multiple historical structures that were part of communities occupied by early settlers of the area.
The park was chartered by the United States Congress in 1934 and officially dedicated by President Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1940. The Great Smoky Mountains was the first national park whose land and other costs were paid for in part with federal funds; previous parks were funded wholly with state money or private funds. The park was designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1983 and a International Biosphere Reserve in 1988.
As the most visited national park in the United States, the Great Smoky Mountains National Park anchors a large tourism industry based in Sevier County, Tennessee adjacent to the park. Major attractions include Dollywood, the second most visited tourist attraction in Tennessee, Ober Gatlinburg, and Ripley's Aquarium of the Smokies. Tourism to the park contributes an estimated $2.5 billion annually into the local economy.
Our Gatlinburg trip planner makes visiting Great Smoky Mountains National Park and other Gatlinburg attractions simple, and helps you make a travel plan personal to you.
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Great Smoky Mountains National Park Reviews

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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 5.0
2,056 reviews
Google
4.9
TripAdvisor
  • Hit the park with a few trails and hikes. will review them separately (laurel falls, Gatlinburg trail) but it was really nice to get away !!!  more »
  • We traveled with 7 members of our family, ages 4-83. It was a wonderful experience. There are so many trails to hike and our family members chose trails based on each person's experience or the...  more »
  • I had been talking about visiting the Smokies for years and was thrilled to have the opportunity finally. We did Clingman’s Dome, Cade’s Cove, and Laurel Falls. The views were incredible. Truly the...  more »
Google
  • Another beautiful National Park! The Visitor Center was helpful and trails were well kept. We were only there for three days, but could have been there for three weeks. We hope to be back soon to do more exploring.
  • I have been coming to the Smokies for 35 yrs. Clean, fresh air, and well maintained. There is something new and amazing around ever bend.
  • Great location I loved it !! Took my husband for his birthday. It's a trip we will never forget!!! I was horrified going up and down the mountains it was my first and last time lol but we did enjoy it. The one bedroom suite was gorgeous the scenery was to dye for and I felt like I almost did. All in all a wonderful trip!!
  • I absolutely love the Great Smokey Mountains. There is something beauty hidden in ever single square foot. The winding roads are wonderful for those who enjoy a great drive. The scenery is fantastic. There are so many good trails for everyone, short/long and plenty of easy ones that are kid and pet friendly. Tons of waterfalls, named and unnamed. Plenty over overviews with amazing landscapes full of beautiful endless mountains and colorful skies. Perfect place for vacation, there is never enough time to do it all.
  • BEAUTIFUL!! There are no words to describe this place! The mountains are endless and there are so many hiking trails and overlooks. You could easily spend a week exploring the great Smoky Mountains and still not see everything. Definitely a must-see if in the area!!

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9 days in United States BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES October, popular sights Preferences: October Attraction style: Popular sights Pace: Medium 8 days in Gatlinburg BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES September, popular sights Preferences: September Attraction style: Popular sights Pace: Medium 4 days in Gatlinburg BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES August, kids, popular sights Preferences: August, kids Attraction style: Popular sights Pace: Medium 5 days in Gatlinburg BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES April, teens, kids, popular sights Preferences: April, teens, kids Attraction style: Popular sights Pace: Medium 4 days in Gatlinburg BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES August, teens, popular sights Preferences: August, teens Attraction style: Popular sights Pace: Medium 4 days in Gatlinburg BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES August, teens, kids, popular sights Preferences: August, teens, kids Attraction style: Popular sights Pace: Medium 4 days in Gatlinburg BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES August, popular & hidden gems Preferences: August Attraction style: Popular & hidden gems Pace: Medium 10 days in Tennessee BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES August, popular sights Preferences: August Attraction style: Popular sights Pace: Medium 6 days in Gatlinburg BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES September, popular sights Preferences: September Attraction style: Popular sights Pace: Medium 5 days in Gatlinburg BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES September, popular sights Preferences: September Attraction style: Popular sights Pace: Medium 8 days in Gatlinburg BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES June, popular sights Preferences: June Attraction style: Popular sights Pace: Medium 60 days in United States BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES August, culture, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites, slow & easy, hidden gems Preferences: August, culture, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites Attraction style: Hidden gems Pace: Slow & easy
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