Great Smoky Mountains

Waynesville, North Carolina

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Vistas from the overlooks of the Great Smoky Mountains offer a gift to the eye—a series of craggy peaks and soft ridges that roll, seemingly endlessly, into the soft, blue, smoky mist from which the chain takes its name. For 70 miles these dramatic mountains straddle the border of Tennessee and northwestern North Carolina. The Great Smoky Mountains National Park, with more than a half million acres, offers myriad recreational opportunities. For families with young children, there are scenic drives and easy hikes. Older kids and teens appreciate the more challenging trails. The natural beauty of the waterfalls, gorges, and the mountains, plus the history of stalwart settlers and the culture of the Cherokee Indians, combine to make the Great Smoky Mountains interesting, educational, and scenic. The Great Smoky Mountains National Park is the most-visited national park in the United States. More than ten million people come here each year. To enjoy the park—and get away from crowds—you need to get off the beaten path, at least a little bit. The best way to do this is to get out of your car and hit the trail. Even little kids can try the easy walks. For visitors with older children, take to the moderate and difficult paths.

Great Smoky Mountains Professional Review and Guide

"Vistas from the overlooks of the Great Smoky Mountains offer a gift to the eye—a series of craggy peaks and soft ridges that roll, seemingly endlessly, into the soft, blue, smoky mist from which the chain takes its name. For 70 miles these dramatic mountains straddle the border of Tennessee and northwestern North Carolina. The Great Smoky Mountains National Park, with more than a half million acres, offers myriad recreational opportunities. For families with young children, there are scenic drives and easy hikes.

Older kids and teens appreciate the more challenging trails. The natural beauty of the waterfalls, gorges, and the mountains, plus the history of stalwart settlers and the culture of the Cherokee Indians, combine to make the Great Smoky Mountains interesting, educational, and scenic. The Great Smoky Mountains National Park is the most-visited national park in the United States. More than ten million people come here each year. To enjoy the park—and get away from crowds—you need to get off the beaten path, at least a little bit. The best way to do this is to get out of your car and hit the trail. Even little kids can try the easy walks. For visitors with older children, take to the moderate and difficult paths."

Activity Type: Hiking
Nearby City: Waynesville
Duration: Up to a week's worth of fun.
Season: Year-round
Local Contacts: All contact information for attractions, dining, and lodging are provided in the eTrail.
Driving Directions: Directions to Great Smoky Mountains

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May 2018