One of the best reasons to visit Gatlinburg, TN is for the breathtaking natural surroundings. Just look up from any spot, and you will see picturesque views of the Great Smoky Mountains enveloping you. The heart of Gatlinburg is just paces away from the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, home to more than 800 miles of hiking trails, over 500,000 acres of forest, 240-plus species of birds, peaceful waterfalls, beautiful flora and fauna, and plenty of opportunities for you and your family to commune with nature.
Hiking in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park is available to everyone, from those simply in the mood for a leisurely day hike to more experienced backcountry backpackers looking for a physical challenge. No matter what type of hike you choose to experience, you will be surrounded by soaring vistas, colorful wildflowers, abundant wildlife, and rich history including 77 historic structures. It is a perfect way to experience the mountains for the first time, and to introduce the great outdoors to the kids. Or, simply enjoy revisiting the rugged terrain you have traveled many times before, seeing something new at every turn.
Hiking trails are open all year round in the park. Each season brings its own set of views and experiences, and a hike any time of the year can be both a healthy and educational experience for anyone. Springtime offers copious amounts of blooming trees and flowers. Summertime is the time to splash in a cool mountain stream or picnic alongside a serene waterfall. The fall welcomes amazing colors, not to be missed. And winter is a special time in the Smoky Mountains, with crisp white snowfalls and views that reveal the true scope of the Great Smokies.
When you take a trip to Gatlinburg, you must take the short drive to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Enjoy an unhurried walk through the wilderness, or experience a challenging overnight hike in the unspoiled backcountry. Take the kids to one of the many waterfalls or simply enjoy the serenity of a romantic picnic lunch beside a mountain stream. Your vacation experience in Gatlinburg will not be complete without paying a visit to one of the nation’s most beautiful natural treasures!