Things to Do at Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Things to Do at Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Things to Do at Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Great Smoky Mountains National Park activities

Image from Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Experience all Great Smoky Mountains National Park has to Offer

Great Smoky Mountains National Park offers an array of activities and experiences. The over 800-square-mile park expands from Tennessee to North Carolina. The park is known for its beautiful mountain vistas, wildlife, plant biodiversity, history and so much more. Hike a mountain summit, bike the challenging terrain, go fishing or simply take in the beauty of the Smoky Mountains.

Things to Do at Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Take part in these activities when you visit Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

Hiking

Hikers come from around the country year-round to traverse the trails at Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Hiking is a fantastic way to explore the vast park and capture some of the breathtaking views.

Click here to read about hiking trails at Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

There are several hiking trails within the park. Can’t decide which to do first? Choose your trail based on your interest and ability. The hiking trails at Great Smoky Mountains National Park have varying levels of elevation, distance and terrain. Looking to hike with the whole family? There are even kid-friendly hiking trails that are perfect for the little ones.

Click here to read about Great Smoky Mountains National Park’s kid-friendly hiking trails.

Biking

In addition to hiking, biking is also a great way to get around Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Cyclists can ride on many of the roads within the park, however they should be cautious of heavy vehicle traffic and narrow roads.

Cades Cove Loop Road is perfect for bikers. The 11-mile one-way road is a popular trail to bike and offers opportunities to spot plenty of wildlife and historic sites. Bring your own bike or rent one from the campground store.

Camping

Spend a night under the stars at Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The park offers both backcountry and frontcountry campsites, as well as group campgrounds located in the frontcountry and horse camps.

Great Smoky Mountains National Park camping

Image from Great Smoky Mountains National Park/ Warren Bielenberg

Backcountry campsites are perfect for hikers making their way around the park. While these sites do not offer any amenities, they do put campers closer to Great Smoky Mountains National Park’s most sought-after scenery. The frontcountry campsites are more developed and boast restrooms, running water, fire grates and picnic tables.

Fishing

There are about 2,900 miles of streams within Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Cast a line in one of the few wild trout habitats in the eastern United States. Fishing is permitted year-round in all of the streams. A valid Tennessee or North Carolina fishing license is required.

Horseback Riding

Explore Great Smoky Mountains National Park by horse from mid-March through late November. The park has four concession stables that allow you to rent a horse per hour to ride Great Smoky Mountains National Park’s scenic trails. Or, bring your own horse to experience the 550 miles of hiking trails that are open to horses.

Click here to read more about horseback riding in the Tennessee Smokies.