Great Smoky Mountains National Park
The most visited park in the National Park system, the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, attracts more than 9,000,000 visitors to the Smokies annually. The Park (just a short drive from Pigeon Forge, Tennessee) has of over 1/2 million acres teeming with stunning waterfalls, sparkling streams and an large quantity of native wildlife. Located in the Blue Ridge Mountains, the park is part of the southern Appalachians, and straddles the TN-NC border for seventy miles.
In fall the Great Smoky Mountains National Park's pristine forests transform to an amazing display of natural beauty. The leaves change from green to dazzling colors of gold, red, orange and purple. This fall show of color normally reaches it most beautiful color around the third week in October.
Hiking along the Park’s 800+ miles of trails is a popular way to explore the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. For more park info visit www.gatlinburginsider.com/smoky-mountains.htm. On foot visitors enjoy many facets of the park that are missed from driving through in a car. The smell of the forests and wildflowers, the sound of rippling streams and chirping birds are best experienced away from the main roads.
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Visitor Centers - Operating Hours
The Great Smoky Mountains National Park is open year-round with the exception of Christmas Day.
The Sugarlands Visitor Center is
located on US 441, just 2 miles south of Gatlinburg, Tennessee. The center's displays focal point is on the plants and animals found in the park.
The Oconaluftee Visitor Center is located 1 mile north of Cherokee, North Carolina. The center's
displays spotlight the impact of farming and logging on the Great Smoky Mountains.
Located inside the park close to the middle of the 11-mile Cades Cove Loop Road, the Cades Cove Visitor Center focuses on the cultural history of the Smokies.