Things to Do!
Cades Cove is a broad, verdant valley surrounded by mountains and is one of the most popular destinations in the Great Smokies. It offers some of the best opportunities for wildlife viewing in the park. Large numbers of white-tailed deer are frequently seen, and sightings of black bear, coyote, ground hog, turkey, raccoon, skunk, and other animals are also possible. An 11-mile, one-way loop road circles the cove, offering motorists the opportunity to sight see at a leisurely pace. Allow at least two to four hours to tour Cades Cove, longer if you walk some of the area's trails. Traffic is heavy during the tourist season in summer and fall and on weekends year-round. While driving the loop road, please be courteous to other visitors and use pullouts when stopping to enjoy the scenery or view wildlife. A visitor center (open daily), restrooms, and the Cable Mill historic area are located half-way around the loop road. For more information, visit the National Park Website, https://www.nps.gov/grsm/planyourvisit/cadescove.htm.
Great Smoky Mountains Heritage Center
Located in the peaceful gateway community of Townsend, Great Smoky Mountains Heritage Center celebrates the history of East Tennessee and the Smoky Mountains and is dedicated to preserving the region's unique culture. Through an assortment of artifacts dating from 3000 B.C. to the 1930's, visitors catch a glimpse of Native American life and its pottery, hunting weapons, ceremonial dress, and masks representing the Cherokee seven clans. Visitors can learn about both Native American and Auro-American life through three-dimensional displays, interactive exhibits, media presentations, and a historic village of authentic log cabins, cantilever barns, underground still house, sawmill, wheelwright shop, church, smokehouse, and more. Call 865-448-0044 or visit https://www.gsmheritagecenter.org/.
Little River Railroad and Lumber Company Museum
In the early 1900's, a busy railroad operated in the Smoky Mountains, bringing tourists to the area and taking thousands of trees out. The Little River Railroad and Lumber Company Museum tells the story of the area's logging history with hundreds of photographs, restored equipment and interpretive exhibits. Railroad buffs enjoy seeing one-of-a-kind locomotives and logging machinery and visiting with volunteer staffers rich with the knowledge of the old railroad's operations. An expansion project includes a refurbished water tower, replica passenger platforms, and a restored set-off house that shows how life was lived atop mountain ridges while logging operations were underway. For more information, call 865-661-0170 or visit https://littleriverrailroad.org/.
Tennessee River Monsters
There is nothing like a screaming bait-clicker or the jolting explosion of a top-water bait. Whether you choose to fish for catfish or stripers, at every turn, Tennessee River Monsters embraces your passion for Trophy fish. Their preparation and dedication to providing you an unforgettable adventure is evident the moment you step on the boat. They are a Veteran-Owned guide service and have been featured in over 25 magazines and TV Show like BoatUS, Country Living Magazine, and CBS Sports over the past four years. We are licensed by the US Coast Guard, the State of Tennessee, and fully insured. You can visit http://
The River Rat
Enjoy a day of fun TUBING down Little River, one of the most scenic rivers in the Smokies. Two outposts to choose, depending on age and experience, or float them both for no additional charge! Tubes and life jackets furnished. Group rates available. Picnic spots, changing rooms, and restrooms all on campus! Call 865-448-8888 or visit https://smokymtnriverrat.com/ for more information.