How long have you been craving a peaceful, refreshing, and adventurous getaway? The answer may be obvious – forever. And to experience such unique moments, you might have gone on numerous trips to beach destinations, bustling cities, or exotic islands. But none of them could honestly fill the void in your heart and give it the tranquility and joy it desperately seeks.
So, if you’re looking forward to a one-of-a-kind vacation, the mountains are your ultimate soul-enriching destination.
Interestingly, the Great Smoky Mountains are one of the most famous mountain ranges in the United States, with over 11 million average annual visitors since 2012. They span 500,000 acres along the Tennessee-North Carolina border and are brimming with cascading waterfalls, verdant fields, ancient forests, crystal clear rivers, and wildflower-covered meadows. It’s no wonder that the Great Smoky Mountain is a popular destination among nature lovers and travel enthusiasts.
Besides, the experience of exploring a mountain range comes with several advantages – here are the top seven benefits of traveling to the mountains:
- Luxurious Mountain Accommodations
Your mountain vacation will be more than complete with a stay in luxurious mountain cabins. If you’re visiting the Great Smoky Mountains, you can easily find fully-equipped mountain cabins for rent at budget-friendly prices.
Whether you’re looking for a cozy one-bedroom, a spacious two-bedroom, or a large group lodging, these cabins are designed with complete comfort in mind. They feature high-end amenities, comfortable beds, a fully-equipped kitchen, and a stunning view of the Great Smoky Mountains that’s just unbeatable. What’s best, many of these cabins are conveniently located near Pigeon Forge, Gatlinburg, and Sevierville and have access to various attractions.
- Outdoor Adventure Awaits
Amidst the mountains, the traffic noise is gone and replaced by birds chirping, waterfalls gushing, and fresh mountain air caressing your skin. Well, that’s the beauty of a mountain vacation – it takes you away from all the chaos and immerses you in the beauty of nature. And if adventure is your thing, there are a plethora of activities to give your adrenaline a boost.
Whether you’re looking for a spot for fishing, camping, or simply exploring the mountainside trails on foot (or bicycle), the mountains have it all. You can also opt for ziplining, horseback riding, whitewater rafting, and other thrilling activities.
But bring proper gear and clothing with you. For instance, if you’re planning on hiking, the right hiking gear is necessary for a safe and enjoyable experience.
- Incredible Wildlife Viewing Opportunities
Mountain ranges like the Great Smoky Mountains are full of diverse species of flora and fauna that make the experience more exciting.
Apart from vibrant wildflowers, ancient trees, and diverse plants, there are over 200 species of birds, 65 species of mammals, 80 reptile types, and countless other animals living in the Great Smoky Mountains. You can spot them while hiking or take a wildlife safari tour to explore the area.
Some of the most majestic creatures you can easily witness in their natural habitat include elks, black bears, white-tailed deer, coyotes, turkeys, groundhogs, etc.
And if you’re lucky enough, you may even glimpse endangered species like the red-cockaded woodpecker, smoky madtom, and more.
- Stargazing Hotspots
The stars shine in all their glory when there is no light pollution from the cities – this makes mountain destinations perfect for stargazing.
The famous Smoky Mountains, for instance, have plenty of spots for stargazing, such as Cades Cove and Clingman’s Dome. You can set up a pretty picnic blanket or recline on a chair and look at the sky with naked eyes – it’s a wonderfully mesmerizing experience.
You can also use telescopes to closely examine the stars, constellations, and galaxies. Who knows, you may even witness a meteor shower or two.
- Enjoyable Shopping in Town
Do you love collecting souvenirs or picking up locally crafted items? The Great Smoky Mountains, including Gatlinburg, Sevierville, and Pigeon Forge, are filled with cute boutiques and artisan shops to meet your shopping needs.
From unique handmade jewelry to traditional crafts, there’s something for everyone. You can also find a variety of antiques, clothing items, and art pieces.
Gift shops also offer regional products such as jams, honey, soaps, postcards, books, and more – all at affordable prices.
- Delicious Local Cuisine
The Great Smoky Mountains are home to some of the most delicious regional cuisine you’ll ever taste. The restaurants in Pigeon Forge, Gatlinburg, and Sevierville have unique local recipes that will leave your taste buds smitten.
So, plan a meal or two at the local eateries while you’re here – it will be a different culinary experience. Taste the delicious smoked fish, lip-smacking country hams, and some of the most flavorful fried chicken in the world.
You can also sample home-style dishes like fried green tomatoes, cornbread muffins, collard greens, and more. And don’t forget to grab a few pies for dessert and your favorite local beer for a refreshing sip.
- Year-Round Fun
Even the most popular tourist spots die down at some point in the year, but that’s not true with mountain destinations. The Great Smoky Mountains are always bustling with activities throughout the year – no matter the season or time of day.
In winter, you can enjoy skiing down the slopes and admire Christmas lights and decorations in the towns. Spring is the best season for wildflower viewing, while summer brings great chances for fishing and swimming. And during fall, you can witness the spectacular autumn foliage that makes for beautiful landscape photography. Take some time to meditate in nature’s embrace and relax – it’ll all add up to create a uniquely luxurious experience.
If any destination offers a complete holiday experience, no matter the length or budget of your vacation, it has to be the Great Smoky Mountains, Tennessee. Whether traveling for a weekend, a week-long retreat, or a more extended vacation, every day will bring you a magnificent experience. You’ll find luxurious mountain cabins for rent at affordable rates, exciting outdoor adventures, incredible wildlife viewing opportunities, unique shopping experiences, finger-licking meals, and of course, unforgettable memories that will last a lifetime. So, put the Great Smoky Mountains on your list of places to visit and indulge in a perfect mountain vacation.