foothills parkway in the smoky mountains

Top 3 Things to Do in the Smoky Mountains During Our Off Season

During the winter months, our Smoky Mountain campground closes down for the season. We know you wish you could visit us year round, but since you can’t, we thought we could share some of the fun things you can do in the area during our off season! From exploring the national park to visiting one of the most popular cities in the area, you’ll find plenty of fun things to do! Check out these top 3 things to do in the Smoky Mountains during our off season:

1. Hike in the National Park

alum cave trail in the smoky mountains

You’ll find plenty of hiking trails to explore in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park during our off season! Many people enjoy hiking Alum Cave Trail during this time of year because of the jaw-dropping views and the incredible size of icicles at the bluffs! Other trails that are popular during winter are any with waterfalls because sometimes the water freezes around the falls and creates a beautiful sight. You might also find snow in the Smokies during this time of year, and you’ll have a blast exploring the trails with a layer of snow on the ground! No matter which trail you decide to hike, be sure to dress warmly, pack water and snacks, and don’t hike alone! Also, be aware that some main roads are closed seasonally, so some trailheads may not be accessible during this time of the year.

2. Go on a Scenic Drive

Another fun thing to do in the Smoky Mountains during our off season is to go on a scenic drive! This is a great option for visitors who don’t want to brave the chilly weather on a hiking trail. You will still be able to take in the beauty of the area in the winter while staying toasty warm in your car! One of the most beautiful drives you’ll want to experience is Foothills Parkway. This road was approved for construction by Congress in the 1940s, and it has been worked on in sections over the years, with a few more sections left until it is completely finished. The first part is located closest to our campground, and it’s a 5.6-mile stretch of road that includes breathtaking overlooks where you can get out and stretch your legs, as well as take pictures of the landscape. There are quite a few other scenic drives in the area you might want to explore, but be sure to keep up with temporary road closures to see if you can access them!

3. Visit Gatlinburg

ober gatlinburg signDuring our off season, you may want to spend some time in Gatlinburg! This mountain town is located right outside the national park, and it’s full of attractions, places to shop, and restaurants. Winter is a great time to visit, especially if you love to ski or snowboard! Ober Gatlinburg, the only ski resort in Tennessee, is in full swing during winter so guests can enjoy the slopes. They also have a snow play area for small children and a snow tubing hill for people of all ages! Of course, you can’t go wrong enjoying views of the mountains any time of the year, and Gatlinburg SkyLift Park is the perfect place to experience these views. Plus, you can test your bravery and walk across the SkyBridge with the glass panels in the center! After you have had fun at these attractions, browse through shops or grab a bite to eat! All of the shops and restaurants in Gatlinburg are open during this time of year, so browse through local shops for some goodies to take home, and try a ton of unique restaurants you won’t find back home!

You won’t want to miss out on these things to do in the Smoky Mountains during our off season. While your mind might not be on springtime quite yet, it’s never too early to start thinking about your next camping trip with us! See which rentals at our campground are available, and book your next trip with us now!