Easy on the Wallet: Smoky Mountains National Park is Still Free

 For most of you, going on vacation as a couple or family means pinching pennies to save up for it. A great option that allows you to get away from the hustle and bustle and do some relaxing is vacationing in the Smokies. Few places in the U.S. offer a better combination of amazing views, peace and quiet, and total relaxation.

At first glance, the Smokies might not be the obvious choice, but there are two good reasons as to why this is true. For one thing, the most popular national park in the U.S. I free! That’s right, there is no fee to enjoy the Smokies. And, second, staying in a cabin in the Smokies is the same price as a hotel, but allows you far more amenities and the ability to cook meals for the family or two of you at home.

Stretch Your Legs and Enjoy Clean Mountain Air

The best way to enjoy vacationing in the Smokies is to get out and enjoy the park. There are over 800 miles of trails in the Smoky Mountains, from easy strolls for total beginners to serious hiking for those who crave the open trail.

Your list of things to do in the Smokies could include waterfalls, wildflowers, wildlife, or breathtaking views and most trails have mixture of everything. Head out early in the morning for the chance to see deer, bears, and mountain lions, plus a wide variety of birds. The mountains are a great place to cycle as well, with the Cades Cove Loop closed to cars twice a week.

Another popular option for things to do in the Smokies is casting a line in the more than 600 miles of fishable rivers and streams. The catch limit is more than enough to make a feast in the kitchen in your cabin and it is a great way to bond as a family or just get some time away.

Take a Scenic Drive

Another great choice for things to do in the Smokies is a trip to Clingmans Dome. The highest point in the Smoky Mountains and the Appalachian Trail, Clingmans Dome offers 360-degree views from Tennessee to North Carolina. It is even accessible by car by a beautiful 23-mile drive from Gatlinburg.

The paved path from the parking lot leads to the Observation Tower, a stepless spiral to the viewing platform. Although it is too steep to be wheelchair accessible, there are benches along the way so those with limited mobility can still take in the view. And, from the top, what an amazing view it is! You will definitely want a charged phone or camera for this trip.

Whether you intend to break out the hiking boots or simply want to relax with beautiful views, there are plenty of cabins in Gatlinburg that will help you relax. For the price of a hotel room, you can enjoy a flickering fire and bubbling hot tub in total privacy. All of our cabins have full kitchens as well, so whether you are staying or going out, you can start with a healthy breakfast and finish with a big family dinner together, all the while saving money on restaurants.

Book now before peak season and you could be vacationing in the Smokies on a reasonable budget and return home recharged.