Great Smoky Mtns. National Park Feature
- Places to Explore
- Travel Tips
- Fodor's Choice
One Day on the Tennessee Side
If you have one day and are entering the park from the Tennessee side, start early, pack a picnic lunch, and drive to the Sugarlands Visitor Center to orient yourself to the park. Head to the Cades Cove Loop Road and drive the 11-mi loop, stopping to explore the preserved farmsteads and churches. Spend some time in the Cable Mill area, visiting the gristmill, Gregg-Cable House, and other outbuildings. Depending on your timing, you can picnic at one of the stops in Cades Cove or Metcalf Bottoms. Take Newfound Gap Road up to Newfound Gap. Clingmans Dome Road is just over the state line, but if you've come this far you'll want to drive up. Stretch your legs and walk to the observation tower on Clingmans Dome. Return down Clingmans Dome and Newfound Gap roads and walk the self-guided trail around the Noah "Bud" Ogle farm. Then, proceed on to Roaring Fork Motor Nature Trail. Stop to explore the preserved cabins and other sites along the trail. At Auto Tour site number 5, park in the parking lot at the Trillium Gap trailhead and—if you have the time and are up to a moderate 2.6-mi (round-trip) hike—walk to Grotto Falls.
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