Right from its inception in the year 1923, Great Smoky Mountains National Park in Tennessee has never ceased to amuse tourists with its breathtaking landscape, historic sites, dazzling wildflowers, forests, lush greenery, long trails, popular rocky waterfalls, and exciting wildlife.
The park is world renowned for its beauty and diversity in animal and plant life.
Other things that makes this park unique is the ancient gigantic mountains that surround it, waterfalls, rivers that appear along the different hiking routes, and the remnants of the old southern Appalachian culture that still lingers around.
A view from the high points reveals tower tops of the famous Clingmans Dome, coupled with the scenic views of the vibrant mist-covered huge mountains. A round way trip to this spectacular national park is all about adventure, thrill, and fun.
Visiting this park for your holiday adventures, here are the top 10 things you shouldn’t miss while you explore around.
Hiking is the most popular activity enjoyed by numerous tourists at Great Smoky National Park every year in all seasons. Hiking in this park offers its own special treats and rewards. If you visit the park during winter, you won’t see the deciduous leaves, and this reveals new vistas of the astonishing trails and it reveals chimneys, stonewalls, and reminders of the residents that have lived there long before.
During spring, the park provides a parade of the flowering trees, and wildflowers. While in summer, hikers can cool out in the cool retreats located among the lush forests. Hiking in autumn is crisp; you get to enjoy the dry air that instantly brightens up your day. However, one of the most daunting task that hikers face is to choose the perfect hiking trail. Here are some of the famous ones in this park: Alum cave bluffs, Chimney tops, Charlies bunion, Andrews bald, and Rainbow falls.
Great Smoky Mountains National Park is spread over 800 square miles and it is one of the pristine natural parks located in the East. A car tour around the park offers a diverse variety of experience, along with panoramic views of the mountain streams, historic buildings, hardwood forests, and so much more in the horizon.
There are over 384 miles of roads to explore in the park. Some are paved, while some are gravel roads. In the right weather conditions, the travel speed allowed for most vehicles is an average of 35 miles per hour. For car tours, you will find booklets that tell you more about the following roads of the park: Newfound gap road, Roaring fork nature trail, Cades cove loop road, Upper Tremont road, Cataloochee valley.
Sightseeing and admiring all the impressive wildlife animals at this park is also a common activity. The natural park is home to some wildlife animals including some protected species of mammals (about 65), and over 200 different birds, native fish species (67) and over 80 different species of amphibians and reptiles. However, the American Black Bear is conic symbol of the Smokies and probably one of the famous residents of the natural park.
Smoky Mountains Park is one of the largest habitats for special bear species in the East. Other mammal species recorded in the park include groundhog, white-tailed deer, chipmunks and some rare species of birds, bats and squirrels.
Right when the park was successfully established, the huge lumber was saved from companies. Today, you can admire some of the old trees that exist in the Great Smoky Mountains Natural Park. You can find over 21 champion sized gigantic trees.
The Greenbrier area of the park is home to many other marvelous trees. For example, you can find a black cherry tree that has a massive circumference of more than 210 inches, and a special oak tree that measures as much as 257 inches.