sunrise over Gatlinburg, Tennessee

5 Reasons to Visit Cades Cove in the Smoky Mountains

cades cove road
March 17, 2021

Thinking about visiting Cades Cove in the Smoky Mountains? This is a beautiful area of the national park, and it’s actually the most popular destination. There’s a possibility of seeing amazing wildlife while you’re there, and you’ll definitely see incredible views. Check out these 5 reasons to visit Cades Cove in the Smoky Mountains:

1. Incredible Scenery

tree on the side of the road in cades cove

One of the main reasons people love going to Cades Cove is because of the incredible scenery. This area is a small valley that is surrounded by the mountains, providing you with breathtaking views during the entire drive. Whether you’re there when wildflowers are first blooming in the spring or during the cold winter, you’ll love taking in the beauty of the area. People love taking pictures of the scenery, and it’s definitely something you’ll want to commemorate.

2. Historic Buildings

Another reason why you should visit Cades Cove in the Smoky Mountains is because of the historic buildings. There are more historic buildings in Cades Cove than anywhere else in the national park. All of these buildings didn’t start out in this area; many of them were moved into Cades Cove. They are all maintained by the park service so guests can see what pioneer life was like. You’ll find cabins, barns, a grist mill, a smokehouse, and several churches. Cades Cove is the perfect activity to have a good time and learn something along the way!

3. Hiking Trails

Abrams Falls in Cades Cove

While driving through this area of the park is what most people enjoy doing, there are trailheads that start in Cades Cove. You can see a waterfall when you take Abrams Falls, a moderate trail that is 5 miles roundtrip. Rich Mountain Loop is a difficult trail with an 8 mile roundtrip length that provides you with beautiful wildflower viewing and mountain views. There are a few other hiking trails in the Loop and near Cades Cove you might want to explore.

4. Might See Wildlife

One major reason people visit Cades Cove in the Smoky Mountains is to possibly see wildlife. Although there is no guarantee you’ll see any animals, people are more likely to see them in this area. Several people see black bears throughout the year. Deer graze on grass in the empty fields and drink from the creeks. Birds, bugs, rabbits, and other small animals are abundant in this area. Just stay quiet and keep an eye out!

5. Picnic Area

picnic tables

Cades Cove in the Smoky Mountains is a beautiful place everyone should experience at least once. You already know you want to spend time in the national park, but there are so many other fun things to do when you stay with us. Check out these Gatlinburg attractions for more ideas!