sunrise over Gatlinburg, Tennessee

Top 3 Reasons to Visit NOC Gatlinburg Before Your Visit to the National Park

Beautiful photo of Gatlinburg during the spring.
January 25, 2019

The Nantahala Outdoor Center (NOC) is the nation’s largest outdoor recreation company! They operate their flagship store at the downtown Gatlinburg entrance to Great Smoky Mountains National Park! Whether you are planning to hit the hiking trails or take a scenic drive through the Smokies, make sure that this is your first stop! Here are the top 3 reasons to visit NOC Gatlinburg before your visit to the national park:

1. Fun Shopping Experience

The NOC Gatlinburg store is designed to provide a fun shopping experience for guests of all ages! If you have kids in your family, they will love exploring the bear cave or crossing the swinging rope bridge! There is also a huge fireplace that is perfect for warming up on those cool days in the Smokies. Even if you don’t plan to purchase any items, you will appreciate the cozy ambiance of the store and the friendly atmosphere. The NOC Gatlinburg store also helps you to anticipate the excitement of the great outdoors!

2. Hiking Essentials


The 18,000 square foot NOC Gatlinburg store carries everything you would ever need to enjoy a hiking excursion into the Smoky Mountains! You will find a complete lineup of gear, footwear and apparel from top manufacturers such as Columbia, Patagonia and Keen Footwear. The store also carries a large selection of vacation essentials such as jackets, gloves, coats, sunglasses and even headphones! Although you might feel fully prepared for your hike in the Smokies, you might just see something on the shelves that you forgot to pack!

3. Assistance with Trip Planning

One of the awesome things about NOC Gatlinburg is that it is not only a retail store, but offers trip planning services! The friendly staff will help you plan whitewater rafting adventures and other guided Smoky Mountain excursions right in the store! One of the most popular trips is the Walk in the Woods Waterfall Excursion, where you step off the beaten path to explore vintage farm fields, narrow ridges and a hidden world of delightful Appalachian Mountain waterfalls. The Smoky Mountain Adventure is a favorite full day tour that combines the hiking adventure of the Walk in the Woods with a thrilling rafting trip on the Upper Pigeon River!

Where to Stay

king suite at sidney james mountain lodge

Stay less than a mile from NOC Gatlinburg with a vacation at the Sidney James Mountain Lodge! Our affordable Gatlinburg hotel is conveniently located on Historic Nature Trail. Plus, we have all the amenities necessary for a wonderful getaway to the Great Smoky Mountains! We have a variety of comfortable room types to meet your needs! Including Queen Economy Rooms for those on a budget to Creekside Jacuzzi Rooms for couples looking for a romantic escape! While staying with us, enjoy private balconies, indoor and outdoor swimming pools, an exercise facility and much more!

Check out all of our hotel rooms in Gatlinburg TN today to plan your vacation near NOC Gatlinburg and the entrance to the national park! We hope to see you soon at the Sidney James Mountain Lodge!