Tips to Planning the Perfect Summer Vacation Trip at Smoky Mountains

Smoky Mountains are one of the most popular tourist sites in the US. Accommodating millions of tourists each year, this popular tourist destination is slowly getting back on track after the pandemic. Whether you want to take a fun-filled day for hiking or stay a couple of days to explore every corner, we will help you plan the most memorable trip you have ever had.

Source: Unsplash

Choose The Dates 

Unless you are attending an event, choosing travel dates might be the most challenging element of arranging a trip – especially if you have school-going kids. Choose your vacation dates carefully if you want to stay in the Smoky Mountains. Depending on a variety of variables, some seasons are busier than others. Summer is a great season to visit the Smoky Mountains. However, it can be really busy. Since summers are a popular season for families to visit the Smoky Mountains, schedule your stay as soon as possible if you are considering a summertime Smoky Mountain holiday. Also, make sure to tell your plans at your workplace in advance to avoid last-minute inconveniences. 

Pick A Location for Stay 

For some people, picking the date may not be as much of a problem as finding the right place to stay. One of the main reasons behind this is the fact that accommodation is usually expensive during the vacation season. Once you have the dates in place, finding the right cabins and condos will be easy and simple. You can look over the internet for something that suits your budget and convenience. Most companies offer special discounts and deals but make sure to have a video tour of your potential residence. From 5-star hotels to romantic resorts and best value accommodations, there are so many options out there. Most people with families prefer staying in a rental apartment, while couples prefer a hotel stay. Following are the best places to stay on your next Smoky Mountain trip. 


Gatlinburg houses a wide range of tourists while maintaining its rustic persona. It allows people to explore gorgeous landscapes on foot because of the walking accessibility. 

Pigeon Forge 

Although it may seem a bit less attractive than Gatlinburg, Pigeon Forge indeed holds importance among residential tourists, mainly because of its close proximity to Dollywood – one of the best theme parks in the country. 

Smoky Mountain Accommodation 

If your plan is only to tour the Smoky Mountains, we recommend seeking accommodation within this magical resort. Smoky Mountain Accommodation is a popular trip among trails, campers, and hikers. It allows you to get away from the hustle and bustle of real life because of its peaceful surroundings. 

Check The Attractions You Want to See 

When planning your Smokie Mountain Vacation, picking the places you want to see is one of the best parts of the entire trip. From shopping malls to theaters, restaurants, and historical sites. Make a list of all the locations you want to see and purchase them online before even leaving for vacation (we can thank our MasterCard’s here). Here are some of the most popular places for you to experience the best of the Smoky Mountains.

Cades Cove 

Among the national park’s attractions, Cades Cove is the most popular. This lovely location, complete with animals and 19th-century house sites, is only a taste of what the park has to offer. The area is packed with a lot more history. Other than gorgeous natural views, the Cades Cove road has really popular biking and hiking trails for a fun-filled day of adventure and activity with the family.


Elkmont, a former logging town, is named after the elk that once roamed the region. Prior to the establishment of the national park, Elkmont residents have recreational cottages for tourists on a getaway. Plans to repair the historic clubhouse and 18 surviving cottages were proposed in 2009. It is one of the park’s most popular campsites.

Mount LeConte 

Mount LeConte has a gorgeous lodge at the top, but you need to hike on foot to get there. If you really want to stay there, pick one of the 6 trails that lead to the top. Unfortunately, there are no roads for people with health complications, but the views are to die once you reach the top. From waterfalls to caves and wild llamas, this could be a perfect romantic getaway for couples. 

Plan What and Where You Want to Eat 

There are a lot of restaurants near Gatlinburg attractions, Pigeon Forge Sevierville, etc. Most restaurants focus on traditional Southern flavors in a refined form. Try something that is not available at your location, and make sure to ask about the local specialties before ordering. Other than this, you can take your portable cooking items on top of mountains to plan a picnic with your loved ones. Here are some awesome places to grab a bite from. 

Lil Black Bear Cafe 

Lil Black Bear Cafe is a very small but worth-your-money breakfast and lunch spot. Serving grandma-style food with even more flavors, you can enjoy subs, burgers, sandwiches, and delicious hot dogs. This place tops our lists because of its delectable flavors along with reasonable pricing. However, you must know that they are open till 2pm so get on time. If tourism is at peak, make sure to call first or reserve a table, so you are not left waiting and hungry. 

Nino’s Pizzeria 

Started in 2014, Nino’s Pizzeria was launched with a mission to serve rustic Italian flavors. Don’t confuse it with the Nino’s you saw in Kitchen Nightmares because this one is indeed one of a kind. They have some appetizing flavors to satisfy your hunger, from lasagna, pizza, cheesecakes, and awesome drinks. If you share Italian roots, these flavors may be really common for you, so we recommend you pick something else. 

Cubans Cafe 

Smokies Cuban Cafe is tucked in a strip mall on the Parkway and is a true hidden gem. Authentic Cuban cuisine, such as empanadas, plantains, steaks, and Cuban-flavored sandwiches, will be available to visitors. Smokies Cuban Cafe’s meals aren’t complete unless you sample one of their delectable mango shakes! Cuban food is usually spiced with natural flavors, so your kits are bound to love it. 

Friendly Falls 

Friendly Falls are the only restaurant in the Smoky Mountains that has its very own waterfall – because why not? Visitors may enjoy beautiful views of the falls while eating from the delicious menu of smoked fish, pork sandwiches, nachos, or other southern delicacies. Friendly Falls also has a craft store, a gem mine, and a light display in addition to the wonderful restaurant.

Preacher’s Smokehouse 

It is one of the newer eateries established in 2017. It features a meat-friendly menu with mouth-watering sides – many people have dropped jaws over their delicious ribs! The owner was a server for a ministry during the 2016 wildfires and has continued to serve his flavors to everyone visiting the Smoky Mountains. 


Smoky Mountains is one of the most popular tourist sites in America. However, planning the perfect vacation could be a bit hard for you. We have covered everything you need to know in this article. From picking the right dates to choosing the right accommodation and finally eating at the right spots, choose whatever suits your budget, time, and convenience. 

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Scroll to Top