6 Reasons Why We Love The Smoky Mountains

Planning a vacation is fun but also a lot of work. You want to choose a place that’s fit for everyone in the squad. Some place that’s equally fun during the day as much as it is after sunset.

A destination where adrenaline never dips low, and kind-heartedness is second nature. If that’s the kind of vacation you have in mind, Gatlinburg, Tennessee, is where you want to fly to. 

Gatlinburg, a quaint mountain town, has a small population of only 4000.

Yes, it’s close-knitted, but it isn’t boring and lifeless. It’s alive in the best ways possible.

The credit goes to its convenient location, lip-smacking good food, jaw-dropping views, and pleasant vibes. 

If you’ve pinned this wonderful pot of adventure on your 2023 bucket list, you’ll instantly fall in love. Think it’s too good to be true? Check out the reasons why everyone’s enchanted by Gatlinburg below! 

Free Herd of Animals on Grass Field Near Mountains Stock Photo


1. The Food

Gatlinburg is a food heaven. There’s so much good food here, from piping hot Southern fried chicken and scrumptious pulled pork BBQ to chin-dripping pancakes and melt-in-the-mouth homemade ice cream. We guarantee that people return with taste buds that are twirling with joy. 

The best part is that Gatlinburg’s food fits every budget and vibe. There are high-end restaurants, cozy cafes, and roadside kiosks. All of them serve equally delicious munchies. 

Kids get plenty of options too. There are fast-food joints, diner-style restaurants, and even a few spots with game rooms. Add to that the fresh produce from local markets, cheese-making shops, and homemade ice cream parlors – you won’t be able to resist! 

Moreover, the area has plenty of local brews, wine and moonshine to add a kick to lit nights. The chocolate wine, especially, is divine. Mix it with some cocktail, enjoy it as a milkshake, or gulp it down on its own – the rich, velvety texture will make you return for more! 

2. The Scenic Nature

One look at the rolling, lush green hills that stretch beyond the horizon and anyone will be ready to pack their bags. Gatlinburg is only fifteen minutes from the Great Smoky Mountain National Park, which means there are abundant views of the rugged Smoky Mountains every time someone steps out. And trust us, it is something out of a dream – vibrant foliage colors, misty peaks, and the smell of wet earth. Amazing!

During springtime, the region is dotted with wildflowers, making hiking to find hidden gems in the forest much more picturesque. In fall, the trees burst out in warm colors of yellow, red, and orange. And when winters hit Gatlinburg, it’s time for snow fun like skiing and snowboarding! 

3. The Perfect Location

One of the most exciting things about visiting Gatlinburg is its proximity to both nature and civilization. The city is only a few miles away from some spectacular natural attractions such as Clingmans Dome and Cades Cove. And it’s also within driving distance from some of the most popular cities in Tennessee – Nashville, Chattanooga, and Knoxville. 

So, road trips and weekend relaxation are both within reach when visiting Gatlinburg. You can stay in cabins that sit snuggly between the woods and take a few minutes off to explore. Or, you can drive out of town for some shopping therapy in Nashville. 

Gatlinburg is also home to attractions like the Ober Gatlinburg Ski Resort, Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies, and Great Smoky Mountain National Park Ranger Station. All of these attractions are within walking distance from almost all parts of the city, and that’s what makes Gatlinburg an ideal vacation spot. 

4. The Southern Hospitality

Of course, a big part of Gatlinburg’s charm is its people and hospitality. From warm welcome at hotels to friendly chats with locals, Gatlinburg’s kind-heartedness oozes from everywhere. People here are ready to help with any query and even offer tips for the best places to visit in town. 

The locals also make sure everyone feels at home. So, whenever there’s an event or some kind of gathering happening, tourists are always welcomed warmly. If you’re sold already and are looking to join some events here, don’t miss out on the following:

  • Gatlinburg’s Craftsmen’s Fair
  • The Fourth of July Midnight Parade
  • The Smoky Mountain Harvest Festival 

5. The Entertainment 

Gatlinburg, although small, has a lot going on. There are epic moments for everyone, from adventure-seekers to party-goers. Hit the slopes for some skiing fun, go explore the depths of Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies, or simply stroll by The Strip to witness enchanting attractions. 

The area also has a rich cultural heritage and many live music festivals throughout the summer. Get your groove on at one of the local pubs or try out unique dishes from different parts of the world. 

If you just want to spend quality time with your loved ones, Gatlinburg offers plenty of options for that too! Take a ride up in the Great Smoky Mountain Wheel and soak in beautiful views of downtown, go star-gazing at a nearby park, or enjoy a round of golf with a stunning backdrop. 

6. The Wildlife

What are your views on co-existing with black bears? Well, it’s time to embrace the idea because Gatlinburg homes hundreds of them. The sheer thrill of seeing bears out in the wild will make your heart flutter. If not in their living, breathing form, black bears find a way to a tourist in the shape of salt and pepper shakers, garden ornaments, and artworks. Heck, even toilet seats! 

Apart from bears, the national park is a haven for other wildlife like raccoons, wild turkeys, and white-tailed deer. Spotting them while taking a stroll through the woods can be magical. We’d recommend people take their cameras along and click some awesome pictures of these animals in their natural habitat. 

Final Thoughts

So, has Gatlinburg cast its spell on you already? If so, it’s time you book your tickets to explore one of America’s most beloved mountain towns! From sights that will take your breath away to unique experiences, Gatlinburg could be the next destination of your adventure-filled dreams. 

Our only suggestion is to pack light but pack right! You don’t want to lug around huge suitcases, nor do you want to be caught without all the necessary items. So, ensure you have all your adventure, entertainment, and comfort essentials sorted in advance. 

We hope you love Gatlinburg just as much as we do! Happy traveling!

Julie Higgins
Julie is a Staff Writer at momooze.com. She has been working in publishing houses before joining the editorial team at momooze. Julie's love and passion are topics around beauty, lifestyle, hair and nails.