The Great Smoky Mountains has long been a haven for fishermen, hikers and outdoor enthusiasts, but many people do not realize that this remarkable region is also the perfect spot for an affordable family vacation. The Great Smoky Mountains is blessed with natural beauty, but it is also home to inexpensive campgrounds, free activities and a host of wonderful things to see and do. And with an avis promo code, you can rent a cool car or jeep for your outdoor adventure and keep it all on the cheap. Read more…
If you have been thinking about skipping the annual family vacation this year due to budgetary constraints, you might want to rethink that decision and set your sights on the Great Smoky Mountains. Whether you are traveling by air or by ground, you will find the region easy to get to, and even easier to enjoy.
Once you arrive, you can enjoy endless family-friendly activities, many of them completely free of charge and others costing just a nominal fee. Here is a short sampling of the free and low-cost family activities you will find when you vacation in the Great Smoky Mountains this year.
Douglas Lake is a wonderful excursion, and a must-see for any first-time visitor to the Great Smoky Mountains. Visitors and locals alike take advantage of the free public boat launch to get their crafts in the water, and once they are underway, boaters can enjoy a leisurely float down the river while they keep a close eye out for deer, bear and other local wildlife.
You do not have to have your own boat to get wet and wild in the Great Smoky Mountains. Tube rentals are everywhere, and you can rent a tube and float down a lazy river – or try your luck with the local rapids. The Litter River, particularly the stretch along Little River Road, is a real local favorite, and a great scenic trip for first-time tubers. The Little Pigeon River in nearby Greenbrier is another local favorite – first-timers should stop by the welcome center in Sugarland to get information on local weather conditions and other prime tubing spots in and around the Great Smoky Mountains.
Discover What Only the Locals Know
If you want to have the best time in the Great Smoky Mountains, you need to think like a local. The restaurants and cafes favored by locals are more likely to have fresh affordable food, while the trails they traverse are likely to be less crowded and easier to navigate.
One of the hidden gems of the Great Smoky Mountains is a spot few tourists know, but all the locals do. The nearby town of Greenbrier is home to one of the most secluded, and thereby underutilized, entrances to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. This local favorite is the perfect spot for all manners of free family fun, including bird watching, nature walks, hiking, fishing and sunbathing. Be sure to bring your bike or rent one on the outskirts of the park – seeing the area on two wheels is sure to be a delight for the whole family.
If this is your first trip to the natural wonder that is Great Smoky Mountains National Park, the experience could be somewhat overwhelming. The park is vast, and just getting around can sometimes be a challenge.
That is why it is smart to start your journey at the Sugarlands Visitor Center, located less than three miles from Gatlinburg. The visitor center features an educational 20-minute film with an in-depth look at the local wildlife and insider tips designed to help you get more out of the experience.
Whether you are a first-time visitor or not, the Great Smoky Mountains is home to some truly spectacular vistas, and the views are completely free. If you have been looking for a memorable family vacation that will not break the bank, just point your car toward Gatlinburg and join in on the fun.