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What to see?

Suffolk, United...
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344 posts
207 reviews
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What to see?

Hi. We have spent many enjoyable holidays across the United States but this is our first visit to this area, although probably not the last! I've looked around the forums but would appreciate any suggestions you can give for things to do. We are travelling the last two weeks of September and really enjoy scenic drives with opportunities for short hikes (upto 3 mls), historical sites, gardens and wonderful views. We are deciding how to make the best use of our time in:

1. Chatanooga - we have just over a day on our itinery. Is the National Civil War site worth insisting? What are the "don't miss" places?

2. We are then driving through the Smokey Mountains NP which I understand are beautiful from Knoxville and through Sevierville, Pigeon Forge, Gatlinburg and Cherokee to Asheville. We would have loved to spend more time here but on this trip have just the day in order to make the rest of our itinery work.

We are then doing the Blue Ridge Parkway for a couple of days before heading down to the Southern Carolina coastline. I would really appreciate any suggestions for things to see and do on this route. Thanks.

Townsend, Tennessee
Destination Expert
for Townsend, Great Smoky Mountains National Park
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963 posts
14 reviews
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1. Re: What to see?

If you are headed to the Smokies from Chattanooga, consider exiting I-75 at Lenoir City (exit # 81) then through Maryville and Townsend and enter the Smokies at the Townsend/Cades Cove entrance. About the same travel time as coming around to exit 407 off I-40 through Sevierville but without all the PF/Gatlinburg Parkway traffic. From Townsend, travel along the Little River Road towards Gatlinburg. Stop for a picnic lunch at Metcalf Bottoms in the Park, or head into Gatlinburg for a meal at the Smoky Mountain Brewery. Then back into the Park and travel on 411 towards Cherokee. Alum Bluffs Trail would make a nice hike (4.4 miles RT ) or even just partway on that trail as far as Arch Rock (2.6 mi RT). On the border between TN and NC you will find the 7 mile road out to Clingman's Dome and a 1/2 mile hike up to the observation tower - definintely worth a stop.

Suffolk, United...
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344 posts
207 reviews
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2. Re: What to see?

Thanks very much for this. Looking at maps in England don't always give the best travelling perspective! Unfortunately we have an overnight booked further along at Knoxville, but if we can't change that perhaps we can double back to pick up your route. The hikes look great. Thanks

3. Re: What to see?

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