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Gatlinburg or Blowing Rock

Garza Garcia
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Gatlinburg or Blowing Rock

Calling all locals to help me out! I was nominated to choose the perfect place where our families should meet for 2008 Xmas. Some come from NY and we're from TX. Since we are all driving, I figured these two cities were our best options to choose from, but I really have no idea what to expect. We want to ski(we are beginners), skate, and do all the winter activities to keep 8 children and 13 adults busy. We would like cultural activities and we love to go shopping. Should anyone have a better idea considering that the New Yorkers don't want to go too far south and we don't want to go too far north! Thank you all!

NC
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1. Re: Gatlinburg or Blowing Rock

Blowing Rock is smaller, quieter and more quaint. It's a nice town. Gatlinburg/Pigeon Forge is larger and has more entertainment options ( lots of theaters that will be doing Christmas Shows and other attractions). Both areas have skiing - Blowing Rock area has more choices.Ober Gatlinburg is the big winter sports area in that region.

Lodging will be a bit less expensive in Gatlinburg area and you'll have more choices. You get luxurious cabins in the Gat/PF area for much less than the High Country in NC. It depends on what you are looking for. You also have more shopping options in Gat./PF. Best wishes.

Weaverville, North...
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2. Re: Gatlinburg or Blowing Rock

I think Gatlinburg may be a good option as far as winter activities, though that area seldom has much natural snow until Feb/March as it doesn't get or stay cold enough. There are a lot of activities like the aquarium, shopping and hiking...though you will need to drive or take shuttle buses to everything. Many of the amusements like Dollywood will be closed for the season.

Have you considered a cruise?

North Carolina
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3. Re: Gatlinburg or Blowing Rock

As usual, this depends on what you like! A lot of people really like Gatlinburg, but it's.......well, sort of tacky! Now, I have to say that I'm going there a week from today, but I have no expectation that it's going to be serene and culture filled! Blowing Rock, on the other hand is a cute village! Boone is nearby, which is home to Appalachian State University. To me, there's a lot to do in the area, but I'm not into theme parks and that kind of thing. I think that skiing in both areas would be comparable. I would choose Blowing Rock, but that's just me!

Kathrine

NC
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4. Re: Gatlinburg or Blowing Rock

LOL - why are you going to G'Burg Katherine? Somebody making you go? I agree the main drag in G'Burg is not serene...but boy those surrounding mountains sure are! I also agree a lot fo the shops on the main drag are tacky. but- the area is sooooooo much more than that mile or two. Culture? Ever driven the arts and crafts loop? try it.

North Carolina
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5. Re: Gatlinburg or Blowing Rock

You know, after I wrote that, I realized I have never been during the winter, so I probably shouldn't have an opinion! I just go in April for a conference each year, and by the way, we have a blast! We do go out into the surrounding areas and enjoy crafting off the beaten path. I guess when I am there, the town is just so very crowded, I'm a little overwhelmed. But I'm a country girl!

North Carolina
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6. Re: Gatlinburg or Blowing Rock

I would suggest another option...Wintergreen, Virginia. The skiing will be much better than NC or TN. For culture and shopping you are a short drive from Charlottesville and Monticello.

Tennessee
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for Chattanooga, Blowing Rock, North Carolina Mountains
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7. Re: Gatlinburg or Blowing Rock

OK, spending much time in Tenn and NC., I think you need to qualify yourself and your family. Gatlinburg will be wall to wall traffic. Many will be outlet shopping in Pigeon Forge.

The Gatllinburg area is mostly for the tourists who come to eat, shop and "who knows what"!!! Do not know how many "Cultural Events" will be in Gatlinburg. Not known for that.

Blowing Rock and Boone, NC area is less crowded, and nicely decorated for a winter holiday season, but in good taste. To ski, that depends on weather and snow making at time of year, but more likely to be in NC.

The Blowing Rock/ Boone area is beautiful. It will depend on what you are looking for. There are outlets, charming streets and interesting shopping.

You may want to look at Chetola Resort in the Blowing Rock for housing. It looks beautiful during the holiday season and offers much for families.

Cullowhee, North...
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8. Re: Gatlinburg or Blowing Rock

Boone and Blowing Rock way better winter sports than down here in the Smokies. Boone and West Jefferson are nice towns and enjoy them when we go. If you are looking for a white mountain Christmas you are more likely to get it in Boone.

If you do come south, I would suggest Maggie Valley because Cataloochee is higher than GB Ober and there are more trails and so forth for Skiing. If you stay in Maggie or near us in Sylva-Bryson City you can day trip to Gburg, ski there too, ski at Cataloochee, experience the busy side of the Smokies and the quaint side of the Smokies too.

But, if I really had to press it, I would stay in Boone or Blowing Rock because it is just more Christmas like there. This is coming from a guy who owns cabins here for rent in Bryson City as well as a quaint store in Dillsboro. Dillsboro is a great mountain town at Christmas...very Norman Rockwellesque....

9. Re: Gatlinburg or Blowing Rock

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