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Initial Planning - BRP and GSMNP

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Haifa, Israel
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Initial Planning - BRP and GSMNP


I am posting this request on both the Aseville and Gatlinberg forums, since part of the question is how to split our trip between the two.....

We are planning a week trip in early May to the area hoping to see highlights of both BRP and GSMNO. We are a couple in our late 40`s, enjoying views and nature (albiet not great hikers unfortunately), as well as intersting paces (as Biltmore) and shopping.....

I read quite a lot of posts, yet would appreciate directed guidance to a few questions:

1. We are flying in from NYC. We thought Asheville should be a good point to arrive and embark, yet flights are limited. Is Charlotte a better point?

2. How should we split our time? We would rather travel less per-day and move. Should we travel towards Boone/Blowing Rock (and then what?) or towards Cherokee and from there towards the Park and TN? Should we stay in any of those towns or split our lodgings between Asheville and Gatlinburg/Pigeon Forge?

Please forgive me for such elementary questions. I promise that after you responses, my next questions will be more focused.



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1. Re: Initial Planning - BRP and GSMNP

I would fly to Atlanta or Charlotte. Both are nice airports with plenty of flights to accomodate your needs. Drive to BRP and SMNP and back to your flight home. I like the Boone/BR area better than SMNP but you should visit there once. Asheville is an outstanding city. Enjoy your trip.

Pigeon Forge...
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2. Re: Initial Planning - BRP and GSMNP

If you do start out at Asheville, NC, you can access the BRP from there. I started my trip from there last year and loved the BRP. I drove a lot the first day, then stayed overnight in Maggie Valley. You can also consider Waynesville, NC which is a cute little town. Make sure to stop up at Lodge for lunch along the BRP. Also stop in Dillsboro, NC there is a great chocolate factory there (well actually the store) but great chocolates.

There are some small hikes with waterfalls outside of Maggie Valley to see. You can also head over to Cataloochee to see the Elk, all before heading into The smokies Through Cherokee. Stop over in Cherokee and go to the Museum, and if it is nice outside (summer time), go to the Indian Village. Then head into the National Park and into Gatlinburg. Stay over here for a a day or two, as there as so many places to see and do things. You can then head back to Asheville from I-40 and stop and see The Biltmore Estates the day before you head back on your flight home.

Just suggestions, but any variation of this loop will provide you with a lot of amazing scenery, great towns along the way, and lots of fun stuff to see and do. Also make sure to get to some of the waterfalls and short hikes along the way.

Haifa, Israel
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3. Re: Initial Planning - BRP and GSMNP

Very helpful recommendations - thank you!

It sounds like I shall plan on 2 nights Boone/BR, 2 nights Asheville, 1 night Cherokee and 2 nights Gatlinberg area - sounds about right?

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4. Re: Initial Planning - BRP and GSMNP

I would not bother spending the night in Cherokee. I would add another nite in either Blowing Rock, Asheville or Gatlinburg. You can easily see Cherokee in half a day.

5. Re: Initial Planning - BRP and GSMNP

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