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“Quiet when rest of park is busy”
Review of Cosby Campground

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Cosby Campground
Ranked #3 of 14 Speciality Lodging in Cosby
Certificate of Excellence
Toledo, Ohio
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Quiet when rest of park is busy”
Reviewed 7 September 2011

Just got back from a Labor day weekend stay. We got to the park around 6pm and when we stopped at the park visitor center in Gatlinburg we were told best luck in getting a site was Cosby and with traffic about 45 min drive. We were very glad she told us about Cosby. Very beautiful, and quiet, there were several sites still open.
We were surrounded by trees, decent size site, nice level platform, very clean restrooms. People were listening to the Tennessee football game, the only way we knew was when they scored the campground erupted in cheers.
Cosby is very well worth the low cost. You can even avoid Gatlinburg completely when arriving and leaving but if you want to explore the rest of the park you will have to go through Gatlinburg but once in the park very little traffic.

  • Stayed September 2011
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank jwpalmer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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64 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (11)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Any
English first
Nashville
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 June 2011

Just got back from staying at Cosby Campground, and whilst it is one of the better national park campgrounds I've stayed at, it's still far from perfect. The sites themselves are quite well laid out, with a good sized fire ring and grill, ample room for even a large tent, and a rugged picnic table, Each site has 1 parking space, and it's located directly in front of the site, which makes unloading and loading your vehicle extremely easy.

The one major problem with the majority of the sites is the lack of flat space, which limits where you can put a folding chair or table, and when you've got a few people in your group, not having enough space for chairs can become a real pain.

The layout of the camp itself is quite nice, and you're never more than 300ft from a restroom. The restrooms themselves are almost always immaculate, and it would appear they're cleaned every day. There aren't any showers, and the nearest shower facility is about a 4 mile drive, and will cost you about $5 per person.

There's a lot to do around the camp, many of the sites have trail heads not far from them, and no matter what your hiking experience is, there's bound to be a trail for you. Also about 2 miles from the camp, towards the town of Cosby, is a fair sized creek, with a pathway running alongside it.

The campsite is about 25 minutes from Gatlinburg, so if you want to spend some time in the resort town, but don't want to put up with the high priced hotels, Cosby Campground is just about perfect.

Room Tip: Arrive early, pick your site, then pay.
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  • Stayed June 2011, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
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Helpful?
3 Thank JcbT11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Framingham, MA
Level Contributor
31 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 June 2011

We stayed here over Columbus Day weekend last year. It was great in the sense that it was easy to get to off of I-40, and the area was very quiet. There are also several trailheads right at the campsite for day and extended hikes. One day we took a day hike and didn't have to get in the car at all that day. The fact that Gatlinburg, which is a shlocky tourist trap of a town, is 20 miles away is also a good thing. The problem is that since the campground is fairly remote, you need to drive a ways to get anything but the barest essentials.

There are no showers at the campground, but there are flush toilets and potable water. the big downside to the camp is that is can get quite crowded and loud. Made it tough to get to sleep. They really pack the sites pretty tight, so you feel like someone is camping on top of you. No real privacy at individual sites either.

Not a bad option though all things considered.

  • Stayed October 2010, travelled on business
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank NPTourist
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Washington, DC
Level Contributor
25 reviews
25 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
Reviewed 31 May 2011

We stayed for one night over Memorial Day weekend at the Cosby campground, and overall were very satisfied.

Pros: Nice campsites with separate tent & cooking/picnic areas for each site. (Tent sites were nicely leveled!). Good positioning of sites so that each site has some privacy. Solid ranger presence. Clean restrooms (cold water & flush toilets, no showers). Trailheads near the campground. You are about 20 miles away from Gatlinburg, so you get to avoid the craziness of that area and have a quiet entrance to the Park.

Cons: As others have noted, if you want to get to other sections/trails in the Park, you must either go through Gatlinburg or go down I-40 to the SE corner and backtrack in that way, so if you are staying here as your primary access to the Park you should take that into consideration. Also, the "town" of Cosby is pretty limited, do not expect much in the way of services other than a few mini-marts/gas stations. Other reviewers mentioned a place to take showers outside the park, that business appeared to be closed for good while we were there. Finally, obviously you expect to encounter bugs while camping, but we did find quite a few ticks at our site/tent/climbing on our car, etc. This wouldn't keep me away, but you might want to make sure to check you/kids/dogs/etc. while camping in the area.

  • Stayed May 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
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Helpful?
4 Thank DC_Runner78
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Seminole, FL
Level Contributor
59 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
Reviewed 19 September 2009

This is a beautiful campground. We tent camped here in July We made reservations but it was not necessary as the campground was only about 20-30 occupied! It is about 1/2 hour drive from Gatlinburg. The park facilities has flush toilets and running water but no hot water. There are a couple of places outside the park entrance that has pay showers. We did not see any bears but people said there were some two days earlier and the park ranger said they are common here.

  • Stayed July 2009, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank Edward65
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Memphis, Tennessee
Level Contributor
56 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
Reviewed 20 July 2009

we stayed in Cosby the week following the 4th of July. Less than half the sites were in use so we were able to have plenty of space and privacy. The sites are large and the trees are tall and thick. The bathrooms are cleaned every morning and we constanly saw ranger presence. There are several nice hikes from each end of the campground. The only downside - we wanted to take the kids to other sites in the smokies (bike cades cove, hike up clingmans dome) but you have no choice but to drive a good hour thru Galtlinburg to see any of these. Cosby is not connected to the rest of the smokies by any roads.

  • Stayed July 2009, travelled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank largefamilymom
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Lakewood, Colorado
Level Contributor
50 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
Reviewed 6 July 2009

This is the best campground that we have stayed in. Very quiet and spacious, unlike Cades Cove. We had a huge campsite surrounded by trees and no one in the sites around us. The only downside was the lack of showers ( the nearby shower facility was closed for repair). There are a lot of great hikes right out of the campsite.

  • Stayed June 2009, travelled with family
    • Value
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
2 Thank Kahlesh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Cosby Campground

Property: Cosby Campground
Address: Great Smokey Mountain National Park, Hwy 321, Cosby, TN
Region: United States > Tennessee > Cosby
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 14 Speciality Lodging in Cosby
Number of rooms: 157
Also Known As:
Cosby Campground Hotel Cosby
Cosby Campground Tennessee

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