This land is the most visited national park in America, world-renowned for its abundance of plant and animal life, the majesty of its ancient mountains, and the nature of its remnants of Southern Appalachian mountain culture.
Ridge upon ridge of woodland in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park traverses the boundary between North Carolina and Tennessee.
The Great Smoky Mountains National Park was established on June 15, 1934 after overcoming numerous economic, cultural, and political issues. Today the park is the largest protected land area east of the Rocky Mountains and has become the most visited national park in the American Park System. The main entrances are located along US Highway 441.
The history of the Appalachian Mountains is a precious thing and the Great Smoky Mountains National Park preserves this story. These mountains have been around for thousands of years from the prehistoric Paleo Indians to the 18th century European settlements and loggers and Civilian Conservation Corps in the 20th century.
The protection of history, wildlife, and nature are very important to the park. There are many great attractions to see while visiting the park. The most popular attraction is Cades Cove.
Others include: Roaring Fork, Cataloochee, Elkmont, Mountain Farm museum and Mingus Mill at Oconaluftee. Don’t forget to watch out for , Clingmans Dome, the highest point in Tennessee and the Smokies.
The Great Smoky Mountains have a spring and summer explosion of wildflowers.
There are more than 1,500 flowering plants in the region, including delicate spring beauties, several types of trillium, trout lilies, wild geranium, and orchids; visit for the best blooms from mid-April to mid-May.
The showy flame azaleas and rhododendrons of the park also burst into life from the low elevations in April and high up into June.
There are three entrances to Gatlinburg's Great Smoky Mountains National Park, each taking you into an 800 square miles section of unspoiled Appalachia.
Every trip to the Smokies begins with a drive on the Newfound Gap Road including the Sugarlands Visitor Center, Newfound Gap, Clingman’s Dome Road, Ocanaluftee Valley and Mingus Mill. Wildflower watchers love exploring the Greenbrier, a six-mile road featuring the most colorful flora in the Park.
In March and April, Porter's Creek is notably vivid.
The park is a place of refuge for a magnificent array of animal and plant life to be appreciated by future generations.
A drive through the roads of Great Smoky Mountains National Park is guaranteed to be an adventure in itself, whether you arrive during the rich, green days of spring and summer, the crazy quilt of autumn color or the sparkling white of winter.
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