Oconaluftee River Trail

EASY 16 reviews

Oconaluftee River Trail is a 3.1 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Cherokee, NC that features a river and is good for all skill levels. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

3.1 miles 49 feet Out & Back

dog friendly

wheelchair friendly

kid friendly



nature trips

road biking

trail running





wild flowers


The Oconaluftee River Trail is one of two walking paths on which visitors can walk dogs and bicycle. It is relatively flat, but does have a few small hills. The trail runs from the Oconaluftee Visitor Center through the forest along side the Oconaluftee River and offers beautiful views of the river.

1 hour ago

After a wonderful and long day hiking in the mountains, I ended on this flat and easy trail just inside GSMNP. It is beautiful with the large meadow by the Oconaluftee Visitor Center and Mountain Farm Museum, the pretty river views and the surrounding hills. I even saw several elk resting on the edge of the meadow!

19 hours ago

easy smooth path. shared with cycling and dogs.

5 days ago

super easy very flat nice for a 3 mile trail run.

1 month ago

2 months ago

3 months ago

fun, quick 1.5 mile trail

trail running
4 months ago

This is a good one to straight up run. Can be heavily trafficked depending on time of day. Good for a run though without obstacles.

4 months ago

This is an easy trail and beautiful. We only hiked a short section of it so far. Hope to do the whole thing next trip!

4 months ago

5 months ago

Very easy to walk, nice scenery. Saw an Elk while on the trail.

8 months ago

Nice easy trail. Out and back takes about an hour walking. Would like to come back and go for a run. Distance is basically a 5K.

10 months ago

Great flat trail along the river. Yesterday 12/13 we saw 16 elk grazing. Very nice.

cross country skiing
11 months ago

3 years ago

One of two trails in the Great Smokey Mountain Park to allow dogs.

4 years ago

This is a great trail for the family. It's an easy walk along the river from the Heritage Center to the Qualla Boundary. If you're a seasoned hiker this trail may not be for you, it lacks the strenuous physical effort many search for and though the view of the river is nice it lacks the spectacular reward at the end. If you are for a slightly harder hike but a big reward make trip to Mingo Falls, only a few miles away.

6 years ago

This trail is on the Cherokee Indian Reservation in North Carolina. It follows the river and is very shady.