Explore Appalachian Trail: Tennessee: Best Day Hikes - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

This month marks the 80th anniversary of the #AppalachianTrail, which passes through 14 states from Maine to Georgia. . With so many access points along its approximate 2,190-mile route, this trail is not only an excellent option for thru-hikers and section-hikers, but also day-hikers and those looking to escape into nature for a few hours. . To honor the Appalachian Trail, we have compiled a list state by state of some of our favorite day hikes along the AT. Check out this list for Tennessee and help us celebrate the legacy and natural wonder of this trail!

Appalachian Trail: Tennessee: Best Day Hikes Map
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This was our favorite hike in the Smoky’s! We included the Jump Off on our way to Charles Bunion (an extra 0.6 mile). The trail starts at the Newfound Gap parking lot, and it’s about 4.4 miles until the Charles Bunion lookout, which is absolutely breathtaking. We could have spent all day at the lookout! Highly recommend.

Truly an amazing hike! Started early in the morning to beat the heat, and we stayed cool the whole way. Parts of the trail are definitely rocky and lots of exposed roots at times, but nothing you can’t get past. We are not experienced hikers, and had an easy time getting up the rocks. Something I loved about this trail was the gradual incline it has. Nothing too steep, which made it quite easy to hike. And then the view at the end is absolutely unbeatable. I highly suggest this trail to anyone who’s looking for great views the whole way! Also, look out for squirrels haha one jumped right in front of me on the trail and scared me pretty good. They’re stealthy, but cute!

Challenging hike and well worth the work to get to Mount LeConte. My favorite parts were walking the spines of several ridges, and the short hike up to Myrtle Point.

Finally! I have wanted to do this for a long time and got it knocked out today.It is part of a goal to ascend or descend Leconte by the major trails I did it with a friend as part of a through trip down Alum. There are some great views along the way.

Wonderful trip! we were smiling when we started and when we finished! We started at 4:30am to try and get to Charlie's Bunion by sunrise, missed by 30 minutes. Still breathtaking views. Next time we will give ourselves 2.5 hours to get there. We heard about a bear sighting at Newfound parking lot but trail was clear. Make sure you take plenty of water.

Definitely one of the best hikes we have ever done. By far some of the best views in the Smokies. Had lunch at the Bunion before hiking back to Newfound Gap. Trail did have some traffic but nothing overwhelming. There was a bear sighting when we were on the trail near the Kephart Trail/Shelter crossing.

We went in the winter. I highly suggest going it is beautiful! Just note though to check the road closures, because they shut down the roads due to snow and ice. We were fortunate enough to go the day they opened up the roads again. The scenery throughout walking the trail was spectacular snow everywhere and the hiking wasn't too bad with the snow. When you get close to reaching the bunion the trail gets tighter because you're on the edge of the cliff but it's not bad to where you're fearing your life. The day we went the winds were high and there were a couple times it freaked me out, but once you reach the bunion the view is absolutely spectacular! We couldn't go around the bend to the other side of the bunion, and I was weary of the top even though I did climb to the top of it but only for a quick photo, because of the high winds, I saw some other people dare though, but in my opinion wasn't too smart.

The view is definitely amazing! I would probably rate this hike difficult because of all the rocks on the path.

This hike was beautiful but a little tougher than I planned on. Also mileage I recorded was 13.5, every .5 mile counts. Beautiful at the summit.

道は良く整備されていて歩きやすいです。午後から雨予報だったのにたくさんの人とすれちがいました。景色のいい岩場などは常に誰か居る状態だったので、晴天の日は混雑が予想されます。
Charlies Bunionの山頂にはAppalachian trailから分岐した道から行けるのですが、あまり行く人がいないのか、草が肩まで生い茂っている箇所があるので、長袖長ズボンがおすすめです。でも山頂の景色はすごく良いので、時間があるならぜひ寄り道して行くべきです。
Charlies Bunion付近にある登山道沿いの岩場からの景色もそこそこ良いので、大体の日帰り観光客はNewfound gapからここまで行って引き返すようです。Appalachian trailもここを超えると人がめっきり減ります。

Some truly breathtaking views along the AT

Took the trail from the newfound gap parking lot. There’s a lot of uphill hiking at first (nice to get out of the way though because it’s all downhill for the way back). Charlie’s bunion is not listed on the first wooden sign at the 1.7 mi split. However, just keep following the Appalachian trail and you’ll eventually see signs for it. The view was incredible and worth every step. The trail is well maintained and just absolutely beautiful. If you have the time- definitely do this trail!

Beautiful hike with some epic views. Was a bear near the trail, but we had just missed it. Been wanting to hike the AT, now just have to do the whole thing some say.

Great hike! View was amazing from Charlie’s Bunion! There’s a toilet at the shelter (FYI

fairly moderate for the most part. there are a couple of rough patches, but more than worth it for the view.

Had a great hike. Fantastic trail with amazing views.
Enjoyed the day with my best friend.(wife)

I was completely blown away by this trail and the view at Charlie’s Bunion. We actually started in the wee hours to reach the Bunion for daybreak. If you’re a fairly skilled hiker in possession of a headlamp, definitely consider that option. What a unique and breathtaking experience to have the space all to ourselves, hear the forest come alive, and watch the mountains slowly gain color. The trail itself is also beautiful. There’s something about the mossy trees and wildflowers that was really enchanting. Plus it’s cool to walk a section of the famous Appalachian Trail and see some thru hikers this time of year. Fully recommend.

awesome falls, one of the most popular trails in the area. Few primitive campsites by the river (not the falls) lot is small and always full. approx 5.5 miles round trip from 321, app 175 steps from Dennis cove.

Enjoyed a full day hiking in the mountains. Breathe taking views from the top.

It was a beautiful waterfall and fairly easy hike but the rock stairs going down to the waterfall and coming back up were really rough. It was a very strenuous hike back up. I would not recommend bringing your dog. My greyhound struggled, even with her long legs.

Great trail!! Panoramic views along the way and once you reach Charlie’s Bunion you will be left speechless! Highly recommend

Boulevard is a good alternate route to Leconte versus the more popular Alum Cave or Rainbow Falls routes. Although an out and back on this trail is longer, the trail has a steady mix of ups and downs - but not too much of either at once. The side trails to “the jumpoff” and Myrtle Point are worth the stop if you want to do some extra and have the time. Trail is in good shape with the most rocky portions at the beginning and the end on the climb from Newfound gap to Ice water springs area. That is also the most crowded section as it overlaps the route along the AT to Charlie’s Bunion.

Would be a good running route if that’s your thing.

Would rate certain sections of this trail as difficult. First part of AT is a little on harder side. First part of Jump off trail is a little more difficult as well. Trail is well marked, and provides stunning views. We were going to hike to Charlie's Bunion but after the views we saw, just felt as if they couldn't be topped. Good hiking boots and socks are a must. Poles would help. Saw people with Sandals, but it is just asking for an injury. Worth the hike, we will remember this for years!

I met a lot of great folks on this trail in April through hiking the AT to Maine from Georgia..super nice people. GOOD LUCK GUYS!!!! AND LADIES!!!!

Very nice trail with the creek, rock walls and rhododendrons-lots of natural beauty to enjoy. Now once you get to the rock stairs the fun is over! Difficult going down and definitely coming back up! I’m not in the best shape right now after a very long winter but even in shape I think it would be difficult. That being said, I still think it was so worth it! We’ve had rain so the falls had a lot of water flowing over the rocks. Absolutely beautiful!

Second time doing this hike, always a good one to stretch the legs. Nice time chatting with the thru-hikers this time of year and spreading a little trail magic!

Great hike. Stopped at Jump Off as well. Beautiful views!

A great place to hop on the Appalachian trail. Beautiful views of the lake from most of the trail. There is a visitors center at the end of 4 miles if you need a restroom.

Love it. Perfect time is now!

This is a great trail overall and mostly moderate. I will say the actual .3 miles on the jump off trail are more on the strenous/hard side with steep ups and downs, but the view at the end is worth the hike up there. Definitely a must do while in the Smokies!

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