Explore the most popular birding trails near Gatlinburg with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

The view was amazing! However, the hike was paved (which in my opinion takes away from nature) and it was highly populated and a steep climb with 3 littles!

hiking
11 hours ago

Very well kept trail. Challenging but doable!

Fairly steady climb, not too strenuous. There's a steep right turn about 0.3 miles from the top that can be easy to miss as that part of the trail is not as obvious.
The views are spectacular. When we got there, we were on top of the clouds. After several minutes they broke and we could see for miles.
I would definitely recommend it if you are wanting a sunrise hike as well, as the vista faces east over the valley.
Approx 2 hours up, 90 minutes down. Expect a lot of traffic, and set off early.

Challenging trail but, the views are amazing.

hiking
16 hours ago

A lot of trees covered some of the great views but the ones we found were spectacular. A great hike into a temperate rainforest.

Super easy trail. Great for kids or less mobile. The waterfall was quite impressive and there was tons of places to explore right on the trail or right off the trail. Watch your signs though! Me and my party accidentally went the wrong wait at one of the turns because the signs were hard to see

on Chimney Tops Trail

hiking
1 day ago

It’s a great hike, not as strenuous as people claimed. Nicely maintained trail, with a lot of stairs. My 5 year old hiked up without any problem. She was super disappointed that we are no longer allowed to climb the big rock on the top. I thought there would be some rocks to climb at the end, but it was only the newly built platform. The view on the top is ok, not spectacular. The view of the stairs is much better.

hiking
1 day ago

An easy hike. A lot of tree roots stick above the ground.

hiking
1 day ago

A great hike, the stairs through the rock makes the hiking interesting. At the top of alum Cave, the view was ok, but the cave is magnificent. My 5 year old enjoyed it.

on Rainbow Falls Trail

hiking
1 day ago

A good hike. Only opens on Fridays to Sundays. Mostly unpaved, with rain it could be a bit muddy. My 5 year old did it. It took a bit time to hike up, but coming down was a breeze.

Fantastic hike, amazing views

My favorite hike ever!! We started the hike at about 7:15am so there were only a few other people along the trail so early. Inspiration point at about 2 miles is beautiful! Alum cave was pretty neat too. Above there is where the hike really gets interesting to me. Such amazing views and some of the cliffs you are on just make it a great experience. A long hike but worth the effort. We went to the lodge and Cliff Top. I am so glad we did the spur to Cliff Top, the views were stunning!! Felt like we were on top of the world! Took us roughly 6 hours start to finnish. One piece of advice, bring food, we did not and were starving for the last few miles. The Pancake Pantry in Gatlinburg was the best $40 I ever spent afterwards.

Starting off in the parking lot the views blow you away. We left early in the morning so the trail was not as busy. Absolutely breathtaking once you reach the Jump Off. Great views along the way also. Once we reached the summit of Mt Kephart we weren't sure if that was the jump off but had to go through some brush to continue. Once we got to the Jump Off there was no mistaking it. Absolutely incredible! Highly reccommend.

Don’t get me wrong, the views from the observatory are breathtaking and definitely deserve 5/5. But there were hundreds of people there and felt like an amusement park and not the great outdoors. That’s probably me being an outdoor snob, to be fair, but if you’re a fan of nature and pure hiking I’d do this one later.

hiking
3 days ago

This is a Smoky Mountain classic. The second mile to the overlook is intense but the views are totally worth it! Great mix of forest setting in the beginning to panoramic views at the top. Wife and I had a great time and would definitely would recommend!

hiking
3 days ago

Yup, STEEP. Felt like more than 3-4 miles up to the top, but when you go the way back down, you’ll be “oh that’s all?” :-) I enjoyed hiking this trail even though I had to make some stops to catch my breath! Spot a black bear on the trail, and had to wait some good 10-15 minutes before it left the trail.

Amazing views well worth the trek up the mountain side, the hike will take your whole day. One of my favorite places in the smokies for sure.

scenic driving
3 days ago

Beautiful, easy drive! We loved the falls on the side of the road. We went at about 5 pm and found very little traffic. The directions definitely take you to the “out” end of the drive! We would definitely take this drive again.

This was one of the most beautiful hikes to date.. I highly recommend it but be ready, We did it in 4 hrs but well worth it!!!

Love driving this motor trail. There’s so much scenery and places to pull over to walk around and see the waterfalls and a few old historical buildings. Also Ely’s Mill at the end is a must visit.

AWESOME TRAIL! The Alum Cave makes a great, scenic half-way point to sit and rest or eat. The second half is way more strenuous, but SO MUCH FUN! Even though it was foggy at the top, the lodge was a joy and the hot chocolate was pleasant. Looking forward to doing this one again.

My ABSOLUTE favorite hike in the Smoky Mountains. I always hike up to the Jump Off then back Down to Charlie's and it is always worth it. My gps clocked it at 9.2 miles to complete the Jump Off, Icewater Spring Shelter, and Charlie's Bunion. This hike never disappoints.

Nice and easy trail along the river

One of my favorites in Gatlinburg. Spotted a small bear and a black snake. The cemetery is cool to see, and the falls are beautiful! Not a very busy trail either! There are spots where this trail can be more difficult especially downhill towards the falls

This was our second time taking this trail up to the lodge. Beautiful trail and the views at the top are amazing. Unfortunately on this trip at the top the fog and clouds were socked in. Still worth the journey up there.

hiking
6 days ago

Saw bears at two different areas, great hike

little bit of a workout but totally worth it

This trail was beautiful! We hiked to the bluffs and the view there was fantastic! The scenery, bridges, arch and so much more made this trail very interesting. Something different at every turn. Will do this one again.

This hike was beautiful!

Although there was no visibility, it was a fun experience! It's a steep walk up a paved walkway. Wear layers for sure!

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