Home » Blog » Smoky Mountains » 5 Experiences You Can Only Enjoy in the Smoky Mountains
sunset in the Smoky Mountains

5 Experiences You Can Only Enjoy in the Smoky Mountains

The Smoky Mountains are one of the most unique vacation destinations in all the United States. There are several family-friendly activities that you just simply can’t find anywhere else. If you don’t believe us, check out the five experiences you can only find in the Smokies listed below!

(See Related: 8 Ways the Smoky Mountains Are Different From The Rest of the World)

Cades Cove

If you have ever visited this historic area, you know how beautiful it is to spend the day here. Aside from the several historic buildings, this area is also known to be home to several playful wildlife including deer, turkeys, and the famous Smoky Mountain black bear. Cades Cove is a Smoky Mountain experience you will have to see to believe, so what are you waiting for?

Synchronized Fireflies

Sure, there are fireflies all over the country. However, Elkmont in the Smoky Mountains is one of two areas in the world that host a natural synchronized fireflies show every year during the summer. This is when literally thousands of fireflies come out and light up the night sky.

Enjoy Four True SeasonsCades Cove during fall season

Unlike in the northern parts of the country, the Smoky Mountains have four very distinct seasons, all of which are paired with unbeatable scenic views. In the fall, they come to life with rich vibrantly colored leaves that you would have to see to believe. During the winter, the area takes on a hibernation of its own with a little bit of snow resting in the higher elevations. Spring is known for the abundance of flowers and playful wildlife. Summer on the other hand is the time for relaxing and finding your favorite watering hole or waterfall hiking trail to cool down.

Sweet Tea

When talking about southern experiences, it’s almost impossible not to mention our most-famous beverage. If you have never tried this sugary goodness, you are really missing out. The recipe is simple: brew fresh tea, add a lot of sugar, pour over ice and enjoy. Now, imagine having this while relaxing in a rocking chair on the back porch. Sure, you can find a tall glass of this Southern staple pretty much anywhere in the South, but none will be quite as good as the freshly brewed tea at the Applewood Farmhouse restaurant in Sevierville.


Themed after the exciting life and family traditions of Dolly Parton, Dollywood is one of the most memorable theme parks in the United States. Visitors here will find hints of the country music legend’s history as they stroll through the attraction. You’ll be able to stroll through the Tennessee Mountain Home, an exact replica of the home Dolly grew up in, not to mention all the exciting rides, dining, shopping, and entertainment.

Want to learn more about all the fun and exciting things to do in the Smoky Mountains? Be sure to check out the What to Do section on our website!