Where if the Smoky Mountain National Park Entrance, you ask? “Which one?” is what we would ask back as we have several places here that can bring you right to the threshhold of the National Park.
The first and probably foremost is Newfound Gap Road off of 441 and connecting to Gatlinburg from The Spur and stoplight #10 from the downtown area. This takes you to one of the biggest highways going through the Smokies there is where you can drive to Cherokee, NC, hike MANY trails that start from Newfound Gap, stop at over a dozen spots overlook MILES and miles of the National Park and even stop at Sugarlands Visitors Center, which is a day destination of its own.
Another prominent one is Townsend, TN. Pretty far away from Gatlinburg but connects to the National Park all the same. Townsend’s entrance provides Little River Road, a wonderful driving area to take in scenery, and the Townsend Wye river which is a very popular local swimming hole and fishing area. For cultural stimulation, Townsend also has the Smoky Mountain Heritage Center.
Finally, Cosby Tennessee, east of Gatlinburg, provides an entrance and connections to the park. It is also a notable entrance to Cataloochee Valley and further on to Asheville, NC. Cosby is a very small town and is more like Wears Valley on the other side of the area, but it offers some worthwhile shops, attractions and restaurants all the same.
See more on these areas at www.allthesmokies.com.