I’m in the midst of preparing an itinerary for a last-minute trip to the Great Smokey Mountains National Park for this weekend! I found the cutest studio cottage for only $60 a night–10 miles from Gatlinburg, situated on 2 acres–with a pond. Here are some photos from the owner’s site…
I’ve been to Gatlinburg a couple of times years ago, but never hiking in the National Park. When my son was young, we would take a 12 hour road trip in our conversion van to Myrtle Beach every year, taking along a friend for him. They had it pretty good…with a T.V., Nintendo and plenty of leg room! We stopped in Gatlinburg once on the way back.
Anyway, after researching the available hikes, I’ve decided the Charlies Bunion 8 mile round trip hike on the Appalachian Trail sounds like it will be the perfect hike for us! It’s at the top of the mountain with amazing views! I have no desire to window shop in Gatlinburg, but would like to drive into the town of Cherokee in North Carolina. I’ve heard it’s only 25 minutes from where we’ll be hiking. One of the nice things about renting a place like this is being able to cook there to keep your expenses down. So, here’s the proposed itinerary:
Friday – May 24th
8am – Depart
12noon – Stop at Cafe4 in Knoxville‘s Market Square District (I think I want the Shrimp and Grits…yum!)
1:30pm – Hit the road again
2:30-3:00pm – Arrive
Unpack – Relax – Explore property – take a walk
5:00pm – Make Steak dinner
Watch a DVD
Saturday – May 25th
6:00am – Wake up – Brft – Make sandwiches for lunch
6:45am – Drive to Newfound Gap & possibly go to Clingman Dome
(This is where the Charlies Bunion trail is located)
7:30am – Hit the Trail
10:30am – Stop for early lunch on the trail
12:00pm – Drive to Cherokee, N.C.
12:30pm – Explore town
2:00pm – Drive back to cottage
3:30pm – Arrive
4:30pm – Prepare pasta or dine out
Sunday – May 26th
Unscheduled – possible activities:
Have breakfast out at either Log Cabin Pancake House or Cracker Barrel
Drive/Hike around Cades Cove area
Grotto Falls Trail
Porters Creek Trail
Have lunch or dinner at: Old Mill Pottery House Cafe (at Traffic Light #7 in Pigeon Forge)
Monday – May 27th
Cereal for brft.
10am – Depart for home
Here’s my food shopping list:
I usually eat healthier at home, but we’ll be on vacation!
Hope everyone has something fun planned for Memorial Day weekend, or if you’re staying home, I think it’s nice to have friends over for a barbecue! Whatever you do…make it fun!!
- Enter the Great Smokey Mountain National Park (2180miles.wordpress.com)
- Embrace Plan B (Part I): The “I Like Lemonade” Trip (hikerdude.wordpress.com)
- Nature Valley Trail View Adds Sequoia National Park To Virtual Hikes (gadling.com)
- All the Good People (barbonabike.wordpress.com)
- Let’s just get the heck out of the Smokies (mymeanderingtrail.com)
- Day 31: Rocket fuel! (thumperwalk.wordpress.com)
- Day 21; Mile 206.8; Newfound Gap, Great Smoky Mountains National Park (nickslongwalk.wordpress.com)
What a lovely cottage. As mentioned in one of the previous comments, I’d be happy just sitting on that porch reading all day!
I do that at home a lot…so hiking and seeing the views from way up sound good to me!
Take me with you! (have a great time)
Guess what…I’m not going now. It’s a long story. But my son and his girlfriend are taking our place. I’ll probably explain in a post.
What a beautiful little cottage …. and what a program !!!!!! I would be happy just sitting on the porch – just watching time goes by.
Hi there, I would love to pass this award on to you – http://wp.me/p293Pw-6gn –
No MUST attached – if you don’t feel for it. And I everything about the food .. except the grits.
Thanks Viveka…I’m flattered. Your visits are my reward!
*smile … you made me blush now. *smile Thank you for your kind words.
Looks like a great place. I wish I could do that much planning. We basically scout out restaurants and have a few things in mind.
I try to mix it up and not have every day planned…but like you have an idea of some places. I don’t have wifi where we’re staying and I got rid of my smart phone, so I won’t have a way to research while I’m there. Plus, who wants to research on vacation.
Our long weekend was last weekend. Not Memorial Day but Victoria Day. We had some beautiful weather and I hope you do as well. This little studio cottage is adorable. I think I could just live there with that view. Have a great time.
That’s great! I hope we do too!!
Oh I do look forward to the up coming posts from this trip
I can’t wait to go!!
Sounds like a great trip. Have fun.
Thank you very much!
Have an excellent trip!
I am so jealous! I love the Smokeys. If you have any time at all to do another trail, I recommend Chimney Tops Trail. Standing on this rocky outcropping with clouds all around you literally in the clouds instead of them being above you was mind blowing to me. It is a rough trail and all uphill though.
There are so many highly rated trails…it’s difficult to decide! That sounded like such a cool experience!
love the area you are going to i used to go there once a month or so
Wow…that’s a lot! Lucky guy!
Take good shoes! Sounds like a fun trip. I’ll be looking forward to seeing your photos when you get back.
I have comfortable hiking shoes…Thanks Anneli!
What an amazing place! Thanks for sharing!
Thanks…it does look so cute!