Golden fog in the early morning in Cades Cove

3 Reasons to Visit Cades Cove During Your Smoky Mountain Vacation

Cades Cove is a great place to visit when you come to the Smokies. The area offers a glimpse into the history of the area and some of the most beautiful views of the mountains and wildlife that call the area home.

Every visit is different from the last. With so much wildlife to see, you will probably see many different animals depending on the time of year you visit. You may decide to hike as many trails as possible while visiting and discover something new each time.

The view is always beautiful, whether you come when the mountains are in bloom, in the heat of the summer when the wildlife is out and about, or in the fall when the leaves turn color and make the area look so beautiful. No matter the time of year you visit, you’ll enjoy yourself.

Here are 3 reasons why you should visit the Cove.

1. WildlifeBlack bear cub in meadow at Cades Cove

Because Cades Cove’s 11 mile long loop takes you slowly through this area of the national park, you have so many opportunities to see deer, raccoons and other small wildlife and you may even see a Smoky Mountain bear. The summer months tend to be the best time to visit, since a number of the wildlife will be awake and all around the park. If you can, try to get to the Cove when it opens – that’s the best time to catch a glimpse of the animals.

2. Hiking Trails

There are multiple trails you can hike while visiting the Cove, like Abrams Falls which takes you out to a beautiful natural waterfall. There are short and long hikes, all you have to do is pull off and find the trail head. You can even bike the loop if you want, the Cove opens early some mornings just for bikers!

3. Smoky Mountain History

Cabin with split rail fence in Cades CoveA big attraction for most visitors are the cabins and buildings that dot the Cove. Some are right off the loop, others require a short hike. Either way, you’ll enjoy the history of the area by looking at the buildings and reading the plaques spread throughout. You can even visit the churches throughout the Cove and see the cemeteries. You’ll be surprised at some of the dates on some tombstones.

You can also visit the Cove’s store where you can pick up fruit preserves or honey made from the area. The bees that made the honey used the natural pollen which makes for some delicious honey like you’ve never tried before!

The Great Smoky Mountains National Park offers many opportunities to hike trails and learn about the history of the area, but Cades Cove is a must see for yourself. For more information about the Smoky Mountains and the Cades Cove area, click here.

About Emily Wolff

Hi, my name is Emily Wolff. I am a writer and editor based in East Tennessee, right in the heart of the Great Smoky Mountains. I have enjoyed writing for as long as I can remember, but I truly fell in love with it as a young adult. Some of my favorite things include makeup, magazines and ice cream with sprinkles. Thank you for taking the time to read about me; I hope you’ll continue to follow my writings about the Smoky Mountain area on this website!