Name: Greenbrier Picnic Area
Picnic Sites: 12
Pavilion: Yes – Seats 70
Hours: Closes at 8:00 PM from May 1 – August 31 and at sunset all other days.
Dates Open: Year-Round

Directions to Greenbrier Picnic Area

From Gatlinburg: At traffic light #3, take East Parkway (US 321-N) 6.0 miles to Greenbrier Road, just before the Little Pigeon River Bridge. A Great Smoky Mountains National Park entrance sign is on the right side of the road. Turn right at the sign and drive 2.8-miles to Greenbrier Picnic area on the left.

Greenbrier Picnic Area Description

Greenbrier Picnic Area is one of the smallest picnic areas in the park. Nevertheless, it is a beautiful spot to picnic and explore.

Greenbrier features 12 picnic pads with a table and grill at each. Charcoal is the only heat source allowed in the grill. Wood fires are a no-no in grills. This is park policy and applies to all picnic areas.

Restrooms are rustic, but doable. They are pit toilets like those used in backcountry camping areas. Pit toilets do not flush, much like an outhouse, but they are somewhat nicer. Occasionally, portable toilets are on site.

While the National Park Service says potable water is available at the restrooms, I would not count on it. Bring some fresh drinking water with you to be sure you have what you will need.

Greenbrier Picnic Pavilion

Greenbrier Picnic Pavilion is not part of the Greenbrier Picnic Area, but it is nearby on the same road. You will need to drive an additional 0.7-mile past the picnic area to reach the pavilion. It is on the right hand side.

The pavilion has two 8′ accessible tables and twelve 6′ tables, enough to seat 70 people. This is a great spot for a large family reunion, a church picnic, or some other type of group outing.

Three grills make cooking for a large crowd relatively easy.

The covered pavilion has a large stone fireplace for picnickers who want to sit around a hot fire and talk or roast marshmallows. Be sure to bring lots of wood!

Greenbrier Picnic Area Pavilion | Great Smoky Mountains National Park | My Smoky Mountain Guide

Greenbrier Picnic Pavilion | GSMNP | Photo: Recreation.gov

IMPORTANT: Keep in mind that wood burned anywhere inside the park must be gathered in the park or approved by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) or a state department of agriculture.

The restrooms are pit toilets just like in the picnic area. They are similar to port-a-potties. In addition, you need to bring fresh water with you since water is not provided at the pavilion.

There is no electricity at the pavilion.

IMPORTANT: Pavilions must be reserved in advance. Each day, two periods are available for rental: 7:00 AM to 3:30 PM and 4:00 PM to 8:00 PM. If you want the pavilion for the entire day, you must reserve it for both periods.

A charge of $10 is required for each reservation period.

Availability, reservations, and payments can be made online at Recreation.gov or by calling 800-365-2267.

One final thing, if no one is using the pavilion, you are free to use it. However, if someone with a reservation shows up, you must pack everything and move to the picnic area down the road immediately. Are you a gambler?

Nearby Points of Interest

Porters Creek Trail is one of the most beautiful and underutilized trails in Great Smoky Mountains National Park. It is very close to the picnic area. Old Settlers Trail is on Ramsey Prong Road within walking distance. Both are fantastic hikes with historical significance.