Cades Cove Introduction
Great Smoky Mountains National Park is the crown of America’s national parks. Cades Cove is the jewel in that crown. In 2021, more than fourteen million people visited Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Each year approximately two million make the trek through Cades Cove. It is the number one destination inside the number one park.
Cades Cove Introduction | White Tail Buck | Great Smoky Mountains National Park
Anyone spending time in Great Smoky Mountains National Park will tell you that Cades Cove is the best location in the park to see wildlife in their natural surroundings. White-tail deer, black bears, coyotes, turkeys, and all sorts of wildlife can be seen almost daily.
Cades Cove Loop Map | Copyright: My Smoky Mountain Guide
An eleven mile, one-way, paved loop is easily navigable by auto, motorcycle, bicycle, or foot. Keep in mind that it can take 4 hours or more to see the sites at a leisurely pace (with a vehicle) during high season.
NOTE: Cades Cove access will be motor vehicle-free all day Wednesdays from May 4 – September 28, 2022.
Cades Cove is located near the park entrance, a short 10-mile drive from the Visitor Center in Townsend, TN. It is a 28-mile drive from downtown Gatlinburg, TN. The beautiful drive from Gatlinburg goes through the mountains and will take approximately an hour. Starting in Townsend will shave about 40 minutes off the drive.
The park is open year-round from sunrise to sunset, depending on weather conditions. For more extensive information about this incredible area of the park, please read our Cades Cove articles.