Great Smoky Mountains National Park is the United States' most-visited national park, attracting more than 11 million visitors each year for world-class hiking, fishing, whitewater rafting, and sightseeing opportunities. The designated UNESCO World Heritage Site is home to one of the United States' most diverse biospheres and is populated by lovely resort towns like Gatlinburg, known for its mountain chalets and family-friendly attractions, and Pigeon Forge, home to renowned theme park Dollywood. Visitors can choose from a wide variety of campground accommodations throughout the park's North Carolina and Tennessee border cities, many of which offer electric hookups, modern bathhouses, and family-friendly amenities like swimming pools and game rooms.
1.Abrams Creek Campground
Abrams Creek Campground is a beautiful traditional campground located within one of the more remote areas of Great Smoky Mountains National Park, making it a great choice for visitors looking to get away from the tourist attractions of areas like Gatlinburg and Cherokee. The secluded campground lets visitors enjoy year-round recreational activities like hiking and fishing without having to endure the crowds of some of the park's more heavily-touristed areas. It is located at an elevation of more than 1,125 feet above sea level, showcasing stunning natural scenery. Traditional outdoor campsites eschew modern amenities like electric hookups or showers, though flush toilets and potable water are provided for all campers. The campsite offers access to more than 800 miles of maintained hiking trails throughout the park, along with opportunities for splendid trout fishing.
Abrams Creek Campground Rd, Tallassee, TN 37878, Phone: 865-561-2453
2.Alpine Hideaway Campground
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Alpine Hideaway Campground is a lovely rustic campground located in lively Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, just minutes from the borders of beautiful Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The privately-owned campground is nestled in a valley between two mountains, providing ample shade from natural trees at all campsites. 62 old-fashioned campsites offer RV hookups and use of rental RVs, which include full kitchens, baths, bedrooms, and cable televisions. Eight rustic cabin rentals are also offered, featuring cable televisions, refrigerators, microwaves, and other modern amenities. Outside, day-use picnic tables are offered for visitor use, along with barbecue grills and fire pits. Families can make use of the campground's lovely outdoor pool and children's playground.
3.Balsam Mountain Campground
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Balsam Mountain Campground is located within a remote section of beautiful Great Smoky Mountains National Park, home to 42 traditional campsites offering flush toilets and drinking water for all visitors. No hookups or showers are offered at the campground, creating a primitive camping experience for visitors looking to disconnect from the grid and enjoy the great outdoors. The campground is located at an elevation of more than 5,310 feet above sea level atop gorgeous Balsam Mountain, which enjoys year-round cool temperatures and serves as a habitat for elk throughout the spring and fall months. Picturesque hiking trails embark near the campground, serving as less-trafficked alternatives to some of the park's more popular hiking trails. Trails include the lovely Flat Creek Trail, which traverses a hardwood forest section, and the 14-mile Hemphill Bald and Rough Fork loop, which showcases stunning views of old-growth trees. Nearby, countless streams offer opportunities for backcountry fishing, winding through the slopes and valleys of the mountain range.
Cherokee, NC 28719, Phone: 865-436-1200
4.Big Creek Group Campground
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Big Creek Group Campground is located near the Tennessee-North Carolina border within the far northeastern corner of Great Smoky Mountains National Park, sitting on the banks of gently-meandering Big Creek. The campsite is a great choice for group camping excursions, accommodating up to 25 guests. Modern conveniences offered at the campsite include flush toilets, potable water, and running sinks. Outside, visitors can make use of barbecue grills, fire rings, and tent pads. The campsite is surrounded by a beautiful forest canopy that provides ample shade. Nearby sites within the national park include stunning 35-foot Mouse Creek Falls, which is located at the confluence of picturesque Big and Mouse Creeks. A handful of lovely trailheads are located within walking distance of the campground, making it a great choice for hikers of all ability levels.
Big Creek Entrance Rd, Newport, NC 37821, Phone: 865-436-1261
5.Brookside Campground and Rafting
Brookside Campground and Rafting is located on the banks of picturesque Rowland's Greek, less than a mile from Topton, North Carolina's Nantahala River launch site. The lovely Great Smoky Mountains National Park campground is home to beautiful grassy campsites with complete electric hookups, making it a great choice for visitors looking for a moderate amount of modern amenities. Hot showers and clean restrooms are offered for all overnight guests, along with laundry room facilities and garbage facilities. A game room is available for visitors of all ages, along with a children's playground offering recreation for young visitors. Other amenities include day-use picnic sites and onsite ice and firewood sales. Nearby, visitors can enjoy some of the national park's best chances for whitewater rafting excursions, led by CPR-certified guides.
764 US-19, Topton, NC 28781, Phone: 828-321-5209
6.Cades Cove Campground
Cades Cove Campground is located within the Great Smoky Mountains' gorgeous Cades Cove region, which preserves a plethora of historic pioneer structures dating back to the mid-19th century. The region is one of Great Smoky Mountains National Park's top visitor attractions, drawing more than two million visitors each year. Visitors can stay at the campground throughout the year and choose from a variety of primitive and modern hookup campsites. Modern amenities are offered for all overnight guests, including flush toilets and potable water. Throughout peak camping season between May and October, visitors can purchase amenities and loaner bikes from the campground's general store. Nearby, visitors can enjoy a plethora of opportunities for outdoor recreation, including chances for hiking, biking, and wildlife watching.
10042 Campground Dr, Townsend, TN 37882, Phone: 865-448-2472
7.Cataloochee Group Campground
Cataloochee Group Campground is located within the Great Smoky Mountains' remote Cataloochee Valley, home to some of the national park's most rugged mountain terrains and best hiking and fishing opportunities. The secluded campground offers a more remote alternative to some of the area's top tourist areas, letting visitors escape from the crowds and relax in the scenery of the beautiful mountain terrain. Primitive outdoor camping areas eschew modern amenities, accommodating up to 25 guests at a time. Larger groups can rent all three campsite areas at once, accommodating up to 75 guests in total. The campground offers access to beautiful hiking trails and lovely fly fishing streams within the lush national park forest terrain, including chances for fishing at nearby Cataloochee Creek.
Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Cosby, TN 37722
Cosby Campground is a lovely mountain campground offering the best of backcountry camping experiences in a modern setting, located near the city of Cosby, Tennessee. The beautiful campground offers a quieter alternative to many of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park's more heavily-touristed areas, located within a secluded forest area tucked under a shaded canopy of native trees at an elevation of 2,460 feet above sea level. Lovely tent and RV hookup campsites are offered at the campground, which offer tent pads and modern amenities like day-use picnic sites, fire rings, and barbecue grills. Flush toilets are offered for all visitors, along with potable water.
127 Cosby Entrance Rd, Cosby, TN 37722, Phone: 423-487-2683
9.Cove Creek RV Resort
Cove Creek RV Resort is a luxurious RV resort located within the picturesque Wears Valley, between the resort cities of Pigeon Forge and Townsend, Tennessee. The charming campground offers stunning views of nearby Cove Mountain in a remote area just minutes from the bustling attractions of Pigeon Forge's famed Parkway, including vibrant theme park Dollywood, the Titanic Museum, and Dolly Parton's Dixie Stampede dinner theater. Spacious RV campsites range in size from 55 to 107 feet long, equipped with 30 and 50-amp electricity. Gravel and concrete sites are offered, featuring modern amenities like fire rings and chiminea. All guests can enjoy use of potable water, cable televisions, complimentary wireless internet, and excellent cell phone reception. Onsite amenities include a game room, a conference room, 24-hour guest laundry, and an outdoor saltwater swimming pool.
3293 Wears Valley Rd, Sevierville, TN 37862, Phone: 865-429-7716
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10.Deep Creek Campground
Deep Creek Campground is a beautiful campground located alongside the banks of picturesque Deep Creek, considered to be one of the most popular creeks within Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The primitive campground area offers traditional camping experiences set against the stunning backdrop of the Great Smoky Mountains, located within the park's southeastern edge near the city of Gatlinburg. Visitors can choose from three group campsites or a plethora of primitive and electric hookup individual campsites, which offer lovely amenities like campfire rings, barbecue grills, and day-use picnic tables, along with access to flush toilets and drinking water. Nearby, visitors can access a variety of hiking trails leading to lovely waterfalls or make use of one of the park's few areas for mountain biking.
107 Park Headquarters Road, Gatlinburg, TN 37738, Phone: 865-436-1200
11.Deep Creek Tube Center and Campground
Deep Creek Tube Center and Campground is a lovely campground on the North Carolina side of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, located near the city of Bryson City. The charming campground is located on the banks of beautiful Deep Creek, known throughout the region as the park's top destination for whitewater rafting and tubing. Over 40 campsites are offered at the campground, ranging from creekside tent camping to areas for travel trailers, RVs, and mobile homes. All campsites showcase full electric hookups, along with modern amenities like a full-service bathhouse and day-use picnic sites with grills and fire rings. 25 rental cabins are also showcased for visitors looking for more full-service overnight accommodations.
1090 W Deep Creek Rd, Bryson City, NC 28713, Phone: 828-488-6055
Ela Campground is a lovely campground and RV park located between the resort cities of Bryson City and Cherokee, just steps from the gorgeous Tuckasegee River. The charming pet-friendly campground is a great choice for visitors looking to explore the Great Smoky Mountains with their four-legged friends, offering three easy river access areas for opportunities for fishing and tubing. All campsites offer complimentary wireless internet access and modern amenities like potable water and electric hookups. Campsites are offered for nightly, weekly, monthly, and seasonal rental. Beautiful camping cabins are also available for overnight stay, offering cable televisions, kitchenettes, and outdoor covered porches. An historic general store, relocated from nearby Forney Creek, offers local tourist information, groceries, and hand-scooped Mayfield ice cream.
5100 Ela Rd #19, Bryson City, NC 28713, Phone: 828-488-2410
Elkmont Campground is the Great Smoky Mountains National Park's largest campground facility, located at an elevation of more than 2,150 feet just a few minutes from the bustling resort tourist attractions of Gatlinburg, Tennessee. The busy campground is home to 200 tent and RV campsites, which offer paved driveway access and amenities like day-use picnic tables, fire rings, and gravel tent pads. 20 walk-in tent sites are also offered on a first-come, first-served basis. Nine of the campground's sites are ADA-accessible, making the campground a great choice for visitors of all mobility levels. Modern amenities offered for all guests include cold running water and access to flush toilets. Some sites are located on the banks of the picturesque Little River and Jakes Creek, which are popular swimming and fishing sites.
Elkmont Campground Rd A, Gatlinburg, TN 37738, Phone: 865-430-5560
Greenbrier Campground is a charming family-friendly campground in Gatlinburg, Tennessee, located on the banks of the gorgeous Little Pigeon River just minutes from the Greenbrier entrance to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The beautiful campground offers access to some of the region's top visitor attractions, including lively theme park Dollywood and mountaintop resort Ober Gatlinburg. Visitors can select from a wide variety of tent and RV hookup campsites, which offer electric hookups, running water, and beautiful river views. Cable television is offered for RV hookup campers. Visitors can also stay overnight at the lovely Flint Rock Cabin, which sleeps up to six guests and features a full kitchenette, bathroom, and outdoor fire pit.
2353 East Pkwy, Gatlinburg, TN 37738
15.Moonshine Creek Campground
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Moonshine Creek Campground is a secluded traditional campground located in Sylva, North Carolina, just steps from the beautiful Great Smoky Mountains National Park and its lovely hiking trails and fishing opportunities. The peaceful campground is located on the banks of beautiful Moonshine Creek and is home to a variety of hookup campsite and rental cabin options sure to meet the needs of all area travelers. 91 campsites offer full electric hookups, fire rings, day-use picnic tables, and laundry services. Complimentary wireless internet and cellular service are provided via the campground's cellular booster. A camp store sells ice, firewood, and snacks during peak months. Nearby, the beautiful Blue Ridge Parkway offers some of the area's most beautiful opportunities for scenic drives at high elevations.
2486 Dark Ridge Rd, Sylva, NC 28779, Phone: 828-586-6666
16.Pigeon River Campground
Pigeon River Campground is a charming riverside campground in the northeastern corner of Great Smoky Mountains National Park, located just minutes from the park's borders in Hartford, Tennessee. The campground, which is located approximately an hour from urban areas Knoxville and Asheville, is one of the best choices for exploring the hiking trails of the nearby Pisgah National Forest. 20 primitive hookup campsites are offered for overnight stay, offering convenient access to the lively adventures offered by neighboring Smoky Mountain Outdoors Whitewater Rafting excursion company. An onsite river access ramp is offered for visitor use, along with a heated swimming pool, day-use picnic pavilion, sand volleyball court, and children's playground. Six overnight cabins are also available for rental, featuring modern amenities and full kitchens.
3375 Hartford Rd, Hartford, TN 37753, Phone: 888-827-3404
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17.River's Edge Treehouse Resort
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River's Edge Treehouse Resort offers one of the Smoky Mountains' most unique outdoor camping experiences, featuring lovely eco-friendly treehouses available for overnight rental. The resort is located along the banks of the picturesque Cheoah River near the city of Robbinsville, North Carolina, set amidst the region's stunning natural scenery. All treehouses feature memory foam king beds, satellite televisions, and eco-friendly bath amenities, along with state-of-the-art appliances like microwaves, refrigerators, and air conditioners. Outdoor decks feature gas grills and lovely rocking chairs for relaxation. An ADA-accessible treehouse makes the resort a great choice for guests with mobility concerns looking for unique camping experiences.
195 Old U.S. 129, Robbinsville, NC 28771, Phone: 828-735-2228
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Smokemont Campground is a family-friendly campground located in North Carolina resort city Cherokee, located just over the Tennessee-North Carolina border at the edge of the lovely Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The campground is located at an elevation of more than 2,200 feet above sea level in a lovely region that has been inhabited by humans for millennia, dating back to the Paleoindian era. Today, campers can enjoy year-round recreational experiences on the nearby Bradley Fork River, a top destination for swimming and trout fishing. Tent and RV campsites are showcased at the campground, offering modern amenities like day-use picnic sites, barbecue grills, and fire rings. A large grassy lawn is perfect for pick-up football and volleyball games, while a modern bathhouse area offers flush toilets and access to drinking water.
Smokemont Campground Rd A, Cherokee, NC 28719, Phone: 828-497-9270
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19.Standing Indian Campground
Standing Indian Campground is located less than 20 minutes from the city of Franklin, North Carolina, offering four campground areas with both reservation and first-come, first-served campground areas. The campground makes for a great launching-off point for exploring the Great Smoky Mountains National Park or the attractions of the gorgeous Nantahala National Forest. Tent and RV hookup campsites are showcased throughout the campground, complemented by modern amenities like flush toilets, showers, day-use picnic tables, and campfire rings. A dump station is offered for visitor convenience. Groups can make use of a lovely group camping area at Kimsey Creek. Nearby, excellent opportunities for big and small game hunting, fishing, whitewater rafting, and kayaking are offered within the national park's boundaries.
Off Forest Development Rd 67, Franklin, NC 28734, Phone: 828-524-6441
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20.Thunder Rock Recreation Area and Campground
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Thunder Rock Recreation Area and Campground is located just two miles northwest of the lively Ocoee Whitewater Center on the banks of the beautiful Ocoee River near the city of Copperhill, Tennessee. The campground is home to 37 tent and RV hookup campsites, some of which offer electric hookups. It is a popular destination for visitors coming to the area for whitewater rafting and hiking experiences throughout the year. Day-use picnic sites are offered at the campground, along with fire rings, barbecue grills, and modern bathhouses with flush toilets and warm-water showers. Nearby, the gorgeous Cherokee National Forest offers opportunities for fishing, hiking, and wildlife watching.
Copperhill, TN 37317
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Timberlake Campground is one of Whittier, North Carolina's top options for overnight camping, offering stunning Great Smoky Mountains scenery in a rustic campground setting. The campground is open to the public seasonally between May and November, offering some of the largest tent camping sites in the region, up to three times larger than industry standard sizes. Overnight guests can choose from primitive and electric hookup campsites or bring RVs measuring up to 42 feet to hook up at 30 and 50-amp RV hookup sites. Fully-equipped overnight rental cabins are also available for reservation, featuring full kitchens and pullout sofas. Children under the age of three sleep for free at the campsite with adult reservations, making it a great choice for visitors traveling with young children in tow.
3270 Conleys Creek Rd, Whittier, NC 28789, Phone: 828-497-7320
Tsali Campground is a charming campground in the city of Almond, North Carolina, named in honor of a local indigenous figure during the region's pioneer era. The campground is open to the public for overnight stay between April and October each year, offering 42 campsites available on a first-come, first-served basis. Tent and small RV campsites are available, though no electric hookups are offered. Each campsite offers outdoor amenities like fire rings, day-use picnic tables, and lantern posts. All guests can make use of the campground's modern bathhouses, which feature flush toilets, hot showers, and drinking water. The campground is located on the banks of picturesque Fontana Lake, which offers boat launch ramps and chances for year-round walleye fishing. Nearby, lovely hiking, biking, and horseback riding trails are open to the public, leading to gorgeous Great Smoky Mountains overlooks.
Almond, NC 28702, Phone: 828-479-6431
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23.Yogi in the Smokies
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Yogi in the Smokies is a full-service campground located within a pristine forest cove just north of the city of Cherokee, North Carolina on the banks of the picturesque Ravenfork River, a top destination for trout fishing in Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The campground offers a plethora of overnight camping and lodging options, ranging from tent and RV hookup campsites to deluxe cabins offering modern amenities. Visitors can enjoy modern amenities like complimentary wireless internet, cable television access, and access to full-service bathhouses with modern showers and restrooms. Onsite amenities include a children's playground, a heated family swimming pool, a game room, a camp store, and a day-use picnic pavilion. During peak season, planned activities offer fun for the entire family, while outdoor equipment rentals let visitors take advantage of the campground's beautiful surroundings and opportunities for nearby outdoor activities.
317 Galamore Rd, Cherokee, NC 28719, Phone: 828-497-9151
23 Top Smoky Mountains Camping Spots
- Abrams Creek Campground, Photo: golubovy/stock.adobe.com
- Alpine Hideaway Campground, Photo: Maksim Šmeljov/stock.adobe.com
- Balsam Mountain Campground, Photo: New Africa/stock.adobe.com
- Big Creek Group Campground, Photo: Sergey Novikov/stock.adobe.com
- Brookside Campground and Rafting, Photo: DNF-Style/stock.adobe.com
- Cades Cove Campground, Photo: auremar/stock.adobe.com
- Cataloochee Group Campground, Photo: mooshny/stock.adobe.com
- Cosby Campground, Photo: o_lypa/stock.adobe.com
- Cove Creek RV Resort, Photo: stock.adobe.com
- Deep Creek Campground, Photo: kosmos111/stock.adobe.com
- Deep Creek Tube Center and Campground, Photo: gpointstudio/stock.adobe.com
- Ela Campground, Photo: contrastwerkstatt/stock.adobe.com
- Elkmont Campground, Photo: auremar/stock.adobe.com
- Greenbrier Campground, Photo: proimagecontent./stock.adobe.com
- Moonshine Creek Campground, Photo: Drobot Dean/stock.adobe.com
- Pigeon River Campground, Photo: WavebreakMediaMicro/stock.adobe.com
- River's Edge Treehouse Resort, Photo: River's Edge Treehouse Resort
- Smokemont Campground, Photo: National Parked/stock.adobe.com
- Standing Indian Campground, Photo: WavebreakmediaMicro/stock.adobe.com
- Thunder Rock Recreation Area and Campground, Photo: David Prahl/stock.adobe.com
- Timberlake Campground, Photo: WavebreakMediaMicro/stock.adobe.com
- Tsali Campground, Photo: moodboard/stock.adobe.com
- Yogi in the Smokies, Photo: Olesia Bilkei/stock.adobe.com
- Cover Photo: csfotoimages/stock.adobe.com