The town of Cherokee near the Great Smoky Mountains National Park in North Carolina preserves the heritage and traditions of Native Americans. Many signs are written in the Cherokee language as well as in English. Visit the casino that opened on Cherokee Nation lands in 1995. It draws millions of visitors to the area annually and creates thousands of jobs for residents.
Try your luck at Harrah’s Cherokee Casino Resort. Play table games, such as blackjack, roulette and three-card poker, or spend some time on the slot machines. Stay in one of the three stylish hotel towers that are part of the casino complex. The large food court has a variety of casual and high-end restaurants.
See the Museum of the Cherokee Indian in the center of the town and learn about the Native American group through many antique books and photographs. Original Cherokee material and many artistic exhibits tell the story of the Cherokee Nation. Historical displays showcase material that dates back to the Paleo Period.
Explore the Cherokee Botanical Garden and Nature Trail. It contains more than 150 species of flora from the Great Smoky Mountains, such as mountain laurel, Dutchman’s breeches and azaleas. Wander through half a mile (800 meters) of pine and hardwood trees.
Make your way to the Oconaluftee Indian Village, a replica of a typical 18th-century Cherokee community. A guided tour can help you learn about the culture and history of the people. See live demonstrations of the construction of weapons and amenities.
Hike up to the Oconaluftee River in a valley of the Great Smoky Mountains. Trek through miles of wild, picturesque grounds with panoramic views of the mountains.
The Cherokee area was once known as Yellow Hill. It has an agreeable climate with warm summers and mild winters. The town is about 2.5 hours’ drive from the east side of Atlanta, Georgia. Other cities close to Cherokee include Asheville and Charlotte. Since the inception of its casino and other attractions, the town has become a haven for history buffs and adventurous travelers.