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TownsendUnited States of America

This peaceful gateway to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park is a family-friendly town with caves, museums, scenic drives and hiking trails.

Prepare for a vacation of outdoor adventures, wildlife spotting and Appalachian heritage in Townsend. This easygoing town sits in the heart of Tuckaleechee Cove, a scenic valley at the edge of the Smoky Mountains. Townsend’s striking countryside ranges from wildflower meadows to dense woodland, lazy rivers and meandering creeks. Hike to mountain peaks, marvel at thundering waterfalls, visit pioneer homes and explore historic trails.

Get an in-depth insight into the Smokies and examine millennia-old objects at the Great Smoky Mountains Heritage Center. Learn about the region’s railroading history at the Little River Railroad and Lumber Company Museum. Discover local legends and learn about Southern Appalachian culture on the 10-mile-long (16-kilometer) Shadows of the Past Hiking/Biking Trail. Interpretive signs provide information about archaeological grounds, early settler homes and other sites.

Admire curious limestone rock formations, including a 12-foot-tall (3.7-meter) stalagmite and icicle-like stalactites, at Tuckaleechee Caverns. Hike the Rich Mountain Loop trail and be rewarded with superb views over the Smoky Mountains.

Visit Cades Cove, one of the most popular areas of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Appreciate the pristine landscapes while driving along Cades Cove Loop road. Walk to Abrams Falls and Laurel Falls. Glimpse the life of European settlers at John Cable Grist Mill and the Primitive Baptist Church, among many 19th-century landmarks. Spot black bears, coyote, deer and elk.

Enjoy thrill-seeking fun by joining a tubing adventure on the Little River. Cross the Dark Island Swinging Bridge, one of two swinging bridges in Townsend. Alternatively, play a round of golf at the Laurel Valley Golf Course.

Townsend is about a 3-hour drive east of Nashville and a 4-hour drive north of Atlanta, Georgia. Visit in May for the Townsend Spring Festival and Old Timers Day. Watch bluegrass concerts, browse artisan stalls and sample typical Tennessee fare.

Top Hotels in Townsend

Townsend Gateway Inn
Townsend Gateway Inn
2 out of 5
8270 State Hwy 73, Townsend, TN
The price is $104 per night from Oct 28 to Oct 29

Situated in the mountains, this motel is within 1 mi (2 km) of River Rage Go-Kart Track and Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Great Smoky Mountains Heritage ...

4.7/5Exceptional! (541 reviews)

"The staff was very friendly. We requested an early check-in, because of my elderly parents, and they were so nice about it, even though they were very busy!"…"

Reviewed on Oct 20, 2020

Townsend Gateway Inn
Richmont Inn of the Great Smokies
Richmont Inn of the Great Smokies
2.5 out of 5
220 Winterberry Lane, Townsend, TN
The price is $215 per night from Oct 25 to Oct 26

Situated in Townsend, this golf bed & breakfast is within 6 mi (10 km) of Tuckaleechee Caverns, Dark Island Swinging Bridge, and Great Smoky Mountains Heritage ...

4.6/5Exceptional! (71 reviews)

"It was quite the B & B. Everything was quaint. The staff was awesome. Only thing, the stairs were steep to our room on the top floor."…"

Reviewed on Oct 23, 2020

Richmont Inn of the Great Smokies
Tremont Lodge & Resort
Tremont Lodge & Resort
3 out of 5
7726 E Lamar Alexander Parkway, Townsend, TN
The price is $99 per night from Nov 15 to Nov 16

Situated in the mountains, this lodge is 0.1 mi (0.2 km) from The Little River Railroad and Lumber Company Museum and 2.6 mi (4.1 km) from Great Smoky Mountains ...

3.9/5Very Good! (699 reviews)

"It was very neat and clean. The fiberglass bath surround had some broken places but again, was clean. I like that my room did not have carpet but what appeared to be laminate flooring. For a fairly simple room, I feel the price was a bit exuberant, but it was all that was available at the time so ..."…"

Reviewed on Oct 10, 2020

Tremont Lodge & Resort
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

Vacation Rentals in Townsend

Sanitized Between Stays - Copperline - Beautiful View, Studio Cabin Just for 2, hot Tub, Free Wifi
Sanitized Between Stays - Copperline - Beautiful View, Studio Cabin Just for 2, hot Tub, Free Wifi
Townsend, TN

Situated in the mountains, this cabin is within 3 mi (5 km) of The Little River Railroad and Lumber Company Museum, Dark Island Swinging Bridge, and Townsend ...

4.4/5Excellent! (31 reviews)
Loved it here

"The cabin was described accurately and the drive up and the stairs a bit challenging at times but well worth it. The view is spectacular and it is quiet and cozy and peaceful. The cabin is clean and comfortable with everything you need. Kathy the property manager was fantastic and if I had any small ..."…"

Reviewed on Mar 28, 2020

Sanitized Between Stays - Copperline - Beautiful View, Studio Cabin Just for 2, hot Tub, Free Wifi
Sanitized Between Guests - Secluded Cabin, Mtn View, Hot Tub,, King bed - Pioneers Point
Sanitized Between Guests - Secluded Cabin, Mtn View, Hot Tub,, King bed - Pioneers Point
Townsend, TN

Situated in the mountains, this cabin is 2.4 mi (3.9 km) from Laurel Valley Golf Course and 3 mi (4.9 km) from The Little River Railroad and Lumber Company Museum. ...

4.5/5Wonderful! (25 reviews)
Perfectly tranquil cabin with a spectacular view and relaxed drive into Great Smoky Mountains NP

"We had a wonderful stay, beginning as we stepped onto the front porch that framed a beautiful view of the Smokies. As we walked through the door we were greeted with a pleasant, homey smell and a simple and clean aesthetic. It is a lovely cabin that is well kept and clearly cared for. This was our ..."…"

Reviewed on Oct 12, 2020

Sanitized Between Guests - Secluded Cabin, Mtn View, Hot Tub,, King bed - Pioneers Point
Contactless Check In - Mtn View, hot Tub, Outdoor Fire Table, gas Fireplace A View FOR TWO
Contactless Check In - Mtn View, hot Tub, Outdoor Fire Table, gas Fireplace A View FOR TWO
Townsend, TN

Situated in the mountains, this cabin is within 3 mi (5 km) of The Little River Railroad and Lumber Company Museum, Dark Island Swinging Bridge, and Townsend ...

4.7/5Exceptional! (19 reviews)
Great view.

"Parking was terrible. Damage my rental car dropping off edge of driveway. Floor was moving and made it hard to walk and keep our balance."…"

Reviewed on Oct 12, 2020

Contactless Check In - Mtn View, hot Tub, Outdoor Fire Table, gas Fireplace A View FOR TWO
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

Popular places to visit in Townsend

Cades Cove
Image for Cades Cove

Cades Cove

4.5/5(1,502 reviews)

Spot colorful wildlife and enjoy the delightful natural landscapes of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park via scenic drives and hikes.

Tuckaleechee Caverns
Image for Tuckaleechee Caverns

Tuckaleechee Caverns

5/5(4 reviews)

You can find out about the history of Townsend when you stop by Tuckaleechee Caverns. Discover the mountain views in this family-friendly area.

Spruce Flats Falls
Image for Spruce Flats Falls

Spruce Flats Falls

Explore the great outdoors at Spruce Flats Falls and enjoy the mountain views during your trip to Townsend. Amble around this family-friendly area's riverfront, or seek out the hiking trails.

Meigs Falls
Image for Meigs Falls

Meigs Falls

Explore the great outdoors at Meigs Falls and enjoy the mountain views during your trip to Townsend. Amble around this family-friendly area's riverfront, or seek out the hiking trails.

Next To Heaven
Image for Next To Heaven

Next To Heaven

Take the family on an outing to Next To Heaven during your trip to Townsend. Stroll along the riverfront or seek out the hiking trails.

Great Smoky Mountains National Park
Image for Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Great Smoky Mountains National Park

5/5(4,545 reviews)

America’s most visited national park offers blue mountain ridges, forested hiking trails, a variety of wildlife and bits of Southern mountain history. 

Top things to do in Townsend

Enjoy the Magic in the Mountains of Beautiful Anakeesta
Image for Enjoy the Magic in the Mountains of Beautiful Anakeesta

Enjoy the Magic in the Mountains of Beautiful Anakeesta

$25
Per adult
86% of travellers recommend
Voted The Smoky Mountains Best Show - Country Tonite!
Image for Voted The Smoky Mountains Best Show - Country Tonite!

Voted The Smoky Mountains Best Show - Country Tonite!

$39
Per adult
80% of travellers recommend
Pigeon Forge Hollywood Wax Museum Entertainment Center
Image for Pigeon Forge Hollywood Wax Museum Entertainment Center

Pigeon Forge Hollywood Wax Museum Entertainment Center

$34
Per adult
88% of travellers recommend

Reviews of Townsend

4.5

Top Destination

5 - Excellent
109
5 - Excellent 59.56284153005465%
4 - Good
58
4 - Good 31.693989071038253%
3 - Okay
12
3 - Okay 6.557377049180328%
2 - Disappointing
3
2 - Disappointing 1.639344262295082%
1 - Terrible
1
1 - Terrible 0.546448087431694%

4/5 - Good

Verified traveler

May 23, 2020

It is a beautiful area with a nice sidewalk/trail to walk/run/bike along. Limited places to eat and shop.

5/5 - Excellent

Brenda

May 12, 2020

Townsend is very close to Cades cove which is why we go to that area and very far from attractions we could care less about

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveler

Mar 17, 2020

Very friendly residents.

4/5 - Good

Devesh

Jan 1, 2020

Since we only stayed overnight, and didn't explore I can't comment about the town. However, I loved the calmness and serenity of the town. I would love to go back and relax and explore more.

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveler

Nov 30, 2019

Small mountain town.

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveler

Nov 26, 2019

The Abby restaurant has yummy pulled pork sandwiches with beautiful outdoor seating by the river, it's next to the swinging bridge

Read travel guides and advice on visiting Townsend

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Finding the best places to get views of America from new heights

Finding the best places to get views of America from new heights

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