Great Smoky Mountains National Park
The Great Smoky Mountains National Park is the most popular National Park in the US thanks to stunning natural beauty, outstanding outdoor activities and no entrance fee to enter the park. Over 9,000,000 people visit the Great Smoky Mountains National Park each year, which is more than twice as many as visit the Grand Canyon, Yosemite or Yellowstone National Park.
Visitors come to the Great Smoky Mountains to enjoy the scenic vistas, waterfall hikes, trout fishing and white-water rafting. Spring in the Park is the time to view American black bear cubs and fawns of the native white-tail deer, though visitors are strongly cautioned not to feed wildlife and advised to keep car windows closed against curious creatures. Autumn is leaf season, with fall colors ablaze as early as mid-September at the higher elevations and peaking at lower elevations between mid-October and early November.
The Great Smoky Mountains National Park encompasses more than 500,000 acres, with nearly half that area being in Tennessee. Hundreds of miles of road stretch through the Smokies, making auto touring a popular activity. The National Park Service website offers a seasonal road schedule as well as updates on temporary road closures due to weather or construction projects.
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