Nestled in the heart of the Great Smoky Mountains, Gatlinburg, TN, is a haven for outdoor enthusiasts. Guests of Mountain Laurel Chalets vacation rentals often seek creative ways to have a nice time and enjoy nature. One of the most delightful ways to experience the beauty of this region is by enjoying a leisurely picnic surrounded by breathtaking landscapes. We're happy to share our suggestions for the best places to have a picnic near Gatlinburg, where you can savor a meal while soaking in the peace and quiet of nature.
1. CADES COVE
A picturesque gem within the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, the Cades Cove Picnic Area is an ideal spot for a relaxing picnic. Surrounded by lush meadows, rolling hills, and historic buildings, this area offers a peaceful ambiance. Enjoy your meal under the shade of trees while watching for wildlife like deer, black bears, and wild turkeys. After your meal, explore the Cades Cove Loop Road, which provides stunning scenic views and opportunities for wildlife spotting.
2. GREENBRIER PICNIC AREA
For those seeking a more secluded picnic experience, the Greenbrier Picnic Area is a hidden gem. Tucked away off the beaten path, this area boasts beautiful creeks, wildflower-filled meadows, and access to hiking trails. Set up your picnic along the banks of the Little Pigeon River and listen to the soothing sounds of flowing water as you dine in the serenity of nature.
3. MYNATT PARK
Conveniently located near downtown Gatlinburg, Mynatt Park is a fantastic option for families and couples looking for a cozy picnic spot. This park features picnic tables, a playground, and well-maintained green spaces, making it an excellent place for a relaxing afternoon. The park's proximity to the Gatlinburg Trail, a scenic path that leads to the Sugarlands Visitor Center, adds to its appeal.
METCALF BOTTOMS PICNIC AREA
Nestled along the banks of the Little River, the Metcalf Bottoms Picnic Area is a popular choice for those seeking a serene riverside picnic. The cool breeze and the sound of the river create a soothing atmosphere, making it an ideal location to unwind. While here, take advantage of nearby hiking trails that offer stunning views of the surrounding mountains.
5. TREMONT INSTITUTE
For a truly educational and enriching picnic experience, head to Tremont Institute. This environmental education center offers picnic facilities amid a beautiful forest setting. Learn about the local flora and fauna through interpretive signs, and after your meal, explore the institute's trails to fully immerse yourself in the beauty of the Smokies.
Gatlinburg and its surrounding areas provide a multitude of wonderful picnic spots that cater to a variety of preferences. Whether you're looking for a riverside retreat, a historic landscape, or an educational experience, these places have it all. At Mountain Laurel Chalets, all of our Gatlinburg vacation rental properties are convenient to the above-mentioned picnic spots, making it easier than ever for you to prepare your picnic from the comfort of your home away from home. All MLC properties have fully equipped kitchens; all you have to do is bring the groceries and you'll be covered! As you pack your picnic basket and set out for your adventure, remember to respect the environment by packing out what you bring in and leaving no trace behind. Embrace the natural beauty, enjoy the peaceful ambiance, and create cherished memories with your loved ones in the heart of the Great Smoky Mountains.