Hideaway Hills Resort is located 15 minutes from The Great Smoky Mountains National Park, the most visited national park in the United States. Each year nearly nine million people come to enjoy the four seasons of the Smokies. The park covers area in both Tennessee and North Carolina and is about 16 miles wide by 50 miles long.
Historic structures such as homes, mills and churches (see Cataloochee church at left) built by early settlers have been preserved and offer visitors a glimpse into the lives of those who lived here in the 1800s.
Wildlife is abundant. Dawn and dusk are the best times to spot some of the 70 different mammals and more than 200 species of birds that make the park home. The park is also known for having more varieties of fresh-water fish than any other national park in the country, and fishing is permitted year round with the appropriate license from Tennessee or North Carolina.
Perhaps the most famous inhabitants of the Park are the nearly 1,700 black bears which visitors are encouraged to enjoy from a distance.
For the hiking enthusiast there are more than 900 miles of well-marked hiking trails. Many of these trails offer the hiker spectacular views of the Smokies or culminate in a waterfall. Pets are not allowed on Park trails, so it’s best to leave them home.
The Park has three visitor centers- Sugarlands on the Tennessee side, Oconaluftee on the North Carolina side, and one is found midway around the Cades Cove loop road. These centers offer information, books, pamphlets, and maps. Oconaluftee is directly adjacent to The Pioneer Farmstead that includes a meat house, chicken house, springhouse, blacksmith shop and a dwelling in a setting reminiscent of the 1800s. The Sugarlands visitor center is two miles inside the Park from Gatlinburg, Tennessee.
The fun even continues during the winter. The towns of Gatlinburg, Pigeon Forge, and Sevierville offer full activity. Winterfest, beginning in mid-November and ending in the spring, is a celebration of winter that includes festivals, lectures, organized hikes, special entertainment, sports competitions, storytelling and more.
If you enjoy golf there are several resort-type courses in the area. Most are open year round and offer magnificent views of the Smokies. Call ahead to reserve a tee time.
Horseback riding is popular in the Park. There are even drive-in horse camps. Most stables are open when the weather is good and offer trail rides, guides, and group hay rides.
You can simply drive down the Parkway (Hwy. 441) and select from a variety of amusement parks such as Dollywood, arcades, miniature golf, mini-tracks with go-carts to race around on, movie theaters, and bungie jumping. The latest addition to the area is Ripley’s new aquarium in Gatlinburg.
Here in the Smoky Mountains there is a wide variety of live entertainment that is sure to please everyone. After a day of sightseeing and shopping, sit back and relax and enjoy true southern hospitality while the country’s finest entertainers perform. Remember to make your reservations early.
Dolly Parton’s Stampede – Pigeon Forge favorite! Enjoy a delicious 4-course feast and be dazzled by a horse-racing, whip-cracking, wagon-busting good time complete with the North/South rivalry. Get there an hour early and enjoy the pre-show in the Dixie Belle non-alcoholic Saloon! 1-800-356-1676
Dollywood – There is plenty of entertainment here for all ages… over 40 live shows daily, rides, attractions, and more than 25 craft showcases. Evenings are filled with dazzling performances by popular artists for an additional cost. For tickets or information call (865) 428-9488.
The Comedy Barn – America’s funniest family variety show! We feature nationally known comedians, magicians, jugglers and “Arnold the Mind Reading Pig”! Reservations suggested and Kids are free! (865) 428-5222
In 1996, the Smokies area was voted the best shopping spot in the South (Southern Living Magazine), and people come from all over to take advantage of the incredible values offered in and around the Smoky Mountains, such as the Village Shops in Gatlinburg, the Arts and Crafts Community, and the outlet shops of Pigeon Forge. There are five outlet malls boasting famous brands like Nike, Sony, Naturalizer, Reebok, London Fog, Anne Klein, J.Crew, and Coach. These are only a few of the many select stores offering significant discounts.