Great Smoky Mountains Visitor Centers

The Smoky Mountains are truly one of the most beautiful places to visit on earth. Here you can witness nature, wildlife and see the smoke rise in the morning. A place where great memories are made everyday.

Great Smoky Mountains Visitor Centers
  • Its a good idea to begin your exploration of the park at a visitor center. At the smoky mountains visitors center you can grab a park map or newspaper, have your questions answered by a ranger, and purchase books and guides to the park.
  • There are four visitor centers that are located within the national park at Cades Cove, Oconaluftee, Sugarlands and Clingmans Dome. In addition, four information centers are located outside the park in the communities of Gatlinburg, Sevierville, and Townsend.
  • Two historic grist mills are open seasonally in the park. Both provide demonstrations of corn meal milling.

Cades Cove Visitor Center Calendar

Open every day except Christmas Day.
January 9:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
February 9:00 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.
March 9:00 a.m. – 6:30 p.m.
April 9:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m.
May – July 9:00 a.m. – 7:30 p.m.
August 9:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m.
September – October 9:00 a.m. – 6:30 p.m.
November 9:00 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.
December 9:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

Location

Inside the park near the mid-point of the 11-mile, one-way Cades Cove Loop Road.

Special Programs

Ranger-led programs are conducted seasonally. Check at the visitor center for times.

Exhibits

Indoor and outdoor exhibits of Southern Mountain life and culture. Includes Cable Mill, a grist mill which operates spring through fall, the Becky Cable house, and other historic structures.

Available Facilities

Great Smoky Mountains Association bookstore and shop. Public restrooms.

Oconaluftee Visitor Center

Open every day except Christmas Day
January – February 8:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
March 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
April – May 8:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
June – August 8:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
September – October 8:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
November 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
December 8:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

Location

Inside the park, 2 miles north of Cherokee, NC, on US-441.

Special Programs

Ranger-led programs conducted seasonally. Check at the visitor center for location and times.

Exhibits

Visitor center museum exhibits tell the story of life in these mountains from native Americans and early European settlement time periods through the Civilian Conservation Corp and the development of the national park. The adjacent Mountain Farm Museum contains a fascinating collection of log structures including a farmhouse, barn, smokehouse, applehouse, corn cribs and others. Demonstrations of farm life are conducted seasonally.

Available Facilities

Great Smoky Mountains Association bookstore and shop. Public restrooms. Soda and water machines.

Learn about the new Oconaluftee Visitor Center’s green design!

Sugarlands Visitor Center

Open every day except Christmas Day.
January – February 8:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
March 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
April – May 8:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
June – August 8:00 a.m. – 7:30 p.m.
September – October 8:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
November 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
December 8:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
Location
Inside the park, 2 miles south of Gatlinburg on US-441.

Special Programs

Ranger-led programs conducted seasonally. Check at the visitor center for locations and times.

Exhibits

Free admission to 20-minute film about the park. Extensive natural history exhibits.

Available Facilities

Great Smoky Mountains Association bookstore and shop. Public restrooms. Soda and water machines. Backcountry Information Office.

 

Clingmans Dome Visitor Contact Station

April – June 10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
July 10:00 a.m. – 6:30 p.m.
August – October 10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
November 9:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Location

At the Clingmans Dome trailhead, 7 miles off US-441 on the Clingmans Dome Road.

Available Facilities

Great Smoky Mountains Association bookstore and shop. Park information. Public restrooms in parking area.

Historic Grist Mills

Cable Mill in Cades Cove

Open daily late-March through October, and on weekends (Friday-Sunday) in November
Hours: 9:00-5:00

Location

Inside the park near the mid-point of the 11-mile, one-way Cades Cove Loop Road.

Exhibits

Water-powered grist mill.

 

Mingus Mill near Oconaluftee

Open daily mid-April through October, and on weekends (Friday-Sunday) in November
Hours: 9:00-5:00

Location

Inside the park, 2 miles north of Cherokee, NC, on US 441.

Exhibits

Turbine-powered grist mill.

Make sure to bring your camera and binoculars!