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Campgrounds of Great Smoky Mountains

There are campgrounds scattered all over Great Smoky Mountains National Park, many of them of large size. However, this is also the most visited national park in the United States, and camping is a very popular way of spending time here. Reservations are highly suggested from spring through fall, if available.

Abrams Creek Campground

  • Size & Cost: 16 sites, $17.50 per site
  • Open: May through October
  • Reservations: Required, Reserve Online
  • Location: 6 miles down Happy Valley Road off of US-129 on a side road, near the south end of the Foothills Parkway
  • Amenities: Running water, flush toilets, fire rings and picnic tables
  • Demand: Moderate. This campground is far from the main park area, but is small and sometimes fills during periods of high visitation. Look Rock Campground, further down this page, is very nearby.

Balsam Mountain Campground

  • Size & Cost: 46 sites, $17.50 per site
  • Open: May through October
  • Reservations: Required, Reserve Online
  • Location: At the end of Heintooga Ridge Road, off of the Blue Ridge Parkway
  • Amenities: Running water, flush toilets, fire rings and picnic tables
  • Demand: High. This campground is also far from the main park area, but is accessed from the very popular Blue Ridge Parkway, so it sometimes fills.

Big Creek Campground

  • Size & Cost: 12 sites, $17.50 per site
  • Open: April through October
  • Reservations: Required, Reserve Online
  • Location: In the Big Creek section, accessed off I-40 at Tennessee Exit #451
  • Amenities: Running water, flush toilets, fire rings and picnic tables
  • Demand: High. This small campground is accessed by a short and narrow gravel road. It is small, and often full in the summer months.

Cades Cove Campground

  • Size & Cost: 159 sites, $25 per site
  • Open: All Year
  • Reservations: Reserve Online
  • Location: At the entrance to the Cades Cove Loop Road
  • Amenities: Running water, flush toilets, fire rings and picnic tables, campstore, and dump station
  • Demand: Very high. This campground is at the entrance to the insanely popular Cades Cove area, and is almost always full from spring through fall. Reservations are strongly suggested.

Cataloochee Campground

  • Size & Cost: 27 sites, $25 per site
  • Open: June through October
  • Reservations: Required, Reserve Online
  • Location: In Cataloochee Cove near Maggie Valley, accessed off I-40 at North Carolina Exit #20 via long gravel roads
  • Amenities: Running water, flush toilets, fire rings and picnic tables
  • Demand: Very high. This campground is far from the main park area, but is small and frequently fills during peak visitation.
Cataloochee Campground in Great Smoky Mountains National Park in North Carolina

Cosby Campground

  • Size & Cost: 157 sites, $17.50 per site
  • Open: April through October
  • Reservations: Reserve Online
  • Location: Off of US-321 in the Cosby section, east of Gatlinburg
  • Amenities: Running water, flush toilets, fire rings and picnic tables, and dump station
  • Demand: High. This campground is a bit removed from the main park section, but is still likely to be full during peak visitation. However, if you find yourself on the Tennessee side of the park and can’t find an open site, Cosby is more likely to have one than the others.

Deep Creek Campground

  • Size & Cost: 92 sites, $21 per site
  • Open: May through October
  • Reservations: No, first come, first served
  • Location: In the popular Deep Creek area, near the town of Bryson City, west of Cherokee
  • Amenities: Running water, flush toilets, fire rings and picnic tables, and dump station
  • Demand: High. This campground is in the popular Deep Creek area, and often fills, especially during the summer when tubing down Deep Creek is a VERY popular activity.

Elkmont Campground

  • Size & Cost: 220 sites, $25-$27 per site
  • Open: All Year
  • Reservations: Reserve Online
  • Location: Off of Little River Road, 4.8 miles west of Newfound Gap Road
  • Amenities: Running water, flush toilets, fire rings and picnic tables, campstore, and dump station
  • Demand: Very high. This campground is the most centrally located on the Tennessee side of the park, and located adjacent to the Little River. It is almost always full during peak visitation. Reservations are strongly suggested.

Look Rock Campground (closed indefinitely)

  • Size & Cost: 68 sites, $17.50 per site
  • Open: Closed Indefinitely
  • Reservations: Closed Indefinitely
  • Location: Off of the Foothills Parkway near its midpoint
  • Amenities: Running water, flush toilets, fire rings and picnic tables
  • Demand: Low. This campground is far from the main park area, but sometimes fills during peak visitation. It is located very near the Abrams Creek Campground listed first on this page. Note that this campground has remained closed throughout the year in the past few years.

Smokemont Campground

  • Size & Cost: 142 sites, $25 per site
  • Open: All Year
  • Reservations: Reserve Online
  • Location: Off of Newfound Gap Road 4.3 miles north of the Cherokee Entrance
  • Amenities: Running water, flush toilets, fire rings and picnic tables, and dump station
  • Demand: Very high. This campground is the main location on the North Carolina side of the park, and is almost always full during peak visitation. Reservations are strongly suggested.

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