Do you want to drive more after you’ve just completed your six, or maybe sixteen hour drive to the Smoky Mountains? If the answer is no, and I know most of you feel that way, then here are a few ideas for wandering around town and beyond, sans car.
This is a great way to get around in town. The routes are all color coded, and each takes you on a specific route in Gatlinburg. There is also one that runs the Arts and Crafts Community, and one that takes you to Dollywood in Pigeon Forge. It is conveniently located next to the Ripley’s Aquarium, but there are over 100 trolley stops located throughout Gatlinburg. Fare is just 50 cents for most routes, but you can purchase an all day pass for just two dollars apiece at the Welcome Center; maps are available there as well. I was skeptical at first, but it is a welcome mode of transport when the legs and feet start to fail from all the walking. For maps and additional info. visit www.gatlinburgtrolley.org.
The avid hiker may shrug his shoulders at this trail, but you can’t ask for a better beginner trail for the novice. It is just a two mile trail that begins off River Road in town, and can be easily missed since it is off the Parkway, but it takes you all the way to Sugarlands Visitors Center just inside the National Park. On the way there, you will come across a bridge, some lovely scenery, and also a little cemetery. A major plus is that it is perfectly wheelchair accessable for those with walking difficulties. Highly recommended and still a peaceful walk, despite the highway being nearby in the first section.
This method of transport is located on the Parkway and takes you up to the Ober Gatlinburg Ski Resort. Available for most of the day, seven days a week, you can board a cable car that takes you on a 2.1 mile ride high above the city for some spectacular views. Warning: The cable car can hold 120 passengers, but if you are a bit claustrophobic, this may not be your thing, because at times, people can be packed in like sardines. But for $12 for the adult and $9.50 for children, this is viable when heading to Ober Gatlinburg.
By all means, I welcome any comments or advice regarding Gatlinburg, so feel free to express your opinions on this particular posting.