Gatlinburg, Tennessee is a sight to behold during the spring. Just imagine all the trees budding with new life. The weather grows warmer, and the once-frozen lakes and ponds now run freely. The wildlife found throughout the Great Smoky Mountains now come out of hibernation, and people begin to spend more time outside socializing and interacting. if you are considering a visit to Gatlinburg during the spring, there are plenty of things to see and explore.
Come to Gatlinburg in the Spring to Celebrate Nature
With the warmer weather comes a celebration of nature in Gatlinburg. With the close proximity to the Smoky Mountains, the once snow-covered trails are now blossoming with new life. Now is the time when everyone’s getting out and getting more exercise and breathing in that fresh mountain air. With over 150 trails, you’ll thoroughly enjoy discovering and exploring the beautiful natural scenery of Gatlinburg in Spring. Head on over to the Great Smoky Mountains, where there are beautiful peaks such as Mount LeConte as well as several waterfalls such as the 80-foot Laurel Falls and Ramsey Cascades, which is the tallest waterfall in the park. The park offers its guests numerous opportunities for hiking, mountain biking, whitewater rafting, kayaking, fishing, and horseback riding. There’s something for everyone here! Explore the park on your own, or book a guided tour and learn about the park while you’re exploring.
With the spring weather, you’ll also get a chance to see more of the wildlife. Gatlinburg is known for their wild black bear population as well as elk, deer and wild turkeys. And the park is home to over 200 bird species as well as a stopover for migrating birds in the spring and fall. Look for migrating loons, grebes, cormorants, Mississippi kites, as well as year-round residents like wild turkeys, red-tailed hawks, and belted kingfishers.
And spring is for wildflowers! Bloodroot, the rare lady’s slippers, white and yellow trillium, wild geranium, Dutchman’s breeches, and trout lily are just a few of the beautiful wildflowers you can see while you hike through the Great Smoky Mountain National Park. A few of the trails with the best spring flowers are Schoolhouse Gap Trail, Porters Creek Trail, and the Kanati Fork Trail. Hardcore wildflower enthusiasts will enjoy the blooming of over 1,000 species of wildflowers with the annual five-day Spring Wildflower Pilgrimage in the Great Smoky Mountain National Park. Enjoy guided walks, exhibits and programs on wildflowers, fungi, ferns, medicinal plants, salamanders, park history and more..
Arts & Crafts Fun
With the onset of spring comes an assortment of arts and crafts festivals. The annual Hands-On Gatlinburg Arts & Crafts Weekend is a chance for you to purchase and even take a stab at making your own piece of art. At this Gatlinburg in Spring event, numerous studios are set up that offer a wide assortment of art classes to the general public. You can do everything from making your own jewelry or soap to learning the art of woodwork or acrylic painting. Tickets are required to take part in this festival, but it is definitely a must-visit for those that enjoy art.
Smoky Mountain Wine Weekend
If you are a lover of wine or specialty crafts beers, the Smoky Mountain wine weekend is a must do while visiting Gatlinburg in the spring. When you purchase a ticket, you get the opportunity to sample an assortment of wines from various wineries across Tennessee. You also get to enjoy delectable small bites from a variety of eateries and restaurants in Gatlinburg. You even get the chance to take home a souvenir wine glass to remind you of the enjoyable experience of wine tasting outdoors surrounded by the beautiful Great Smoky Mountains.
More to Enjoy in Spring in Gatlinburg
There’s more to do besides browse arts and crafts and enjoying good wine—although that might sound pretty good! Honoring our men and women in the military, The Mountain Man Memorial March in late April is a grueling 26.2-mile march over highways, rural roads, mountain slopes and more. Come out and support our troops taking part in this event by cheering them on.
Every year in May, the Gatlinburg Beans & Cornbread Festival serves up plenty of bean, cornbread, sweet tea, games, and live local music. Sponsored by Tennessee’s own Bush Brothers & Company, this festival features a beans and cornbread cook off that is open to everyone, locals and visitors alike. If you’ve got a great recipe for cornbread and beans, bring it along and try your recipe against past winners. If you aren’t entering the competition, you can purchase a spoon for free samples of all of the entries. If you love these two Southern staples, put this event on your calendar!
The Smoky Mountain Trout Tournament is two days of trout fishing with over $10,000 in cash, trophies, and prizes. This annual event stocks over 20 miles of streams with over 5,000 trout for your fishing pleasure. With multiple categories and open to adults and kids, if you’re any kind of angler, you’ll want to schedule your spring trip to Gatlinburg to coincide with this tournament in April.