Sometimes the answers we seek are found in the quietest moments, and when you’re quiet, that’s when the wildlife of Tennessee will find you. We’re obviously not talking about the crazy people you meet in the clubs; we’re talking about the deer, the foxes, and the fish that swim in the streams. We’re talking about the sweet creatures that are the sole property of Mother Nature! Bring your camera on this journey to the top five places to watch Gatlinburg wildlife and remember to stay quiet and calm, no matter how exciting your experiences may be.
Don’t Feed the Bears
Yes, there are bears in the Smoky Mountains, and when you are exploring Cades Cove, don’t be surprised if you come across one or two from a distance. They are skittish and will avoid most humans unless you entice them with your picnic basket. Don’t do that. It’s only funny in the cartoons!
Elks Live Here, Too
It had been almost 200 years since the last elk was spotted in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, but the plan to reintroduce the large mammals to their natural environment has been a successful one. Starting with 25 in 2001, their numbers have increased exponentially since, and if you’re interested in spotting one, your best viewing options for Gatlinburg nature will take place in the Cataloochee area of the park.
The park is home to about 10 different species of bats which can be found in various caves throughout the Smokies, but due to a fungus spread by humans that is killing them all off, you may want to stay out of the caves and watch them as they leave their homes at dusk. We can promise they will stay out of your hair!
The Smoky Mountains and the surrounding towns and cities are considered the salamander capital of the world. You won’t have to go far to spot one of these lizard-like, lungless creatures; they breathe through blood vessels in their mouth and neck. They thrive in the valley, and if you’re traveling to the higher elevations, you may even catch sight of the black-chinned red salamander!
Pour Yourself a Glass of Wine, Pull Up a Chair, and Enjoy Gatlinburg Nature
The back porch of your homey and comfortable Cabin Rental Store vacation escape is the perfect place to watch for Gatlinburg wildlife. Watch for deer peeking out from behind the trees with baby fawns in tow, be delighted anew at the fireflies that light up the night, and if you hear rustling in the garbage cans at night, don’t be worried; it’s probably raccoons seeking their dinner! Our cabins are the perfect place to relax, unwind, enjoy Gatlinburg nature, and spy on the woodland creatures that make the world so special—reserve yours today!