Although summers in eastern Tennessee on the Peaceful Side of the Smokies are spectacular, fall has its own beauty that continues to make it the perfect destination for your next vacation. Coming here in the fall brings with it cooler, drier weather, that makes going for hikes to see the incredible foliage very comfortable; the only thing you might need is a light jacket. The entire area has plenty to offer in terms of hikes, festivals, and more. Here are a few of them for you to consider.

The Townsend Heritage Festival

Held the 28th and 29th of September, the Townsend Heritage Festival is a celebration of Bluegrass music, food, arts & crafts, and offers a range of fall activities sure to be fun for everyone. Grab some lawn chairs, a picnic blanket, and the whole family. There will be dozens of local vendors, on-site demonstrations, and many other activities sponsored by local merchants and local craftsmen and women.

Why Not Go for a Hike?

The fall scenery on this side of the Smokies is nothing less than spectacular. The leaves are incredible with colors that cover every imaginable shade of green, gold, orange, yellow, and red. There are plenty of trails to check out in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Bringing your pup along with you? Try the Gatlinburg Trail; it’s one of the only trails in the park that allows dogs. Just be sure to keep your pup on a leash and carry poop bags to clean up any messes they make.

Take a Hayride Tour

If you are looking for a family activity that everyone will enjoy, head over to the Cades Cove Riding Stables. Here you and the family can go on a hayride tour of the stunning scenery as you ride along the Cades Cove Loop. Along the way, your tour guide will talk to you about the history of the area along with some of the folklore; it’s a beautiful way to spend a little of your day and an excellent experience for the whole family.

It’s Spooky Time

Fall is “Spooky Time” for many across the country as Halloween rapidly approaches. If you like to feel the tingle of fear running up and down your spine, you should add a trip to the Elkmont Historic District in your plans. The vacation homes here were abandoned back in the 1900s and have been left sitting just as they were left. The homes are located inside the Great Smoky Mountain National Park; they make a perfectly “safe” way to get your thrills and chills.

Up for a Challenge?

If you are up for the challenge, make the trek to the top of Clingmans Dome. The Dome is the tallest point in the entire park and offers a spectacular view of the mountains in all their fall splendor. It’s a bit of a challenge, but you will find it well worth the effort.

These are only a few of the countless reasons why you need to make the Peaceful Side of the Smokies your vacation destination this fall. There is so much to see and do here; you will find yourself coming back year after year just to make sure you haven’t missed anything!