Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Fall Foliage 2015 in the Smoky Mountains of Tennessee

Thursday, September 24th is the first full day of Fall.  Here in my neck of the woods the temperatures are still summer-ish, low to mid 80’s.  We (and that includes the weathermen out there) don’t really know when things will cool down, when that first frost and then the first hard freeze will hit.  But we do know it’s not yet!

Those same weathermen and the travel industry put out calendars and schedules showing when the prime ‘leaf looking’ takes place.  According to the website www.Gatlinburgguide.com here is the time table:

The Tennessee-North Carolina State Line Overlook:  Colors peak at the top of the mountain October 7th through 14th.  You will see reds and yellows first.  At the overlook you will see colors on the Tennessee side as well as the North Carolina side.  It is a very popular spot for photos all year long and especially at Fall time.

Downtown Gatlinburg:  Colors there in the valley will peak from October 19th through the 25th.

Pigeon Forge:  A little north of Gatlinburg they start a few days later, from October 15th through the end of the month.

If you are planning a trip to Sevierville/Pigeon Forge/Gatlinburg you better book your motel or cabin soon.  Many places are probably booked solid by now.  But if you search using www.VRBO.co  (Vacation Rentals By Owner) you can probably find something – there are literally thousands of cabins in that area.

Outlet Mall shopping - bargains galore!


While spending some time looking at the beautiful colors is one reason to visit the Smoky Mountains the other reason is shopping!  There are outlet malls in Sevierville and Pigeon Forge and you can get all of your Christmas shopping done if you plan things right!

After a day of shopping and/or sightseeing, you need to find the right spot for dinner.  Some of my favorite restaurants are: 

I just love this place!

The Chop House, which just happens to be located at Tanger Outlet Mall on the Parkway in Sevierville.

Damon’s, which is across the highway from Tanger Outlet Mall.  It is up on a hill so a nice view from their front porch!  Sit in one of the rockers and rest a bit after dinner.

Bullfish, which is located further down the Parkway in Pigeon Forge.  I can’t give them enough praise. 

The area is also loaded with every fast food joint known to man, so food isn’t a problem.  If you love burgers try something a little different,  Fuddruckers , which is located near the Vanity Fair outlet…see food and shopping do go hand in hand!

If you are more into ‘cooking at home’ there is Food City and Kroger and someday Publix will be open!  Stock up and cook at your rental cabin and then relax in the hot tub.

Fall in the Smoky Mountains – a colorful wonderland waiting just for you!

Bradford Pear Trees, the last trees to turn colors



Other photos:  AbbyG