Scenic Drives in Townsend

Things To Do

Here in Townsend, we’re lucky to be right in the middle of some of the world’s most breathtaking views. For visitors looking to enjoy a relaxing and scenic drive through Townsend, we’ve got you covered. We highly recommend taking a day to explore our scenic roads. There are plenty of opportunities for stops to explore nature, learn more about our history, grab a bite to eat, or just enjoy the scenic drive and view.

  • Cades Cove Loop Road
  • Cherohala Skyway
  • Tail of the Dragon
  • Rich Mountain Road
  • Upper Tremont Road
  • Roaring Fork Motor Nature Trail
  • Foothills Parkway
  • Rich Mountain Road
  • Meigs Falls
  • The Sinks
  • A Place of a Thousand Drips

Cherohala Skyway

The Cherohala Skyway crosses through the Cherokee National Forest in Tennessee and the Nantahala National Forest in North Carolina. Designated a “National Scenic Byway,” this 2-laned paved road ranges in elevation from 900 feet above sea level to over 5400 feet above sea level.

The Cherohala Skyway Visitor Center is located in Tellico Plains, Tennessee. Free maps, souvenirs, picnic tables, and public restrooms are available. Staff members are on hand to give recommendations on driving conditions and nearby attractions. The visitor center is open daily from 9am – 5pm. Contact: (423) 253-8010

Visit the Skyway’s official website for more information about history, local events, and even recommended travel itineraries.
Cherohala Skyway official website →

Tail of the Dragon

Riders and drivers come from all over to ride the Dragon. Designated US 129, riders of the Tail of the Dragon experience 318 curves in 11 miles. The Dragon begins at Deals Gap on the Tennessee/North Carolina state line. The tight, winding, adrenaline-inducing curves of the Dragon are a destination for motorcycle and sports car enthusiasts.

Don’t take this road lightly. The Tail of the Dragon is NOT for sightseers.

The official website of the Tail of the Dragon has more information about this road, advice on planning your trip, touring routes, and even live webcam feeds of certain areas.
Tail of the Dragon →

Roaring Fork Motor Nature Trail

The Roaring Fork Motor Nature Trail is a 5.5-mile-long loop road in the Smoky Mountains. The entrance to the motor nature trail is located near the parking areas for Rainbow Falls and ends in Gatlinburg. This one-way loop can be narrow and steep, but it is paved. There are plenty of opportunities along the route to stop and explore trails, historic buildings, and glimpse local wildlife and wildflowers.
The Roaring Fork Motor Nature Trail is impassable to motor homes, buses, or trailers and is closed during the winter season.

Hiking trails along this route
A Place of a Thousand Drips
Baskins Creek Falls
Brushy Mountain
Bullhead Trail
Grotto Falls
Mount LeConte
Rainbow Falls

Historic Buildings along Roaring Fork
Reagan Tub Mill

GSM Motor Rental 8459 State Highway 73 (865) 448-6090

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