Planning a trip to the stunning Smoky Mountains but only have two days to spare? 

If you’re wondering how to maximize your short stay, don’t worry! This blog post will detail an itinerary for a two-day trip to the Smoky Mountains. From hiking trails to packing, you’ll enjoy all the beauty and adventure the Smoky Mountains have to offer. 

So read on to discover how to maximize your two-day trip to Smoky Mountain.

Explore the hiking trails

If you love the outdoors, the Great Smoky Mountains National Park can be your hiker’s haven, with over 800 miles of trails to explore. For the best hiking experience, start early to avoid crowds and maximize your time.

Here are a few suggestions for places to hike in the park:

  1. Clingmans Dome: This is the highest point in the park, and the views from the observation tower are breathtaking. The hike to the tower is a moderate climb, and the trail is paved.

  2. Andrews Bald: This hike offers a short, easy walk to a beautiful open meadow with panoramic views. The trailhead is located off Clingmans Dome Road.

  3. Rainbow Falls: This hike takes you to a beautiful 80-foot waterfall with several overlooks along the way. The trail is moderate in difficulty and is about 5.4 miles round trip.

  4. Chimney Tops: This hike is challenging, with steep inclines and rocky terrain. The reward for the effort is a stunning view of the park from the top of the chimney-like peaks. The trail is about 4 miles round trip.

  5. Cades Cove: This is a beautiful, historic valley with an 11-mile loop road that is perfect for a leisurely hike or bike ride. Along the way, you’ll see historic buildings, wildlife, and stunning views of the mountains.

Remember always to come prepared when hiking in the Smoky Mountains, with plenty of water, a map, and appropriate clothing and footwear. For the right outdoor gear, don’t forget to stop in and check the Smoky Mountain Jeep Outfitters, which offers jackets, hats, decals, and all the right gear to make your trip smooth; you can even visit their e-store if you’re short on time. It’s also important to follow Leave-No-Trace principles and be respectful of your natural surroundings. 

Places To Eat

If you’re planning a two-day trip to the Smoky Mountains, you’ll need to plan where you’ll eat. While the views and sights of the area are sure to take your breath away, you’ll also need to fuel up for all of your adventures! Here are the five finest restaurants to eat at during your two-day excursion to the Smoky Mountains.

    1. Pancake pantry: This place offers you 23 different kinds of pancakes, French toast, omelets, waffles, and just about anything else you might desire. Prepare yourself for the finest pancakes you’ve ever had because everything is homemade, even the pancake batter and the syrup.

    2. The Wild Plum Tea Room: There are many attractions and activities in Gatlinburg, but this restaurant provides a relaxing dining experience with exceptional entrees, teas, and desserts. Appetizers include baked Brie, buffalo cauliflower, and hot pimento cheese dip.

    3. Riverstone Grill: For those looking for mouth-watering seafood dishes on their two-day trip through Tennessee, Riverstone Grill is one of the top spots to hit up.

    4. Cherokee Grill: You can enjoy a juicy steak cooked to perfection at this place. Start your meal with a fresh salad, then finish off your adventure with a decadent handmade brownie.
    5. Crockett’s Breakfast Camp: Everyone can find something they enjoy on Crockett’s menu, which features delicious skillets, fluffy biscuits, and golden-brown pancakes.

Get an Early Start

A two-day trip to the Smoky Mountains is the perfect way to experience the beauty of this majestic region. However, you’ll want to get started early and plan your itinerary wisely. Here are some tips on how to maximize your time in the Smokies.

First, plan your route ahead of time so that you don’t waste time driving in circles. It can be done by researching online or asking local tourist information centers. Make sure to include some of the popular landmarks we mentioned above.

Secondly, make sure to leave yourself enough time at each spot. You don’t want to feel rushed or miss out on things. Set aside time to take pictures and enjoy the views without feeling rushed.

Finally, check the weather forecast before you leave to prepare for any unexpected conditions. The weather can change quickly in the mountains, and you don’t want to be caught off guard!

Take Advantage Of Downtime

Making the most of your two-day trip to the Smoky Mountains doesn’t have to mean cramming your itinerary with activities from sunup to sundown. If you plan, you can also make time for relaxation during your trip, allowing you to get the most out of your vacation.

Consider booking a hotel or cabin in a scenic area when planning a two-day trip. That way, when you’re not out exploring, you can take advantage of the downtime to enjoy stunning mountain views. You might even be able to find accommodations that offer amenities like hot tubs or fire pits so that you can cozy up after a long day of hiking.

If you’re looking for something more active, try renting a bike or kayak and exploring local rivers or trails. You can also book a guided tour, where you can learn more about the area’s history and wildlife from experienced guides.

Regardless of how you choose to spend your time in the Smoky Mountains, make sure to get plenty of rest.


Your two-day trip to the Smoky Mountains will give you lifelong memories of exploring beautiful nature and observing wildlife. Whether you’re looking for a relaxing weekend getaway or an active adventure, the Smoky Mountains have something for everyone. With some planning, you can make the most of your two days in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Don’t forget to pack your camera to capture all the beauty around you!