Everything You Need to Know About the Cades Cove Visitor Center

Hands down, Cades Cove is one of the most popular areas in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Not only is this where you and your family or group can find some of the most picturesque views of the mountains, but there is also an abundance of history and Smoky Mountains culture found here you cannot discover anywhere else.

In the middle of all of this beauty and history lies the Cades Cove Visitor Center. You one-stop shop for everything you need to learn more about the area and to pick up a souvenir or two of your experience here.

To learn more about the Cades Cove Visitor Center and the surrounding area, read below!

What to Expect When Visiting the Cades Cove Visitor Center

open field near the Cades Cove Visitor CenterAs we mentioned, Cades Cove is home to a ton rich history, all centered around the Cades Cove Visitor Center. Inside the facility, you and your family or group can find hundreds of small trinkets that make for the perfect souvenir, park maps, history books, and locally made jams and jellies. You can also pick up local grains ground at the historic mill located next door to the visitor center.

It is not just the history and culture found in Cades Cove that draws in over 2 million visitors a year. This area is also where you and your family or group can experience some of the most breathtaking views of the Smoky Mountains, as well as catch a glimpse of a lot of the playful wildlife found in the area, including black bears, deer, turkeys, and more!

There are also several fun and challenging hiking trails starting near the visitor center in Cades Cove you and your loved ones will love to explore.

Click here to learn more about some of our favorite Cades Cove hiking trails.

historic cabin in Cades Cove near the Cades Cove Visitor CenterCades Cove Visitor Center Location

The Cades Cove Visitor Center is located at the halfway point around the Cades Cove Loop Road, an 11-mile loop road circling the historic district. To access the loop road, all you and your family or group need to do is

Cades Cove itself is located just outside of Townsend, TN, in what is considered to be the peaceful side of the Smoky Mountains. Distance wise, Cades Cove is located approximately 27 miles from downtown Gatlinburg and 57 miles from Cherokee, NC.

For driving directions to the Cades Cove Visitor Center, use this map:

Cades Cove Visitor Center Hours

The Cades Cove Visitor Center is open every day of the year except for Christmas day. However, the hours of the facility do fluctuate based on season. Find out what the Cades Cove Visitor Center hours of operation will be during your next vacation here:

  • January, December: 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m.
  • February, November: 9 a.m.-5:30 p.m.
  • March, September, October: 9 a.m.-6:30 p.m.
  • April, August: 9 a.m.- 7 p.m.
  • May, June, July: 9 a.m.-7:30 p.m.

Please note, the center may close periodically due to extreme weather conditions. For up to date information about the visitor center’s hours, visit the National Park Service’s website at http://www.nps.gov/grsm/planyourvisit/cadescove.htm.

What You’ll Find Around the Cades Cove Visitor Center

mountain view of Great Smoky Mountains from Cades CoveThe visitor center is not the only place where you and your family will find fun and exciting places to explore. In fact, all of Cades Cove is home to dozens of rustic cabins and historical sites you will be in awe of during your visit.

An example of the history found around the visitor center, includes the John Oliver Cabin, Primitive Baptist Church, Cades Cove Cable Mill, hiking trails, a picnic area, a campground, and more!

If you enjoyed reading this, check out our Cades Cove map & loop road guide to learn more about all of the fun and historic sites found in and around the Cades Cove Visitor Center.

Author: oms

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