Quaint Town

Townsend is a quaint little town at the entrance of the Smoky Mountains.  It's nickname is "The Peaceful Side of the Smokies" (TM).  This is a town that has managed to escape all of the commercialism of Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge, and has stayed true to itself.  While it is still "touristy", you won't find many "chain"-anything here. There is an IGA Supermarket, Dollar General, and Subway, but just about everything else is a "mom & pop" kind of place.  In the summer, you can see tubers floating down the river alongside Townsend.  There are a few hotels, as well as a few campgrounds.  
From Maryville, Tn., you take Hwy 321.  The 4 lane highway turns into a 2-lane, then, once into the "city" limits, it turns back into a 4 lane.  As you come out of Townsend to go into the Park, the road turns back into a 2 lane.  There is 1 stoplight in Townsend; turn left and you go through Wears Valley to get to Pigeon Forge.  Also, if you turn left at the light, taking a right onto Lyon Springs Road will take you right to Metcalf Bottoms.  
The Great Smoky Mountains Heritage Center finds its home in Townsend.  Here you can learn about the history of the Great Smoky Mountains.  From time to time, they have live demonstrations so that visitors can see what life was like in the area.    Some weekends, there will be bluegrass bands entertaining visitors.
The Visitors Center hosts "Old Timers Days" in the Spring and Fall.  Get a taste of the mountain culture through arts & crafts, cloggers, demonstrations, as well as story-tellers.  
There is fishing, horseback riding, tubing, biking, hiking, and golfing in the area.  If you want to explore a cave, Tuckaleechee Caverns is in Townsend.
To learn more about Tuckaleechee Caverns, click on the picture above.

Little River Railroad Museum  is open June-November.
Townsend is one of my favorite places in the area.  If you're looking for someplace "peaceful" to stay, then Townsend would be your place!
Townsend TN in the Smoky Mountains


  1. This sounds so beautiful. A place I wish I could retire to if I had the money. :)

  2. Townsend sounds like a great place to stay when visiting the Smokies ... DH and I decided to add a day or two to our September trip to Hilton Head so we can spend a day or two in the Smokies ... we won't get to see everything we'd like to, but we're hoping it will whet our whistle for a longer stay.

  3. As you know, Townsend is near and dear to our hearts. Gorgeous mountain living!

  4. Another Tennessee place to add to the list. I am enjoying my tour.

  5. I like that the town didn't go all touristry and that mom/pop businesses still are in business there!

    Happy Easter!


  6. Hi Mary - looks to be a lovely quieter, but interesting, town and neighbourhood in the big SMs .. cheers Hilary


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