Beat the Heat on Vacation

With the temperature rising and humidity creeping up, more creative ways might be needed to beat the heat this summer. Regardless of the heat, it is still beautiful in Gatlinburg and the Great Smoky Mountains, but it is heating up. Fortunately, there are some really great ways to beat the heat this summer in and around Gatlinburg, TN.

One of the most popular things to do when the warm weather arrives in the Smokies is whitewater rafting. Along the Big and Little Pigeon Rivers, as well as neighboring rivers such as the Nantahala and Ocoee, a rush of excitement and raging waters await. Pros can test their skills in the more challenging rapids while beginners can just test the waters. Rafting in the Smokies (, Smoky Mountain Rafting (, and Nantahala Outdoor Center ( are great local outfitters.

For those who prefer a more relaxing water experience, the Great Smoky Mountains National Park is the perfect place to spend a quiet afternoon trout fishing. Over 2,100 miles of streams run within the park and more than 500 miles of those are fishable. The city of Gatlinburg even has its own trout farm, streams within the city limits are stocked on Thursdays. The Smoky Mountain Angler (, located in Winery Square, is the one stop shop in Gatlinburg for guided fishing trips, rentals, licenses and fishing gear.

And if a quick dip isn’t enough, there are even some water parks in town for a full day of splashing around. Dollywood’s Splash Country ( has thrill rides, water slides, a lazy river and more. At Wild Bear Falls (, kids and adults alike will find tons of fun in attractions such as Clingman’s Dome (water tube slide), Cades Cove (lazy river), and Moonshine Hollow (indoor/outdoor hot tub).

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