Why You Should Go
It’s Like Driving The Blue Ridge Parkway But Without The Crowds
Almost everyone has heard of the scenic Blue Ridge Parkway, but few have driven the shorter but equally beautiful Cherohala Skyway in Tennessee.
Offering stunning overlooks, hiking trails, and waterfalls along the way, this 43-mile National Scenic Byway stretches from Tellico Plains, Tennessee (TN165) to Robbinsville, North Carolina (NC143).
Hike To One Of The Most Beautiful Mountain Balds
The trail to Huckleberry Knob, elevation 5560’ is perfect for an easy family hike. The trail is wide (it’s an old road) and relatively short, logging just 2.5 miles roundtrip to experience amazing and rewarding views.
Bring a picnic blanket and enjoy the 360 degree views and wildflowers from this grassy bald. It’s simply awesome. If the weather is nice, you could spend an afternoon here.
Pro Tip: Once on the bald, look for the cross and grave for Andy Sherman who died on the mountain with Paul O'Neil amidst snow and fog in the winter of 1899.
Scenes From The Cherohala Skyway
Where You Should Stay
You won’t find many lodging options along the Cherohala Skyway. There are a few basic hotels in the towns of Sweetwater, TN and in Robbinsville, NC, but the best option is to camp at Indian Boundary Lake Recreation Area.
This campground is located just two miles off the Cherohala Skyway and borders the Cherokee National Forest. It is a terrific base camp for all of the activities on the Cherohala Skyway.
There are a few cabins for rent nearby which could serve as a fun basecamp from which to explore the area. This is our personal list of places that we have stayed in previously, have been recommended by friends we trust, or we have bookmarked as possibilities for future visits.
Heads up: We are not sponsored in any way and have never received compensation at the behest of any organization or company. If you book one of our recommended properties from our VRBO or booking.com links, you won’t pay a penny more but we may get a small commission which helps support our website. Thanks! Disclosure Statement.
1) Completely Renovated - Private Stream, Hiking Trails, Hot Tub, Game Room and WiFi. VRBO 592878. 4 bedrooms and 3 baths. Looks super nice with hiking trails and a creek on the property. Located near Robbinsville, NC. Average nightly rate is $199.
2) Glamping Barn - Creekside w/ Outdoor Kitchen & Fire Pit - Better Than Pinterest! VRBO 823891. 2 bedrooms and 1 bath. Looks wonderfully cozy with 2 separate sleeping lofts. One loft has a Queen bed and the other has 2 twins. Located near the above property. Average nightly rate is $179.
3) Luxury Log Cabin on 21 Private Ac. Above Mtn Stream, Hot Tub & Wifi, Paved Drive. VRBO 131419ha. 3 bedroom and 2 baths. Near Robbinsville. Minimum stay is 3 nights. WiFi. Average nightly rate is $169.
Where You Should Eat
The Skyway has limited food offerings, so you are better off bringing most of your food from home. If you are starting from the Tennessee side of the Cherohala Skyway, make sure to stop at Tellico Grains Bakery to eat one of their delicious wood-fired pizzas or pick up some of their wonderful baked goods. It’s a cozy place to eat a meal and an excellent foodie stop!
If you’re craving a burger and milkshake, stop at the Tellico Beach Drive-In, a local favorite located right on the river, near the beginning of the Tellico Plains section of the Skyway.
The Cherohala Skyway offers plenty of outdoor adventure for a family weekend getaway. Go camping, hike to a mountain bald with soaring views, hug a tree in an old-growth forest, and slow down enough to listen to the wind. So load up the minivan, unplug those devices, and go have yourself a weekend of fun and family togetherness!
What Makes Our Travel Guides Simply Awesome?
If you want to spend a weekend exploring the Cherhola Skyway but don’t have time to plan your adventure, check out our Cherohala Skyway Weekend Getaway Guide.
This Getaway Guide starts in Tellico Plains and describes some of the “must-see” sights, hikes, food stops, and lodging that everyone in the family will love.
Most importantly, our guide includes all the little things that can be so helpful in making a trip a success—detailed maps so it’s easy to find your way around, rainy day ideas, and helpful tips we discovered along the way.
We have done these trips with our own families so we know what works and what doesn’t. We’ll tell you what’s skippable and what’s a must do in this fun city.
All Of Our Travel Guides Include:
Where To Stay
The lodging choices for each destination have been carefully selected for their ideal location, price point, safety, and proximity to the day’s activities. We tell you the best area to stay so you can minimize driving or walking distances and maximize your moments having fun. Knowing what part of town to stay in is a huge part of making a trip a success, and that’s hard to do when you are not familiar with a destination. We save you time and energy by doing all the research for you.
Where To Eat
Local dining establishments are highlighted. The kind where children are welcome but isn't necessarily a restaurant geared primarily towards kids. You won't find many restaurant chains in our itineraries, just good local food mirroring the destination's culture. This could mean a food truck, a pizza place, or a nice sit-down restaurant, but always delicious. If there are any local brews, specialty foods, wines, or coffee houses around, we'll mention those too.
Where To Play
The organization of each day has been thoughtfully planned in order to group activities together by proximity, ideal time of day to visit, and the best nearby dining choices. It’s all been laid out for you, along with directions, maps, travel tips, links to more info, and more. We cover the most worthwhile activities to do in a destination (based on our own family’s reviews) without forgetting that vacations are meant to be fun and relaxing, not a list to be checked off while hauling around whining children.
You’ll find plenty of outdoor activities for the family as well as cultural and historical sites unique to the destination. Many itineraries include easy hikes, bike rides, and float trips that have been selected for their kid-friendly length and ease of difficulty as well as their scenic beauty. (Always worth it!) We are all about getting families outdoors so we include as much fresh air as we can in our itineraries, whether it is a day-long trek in a national park or just the location of a fantastic playground perfect for a break from sight-seeing.
At the founding of Simply Awesome Trips, we agreed to travel as we always have with our families—on our own dime. No free nights, no comped visits, not even any swag. We continue to feel good about that decision. We do participate in affiliate marketing with some of the companies that we personally use (Booking.com, VRBO.com). They don’t pay us to write, we simply get a commission if you enter those sites through our “gate” as opposed to say a Google search. But we also recommend lodging, restaurants, and activities, where we don’t receive any commission, such as Airbnb or private rental companies. If it’s good; it’s good. We don’t change recommendations based on vendor.