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Gatlinburg is located on the northern edge of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The nearest commercial airport is McGhee Tyson Airport, located about an hour to the west of Gatlinburg, south of Knoxville. Several national airlines provide service here, as do several car rental agencies.
However, most visitors arrive by car. Knoxville is about an hour to the northwest by car. Chattanooga is about three hours to the southwest. Nashville, Birmingham, Atlanta and Charlotte are all within a six-hour driving radius of Gatlinburg. Traffic on the main road, Highway 441, through Sevierville and Pigeon Forge can become very congested, so drivers may want to follow an alternate route.
Amtrak does not provide rail service to Gatlinburg, nor does Greyhound offer bus service.
Directions from the Knoxville airport:If you want a nice scenic drive just take the Maryville/Alcoa exit coming out of the airport U.S. 129 south. Watch for US 321 and go left or east on 321. You will follow this through Townsend, don't blink or youll mis it. You will then come to a stoplight where TN 73 goes straight and 321 turns to the left. Either way will get you to Gatlinburg. If you take 321 you will drive through Wears Valley and into Pigeon Forge. At the third stoplight in Pigeon Forge 321 turns to the right and continues into Gatlinburg on the northern end of town. If you take TN 73 you will follow a very curvy and scenic road along the edge of the Smoky Mountain National Park. This road follows a river and was originally an old railroad bed. You will come to a stopsign at the Juncton of US441. Turn left and follow 441 into Gatlinburg on the southern end of town. If you take this route be sure to stop at the Smoky Mountain National Park Sugarlands Visitor Center just before the 441 junction. THE QUICKEST ROUTE TO GATLINBURG is not the shortest. If you are traveling before noon or mid-week the fastest way to Gatlinburg it to take the Knoxville exit from the airport U.S. 129 north. Turn right at TN 168, John Sevier Highway. Exit at U.S 441/411 and follow this through Seymour and into Sevierville. You will make a right turn in Sevierville, just follow 441 all of the way through Pigeon Forge and into Gatlinburg. DON'T TAKE THIS ROUTE AFTER NOON ON WEEKENDS OR OCTOBER!!!!