What To Expect
Spends a day on the slopes of Cataloochee Ski Area. If thats a little fast, try snow tubing at Tube World in the Valley. Winter offers lots to do for the adventurous soles. During the Spring and Fall the weather is perfect for hiking in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park or motorcycle cruising on the Blue Ridge Parkway.And summer, well summer is just what the doctor ordered. Our high elevation make summers in maggie the perfect place to get away from the heat of the south.
Cataloochee Ski Area
Great skiing is what Cataloochee Ski Area is all about. For over 45 years, skiers have enjoyed the exciting slopes of this North Carolina Ski Area, winding trails and a friendly, helpful atmosphere that make the Cataloochee experience nothing but cool fun. 100% of Cataloochee’s slopes are lighted for night skiing and are covered by snowmaking. Season runs from late November through mid March weather permitting. Check the snow report:
Ghost Town Village
Formerly know as Ghost Town in the Sky, the mountain top theme park will be reopening in 2016 with new rides and attractions.
New for 2016, the old A frame welcome center is now be a country store with souvenirs, homemade jams and jellies and more. The first level will will now be known as Moonshine Holler. With a brand new arcade, children’s rides and a few adult carnival rides like a tilt-a-whirl and a Ferris wheel. The old rollercoaster will become a Mountain Airwalk obstacle course. The old Western Town level is transforming into a Appalachian Village – a more appropriate venue for the area.
We look forward to seeing the improvements this coming summer!
Wheels Through Time – Antique Motorcycle Museum
If you love motorcycles, you can’t come to maggie Valley without stopping by and seeing one of the nations largest collection of vintage and antique motorcycles. The bikes have been painstakingly restored to running condition and even the period workshop is functional and on display. Over 350 rare machines, comprised of 25 makes including Harley Davidson, Indian, Excelsior, Henderson and the famous Flying Merkel. Dirt track racers, war era bikes, one offs and more. The museum has been featured on History Channel American Pickers and American Restorations.
The museum also features some vintage roadsters and other odd vehicles from eras past. Visit the Chopper graveyard, or Americas Rarest displays.
Our Heritage Trout Waters
Maggie Valley’s Jonathan Creek is designated by the state as a Heritage Trout Water. Stocked seasonally with rainbow trout, with a permit, the trout fishing is excellent. You can access the creek right behind the Maggie Valley hotel out our back door. Check with the department of wildlife resources for seasons and license information,
Motorcycle Rides and Scenic Touring
The surrounding mountains feature the finest motorcycle touring in the United States. Think of our maggie Valley hotel as your home base. Riders from all over come to the Smokies to experience the rides of a lifetime. With names like the Dragon, The Rattler and more, pick your poison. You can ride for a hour or days on end. Our staff is well versed in the rides that people like the most.
Just out the west end of the Valley and up to Soco Gap, you can access the Blue Ridge Parkway and head south toward the end of the parkway in Cherokee. This is a fun little ride with multiple long range vistas and tunnels going through the mountain ridges. If you travel eat on the parkway toward Asheville, there is no end in sight to the road. Along the way, you’ll see such things as Graveyard Fields, The Devil’s Court House, Table Rock, and Mount Pisgah, which by the way is a great place to stop and get bite to eat.
There are the most famous rides, but those are not always uncontested on great riding days. We have maps and list son rides that are off the beaten trail whee you can cruise along without having to stare at a fender in front of you.
Blue Ridge Parkway
Since the first section of the Blue Ridge Pakway scenic motor road opened to public travel more than 60 years ago, the Parkway has recorded some 700 million visits. That’s a stunning number, to be sure, but then the Parkway is a wonderfully stunning resource.
Local highlights include Waterrock Knob, Graveyard Fields, Devil’s Courthouse and the highest point on the parkway (6050 feet) all within an hours drive of Maggie Valley, North Carolina.
The gently winding road offers spectacular mountain scenery as it threads its way from the Shenandoah National Park in Virginia to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park in North Carolina. Along its 469-mile length, distant vistas are complemented by pastoral landscapes, replete with log cabins and split-rail fences. At the same time, the Parkway boasts a surprising variety of plants and wildlife.
Great Smoky Mountains National Park
The Great Smoky Mountains National Park is the most visited park in the country, and with good reason – miles and miles of backcountry trails, pristine mountain streams, waterfalls and soaring mountain peaks. One of the most biologically diverse areas in the world, the Great Smoky Mountains National Park is home to rare plant and animal species and serves as a sanctuary for hundreds of black bears. Elk have been reintroduced into the park and are thriving in the Cataloochee Valley, a remote area of the Smokies accessible from Waynesville and Maggie Valley.
Along with appreciating the natural beauty of the area, you can also glimpse into the past at the many preserved historical landmarks and see how southern mountaineers created their own way of life in the Smokies – a culture that is still very much alive and well in communities surrounding the park.
Mountain Farm Museum
The Mountain Farm Museum is a unique collection of farm buildings assembled from locations throughout the park. Visitors can explore a log farmhouse, barn, apple house, springhouse, and a working blacksmith shop to get a sense of how families may have lived 100 years ago. Most of the structures were built in the late 19th century and were moved here in the 1950s. The Davis House is a rare chance to view a log house built from chestnut wood before the chestnut blight decimated the American Chestnut in our forests during the 1930s and early 1940s. The museum is adjacent to the Oconaluftee Visitor Center.
- Free admission
- Historic buildings
- Farm animals
- Demonstrations with costumed interpretations
A half-mile north of the Oconaluftee Visitor Center is Mingus Mill. Built in 1886, this mill uses a water-powered turbine instead of a water wheel to power all of the machinery in the building. Located at its original site, Mingus Mill stands as a tribute to the test of time. Hours: 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM daily mid-March through mid-November. Also, open Thanksgiving weekend.
- Water flows down a millrace to the mill.
- A working cast iron turbine.
- A miller demonstrates the process of grinding corn into cornmeal.
- Cornmeal and other mill-related items are available for purchase at the mill.
Cataloochee Valley (Not Cataloochee Ski Area)
Cataloochee Valley is nestled among some of the most rugged mountains in the southeastern United States. Surrounded by 6000-foot peaks, this isolated valley was the largest and most prosperous settlement in what is now the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Once known for its farms and orchards, today’s Cataloochee is one of the most picturesque areas of the park.
- Historic buildings: Cook Cabin reconstructed in Little Cataloochee.
- Fishing: Pick up fishing regulations at a park visitor center. A Tennessee or North Carolina fishing license is required to fish within park boundaries. A fishing license may be purchased in a nearby community.
- Camping: A primitive campground with 27 first-come, first- serve sites. Open mid-March – October. Tent or RVs up to 31 feet.
- Hiking: There are many enjoyable trails to hike in Cataloochee. Several of these designated backcountry campsites (camping by permit only) are along many of these trails.
- Wildlife viewing area
An 11-mile long loop road winds through the valley of Cades Cove offering visitors beautiful scenery and the opportunity to tour historic buildings and view wildlife. Visit the Cades Cove page for additional information about the cove.
- Historic buildings: Homes, churches, barns, and Cable Mill – a working grist mill
- Hiking: There are many enjoyable trails in the area including hikes to Abrams Falls, Thunderhead Mountain and Rocky Top (made famous by the popular song). Several designated backcountry campsites (camping by permit only) are located along trails.
- Wildlife viewing area
The Cherokee Indians were the first to be charmed by the natural beauty of the mountains, fresh flowing streams and rivers, and clear blue sky in what they called ‘Land of the Blue Smoke’, or Smoky Mountains as we know them today.
Now it’s your turn to be charmed.
Encircled by majestic mountains, Cherokee North Carolina is a Smoky Mountain destination with plenty of fun activities – museums, amusement parks, casino, hiking trails, scenic drives, and great shopping.
And there are plenty of ways to relax, too. Sit by a waterfall or a swift-flowing stream, picnic under a lush canopy of trees, stroll along a river path – it’s all waiting here for you.
Cherokee is a great combination of lots of fun things to do in the midst of incomparable natural beauty. Just a short drive on Highway 19 south, or at Soco Gap, take the Blue Ridge Parkway
Cherokee Indian Museum website
Oconaluftee Indian Village
The wood smoke drifting on the breeze isn’t like any you’ve smelled before. It’s not the pure tang of hardwood burned for heat. Nor is it the aroma of a cooking fire, fragrant with baking bread or bubbling broth or roasting meat. There’s something earthy about this fire, because it’s smoldering pitch pine, firing local Cherokee clay into gleaming blackware pottery. Then again, all the sights, sounds, and scents surrounding you today are novel. Here in the Oconaluftee Indian Village, it’s 1750. You’ve been taken back two centuries before your birth, and the old Cherokee ways are alive all around you. Another smoke trail draws you to a shaded clearing where a man is doing … well, it’s not quite clear yet. He seems to be burning the flattened topside of a huge, felled tulip poplar log nearly 40 feet long. Clay is packed around the edge of the log to contain and direct the fire. This log, he explains, will become a ten-man canoe, waterproofed by animal fat and pine resin. It may take six’ to eight months of burning to fully hollow out the craft, but it will serve the whole village for fishing and voyaging, and will last for generations.
Now you enter the great seven-sided council house, where a third fire glows. It is sacred fire, kept burning to symbolize the strength and unity of the Cherokee people, and used to kindle the fires in every village household. This council house, like those in every Cherokee village, has seven bench-lined sides to seat the seven clans:
In Oconaluftee, you’ll find no separation between art and utility. The flint nappers craft arrowheads with deadly beauty, each sharper than steel, all as singular as snowflakes. The carvers create masks that come alive when danced around a flickering fire, and pipe bowls that please the hand and eye and spirit.
Just as it takes time to craft all these items, so it takes time to appreciate their crafting. And that, in turn, takes being here. Do come. We look forward to sharing our beauty with you.
Asheville, North Carolina
Asheville is just a short 30 minute drive to the east. With lots to see and do, visit to the Biltmore Estate should top your list. Touted as America’s Largest home, the word home is lacking. More like a castle, with over 30 bedrooms, great halls, tapestries, a winery and stable, all set in rolling hills over looking the mountains.
Also on your trip should be some of the finest local breweries, the WNC Nature Center, numerous museums and more. In Asheville culture is king.