About Cades Cove Group Campground
Over 2 million visitors annually come to enjoy the scenic beauty of Cades Cove and its many historic structures, popular biking and hiking trails and scenic waterfalls and streams. Tucked in the mountains under a lush, shaded canopy, this group campground offers the best that the Great Smoky Mountains National park has to offer. Natural Features: Cades Cove is a broad, verdant valley surrounded by mountains and is one of the most popular destinations in the Great Smokies. It offers some of the best opportunities for wildlife viewing in the park. Large numbers of white-tailed deer are frequently seen, and sightings of black bear, coyote, ground hog, turkey, raccoon, skunk, and other animals are also possible. For hundreds of years Cherokee Indians hunted in Cades Cove but archeologists have found no evidence of major settlements. The first Europeans settled in the cove sometime between 1818 and 1821. By 1830 the population of the area had already swelled to 271. Recreation: The Great Smoky Mountains are a hikers paradise and visitors to Cades Cove Campground love the 5-mile roundtrip hike to Abram Falls. From Cades Cove Loop Road, turnoff at the sign and follow the directions to the trailhead. Although Abrams Falls is only 20 feet high, the large volume of water rushing over falls more than makes up for its lack of height. The long, deep pool at its base is very picturesque. The trail to the falls traverses pine-oak forest on the ridges and hemlock and rhododendron forest along the creek. The waterfall and creek are named for Cherokee Chief Abram or Abraham whose village once stood several miles downstream. A nearby horse stable provides one-hour horseback rides as well as hay rides and carriage rides from March through October, offering recreational activities for the entire family. Campers can also enjoy high-quality backcountry fishing in the cool waters of the countless streams and rivers that snake through the mountains, with trout available in abundance. Facilities: Cades Cove Group Camp provides a primitive camping experience, with conveniences such as flush toilets and drinking water, but there are no hookups or showers at the campground. with the modern conveniences of flush toilets and drinking water. The four group campsites can accommodate up to 20 guests each, and multiple sites may be reserved for larger groups. A camp store provides visitors with basic necessities as well as bike rentals, and events like Interpretive Programs in the nearby amphitheater and Bicycle Only Days on the loop road provide visitors with a fun and unique experience. Nearby Attractions: The park holds one of the best collections of log buildings in the eastern United States. Over 90 historic structures, including houses, barns, outbuildings, churches, schools and grist mills, have been preserved or rehabilitated in the park, a few of which are easily accessible from the Cades Cove Loop Road. Townsend, located about nine miles away, offers full service grocery stores and fuel. ACTIVITIES Historic & Cultural Site: Historic Sites Interpretive Programs Fishing Hiking Horseback Riding: Horse Rentals Visitor Center: Ranger Station Wildlife Viewing Day Use Area: Amphitheater
National Park Service
Cades Cove Group Campground is located in Tennessee
Cades Cove Campground 10042 Campground Drive Townsend, TN 37882 865-448-2472 Lat/Long: N35.6009 W083.7742 From Maryville, TN: Take U.S. 321 North (youll actually be driving south!) from Maryville to Townsend, TN (about 22 miles). At the traffic light in Townsend, continue straight on TN 73 and follow signs to Cades Cove. From Pigeon Forge, TN take US 321 South (youll be driving westerly) to Townsend, TN. Turn left (south) at Townsend onto TN 73. Follow signs to Cades Cove.
8 Reviews of Cades Cove Group Campground
After staying at Cade's Cove regular camp I had to check out the group camp area which is basically connected in the loop and can be accessed along the same road. I wanted to see if there was a difference in the camping experience at the two locations. For the most part it was similar in experience as you have access to the same hiking areas basically from the sites, however because these are designed for groups the sites are a little larger and more spread out. I didn't experience a lot of cramping feelings at the regular sites however I did notice not all the sites were created equally, here everything seemed more equalized.
Cades Cove is a great place to enjoy family friendly hiking and trail rides but also has more flat lands than any other section of the park I have found. For this reason you can find something for all difficulty levels, perhaps this is why they placed a group camp here so that groups of all levels of experience can truly enjoy their time here.
This is a great educational area of the park for the novice to learn more about wildlife, hiking and history so I definitely encourage larger groups to check it out.
Lots of hiking and wildlife. First night had bear enter sites. Abrams Creek and Falls were beautiful in sight and sound! Camp office was useful. Rich Mtn. Loop trail was great, not difficult. Indian Grave Gap Trail reflects elevation change with unique hemlocks and pines (lower moisture at higher elevation than below). Crooked Arm Trail back to camp site.
This is a busy little campground sites are close together but it is very clean and secure. There is a small ice cream shop on site that the kids loved. There is a lovely stream near the picnic area. The restrooms were clean but there were no showers.
Will definitely be staying here again.
My favorite place to visit in Tenn. park has a lot to offer you at any age. Hiking, historic sites ,waterfall, picnic by the stream, and the best is the ride around the loop. Who knows you may see a bear or two
This campground is for groups only, of at least 10. It is part of the Cades Cove campground, one of the biggest and busiest. It’s a little more RV-friendly than Elkmont it seems, but we like them both a lot.
Yay: this is a fairly typical big national park campground in many ways. There is a camp store with firewood (you are required to buy it from an authorized location!). Nice roomy campsites, but not as much plant cover as at Elkmont in my experience. You can hike some trail from right on site. Rangers have almost nightly programming for all ages. Love the tent only areas.
Nay: given the traffic it is well maintained but can still be a little behind in restroom cleanliness. We’ve stayed here many times and how clean the campsite and bathrooms/facilities are can vary a lot. The staff are all excellent though and are happy to hop to it and solve any issues you may have with the facilities. Also bring tons of bug spray! No showers.
Surprise: This is a better campground if you have people in your group that are not as mobile or into hiking, as you can drive the Cades Cove scenic drive.
The group site was great! There was only 20 people allowed at the site but could've held 40. It poured rain all weekend so we made a tarp city and squeezed all of our tents together. Much better deal than getting a bunch of sites near each other!
First to Review
If you have some people in your family who can’t do or aren’t interested in longer hikes into the backcountry, Cades Cove is the perfect place to take them thanks to the wildlife driving loop. Pros: excellent wildlife, beautiful views everywhere, lovely historic buildings, visitor center, wooded and shady campsites, very well tended campground, great camp store, friendly & helpful rangers, tons of hiking in the area (full day hikes to short strolls). Cons: bugs, some campsites pretty close together, busy (make reservations if possible). FYI: at the camp store you can rent a bike to ride the 12 mile loop and get ice cream…trust me it’s worth it!