29 Mar

Campground Review #74: Townsend/Great Smokies KOA in Townsend, Tennessee

On this episode of Campground of the Week, we are reviewing the Townsend/Great Smokies KOA in Townsend, Tennessee.

Great Smoky Mountains National Park is the most visited national park in the country, and we covered both the North Carolina and Tennessee side extensively over on our RV Family Travel Atlas Podcast a little while back. Make sure to take a listen to these episodes if you are planning a trip to the Smokies. We gave a ton of recommendations for hikes, activities, and good eats:

The Townsend KOA is located on the Tennessee side of the Smokies in the small and charming town of Townsend, just about 7 miles from the Cades Cove loop drive, one of the most popular places in the national park. This area is sometimes called the “Peaceful Side of the Smokies” and if you are looking to stay away from the hustle and bustle of Pigeon Forge, Gatlinburg, or Cherokee this might be the perfect option.

This is branded as a Holiday KOA, which means it offers upgraded amenities and activities while providing a great basecamp for exploring the local area. With about 100 sites for RVs and tents, and a few dozen cabins, you will need to book early if visiting during the peak summer season.

Amenities:

  • Pool
  • Playground
  • fudge and ice cream shop
  • snack bar
  • basketball
  • bike rentals
  • tube rentals and shuttle service
  • clean, well-maintained bath houses

Activities (from Memorial Day to Labor Day):

  • Outdoor movies
  • Wagon rides
  • Tie Dye
  • Bingo
  • fishing

Cell service is sketchy in the Smokies to say the least, but if you need WiFi you can get a good, strong single up by the fudge shop and camp store. Listen to the episode to hear our recommendations for the best sites at the Townsend KOA and tips for booking them!

The RV Family Travel Atlas podcasts are going to give you a ton of recommendations for activities in the area, but if you want to chill near the campground, here are some great options.

Area Activities:

  • 5-mile bike path
  • Tubing the Little River with River Rat Tubing
  • Fishing with Smokey Mountain Angler or Little River Outfitters
  • Tuckaleechee Caverns
  • Smoky Mountain Heritage Center
  • Townsend Festivals

There is no shortage of great campgrounds in the Smokies, but the Townsend KOA stands out as a charming, warm, beautiful campground providing a peaceful location and plenty of amenities. People return year after year, and that says everything.

See you at the campground,

Stephanie + Jeremy

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