More than 10 million people every year travel to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park – that's more people than visit the Grand Canyon, Yosemite and Yellowstone parks combined! And now there's a whole new view on this breathtaking, seven-thousand foot range of mountains and the dramatic, 'smoky', haze that gives them their name.
The forests and ridges of this UNESCO World Heritage Site straddle the states of North Carolina and Tennessee. On the edge of the Tennessee side, at the town of Gatlinburg, you'll find the new SkyBridge. It's the longest pedestrian suspension bridge on the continent – 680 feet wide! With spectacular views all the way from one end to the other and back.
Plus, at the mid-point where you're at the highest, and feeling your most vulnerable, the designers cleverly added another view that tests your taste for heights. There's a glass floor the full, 5-foot width of the walkway that has you staring all the way down to the valley floor 140 feet below.
It's an attainable adventure for the youngest to even the eldest members of any family, reached by the SkyLift, a 3-seat chairlift from the heart of town that sweeps you 500 feet up through ever-changing views to the top of Crockett Mountain, where you'll find yourself at one end of the Sky Bridge.
If the walk across a suspension bridge is too intimidating, capture sweeping vistas from the expansive SkyDeck, also at the top of the SkyLift.
The record-breaking SkyBridge may be the most unforgettable way to experience the ancient mountains when their forests hint at the first green of spring, through hazy summers, legendary brilliant fall foliage, and sparkling snowfalls. The newest Smoky Mountain attraction is all-season, open every day, all year round. Gatlinburg SkyLift Park tickets include access to the lift, the SkyBridge and the SkyDeck.
SkyBridge is 2 hour's scenic mountain drive from Asheville, North Carolina's hub for exploring the Smoky Mountains. Even if you're not planning a whole vacation in the Smoky Mountains (and you should), it's only an hour's detour off the I-75 at Knoxville, Tennessee for people driving the north/south corridor to their holiday.
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