Area Attractions

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Water Adventures

The Little Tennessee, Nantahala, Cullasaja, Oconaluftee and Tuckasegee rivers flow through the North Carolina Smoky Mountains and dump into Fontana Lake at the edge of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. These rivers, the lakes along the way and their watersheds encompass the Nantahala National Forest and The Smoky Mountain National Park. Pristine waters offer Class A Trout Streams, white-cap rapids challenge the kayaker and rafter, canoeing, floating and still waters provide a serene experience.


Franklin and the surrounding area is home to over 45 spectacular waterfalls. Some require hiking to view while others are obtained by a scenic drive. The abundance of waterfalls, rivers and incredibly scenic mountain views assure something for everyone to explore!


Proximity to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Blue Ridge Parkway and over 40 motorcycle loops makes this some of the Best riding anywhere! Access to The Wolf is located within 2 miles from The Great Outdoors RV Resort. After a fantastic day riding one of the best motorcycle routes in the country, you can relax, have fun and rest up for the next adventure or visit the Motorcycle museum less than 20 miles away!

Gem Mining

Gem mining in North Carolina is a part of local history, and the potential for finding precious stones of all kinds is huge. Panning for gold is not the only thing gem miners focus on in the Great Smokies. When gem mining in North Carolina you may also find ruby, sapphire, topaz, emerald, amethyst, rose and smoky quartz, and more. These are the natural gifts the Great Smoky Mountains can share and Franklin, NC is the Gem Mining capitol of the world! Take home a special piece of this unforgettable land.

Cultural Entertainment and Education

The Smoky Mountains are home to some of the oldest folk schools in the country. Visit an acclaimed summer dinner and music series featuring Appalachian roots music in the restored 1920s Cowee schoolhouse. The Smoky Mountain performing Arts center Located in Franklin, North Carolina, is a state-of-the-art facility presenting the finest in performing arts to Franklin and the surrounding towns. Learn a new hobby at one of our folk schools, and bring some Smoky Mountain things to do with you when you return home.

Arts, Crafts, and Antiques

Smoky Mountain art and crafts began over 10,000 years ago with the Cherokee tribe. Today, pieces of original Cherokee and pioneer art native to the Smoky Mountains are just one cherished aspect of the Smoky Mountain antiques, arts, and crafts scene. Theatre, musicians, museums, artisans and their galleries all comprise the modern landscape of Smoky Mountains. Antiquing at the many Flea Markets and shops in Franklin will keep you hunting for your perfect treasures!


Plan a trip to Harrah’s Casino in Cherokee or Murphy, NC. Harrah’s Casino offers gaming space featuring video blackjack and more. The casino also hosts concerts and performances in a state of the art Entertainment Center. The Great Outdoors RV Resort is centrally located between the 2 casinos. Try your luck!

Train Rides

All aboard for a historic and scenic journey through the majestic mountains and colorful countryside of Western North Carolina, over a sprawling lake, past rushing rivers, through a deep mountain gorge and into dark mountain tunnels. The railroad operates year-round, with schedules varying seasonally.

Elk, Deer, and Bear Viewing

The Great Outdoors RV Resort is close proximity to Oconaluftee Visitor center, Cades Cove, and Cataloochee Valley where you will find an incredible display of God’s creatures and historic buildings. The Elk were reintroduced to the area in 2000 and the population has only increased. This is one of our favorite things to see and do!

We have highlighted on a few of the many activities and attractions in the Franklin, NC area but have not begun to cover them all. Your RV or Cabin adventure is special and we look forward to helping you make it the time of your life! The Great Outdoors RV Resort vacations are guaranteed to offer a myriad of activities all will enjoy. Less than hour from Gatlinburg and Pigeon forge for the city feel. If it’s an outdoor adventure, go kayaking, whitewater rafting, river floating, or brave the zip lines. Visit the many rivers and you’ll find the best trout and fly fishing in the region. Pan for gold and mine precious stones like ruby, sapphire, topaz, and more. Take a hike on the 100s of trails in the area, ride a bike, or enjoy a drive, maybe a mural trail or view Elk. Try your luck at the casinos or take a short trip to the Biltmore Estate. Tour a local farm and pick your own produce or buy local food. Ride the train, hike the Appalachian Trail or explore the countryside. Your Great Outdoors RV Resort stay is sure to be memorable and fun. We are so very Blessed to be surrounded by the beauty of our area and can hardly wait to share it with you!