In Episode 32 of Smoky Mountains Radio, we discuss beating the traffic on the Gatlinburg Bypass, Budgeting for a Smokies Trip, and the Mountain Mall in Gatlinburg.
The Gatlinburg Bypass can save you time and sanity as you try to make your way around the crowded streets of the Smoky Mountains. Gatlinburg is very congested, and the bypass gets you completely around it. From the Foothills parkway between Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg, you will take a right (in the right hand lane) onto the bypass just pass the visitor’s center. From here you will have a scenic 3.8 mile drive that takes you straight to the national park and the Sugarlands Visitor Center, Newfound Gap Road, and Little River Road. Always use the bypass after 10am on any day. You’ll be glad you did.
Budget is the biggest consideration most of us have on any trip. Here are a few things to help you out on the biggest ticket items.
LODGING-Try to visit off-season is possible so you can pay up to half-off. The peak times are weekends, holidays, the summer months, and the entire month of October. Try to go on a weekday and avoid the times above when possible.
FOOD-Food is expensive, but if you stay in a cabin, you can use the kitchen and cut a large chunk of your cost. Also, there are coupon books that offer discounts widely around the mountain towns. They are located in stores, motels, and about everywhere else.
ATTRACTIONS-These can range range a few bucks to several hundred dollars and includes everything from mini golf to Dollywood. Again, see what you get for your money and use coupon books for discounts. Multi-attraction or multi-day passes can be very price efficient.
SOUVENIRS: This will be different for everyone. Whatever you spend at other locations is a good starting point.
AVERAGES: Average hotel room is $89 plus tax, average attraction is $16 per person, average food per day (family of four) is $84.
This 6 story mall was constructed in the early 70’s and has 38 vendors. It is located at traffic light #6 in the popular town of Gatlinburg. You will find very few major chains here. Instead, you will find many small, niche shops like the Rhythm Shop, Aunt Mahalia’s Candy, as well as a Tobacco Shop, Pepper Shop, Pet Shop, and much much more. The stores change frequently, so if you don’t like what you see, try again next time. Some of the stores are sure to be different.
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Intro/Outro Music: ”KM 19″ by “The Breakmen” www.thebreakmen.com