October 25, 2021

If you want the perfect activity that mixes excitement with the beauty of the Smokies, horseback riding is the way to go! While you are riding on one of nature’s most beautiful creatures, you can take in the breathtaking views of the mountains. If you have never ridden a horse before, no need to worry. Here is your complete guide to horseback riding in the Smoky Mountains:

Where to Go

Horseback riding is one of the most popular activities in the Smokies. The good thing about that is there are multiple places to choose from. The downside is you may have a hard time deciding which trails you want to take. One of the most popular places to go riding is through Cades Cove. At their riding stables, they offer guided horseback rides through The Cove. The neat thing about this adventure is you will learn some of the history of the area, in addition to enjoying trotting along with your new friend. The good thing about guided tours is that they are great for all skill levels. You do not have to worry about your horse going haywire because they are all well trained and have a calm temperament.

Riding Stables

Another place to enjoy a thrilling horseback ride through the Smokies is Five Oaks Riding Stables. They offer an hour-long ride along a 3.5 mile trail. Along the way, you will see all types of wondrous nature including beautiful trees, streams, and mountain views! After your ride, you can also check out the Adventure Park Ziplines. This will give you a completely different perspective of the Smokies as you soar down from high above the trees!

Helpful Tips

If you have never been horseback riding in the Smoky Mountains before, you may be wondering what to expect. The good news is that all the horses are very well trained, plus you will have a guide who can assist you along the way. Here are a few other helpful tips to make the most out of the adventure:

1. Wear the right clothing

You want to be sure you are comfortable when you saddle up on the horse. Depending on what season you are visiting the mountains, you will want to dress according to the weather. If it is going to be a warm day, you will probably want to wear some type of shorts and a comfortable shirt. During the cooler months, you will want to bring along a jacket because most of the trails are in the shade so it could get chilly.

2. Bring appropriate shoes

No matter what season it is, you will want to wear the right kind of shoes to avoid your feet hurting after the ride. It is best to either wear tennis shoes with good tread or boots of some kind. It is recommended you do not wear sandals or flip flops when you go horseback riding.

3. Don’t be afraid to ask questions

As mentioned earlier, if you take one of the guided horseback riding tours, you will have an expert at the front of the pack helping you out along the way. If at any point you have questions, don’t hesitate to ask. The guide of your tour will be more than happy to answer any question you may have about riding the horse or the trail itself.

Sit Back and Enjoy the Ride


Once you saddle up for the ride and have mastered the controls, you will be well on your way to enjoying your adventure in the Smokies. As you ride along, take a minute to soak in the beauty of the Smoky Mountains. The horses will not go very fast, so you will have plenty of time to escape the busyness of life and enjoy nature!

Now that you have a complete guide to horseback riding in the Smoky Mountains, be sure to check out all the other fun activities to experience while you are in town! We hope to see you soon on the riding trails!