Cades Cove Field
November 25, 2021

Whether you are a professional photographer or just someone who wants to take some cool shots of the Smokies to show your friends, you will find plenty of fantastic options throughout the National Park! While you can snap some beautiful photos virtually anywhere in the park, there are a few locations worth seeking out for some extra special photographs! Here are the top 4 places in the park that you should visit to take amazing pictures of the Smoky Mountains:

1. Clingmans Dome

Clingmans Dome

Enjoy taking some stunning bird’s eye photos from Clingmans Dome! This is not only the highest peak in Great Smoky Mountains National Park, but the highest point in Tennessee! To reach the peak, take Newfound Gap Road to Clingmans Dome Road and travel for 7 miles to the large parking lot. While the views at this point are already spectacular, you can also take a half mile climb to an observation tower that offers 360 degree views of the Smokies! Keep in mind that Clingmans Dome Road may be closed from early December to late March, so be sure to find out about the current road conditions before making the drive!

2. Cades Cove

Another one of the top places in the park that you should visit to take amazing pictures of the Smoky Mountains is Cades Cove! This broad valley is surrounded by mountains, so it provides excellent photo opportunities both in the early morning and in the evening! This area offers some of the best wildlife viewing in the park, so keep your camera ready to capture pictures of black bears, white tail deer, turkey, coyote, elk, and other critters! You can travel along the 11 mile Cades Cove Loop Road at your own pace, which allows plenty of time to see the beautiful hiking trails and unique historical structures!

3. Tremont


Experience a bit of a hidden gem in the Smokies by visiting Tremont! It is situated in the northwestern region of the park and is a watershed area with streams, waterfalls, and tons of scenic views! Take a drive along Upper Tremont Road, a well maintained gravel road that runs along the Middle Prong of the Little River. Here you can find several places to park next to the water to take some awesome photos! You will want to spend at least a couple of hours exploring the wildflowers, streams, and trees of this remote wilderness area!

4. Roaring Fork

When it comes to the best places in the park for photography, you won’t want to miss a drive through Roaring Fork! This narrow winding motor nature trail takes you on a scenic journey through mountain top ridges, old growth forests, and more! While the one way loop road is just over 5 miles and takes about 2 hours to complete, you will want to spend much more time exploring the various overlooks. The Roaring Fork Motor Nature Trail also leads to the trailheads for Grotto Falls and Baskin Creek Falls, where you can hike to experience some gorgeous waterfalls!

Now that you know the top places in the park to take amazing pictures of the Smoky Mountains, there are also several recommended hikes that lead to some incredible photo spots! Click here to learn about the top hikes in the Smoky Mountains for photographers!