Camping in the Smokies has been a pastime since before the park was established. The pioneers that first came to the area camped under the stars at night after a long day of hiking and exploring the mountains. Today, you can choose to camp in a tent, stay in a shelter, bring an RV or even bring your horse with you while you camp.
Backcountry – Not in a campground but still in the national park, backcountry camping is designed for those hikers among the visitors to the National Park. Some of the backcountry camping spots are just cleared spots for you to setup a tent while other backcountry camping areas have shelters that you can stay in.
Frontcountry – These are the campgrounds. Located all around the park, from Smokemont to Elkmont to Cosby, these campgrounds have spots for RVs and Pop-Ups and of course areas for tent camping as well. Most of the campgrounds in the GSMNP are full service campgrounds, with showers and many more amenities.
Group Campgrounds – These areas are designed for groups of 8 or more. The group campgrounds are located inside the traditional Frontcountry Campgrounds.
Horse Camps – Frontcountry Camping but in this case you have brought your horse with you. You can spend the day riding your horse on one of the many trails in the Smokies and then keep your horse at your campsite for the evening.