Family Travel Review: Elk Springs Resort in Gatlinburg

Gatlinburg is one of my favorite destinations in Tennessee. The Smoky Mountains are one of our nation’s treasures and downtown Gatlinburg has something for everyone.


Our beautiful cabin, Almost Heaven, which was at the highest peak in the resort area. You can see the Smokies in the background.

We were invited to stay at Elk Springs Resort in early November. I had never been to Gatlinburg in November and was pleasantly surprised that there was still quite a bit of fall color. I also was excited to learn that Gatlinburg decorates for the holidays November 1 so downtown was festive and all decked out for Christmas! There were holiday lights everywhere as well and we arrived after dark so we enjoyed seeing everything lit up for the season.


One of our favorite parts of downtown Gatlinburg is The Village Shops. Founded in 1965 by two families, “The Village” features thick roofing slates, substantial carved doors, antique trim moldings, and handmade bricks, giving it a lovely Old World charm. There are 27 unique boutiques, eateries, galleries and clothiers open for business in this quaint European village atmosphere.


Love this cute snowman in the center of The Village Shops.


We stayed at one of the resort’s largest cabins up a meandering drive near the top of the resort. The larger cabins are all situated close to one another which makes them perfect for large group gatherings, such as family reunions. Almost Heaven features four bedrooms and three full bathrooms as well as a loft area on the second floor with a fold out sleeper sofa and sleeps 12 people comfortably. We took our girls and two of my younger daughter’s best friends and we had more than enough room for our group of six! The younger girls, all 6th graders, stayed in the second-floor bedroom featuring bunk beds, which were actually queen-size bunk beds, something I’d never seen before. They LOVED all the space!

A few of our favorite things about our cabin at Elk Springs Resort:


The lower-level game room – A spacious game room is a must when traveling with tweens and teens. We could have easily spent all our time here. We played pool and air hockey every night and had an absolute blast. This lower level also features a large movie theatre with comfy theatre style seating.

The hot tub – A hot tub is a must when staying in Gatlinburg! Whether you are sightseeing or hiking in the beautiful Smokies you’re going to want to unwind after a busy day in a hot tub with a mountain view..

Open and spacious kitchen – We always eat breakfast at our cabin and having a roomy kitchen stocked with every utensil or cooking pan we might need was wonderful.


The beautiful interior of our cabin on the main floor…lots of room, great views and a cozy fireplace that was hard to say goodbye to.

Gas fireplace – Another must have in the Smokies. We loved turning the fire on every evening. We did have to call maintenance to turn it on but they showed up within 45 minutes of us calling and leaving a voice mail.

Close proximity to downtown Gatlinburg – Our cabin was less than 6 miles to the bustling downtown area which is filled with all sorts of tourist attractions. I took the younger girls to Ripley’s Odditorium and we made a stop at Ole Smokey Candy Kitchen to buy taffy and watch it being made. That’s always a traditional must do for us when we go to the downtown area!


Large bathrooms  – The full bathroom on the top floor of our three-story cabin had THE MOST amazing shower.

Sauna – Although we didn’t use it much, our cabin featured a sauna on the lower level. What a treat!

Scenic views from two large porches – There’s nothing better than having your morning coffee and looking out to a beautiful mountain vista. The cabin had plenty of rocking chairs on the porches for seating.

Gas grill – We grilled one evening during our stay and it was so nice to have this option!


Check out this fun video I shot while we watched taffy being made at one of my favorite longtime candy stores, Ole Smoky Candy Kitchen.

We also took the main drive into the national park and headed up to the overlook at the North Carolina/Tennessee border. You can see here there is quite a bit of haze due to fires and dry conditions, but the view is still beautiful nonetheless.


Be sure to follow Elk Springs Resort on Facebook for announcements about special vacation discounts! You can also visit their website for more information about all of their cabins which are perfect for couple getaways or family vacations.

Leave a Reply