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Nantahala-Gorge is located in Swain County, and 85 percent of the county's 553 square miles is federal land. This means it is mostly mountains, forests, streams, rivers and wilderness. This unhurried and unspoiled bit of paradise is just 60 miles from Asheville and 85 miles from Knoxville, Tennessee. Some of North Carolina's most scenic rivers, the Nantahala, Oconaluftee and Tuckasegee are located in Swain County and offer unparalleled recreational opportunities. The Nantahala River Gorge draws thousands of rafters and kayakers each year. The clear, cold waters rush for 9 miles through the spectacular Nantahala Gorge in the Nantahala Forest. This is one of the most heavily used whitewater rivers in the region, with a constant flow of rafters - who are fun to watch, even if you don't care to join in the sport. There are also great mountain biking trails in the area, and some of the state's most popular series of mountain bike races are held here. Other exciting activities in the Nantahala Gorge area include canoeing, boating, fishing, hiking and horseback riding. Rockhounds will love the Nantahala Gorge Ruby Mine, which is open from mid-March to the end of October. For a relaxing look at the area, the Great Smoky Mountain Railway offers a spectacular Nantahala Gorge Excursion, mid-March through December.

Surrounding areas: Alarka, North Carolina (6.6 mi), Stecoah, North Carolina (7.3 mi), Nantahala, North Carolina (7.5 mi), Bryson City, North Carolina (8.3 mi), Aquone, North Carolina (11.0 mi), Topton, North Carolina (11.0 mi), Whittier, North Carolina (12.6 mi)

Nantahala Gorge Vacation Rentals

Nantahala Gorge Hotels and Resorts

Hotels & Motels
Charleston Inn208 Arlington AveBryson City, NC7.8 mi.(828) 488-4644
Nantahala Village Mountain Resort9400 Hwy 19 WestBryson City, NC8.3 mi.(828) 488-2826
Sleep Inn500 SPG StBryson City, NC8.3 mi.(828) 488-0326
Ela Motor Court5280 Ela RdBryson City, NC11.9 mi.(828) 488-2284
Lloyd's On The River5370 Ela RdBryson City, NC12.0 mi.(828) 488-3767
Microtel Inn & Suites Robbinsville107 Rodney Orr By-PassRobbinsville, NC14.0 mi.(828) 479-6772
San-ran MotelRobbinsville, NC14.0 mi.(828) 479-3256
Snow Hill Inn531 Snow HL RdFranklin, NC15.8 mi.(828) 369-2100
Days Inn1320 E Main StFranklin, NC16.0 mi.(828) 524-6491
Comfort Suites35 Hwy 441 NorthCherokee, NC16.1 mi.(828) 497-3500
Days Inn Smokey Mountain Inn660 Painttown RdCherokee, NC16.1 mi.(828) 497-2300
Econo LodgeUs Hwy 19Cherokee, NC16.1 mi.(828) 497-4575
Fairfield Inn & Suite - Cherokee568 Painttown RdCherokee, NC16.1 mi.(828) 497-0400
Hampton Inn185 Tsalagi RdCherokee, NC16.1 mi.(828) 497-3115
Holiday Inn CherokeeHwy 19 WCherokee, NC16.1 mi.(828) 497-9181
Holiday Inn Expres Hotel & Suites376 Paint Town RdCherokee, NC16.1 mi.(828) 497-3113
Holiday InnHwy 19 SCherokee, NC16.1 mi.(828) 497-9181
Microtel Inn & Suites674 Casino TrlCherokee, NC16.1 mi.(828) 497-7800
Quality Inn-cherokeeUS 441 N BypCherokee, NC16.1 mi.(828) 497-4702
Ramada Limited196 Painttown RdCherokee, NC16.1 mi.(828) 497-4231
Sleep InnHwy 441 Pob 1956Cherokee, NC16.1 mi.(828) 497-4730
TravelodgeAcquoni RdCherokee, NC16.1 mi.(828) 497-2226
Microtel Inn & Suites81 Allman DrFranklin, NC16.6 mi.(828) 349-9000
Hampton Inn244 Cunningham RdFranklin, NC16.7 mi.(828) 369-0600
Baymont Inn-Cherokee/Smoky MTNS1455 Acquoni RdCherokee, NC17.2 mi.(828) 497-2102
Best Western Great Smokies Inn1636 Acquoni RdCherokee, NC17.2 mi.(828) 497-2020
Best Western River Escape Inn And Suites248 Wbi DrDillsboro, NC17.5 mi.(828) 586-6060
Mountain Creek Cottages162 Dicks CRK RdDillsboro, NC17.5 mi.(704) 586-6042
Andrews Valley InnBeavercreek RdAndrews, NC18.2 mi.(888) 777-7901
Comfort InnHwy 23/74Sylva, NC19.0 mi.(828) 586-3315
University Inn563 N Country CLB DrCullowhee, NC22.0 mi.(828) 293-5442
Jack Huff's Motor Lodge204 Cherokee Orchard RdGatlinburg, TN24.2 mi.(865) 436-5171
Park Vista Resort Hotel705 Cherokee Orchard RdGatlinburg, TN24.2 mi.(865) 436-9211
Shoney's Inn & Suites515 Airport RdGatlinburg, TN24.2 mi.(865) 436-5883
Gazebo Inn417 Airport RdGatlinburg, TN24.3 mi.(865) 436-2222
Quality Inn Creekside125 Leconte Creek DrGatlinburg, TN24.4 mi.(865) 436-4865
Microtel211 Airport RdGatlinburg, TN24.5 mi.(865) 436-0107
Comfort Inn Parkside7824 E Lamar Alexander PkwyTownsend, TN24.5 mi.(865) 448-9000
Docks Motel8219 State Hwy 73Townsend, TN24.5 mi.(865) 448-2234
Hampton Inn7829 E Lamar Alexander PkwyTownsend, TN24.5 mi.(865) 448-9000
Bed & Breakfast
Freeze House Bed And Breakfast71 Sylvan HeightsSylva, NC19.0 mi.(828) 586-8161

Nantahala Gorge Weather & Climate

The Mountains of North Carolina range from 800 feet to over 6,600 feet and topography affects the local weather. Expect temperatures to be 10 to 20 degrees cooler on the mountaintops. Spring is unpredictable, particularly at the higher elevations. Snow may fall in March, but by May, things warm up with daytime highs in the 80s. Summer is warm and humid, but more pleasant at the higher elevations. Afternoon showers and thunderstorms are common in the summertime. Winter is generally moderate, but extreme conditions can occur in the mountains. It's not unusual to have warm temperatures in the valleys and snow in the higher areas. In the lowlands, snows of one inch or more occur just 1-5 times per year. More frequent and deeper snows fall at the higher elevations.

     Month       High Temp   Low Temp   Rainfall   Ocean Temp 
January 47°F 24°F 5.39 in. -
February 52°F 25°F 4.89 in. -
March 60°F 32°F 5.76 in. -
April 68°F 38°F 4.09 in. -
May 75°F 49°F 4.90 in. -
June 81°F 57°F 4.49 in. -
July 84°F 61°F 4.09 in. -
August 83°F 61°F 4.48 in. -
September 77°F 55°F 3.94 in. -
October 69°F 41°F 3.29 in. -
November 59°F 32°F 4.58 in. -
December 50°F 26°F 4.57 in. -

Nantahala Gorge Map & Transportation

Main viewing image.
Click each thumbnail image to enlarge.
The closest airports in the area are the Gatlinburg Pigeon Forge airport (GKT) located about 34 miles north of Nantahala Gorge in Sevierville, Tennessee, the Mc Ghee Tyson airport (TYS) located approximately 39 miles northwest of Nantahala Gorge in Knoxville, Tennessee, the Asheville Regional airport (AVL) located roughly 57 miles east of Nantahala Gorge in Asheville, North Carolina, the Moore Murrell airport (MOR) located around 57 miles north of Nantahala Gorge in Morristown, Tennessee, and finally the Greeneville Greene County Municipal airport (GCY) located about 71 miles northeast of Nantahala Gorge in Greeneville, Tennessee.

Nantahala Gorge Attractions

Amusement and Theme Parks
Cherokee Fun ParkCherokeeNC16.1 mi.
Santa's LandCherokeeNC16.1 mi.
Ghost Town in the SkyMaggie ValleyNC28.4 mi.
DollywoodPigeon ForgeTN29.8 mi.
Rockin' RacewayPigeon ForgeTN29.8 mi.
NASCAR SpeedParkSeviervilleTN35.3 mi.
Water Parks
Lake Lanier Island Beach & Water ParkLake Lanier IslandGA85.7 mi.
White Water ParkMariettaGA112.1 mi.
Golf Courses
Smoky Mountain Country ClubWhittierNC12.5 mi.
Franklin Golf CourseFranklinNC15.9 mi.
Mill Creek Country ClubFranklinNC15.9 mi.
Laurel Valley Country ClubTownsendTN24.5 mi.
Chatuge Shores Golf CourseHayesvilleNC25.8 mi.
Mountain Harbour Golf & Yacht ClubHayesvilleNC25.8 mi.
Highlands CoveHighlandsNC29.2 mi.
Ski Areas
Scaly MountainScaly MountainNC27.6 mi.
CataloocheeMaggie ValleyNC28.4 mi.
Ski Wolf LaurelMars HillNC65.5 mi.
Ski BeechBanner ElkNC110.0 mi.
Sugar Mountain Ski AreaBanner ElkNC110.0 mi.
Hawksnest Golf & Ski ResortSeven DevilsNC111.6 mi.
State Parks
Chatuge State ParkGA30.8 mi. 
Black Rock Mountain State ParkGA32.7 mi. 
Moccasin Creek State ParkGA35.7 mi. 
Sequoyah Birthplace MuseumVonoreTN41.5 mi.(History)
East Tennessee Discovery CenterKnoxvilleTN46.3 mi.(Science)
Ewing Gallery of Art & ArchitectureKnoxvilleTN46.3 mi.(Art)
Knoxville Museum of ArtKnoxvilleTN46.3 mi.(Art)
East Tennessee Historical Society MuseumKnoxvilleTN46.3 mi.(History)
Farragut Folklife MuseumFarragutTN49.3 mi.(History)
South Carolina Gold MuseumPickensSC58.4 mi.(Miscellaneous)
Zoos and Aquariums
Knoxville Zoological GardensKnoxvilleTN46.3 mi.
Western North Carolina Nature CenterAshevilleNC59.2 mi.
Greenville ZooGreenvilleSC74.7 mi.
Tennessee AquariumChattanoogaTN101.0 mi.
Warner Park ZooChattanoogaTN101.0 mi.

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