Cherokee National Forest Guide

Cherokee National Forest encompasses 655,598 acres in eastern Tennessee. The forest runs along the northwestern edge of Great Smoky Mountains National Park and comprises nearly the entire eastern border of Tennessee. Inside the forest are notable locations such as the Ocoee River, two large reservoirs, Big Frog Mountain, and a large section of the Appalachian National Scenic Trail. The terrain is mountainous with undulating ridges interrupted by deep valleys hiding clear streams under deep foliage. Black bears, bobcats, and white-tailed deer roam freely throughout the forest of hardwoods and firs interspersed with deciduous fruit trees such as maple and wild cherry. Visitors from across the country come to Cherokee National Forest to hike, horseback ride, jog, fish, swim, and hunt during the summer months and enjoy an array of winter sports during the months that see ice and snow.

Where to Camp

Camping in Cherokee National Forest

You can enjoy the beauty of America's national parks and forests as you travel in an RV. These vehicles allow you to camp under the stars and travel at your own pace. If you have always wanted to hit the road in an RV, make sure to book with RVshare. From motorhomes to campervans, the perfect vehicle is waiting for you. 

RV Rentals Near Cherokee National Forest

Shape Hiking Trails

Cherokee National Forest Hiking Trails

Cherokee National Forest is next door to Great Smokey Mountain National Forest and shares its reputation as a foggy environment. Hikers often come across entire valleys engulfed in thick mists. But, when those fogs and mists dissipate, the views of the surrounding mountains, deep valleys, and multicolored hills are breathtaking.

During the day, hikers, bikers, and horseback riders venture along established pathways to observe wildlife and the environments' incredible diversity. The significant elevation changes that typify the forest topography feature plants that cling to the sides of cliffs, bound across meadows, and run color and texture along ridges.

Things to Do

Activities in Cherokee National Forest

With more than 20,000 species of plants and animals, there is no shortage of flora and fauna in Cherokee National Forest. There are 43 species of mammals in the forest, including white-tailed deer, raccoons, otters, and black bears. You can find plenty of fish and amphibians, including the hellbender salamander. Along with that, bird enthusiasts will love this national forest. You can spot over 262 winged species fluttering throughout the park, including the northern owl, red-breasted nuthatch, and blue-headed vireo. 

map-marker-alt-regular How to Get There

How to get to Cherokee National Forest

Address: 2800 Ocoee Street, Cleveland, TN

Fee: Entry fee $0

Cherokee National Forest is an ideal place to spend a vacation in an RV. Visitors often find the hills and streams challenging, and a home-like place to rest is always welcome. RV rentals through RVshare involve a simple process that begins with finding the perfect RV for your family's vacation. After that, memories that last a lifetime pile upon each other.

Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions About Cherokee National Forest

What type of wildlife lives in Cherokee National Forest?

Wildlife in the Cherokee National Forest includes black bears, bobcats, deer, skunks, beavers, otters, and woodchucks. There are also many kinds of birds that live in the forest, along with fish in the lakes and streams, and a variety of other small animals.

Is there a fee to get into Cherokee National Forest?

No, there is no fee to get into Cherokee National Forest. However, there are additional fees for using certain day-use areas, and permits are required for activities like hunting or fishing.

Does Cherokee National Forest offer free camping sites?

Yes, Cherokee National Forest offers free camping sites. Dispersed camping is allowed throughout the forest and does not cost. Dispersed campsites have no amenities, so campers need to bring everything with them, including water.

Is there a limit to how long you can camp in Cherokee National Forest?

Yes, there is a limit to how long you can camp in Cherokee National Forest. Campers are allowed to stay a maximum of 14 consecutive days within a 30-day period at a campsite within the forest.

What is the closest town to Cherokee National Forest?

Elizabethton, Tennessee is one of the closest towns to the Cherokee National Forest. It's also the town where the forest's headquarters lie. You can go out to eat, find a place to stay, or stock up on supplies in town.