Our plan was to spend about an hour or so exploring before we drove back home. About 3 hours later, we reluctantly headed out only because our schedule demanded it. We didn’t want to leave!
If you ask us, the sprawling 150 acres of Foxfire Mountain alone is worth the short trip to east Tennessee from Atlanta. Camp here (or stay in a glamping tent like we did) and make it a weekend so that you can explore even more than we did!
Bridge to Prosperity Mountain
At the very least, you’ll want to buy tickets for The Discovery Hiking and Swinging Bridge Tour. This allows you to cross Foxfire gorge from Foxfire Mountain to Prosperity Mountain. At 335 ft, this bridge is the longest swinging bridge in America, and makes gorgeous photos in addition to being super fun.
Wishes for the Fairies
Before you cross the bridge you’ll write your most important wish on a piece of plastic and carry it across the bridge to Prosperity Mountain where you’ll find Whispering Winds Covered Bridge.
Here you can hang your wish with thousands of other wishes…and if you’re lucky, your wish will come true. Be sure to ask the staff about the hundreds of stories of people’s wishes becoming reality.
Also on this side of the bridge, you can follow the hiking trail to Lost Mine Falls and the Sweden Furnace Iron Mine. It’s only about a mile round trip, and the boys loved the second (smaller) swinging bridge over the falls.
There is also a small Walking Tree Canopy Tour and a stone-stacking area where you can create your own cairns.
Exploring Foxfire Mountain
If you are like us, you’ll be excited to cross the bridge and leave your wishes first. But after you explore Prosperity Mountain, be sure to head back to the Foxfire Mountain side for even more fun.
Our kids adored – I mean adored – the Little Adventurer Obstacle Course ropes courses. They went through it about 5 or 6 times, and were truly challenged by it!
The River Walk Trail is also a lovely trail along the water, and the kids (and you!) are free to dip your toes, hunt for salamanders and more in the water.
Wyile Cider House
The Cider House sits on the Foxfire Property, though not owned by the same people…be sure to stop, even with kids. Wyile is the ONLY craft cidery in Tennessee.
We sampled their house cider and the boys fell in love with it so we set them up with a few full-sized glasses of soft cider and let them lounge on the chairs outside with a snack for a few while we sampled 12 other ciders – hard ciders.
I’m always very skeptical of moonshine, mountain wine, ciders and more – but this was SENSATIONAL and ended up leaving with several bottles.
The five most popular flavors are Elderberry, Blackberry, Black Currant, Peach, and Spice o’ Life (which tastes like Fall in a mason jar!) The flavors are very subtle and not overwhelming…really delicious.
Ziplining and ATV Tours
Finally – our reason for wanting to return as soon as possible. You can mountain zipline and/or take some great ATV tours here.
And…if you take one of these zip line courses or ATV trips, the Discover Foxfire tickets are included at no charge.
Waterfall Canopy Tour – (7+ years old and at least 45 lbs.) This is the only zip line in the Smokies that actually zips over a waterfall. You’ll zip 60 ft through the trees.
Goliath Zip Line Tour – (10+ years old and at least 100 lbs.) This behemoth is the highest in the Smoky Mountains at 475 feet into the air — and the longest course at that height. The 2-hour tour encompasses five extreme zip lines, and will have you traveling at over 55mph.
ATV Bear Crawler Tour – (3+ years old to ride; 12 year old to ride alone) Experience nature from an extreme ATV on rugged off-road trails dodging trees and swerving curves to make it to the top of the mountain. This guided tour offers tales of Foxfire Mountain and a trip back in time.
Just a note that there is also a climbing wall, but it is closed at this time because of COVID.
Disclosure: Thank you to Visit Sevierville and their partners for hosting us. Opinions here are our own, as always.