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“Very small and crowded”

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Townsend / Great Smokies KOA
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed July 10, 2013

We had tent site 119, which is at the end of one of the loops away from the river, so we only had one site next to us. The roads are tiny and so are the sites. The RVs were practically on top of each other and the tent sites weren't much better. The location in townsend is nice and it was nice to listen to the river at night. It rained every night we were there, so the river was up quite a bit. Our tent site was covered in dead leaves, so it was almost impossible to keep the inside of our tent clean. I'm not sure if there is anything they can do about that though. The bath houses were clean, but they were all located in the front near the road. They do have port-a-potties in the back, so you don't have to walk all the way up to the front at night.

As for the area, it is great. If you are considering this KOA or the one in Pigeon Forge, I would go with this one. The one in Pigeon Forge is right off the main strip there. It looks like Vegas. That's not why I went to the Smoky mountains. The townsend KOA is close to Cades Cove. We drove up there twice and saw Deer, Elk, a coyote and several black bears.

The campground has a nice small pool and a playground for the kids. The store is convenient and they offer tubing in the river, which we didn't do because of the high water and the fact that our kids are younger and not great swimmers.

Overall, the campground was just a bit too crowded in terms of space, but the location is great and there is plenty to see in the area.

Room Tip: With KOA, you don't get assigned a site until you arrive, so it's luck of the draw. You can...
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  • Stayed: July 2013, traveled with family
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5  Thank Brent_LS
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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158 - 164 of 197 reviews

Reviewed July 7, 2013 via mobile

We stayed on site 126, primitive on the river. It was a great site with awesome views of the river. We were there in the middle of a rainstorm. So the river had class 2 rapids and actually closed the second day to tubes. Our site was nice but the rv sites were like a parking lot, no grass and a matter of feet bn rvs. Crammed in. Our site was in the bac near cabins, very nice, perfect for a tent, longer walk to bathhouse, no electric, no water hookups. But over $50 a night seemed rather expensive for primitive.

  • Stayed: July 2013
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2  Thank volleygirlamy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 1, 2013

This is the second time we have stayed at the KOA Townsend. This is also the second time it has been simply an amazing experience. As before, the campground was super clean, and no overgrown weeds in sight. The bathhouses and restrooms were very clean. I am always amazed at how BUSY the staff is at this KOA. They are always cleaning, spraying for weeds, patrolling, working on making sure all campers are satisfied. All of this in super hot weather...with a smile on their face and with great attitudes and helpful service. Can't say enough about the staff. The new playground and the pool are a huge hit with kids. My girls absolutely loved them. There was a family night and kids day camp every day during the time of our stay sponsored by CHARM. That was awesome. About the only thing that made this not a totally perfect camping trip was a thunderstorm in the middle of the night. But what's camping without a little storm?? Even the staff drove around in the daytime mentioning a storm approaching and offering help to secure campsites if needed. I am sold on the staff, location, and experiences at this KOA. OH YEAH....and do not forget to try the fudge in the fudge shop. We will be back very soon.

Room Tip: Pick a waterfront site. You will not be disappointed.
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  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled with family
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1  Thank Mark C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 24, 2013 via mobile

Clean campground with very friendly staff. Many sites are along the Little River. Location avoids the Gatlinburg traffic. Witin minutes of the Southwest entrance to the park. Very close to Cades Cove.

  • Stayed: June 2013
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3  Thank paul_l1986
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 1, 2013

First off, where you stay at this campground is going to make a difference in your experience. We stayed in one of the sites near the river with a deck. It was very nice, gave us a decent amount of privacy, and had a great view! However, if you are staying at one of the regular sites, you're going to feel like you're just camping in the middle of a parking lot. Huge difference! If you're going to stay here anyway, pay for the upgrade to one of the nicer sites. The cabins also looked nice and were located near the river. Kids loved the playground, clean pool, and very clean restrooms. The showers were private with a small changing area, hot water, and good water pressure. Very family friendly, kids everywhere either riding their bikes or playing. A small market is located on the property, and a bigger grocery store is just down the road. Staff were also very helpful and friendly.

  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled with family
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3  Thank cla11103
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 15, 2013

We have stayed at this particular KOA three times in the last year. Once on the river in the little rustic one bedroom cabin (which was actually my favorite), twice in the deluxe cabins near the pool. The deluxe cabins have TV, bath with shower, small fridge, coffee maker, microwave,and even bodywash and shampoo. We are the dreaded Harley Davidson motorcycle riders from some of the other reviews(LOL), so it's nice not to hafta pack the extra weight of that stuff on the bikes!
I enjoy roughing it a little more than my stepdaughter, so she prefers the fancier cabins, but I love the ones on the river. The porch swing makes me smile. The bath house, restrooms, and campground are spotless! Staff is super friendly and helpful. No cell service is a blessing if you ask me! Stay here if you really want to relax in the smokies:)

Room Tip: Eat breakfast at Riverstone next door!
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  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled with family
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3  Thank rugzmom37
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 5, 2013

I first went to this campground/RV/cabin KOA site when I was 15 and loved it. I went back the first time last year (12 years later) and wasn't sure how I'd feel about it this time. However, I think overall it is still a great place stay. We camped in a tent right on the river which was absolutely beautiful. One downside to wanting to camping on the river is that they only have 3 or 4 available, so book early! The staff is super friendly and it has a small store, gas station (helpful to stop at before going into park) and pool. It has a fabulous location, literally right next to the entrance of the park - you can't stay any closer! The one thing I have to complain about is that the bathhouse is kind of far away from the tent campgrounds (you'd think they'd be closer to tents and further away from RVs that have their own bathroom??) and it is kind of old and dingy. Other than that, it's a fantastic place to camp with kids or without such as myself.

  • Stayed: August 2012, traveled with friends
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2  Thank Wanderer3247
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Townsend / Great Smokies KOA

Address: 8533 State Highway 73, Townsend, TN 37882
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Tennessee > Townsend
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 22 Specialty Lodging in Townsend
Number of rooms: 135
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Set in what's known as "the peaceful side of the Smokies," the Townsend/Great Smokies KOA neighbors Cades Cove and the countless black bears, deer, plants and flowers that make their homes there. With the tranquil Little River hugging the property line, endless hiking trails weaving through the wooded tapestry surrounding the kampground and swinging bridges suspended nearby, each day at this KOA promises a new adventure. Nearby attractions like Dollywood, Tuckaleechee Caverns (a 25-million-year old cavern system) and miles of tubing and biking guarantee great fun for your vacation. On-site, visit the Little River Village restaurant for a batch of fudge, grab your tackle and cast your line and enjoy free wireless Internet during your stay. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Townsend / Great Smokies Koa Hotel Townsend

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