Cherohala Skyway

43-mile National Scenic Byway from Tellico Plains, Tennessee, to Robbinsville

Looking for ridge after ridge of forested mountainside with sweeping mountain views as far as the eyes can see; abundant and unobstructed scenic overlooks around every corner; world class hiking trails, refreshing waterfalls and scenic overlooks; a road featured as one of Discovery Channel’s Top 10 Motorcycle Rides in North America Some call it the “best kept secret.” We call it The Cherohala Skyway – experience it for yourself.

The Cherohala Skyway was completed in the fall of 1996 after planning and construction for some thirty-four years. It was North Carolina’s most expensive scenic highway carrying a price tag of $100,000,000. It winds up and over 5,400 foot mountains for 18 miles in North Carolina and descends another 23 miles into the deeply forested back country of Tennessee. The road crosses through the Cherokee and Nantahala National Forests thus the name “Chero…hala”. The Skyway is becoming well known in motorcycling and sportscar circles for it’s long, sweeping corners, scenic views and cool summer breezes.

This road enthusiast’s dream connects Robbinsville, North Carolina with Tellico Plains, Tennessee. It can be desolate at night and extremely dangerous in the winter months. There are no facilities other than a couple of restrooms for the entire 41 miles so make sure you have enough gas to make the crossing. There is little evidence of civilization from views that rival or surpass any from the Blue Ridge Parkway.


Cherohala Skyway Gifts

Find your swag for all the great roads including Cherohala Skwyay, Tail of the Dragon, Moonshiner 28, Devils Triangle, Six Gap, Diamondback and more. 

Winter on the Cherohala Skyway

Looking for a place for a short winter escape from the crowds? Plan a trip to the mountains for a peaceful get-away.

There are still plenty of options to enjoy even in the winter months. Just bring some warmer clothes and experience a unique vacation away from all the city traffic. And most rental rates are much lower than summer rates.

Just some of the things to do include:

  • Exploring the scenic Cherohala Skyway with a good chance of seeing some snow accumulation
  • Driving the Tail of the Dragon with the road all to yourself (most winter days are still safe)
  • Winter hiking in Joyce Kilmer Memorial Forest and other wilderness areas
  • Amazing photographic opportunities around every corner
  • Holiday festivities at Fontana Village which is open year-round
  • Plan a day at Asheville’s Biltmore Estate where the Christmas decorations are truly special
  • Or ski at Cattaloochee in Maggie Valley with fourteen slopes
  • Go antique/gem/craft hunting when discounts are everywhere
  • Explore the Great Smoky Mountains National Park
  • Spend a day in Gatlinburg for amazing holiday displays
  • Golf at several courses that are open year-round with no crowds
  • Or just bring a good book and curl-up in front of a fireplace and watch the snow

Our roads remain safe and passable for standard vehicles most days in the winter months. But stay alert for any severe weather that might change conditions. See PLAN YOUR TRIP for links on current road conditions.

  • Off season accommodations can be found HERE.
  • More information on things to to in the area can be found HERE.


Who’s ready for some snow? What’s your go to meal on a snow day? 📍Cherohala Skyway
📷 by jon.schrock
#instagramtennessee #tristaradventures #tennessee #cherohalaskyway

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Cherohala Skyway - March 2018
#killgurl #killgurlphotography #canonphoto #subaru #killboy #subaru #boosted #gramlights57transcend #seibon #forged_performance #400hp #smokymountains #subie #cherohalaskyway #snowday #snow #86nation #brz86 #grahamcounty

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Cherohala Skyway Big Junction
Front lip #9 is toast after this round of snow

#killgurl #smokymountains #cherohalaskyway #boosted #subaru #subielove #studdedtires #snowtires #snow #adventure #forged_performance #killboy #snowday

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9.17.19 Turkey Creek Overlook on the Cherohala Skyway. This was my first time in the area but definitely not my last. #cherokeenationalforest #cherohalaskyway #tennessee #instagramtennessee #sunset #landscape #canon ...

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Generic “ITS THE NEW YEAR” post. But heck that just means we must do more Dragon/North Carolina trips & maybe get some Taco Bell on the way c:
📸 dannus_maximus
#mazda #miata #mx5 #mazdamiata #miatagang #stickchicks #miatagirls #stockaf #popupheadlights #importdolls #tailofthedragon #cherohalaskyway #northcarolina #roadtrip #savethemanuals #miatalife #miatamx5 #miataclub #hwy129

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there is so much to overcome when you're on a bicycle for 115 miles. Climbing a mountain continuously for 25 miles isn't even the hardest part. It's the mental hurdles, challenge of conserving energy, fueling yourself well (AKA stuffing your face as fast as you can at every rest stop), and pain everywhere besides your legs (I ingested 20+ ibuprofen). But, nothing compares to how you feel when it's all over. And those views tho 😍 #CherohalaChallenge #CherohalaSkyway #TailOfTheDragon #IDidntDie #IDidntSAG ...

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