School’s out and the temperatures are on the rise – summer is (un)officially here! Kick off your summer with a fun-filled weekend vacation in the Lakeside of the Smokies. We have crafted a guide to make your summer getaway one you won’t forget. Read below to build your ultimate Jefferson County summer vacation!

Best Places to Stay in Jefferson County  

Jefferson County has many great places to stay while enjoying the beauty of East Tennessee. Known for the stellar views and relaxing atmosphere, the lakeside of the smokies is a great place to spend your summer getaway.  

Top Hotels in Jefferson County 

There are many options to find the perfect spot to spend your time in Jefferson County. Hotels and resorts like the Mountain Harbor Inn Resort, the Shepard Inn, and the Point Resort offer unique experiences for all guests!  

Best RV Campgrounds in Jefferson County 

Looking to get into some RV camping? The Lakeside of the Smokies has plenty of camping options. Some of the most popular camping options include the Terry Point Campground, Anchor Down RV Resort, and Cherokee Dam Campground. These campgrounds are equipped with full or partial hookups at each site, located on or near the lake, easy boat ramp access, and much more! 

Tent Camping in Jefferson County 

Wondering if there are places to camp in your tent? Jefferson County has many options for tent camping! Douglas Dam Headwater Campground and Griffin Island Campground are two great options for those who enjoy the pleasures of tent camping. 

Vacation Rental Houses, Cabins, and Lake houses in Jefferson County 

Look no further! The Lakeside of the Smokies has plenty of rental cabins, lake houses, and villas for you to choose from. You can find rentals on Douglas Lake, and Cherokee Lake, perfect for a summer getaway! Here is a list of just some of the AirBNBs to choose from!  

Fun Things to do in Jefferson County 

When traveling, finding things to do is a must. We know some people prefer relaxation, and others want to do everything they can! Rest assured; Jefferson County offers everything you need for a memorable summer vacation. From peaceful lakeside relaxation to adrenaline-fueled skydiving, you’ll have no trouble planning your perfect getaway! 

Boating in the Smokies 

East Tennessee lets everyone have the experience of a lifetime! Jefferson County has a vast array of those opportunities available to you! We have Cherokee and Douglas Lakes, both of which are stunning. These two lakes have many fun and unique things to do!  

Cherokee Lake and Douglas Lake have an abundant number of marinas! Black Oak Marina, located on Cherokee Lake, you have the flexibility to customize your day of fun as boats are available to rent for either 4 or 8 hours per day! Black Oak Marina also has stand-up paddleboards and kayaks available for visitors to rent! 

Don’t worry, there is more than just one marina! Lighthouse Pointe Marina, Swann’s Marina, Indian Creek Camp Ground and Marina, and Smoky Mountain Lakeside Resort & Marina are all located in Jefferson County. Each marina offers opportunities to rent a boat for the day, see the beautiful lakeside of the smokies, and so much more! Each marina provides incredible opportunities to craft unforgettable memories. 

Golfing in the Smokies 

Jefferson County offers an unparalleled opportunity to enjoy a game of golf amidst stunning scenery. There are many great golfing opportunities to enjoy during your Memorial Day weekend. Two of the most popular courses in East Tennessee are located right here in Jefferson County. Dandridge Golf & Country Club and Patriot Hills Golf Club are known to be fantastic courses. Both of these courses par at 72 strokes.  

If you don’t have time for a full 18 holes, you can practice your golf game at Core Golf Center. Core Golf Center uses TopTracer technology from Top Golf. It will show you information like ball speed, height, curve, distance, carry, hang time, and more. This technology is available in their driving range and allows for any level of golfer to get better. They have driving ranges, chipping, and putting greens to allow you to work on your game!  

Mossy Creek Mini Golf is perfect for the whole family! The course is an 18-hole par 43 making the course fun for all ages. The course has many different holes located on each green which allows you to play each hole in a unique way. With obstacles like rocks, uneven surfaces, narrow passes, drops, and much more, the fun never stops! Challenge yourself and friends to break the course record currently held by Keith Jones. His record is -10 (33 strokes) which was claimed in their fall league.   

Go Skydiving in the Smokies 

Skydiving is the ultimate thrill that has crossed everyone’s mind at least once. Thankfully, Skydive East Tennessee, located in Dandridge, Tennessee, gives you the chance to have the thrill of a lifetime! Jumping from 11,000 feet, enjoy taking in magnificent views of the Great Smoky Mountains and Douglas Lake.  

Visit the Smokies! 

Make the most of your Tennessee vacation by visiting the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, which is just a 30-minute drive away! As the most visited national park in the country, the Great Smoky Mountains boast an abundance of exhilarating options to ensure a thrilling and memorable experience. From awe-inspiring hiking trails that lead to breathtaking vistas to captivating wildlife encounters, and fascinating historical sites like Cades Cove, this renowned park offers an endless array of opportunities for enjoyment and adventure. Whether you like hiking, seeing waterfalls, scenic drives, or just stepping out for a picnic you can’t go wrong with the smokies.  

Top Places to Eat in Jefferson County 

After your long day on the water, on the course, or visiting the smokies, food will be on everyone’s mind. Thankfully, Jefferson County has a plethora of great food and truly unique experiences to try out!  

Looking for southern cooking? Try Lisa’s Country Kitchen or Taste of Dandridge. Everyone loves enjoying a meal with a beautiful view. Here are some lakefront restaurants on Douglas Lake; Verardi’s Pizza and Wings, Angelo’s at the Point, and Off the Hook Bar & Grill are all great options! Looking to try some local adult beverages? Check out Mossback Distilling or Dandridge Brewing Company 

Or if you want to get back to where you’re staying quickly, swing by Pal’s Sudden Service. Beloved by most everyone in East Tennessee, this local favorite is definitely worth trying! 

Best Places to Shop in Jefferson County 

Discover the unique shops found in Jefferson County, TN. From antique stores, to boutiques, to bait and tackle, you’ll find just what you’re looking for in the Lakeside of the Smokies! Check out the Dandridge Farmers Market. Starting on April 29th and every Saturday through October 14th from 8 A.M. to 12 P.M. The Dandridge Farmers Market is great for walking around and experiencing some of East Tennessee’s local goods! Martha’s Market, Lost Creek Mercantile, and D & S Gifts and More are just the tip of the iceberg when discussing unique boutiques and shops that can give you the perfect souvenir!   

Take A True Tennessee Vacation in the Lakeside of the Smokies 

When making plans for your summer vacation consider the Lakeside of the Smokies.  Jefferson County has it all—relaxing places to stay, pretty scenery, fun activities, delicious food, and great shopping! Make the most of your summer plans and experience the magic of Lakeside of the Smokies. Don’t wait! Start creating lifelong memories and visit the Lakeside of the Smokies today!