Oconaluftee Visitor Center 2012
Come sit awhile.
When you enter the Great Smoky Mountain National park from Cherokee, NC (the east), Oconaluftee is the first spot you come to. Our visit in May 2012 was the first time that we had a chance to visit the new Oconaluftee Visitor Center which opened in April 2011. The new visitor center is larger and much nicer and more informative than the old visitor center. The construction of the new visitor center was funded by Great Smoky Mountains Association and was donated to the park. It's a great addition to Great Smoky Mountain National Park. The rocking chairs on the porch are an open invitation to come sit an enjoy the view.
The walking path follows the creek and then turns into the Oconalufte Farm. The farm provides a window into life back before ipads, cell phones, refrigerators, and computers. There are several buildings showing the range of structures that were typical on a farm. These includes a furnished two-story log house, a large barn, pig pens, corn cribs, split rail fence, drovers' barn, a working blacksmith shop, and several other out buildings. There is a lot of farm equipment around the place. I remember seeing similar equipment on small farms in Western Colorado when I was growing up.