Although there are no major interstates that run through it, nor any commercial airports nearby, Gatlinburg is nonetheless an easily accessible resort town. The major roads leading to it are US Highways 441 and 321; both of which are extremely well maintained by the Tennessee Department of Transportation. Meanwhile, the closest major interstates are north-south oriented I-75 and east-west oriented I-40, which intersect in downtown Knoxville–about an hour’s drive from Gatlinburg.
The closest commercial airport to Gatlinburg is McGhee-Tyson located in Blount County (approximately 15 minutes south of downtown Knoxville). This airport may be small (especially in comparrison to the likes of O’Hare or JFK) but it serves all major airlines including American, Continental, Delta, Northwest, United, US Airways, and Allegiant Air. You will also find all major rental car companies represented here in addition to ample taxis and even limousine services.
To get to Gatlinburg from the airport simply exit McGhee-Tyson onto US Highway 129 (also known as Alcoa Highway) heading south. From there hang a left onto Lamar Alexander, which is, in fact, US Highway 321.
If you have some time to kill and are interested in taking the scenic route then follow E Lamar Alexander Parkway (Route 73) when, just past Townsend, it diverges from 321 and heads southeast. This will take you into the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. You’ll still get you where you want to go, it just incorporates a few extra twists and turns through the park.
If, however, you are here on business or are otherwise in a hurry you might consider chartering a flight into the small, private airport run by the cities of Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge. Located in Sevierville this airport (code GKT) is only about 20 minutes from downtown Galtlinburg. For more information on GKT please call 865-453-8393.