How to Plan a Wedding in Cades Cove

The Ultimate Guide for Planning a Wedding in Cades Cove
(complete with pricing and photos)

If you are interested in planning a wedding in Cades Cove you have come to the right place! This dreamy destination blends breathtaking scenery synonymous with the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Cades Cove is a popular spot for couples because of its surrounding nature and the variety of viewpoints. Read below for the ultimate guide in helping you plan a wedding in Cades Cove.

Cades Cove Wedding Locations

Choosing an excellent location among the numerous options can be a tricky thing as every spot looks fantastic. Some iconic places you can check out for your Cades Cove wedding are Cades Cove Wildlife Overlook and LeQuire Cemetery Overlook, which offer spectacular views of the surrounding mountains. There are other hidden meadows, prehistoric buildings, and several barns strewn across the park. If you prefer a more traditional event, you can try Methodist church, Missionary Baptist Church, and the Primitive Baptist Church. 

Here is a map of all the locations you can have a wedding in Cades Cove

wedding in smoky mountains

Permit Cost for a Wedding in Cades Cove

As with events held in any national park, you will need a particular use permit from the National Park Service. You can apply for it up to 1 year in advance but at least 14 days before your event.  

Click here for the application form for the $50 special use permit

How to Book a Cades Cove Wedding

Email: to check availability of your preferred date(s)

Before you continue, the NPS made a 6 minute video describing the process and restrictions of planning your Cades Cove elopement

A more thorough breakdown of how to book is in their online brochure

Best Times for a Wedding in Cades Cove

The best times to visit Great Smoky Mountains National Park are in the summer (June, July and August), when the wildlife is most active, waterfalls are full, and most trail are open. Fall is also a popular time for the foliage colors in the Park. July is the busiest month of the summer season while October weekends attract those in search of autumn colors.

Restrictions for a Wedding in Cades Cove

Your Cades Cove wedding will be subject to a couple of restrictions. Firstly, you can only have twenty people there. Hence, this is only the perfect location if you are looking to have an intimate affair. There’s also a vehicle limit of four. Some exceptions might be made depending on your situation. Ceremonies in historic buildings are limited to ninety minutes, while outdoor ceremonies are limited to one hour. Get in touch with the park’s facilitators to find out more about what restrictions you be subjected to. 

Getting there / Lodging

Since it’s a popular spot, Cades Cove has tons of visitors, and you will need to get there ahead of the rush. Being 35 miles from the nearest places of Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge, it can be quite a drive. Once you have weathered the traffic and survived the wavering cell signal, you will fall in love with Cades Cove. 

If you’ve got friends and family coming, give them the notice ahead of time and give them an outline of the park rules and what to expect during travel, itinerary, and budgets. Everyone you want by your side should be present & comfortable on that day, which means letting them know about your Cades Cove wedding. There are cabins and vacation rentals available within and around the Smoky Mountains.


At this point, it’s time to enjoy your hard work and make the most of your Cades Cove wedding. Have fun and enjoy the wedding without worrying about what is or isn’t in place. Get lost in the expansive views, century-old natural architecture, and the refreshing feeling of engraving your love onto nature itself. If you’re up for it, there are fantastic places to host your Smoky Mountain honeymoon.

If you are looking for a photographer for your Great Smoky Mountains wedding, please fill the form below to discuss your day!

415 756 9335

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