How Far is Cincinnati to Gatlinburg By Car?

Driving from Cincinnati to Gatlinburg to enjoy the Smoky Mountains? This guide will outline the best ways to get there, whether you’re looking for the fastest trip or the most picturesque route.

There are several stops you might also consider taking to break up the driving day and add some interest to your journey. We’ll denote these under each route to give you some options.

Route A: I-75 South to I-40 East

Travel Time: 4 hours 50 minutes

Travel Distance: 292 miles

This is the most common route travelers take from Cincinnati. From I-71 S, you’ll cross the Ohio River, then merge onto I-75 S. Stay I-75, through Lexington, then merge onto I-40 E once you hit Knoxville. Stay on I-40, then take Exit 407 and continue on TN-66 S until you hit Gatlinburg.

Common Attractions Along This Route

  • Lexington
  • Daniel Boone National Forest
  • Knoxville
  • Pigeon Forge

Route B: 1-75 South to Chapman Highway

Travel Time: 4 hours 52 minutes

Travel Distance: 280 miles

While Route A is the most common route taken, Route B takes approximately the same amount of time and offers a much more picturesque journey, especially near the end in the rural areas of Tennessee.

From I-71 S, you’ll cross the Ohio River, then merge onto I-75 S. Stay I-75, through Lexington, but once you come to Knoxville, don’t take I-40 E.

Instead, follow US-441 / Henley St. Continue following US-441 / Chapman Highway through Seymour. On Pleasant Hill Rd in Sevierville, you’ll turn slightly right and then left onto River Divide Rd and left onto Henderson Rd. Hitting US-441 S / Parkway again, you’ll follow this to Gatlinburg.

Common Attractions Along This Route

  • Lexington
  • Daniel Boone National Forest
  • Pigeon Forge

Route C: Highway 25 East, Through Morristown

Travel Time: 5 hours 35 minutes

Travel Distance: 317 miles

Finally, this route is a bit longer than Routes A & B (only by about an hour), but the views and scenery are fantastic through southern Kentucky and northern Tennessee.

To take this route, follow I-71 S and I-75 S, but from I-75, take Exit 29 in Corbin, KY to get on Highway 25 E. You’ll go through the stunning Cherokee Reservoir, Morristown (great for shopping or having a bite to eat), and over Douglas Lake.

In Newport, TN, you’ll hit the end of Highway 25 E, so you should take a right onto Highway 25 W and a left on Highway 441. From here, go to Sevierville, and take a left on Veterans Blvd. Pass through Pigeon Forge and onto Gatlinburg.

Common Attractions Along this Route

  • Lexington
  • Daniel Boone National Forest
  • Cherokee Reservoir
  • Morristown
  • Pigeon Forge

Check-In Time is 4pm. Why Not Make a Day of It?

As you plan your stay at Gatlinburg Falls Resort, keep in mind that check-in time is at 4pm, which means the first half of the day is yours for a great trip from Cincinnati to our Smoky Mountain getaway.

Whether your idea of a fun road trip is to stop at Daniel Boone Forest for a few hours and explore nature or to get off in Lexington or Morristown and do some shopping, you’ll have all day to play around with.

In the afternoon, your cabin will be waiting and so will your in-room amenities, whether you’ve chosen from our Gatlinburg cabins or a Pigeon Forge cabin rental. Either way, you’ll have the gorgeous Smoky Mountains surrounding you – it’s the perfect end to a day on the road. Plus, you’ll have a whole vacation ahead of you to enjoy this beautiful gem of Tennessee wilderness.

About Tony Perez

I'm a people person, and I enjoy the atmosphere that working with Cabins Of The Smoky Mountains entails, interacting with different types of people and trying to relate to each one uniquely. From Michigan originally, I've been coming to the Smoky Mountains since I was a child, with family in Wears Valley. Summer fun for me is exploring the Cades Cove area, swimming in the creeks, and hiking Mount LeConte and many other trails. I love the Smoky Mountains.