It was really fun to see the kids get excited about their bears. Be forewarned though, you will spend lots of money and time in the store!
Hiking x 3
Our first hike was our hardest and probably least rewarding. We did Rainbow Falls, which is a pretty long and populated hike. It was especially long for the kids, but they pulled through like champs. If we visited again, I'd probably skip this one. I think that we only made it partways up and not to the top, though.
We also hiked to Grotto Falls, which is a short, powerful waterfall that you can actually touch/go underneath. It was a really cool experience and I definitely recommend it!
We hiked to Mingo Falls, a 120 foot waterfall that's one of the tallest in the Appalachians. The trail is on the reservation, so we had to drive a ways, but the hike was relatively short, with few people and a great view. Worth the drive and hike.
Weird Petting Zoo
We were supposed to go white water rafting, but got completely lost on the way there. After missing our time, we just decided to stop at a weird, hand painted sign for a deer farm, and drove into the depths. Baby goats, deer and zonkeys greeted us.
On the way back from the petting zoo, we stopped for some over-priced mini-golf!
We drove down to Clingman's Dome in NC for a break from hiking, but it ended up being a pretty steep, if short, uphill. It was extremely foggy, but I still loved visiting solely based on the air quality. The air in FL feels muggy constantly, but the air here was cool and fresh!
The Atlanta Aquarium is amazing! It is pretty pricey (we got a deal), but since we spent 6 hours there, I'd say worth the money. Skip the dolphin show and save time to stare at the whale sharks and belugas for an extra long time.
Bear Elegance - We rented a cabin during our stay in the mountains, and it was gorgeous. The view from the porch was a little obscured by trees, but the inside of the cabin was beautiful. I would not recommend this particular cabin, because the grill is in a weird place and you could probably find a better view, but I do definitely recommend the company.
Hilton - In Atlanta, we stayed at the Hilton downtown, which I absolutely recommend. We got a deal with adult tickets to the aquarium that saved us a ton, and the concierge (Michael- he was great) got us kids' tickets. It was a short walk to the aquarium and we received free breakfast.