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Great Smoky Mountains Railroad Questions & Answers

Grain Valley, Missouri

My wife & I are planning on taking the Moonshire ride to Nantahala Gorge in October 2018. I've read several reviews that complained of the lack of scenic areas the train travels through. Is this true? The scenery is our whole pourpose of doing this train ride. Would the Tuckasegee River Excursion to Dillsboro be a better choice for scenery? Thanks in advance for any help. Mike

2 months ago Answer

14 answers

Hendersonville, North Carolina
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Scenery is in the eye of the beholder. Our journey to Nantahala July 5th included a few man made points of interest along the way and many natural sights. However, most of these were viewed from a table for 4 in the 1st class car. It was filled. Reminder: the train does NOT turn around for its return to Bryson. Therefore, you may be facing opposite from the direction of the train.

2 months ago
Summerville, South Carolina
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We took the ride to & from Dillsboro, and thoroughly enjoyed the scenery. Granted, it certainly wasn't a trip into Denali or a drive through Acadia, but quite enjoyable nonetheless. Much of the route traversed rural populated areas, but even that was intriguing as it frequently presented interesting sights. We did book one of the first class coaches on our trip, as it was during winter and we wanted to be comfortable (plus adult beverages with the dinner service), but any of the many cars that made up the train would have provided nice views. We also found the small town of Dillsboro to be a scenic place to stop, as there were some nice places to shop including some beautiful artisan craft offerings. Virtually the only thing that was disappointing to me was having to see the trash that had been thrown from a road that ran immediately adjacent to the tracks for a short stretch, but that's not the fault of the GSMR.

2 months ago
Live Oak
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Dillsboro is drying up...the Jerrod House has closed and the other shows seem to be open on weekends....its a shame as it is a beautiful area.....the train to the gouge was very nice, I suggest first class for a true experience with a narrator for the trip

2 months ago
Enterprise
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I absolutely write 100% true reviews, as you can read from my other 100s. I was even trying to be nice to them.. BUT I would never go again. My family was so upset we couldn't see anything, except at one clearing we saw a pile of burned garbage and a rusted washing machine.

2 months ago
Carlyle, Illinois
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my husband and I love the Gatlinburg area and have missed doing the train several times for different reasons. june of 2018 made reservations with daughter, son in law and 3 kids- 3, 7, 10. luckily we reserved a family booth across from each other. we did the gorge and all on our side of the train was was rock walls and scrub. minimally better on other side on the way back.. we were so disappointed.

2 months ago
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I'm sure everyone has different ideas and expectations for scenery...my husband & I truly enjoyed the trip-it was very beautiful.

2 months ago
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We did the Tuskegee and it was beautiful. We have never done the other one.

2 months ago
Hellertown, Pennsylvania, USA
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We very much enjoyed the scenery on this trip. I suspect each individual's reaction may be different depending on background and expectations.

2 months ago
Athens, Georgia
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I think the scenery will be better on the Nantahala run. There is a lot of foliage and a number of steep embankments, but it is a longer ride over bridges and water.

2 months ago
Belleville, IL
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Scenery is mostly tree lined with bridges, several rivers, lake and other interesting features. We enjoyed the ride, the scenery, the stop at the recreation area and the car host, who was on the ball for the whole trip with scenic observations, history, jokes and great service. The host or hostess can make the difference in how much one enjoys the trip.

2 months ago
Tampa, Florida
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My family went on the Tuckasegee route and none of us were disappointed. Both routes, being so close together, I really don't see either being way better than the other. I don't think you can go wrong with either. It will help if you sit across from a group that will switch sides for the ride back. We had a bit better view on the way out and changed with the group across coming back. I noticed others did not change, it's not mandatory but why be that way.

2 months ago
Phenix City, al.
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Haven’t done the Tuckasegee trip, so can’t compare.

Nantahala trip should be nice in October with foilage.

2 months ago
Smyrna, Georgia
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My sister and I loved the scenery on the Nantahala Gorge ride. We went in the fall and it was beautiful. We didn’t take the moonshine train, but bought a bottle of wine to drink with our meal. It was great! Beaver been on the Tuckasegee River ride. Anytime you get to sit back, enjoy the ride, company and beautiful surroundings, is a great time.

2 months ago
Charlotte, NC
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I don't know about the Moo shine ride, but our ride had beautiful scenery. A group of us booked the caboose so we were able to stand outside on the little "porches".

2 months ago
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