Gatlinburg, TN — The first-ever guide service to operate in Great Smoky Mountains National Park is offering travelers an unforgettable way to experience this summer’s solar eclipse — surrounded by some of the most spectacular scenery in the U.S. and in the direct path of the August 21 total solar eclipse. A Walk in the Woods today announced the fully guided “Total Eclipse of the Heart of the Southern Appalachians” package, which includes a boat ride to the center of Fontana Lake, which is in the heart of the Path of Totality. In addition to prime solar eclipse viewing, the experience also includes a stop in an abandoned Appalachian ghost town and a gourmet picnic.
“There is no better place to experience this once-in-a-lifetime astrological phenomenon than surrounded by the majesty of the Appalachians,” said A Walk in the Woods Co-owner Vesna Plakanis. “A few people still think that last year’s wild fires destroyed the Smokies, but in fact, very few of the region’s tourism destinations and finest natural features were impacted. We are welcoming visitors with even greater experiences than ever,” Plakanis said.
The Walk in the Woods solar eclipse experience begins on the water, as adventurers board a boat to cross Fontana Lake to explore an abandoned ghost town. After a gourmet picnic lunch, guests will take in the wonder of the solar eclipse through special eclipse viewing glasses from the highly secluded and peaceful setting on the edge of the Great Smoky Mountains. After experiencing the majesty of the solar eclipse, visitors can cool down from the dog days of summer heat in a nearby swimming hole and track Elk with the aid of a naturalist guide.
The exclusive Total Eclipse of the Heart of the Southern Appalachians package is open to just 12 participants and begins at $275 per person for a full day experience. The tour beings at 8 a.m. on Monday, Aug. 21 and visitors will return by 8 p.m. Participants will take a piece of their day home with them in the form of a commemorative solar eclipse gift.
Helping people immerse themselves in nature and the Smokies since 1998, A Walk in the Woods is a recipient of the prestigious REI Adventures Top Guide Award, a TripAdvisor’s Certificate of Excellence winner and a “Must See.” The tour company offers a variety of curated, nature-based experiences, from day hikes to multi-day backpacking adventures for groups and individuals of any age and skill level, including seniors, teams and corporate groups for team-building exercises, schools, scouts, individuals and families. Additional information is available at AWalkintheWoods.com, or by calling (865) 436-8283.