Skip to Main Content

Elkmont, Tennessee: Mysterious Synchronous Fireflies

An abandoned hamlet in Great Smoky Mountains National Park where fireflies inexplicably blink in sync in June. No one knows why.

Elkmont Rd, Elkmont, TN
From Gatlinburg drive southwest on US Hwy 441 for two miles into Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Turn right at the Sugarlands Visitor Center onto Little River Rd. Drive five miles. Turn left onto Elkmont Rd and drive a mile to the campground. During "Firefly Week" every early June, Elkmont Rd is closed from 5 PM to midnight; you have to take a trolley from the Sugarlands Visitor Center.
After dark; early June is peak time. Get parking pass in advance. (Call to verify) Local health policies may affect hours and access.
RA Rates:
Worth a Detour
Save to My Sights
Elkmont, Tennessee - Blink Blink…Blink Blink…
Mysterious Synchronous Fireflies: It happens every June, supposedly. In an abandoned hamlet named Elkmont, now a part of Great Smoky Mountains National Park, countless fireflies blink in unison after dark. [06/01/2010] Complete Story...

Visitor Tips and News About Mysterious Synchronous Fireflies

Reports and tips from visitors and Roadside America mobile tipsters. Some tips may not be verified. Submit your own tip.

Mysterious Synchronous Fireflies

Due to popularity, the Elkmont campground closes access to all but registered campers or those with parking passes after 5:00 pm during the weeks of the firefly showing. Advance parking passes are free and available online on a first come basis (limited number day-of passes available at location). There is a small charge for the trolley to take you to the campground.

[Kerry, 06/11/2015]

Nearby Offbeat Places

Blindshot Barnaby's Circus GolfBlindshot Barnaby's Circus Golf, Gatlinburg, TN - 5 mi.
Hollywood Star Cars MuseumHollywood Star Cars Museum, Gatlinburg, TN - 5 mi.
Scrap Metal Pizza GuyScrap Metal Pizza Guy, Gatlinburg, TN - 5 mi.
In the region:
American Museum of the House Cat, Sylva, NC - 30 mi.

Latest Tips Across Roadside America

Catch up on the latest discoveries from the road.

Explore Thousands of Oddball Tourist Attractions!

Unique destinations in the U.S. and Canada are our special obsession. Use our attraction recommendation and maps to plan your next road trip.

My Sights

My Sights on Roadside America

Create Your Own Bizarre Road Trips! ...Try My Sights

Mobile Apps

Roadside America app: iPhone, iPad Roadside America app for iPhone, iPad. On-route maps, 1,000s of photos, special research targets! ...More

Roadside Presidents app: iPhone, iPad Roadside Presidents app for iPhone, iPad. POTUS landmarks, oddities. ...More

Tennessee Latest Tips and Stories

Latest Visitor Tips

Sight of the Week

Sight of the Week

National Museum of Military Vehicles, Dubois, Wyoming (Oct 2-8, 2023)

SotW Archive

USA and Canada Tips and Stories

More Sightings