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Day Trip to Cherokee, NC

Day trip to Cherokee NC -- Cherokee is rich in heritage and culture. Home to 26,992 Cherokee tribesmen, this Indian reservation offers many activities, rich arts and crafts, and museums. A day in Cherokee will be fun and enriching. Begin your day with a bountiful breakfast in Maggie Valley then head over Soco Mountain to Cherokee. Trip time: 15 mins.

cherokee indian crafts
Qualla Arts and Crafts

Discover fine art hand made by the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians.
The member artists of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians (EBCI) have learned handcrafts from their families and community, calling on materials and traditions passed down for many generations. You’ll be treated to an amazing palette of artistry, including international, national and locally acclaimed works representing a variety of practices - many that go back ten thousand years. The arts represented include pottery making, basket weaving, beadworking, silversmithing, tool- and doll- and toy-making, singing, dancing and storytelling.

645 Tsali Blvd, Cherokee NC (Across the street from the
Museum of the Cherokee Indian)
unto these hills indian drama
Image courtesy of

"Unto These Hills" - Outdoor Drama

Unto These Hills, one of the longest running outdoor dramas in the U.S., traces the Cherokee people through the aeons, through the zenith of their power, through the heartbreak of the Trail of Tears, ending in the present day where the Cherokee people continue to rewrite their place in the world.
To purchase tickets by phone, call toll free 866-554-4557. Tickets are also available at the Cherokee Historical Association Box Office at 564 Tsali Blvd., across the street from the Museum of the Cherokee Indian (off Highway 441N) 9:00am – 4:00pm, and at the Mountainside Theatre (during summer season – located at 688 Drama Road) 4:00pm until show time. The 2014 Season runs from May 31st to August 16th.
688 Drama Road, Cherokee, NC
oconaluftee indian village
Image courtesy of Down in the Valley
Oconaluftee Indian Village

Go back in time to the days when the Cherokee lived before they were forced to leave their beloved land. Experience cultural dances and interact with villagers as they hull canoes, make pottery, create masks, weave baskets, fashion beadwork, and participate in their daily activities. The Village also hosts live reenactments, interactive demonstrations, and “Hands-On Cherokee.” Arts and crafts classes for the children are held daily Monday through Saturday. Check with the box office for times and prices. Open from May 1, 2014 until November 8, 2014
564 Tsali Blvd. (Hwy 441), Cherokee NC
warriors of anikituhwa
Image courtesy of Museum of the Cherokee Indian

Museum of the Cherokee Indian

The museum offers exhibits depicting the lives of the Cherokee from Pre 8,000 BC to 1,500 AD. A new exhibit was installed in 1998 that combines computer-generated imagery, special effects, and audio with an extensive artifact collection. This $3.5 million dollar project tells the story of the Cherokee and their ancestors from twelve thousand years ago through the present. Learn who the Cherokee are and why they are still here.
Fifty photographs of contemporary locations on the Trail of Tears are on display along with a reproduction of the 1838 protest roll containing 15,562 Cherokee names. The Trail of Tears National Historic Trail covers more than 1,200 miles through nine states from North Carolina to Oklahoma.
589 Tsali Boulevard, Cherokee NC
Elk Viewing

At the Oconaluftee Farm Museum, located at the entrance to Great Smoky Mountains National Park, you can often find a herd of elk grazing in the field. Bring your camera for these photographic moments.
warriors of anikituhwa
Image courtesy of Harrah's Cherokee
Dining in Cherokee

You will find a number of great restaurants in Cherokee from fast food to fine dining. If you arrive in time for breakfast, there are several mom and pop restaurants that serve up a hearty mountain breakfast. For lunch, the local Dairy Queen has excellent food. There is also McDonald's, Pizza restaurants, KFC, and others.

For dinner, Harrah's Cherokee Casino offers a fabulous buffet and Brio, an Italian restaurant. In the hotel area is Selu Garden Cafe which has a smaller buffet and a la carte menu-- excellent food. All of these restaurants are fine dining and are open to all ages. Inside the casino is a food court, Noodles & Co., and Ruth's Chris Steak House -- must be age 21 or older.
777 Casino Drive, Cherokee NC


Thou hast turned for me my mourning into dancing: thou hast put off my sackcloth, and girded me with gladness.
Psalms 30:11

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