We, a group of 6 adult and a toddler, stayed at Hickory RIdge, one of the secluded cabins maintained by Cove Mountain Realty in Wears Valley. This town is about 20 mins drive from Pigeon Forge and cabin itself is another 15-20 mins uphill drive from main office in valley. It sits on a ridge (just like name suggests) meaning there is slope with forest on both sides. That actually gives it a perfect seclusion and a vantage viewing point. It has three levels and total 3 bedrooms and a loft with capacity to accommodate 9 people easily. The bottom most level with master-king-bedroom and full attached bathroom, pool table, and patio with outdoor 4 people hot tub. Mid level with 2 bedrooms, one with a king bed, and the other with two twin beds. It has a separate bathroom with indoor jacuzzi tub. It has main hall, kitchen and a patio straight out looking into the gorgeous mountain views. Upper level is actually a loft with king bed, daybed and full bathroom. Added chest for linen storage. Outside there is a log swing.
Ambience was very peaceful. Lighting was adequate. Kitchen is fully equipped with utensils and chinaware. Wifi working very well to the needs of 6 of us. That makes cell phone signal requirement rudimentary since you have wifi and you can stay in contact with outer world via apps on smartphone. There was a landline in cabin but we never used it. We had two maintenance requests and both were addressed in a very timely manner. Very happy about it. No roach infestation. We also used the washer and dryer as well as dish washer, all are in good working condition. Main door has electronic lock so no need to have a key as long as you remember the code. And I hope they are changing the lock code every certain times.
There are alternate routes to Gatlinburg and Pigeon forge just in case the main routes are overcrowded which happens a lot during busy summer weekends. Wears Valley sits in between Pigeon Forge and Townsend where the famous cades cove and Abrams falls are located. Also you have an option to enter SMNP via a bypass route meeting at Sugarland visitors center. Laurel falls and little river picnic areas are on that route.
The distant location from main attractions of Gatlinburg (45-60 mins) and Pigeon Forge (30-40 mins) are the only downside. But if you really wanted to be on middle of that then why would you even consider staying this far out. Choose staying at a local hotel instead because local cabins at Gatlinburg especially during peak holidays and summer weekends get occupied very fast.
Overall, we had a very positive experience and lasting memories. We would certainly consider renting this again if we are in the area. Wears Valley is a hidden gem not too far from main attractions.