Value Watch: Watershed Cabins, N.C.
Gay-owned Watershed Cabins in the Great Smoky Mountains of North Carolina feature luxury log cabin rentals for the savvy, outdoor-loving traveler. The property is currently offering an exclusive deal for OutTraveler.com and GPS readers: 15% off your stay (rates range from $120-490 per night), two free spa services, and a choice of either two free hiking or kayaking trips when you mention OT. Super-peak periods are blacked out (their highest rate class, usually holidays) and your stay must be completed before Oct. 1.
Located near Fontana Lake, Bryson City, the Cherokee Indian Reservation, and the Great Smoky Mountains Railroad, Watershed Cabins provide log homes, chalets, and cottages that range from one-bedroom units to five-bedroom handcrafted wood lodges that can house 15 people (or more). Amenities include stainless-steel appliances, granite countertops, surround-sound systems, 600-thread-count Egyptian cotton linens, and a hot tub in every cabin. Deluxe or super-deluxe cabins also offer entertainment that ranges from a foosball table or pool table to a karaoke machine.
If you can pry yourself out of the hot tub, outdoor activities abound -- horseback riding, whitewater rafting on the Nantahala River, hiking on the Appalachian Trail, and fly fishing for trout.
Travel tip: Bring a pair of earplugs when you hit the road. When you find yourself sitting next to a loud passenger on a plane, stuck in a train with a crying infant, or staying in a hotel with thin walls, they are an indispensable, affordable solution.