Escape to this tranquil East Tennessee destination offering breathtaking views, great fishing, superb hiking and horseback riding trails. Come home to Monroe County.
Just southwest of Great Smoky Mountains National Park and gateway to the Cherokee National Forest, Monroe County is easily accessible from I-75, less than an hour from Knoxville and Chattanooga.
As the Cherokee National Forest comprises one-third of Monroe County, you will find an abundance of lakes, rivers and lush, wooded forests. It’s your own outdoor refuge. Let the soothing sounds of Bald River Falls, Fall Branch Falls and Tellico River carry you away. Breathe deeply to be enchanted by the sweet scent of the rhododendrons in bloom.
With 189 miles of trails, the Cherokee National Forest is a paradise for hikers, bikers and horseback riders.
Hit the road for a scenic drive or motorcycle ride on the Cherohala Skyway, a National Scenic Byway. The Skyway presents the cultural heritage of the Cherokee tribe and early settlers in a grand forest environment in the Appalachian Mountains. Enjoy mile-high vistas and brilliant fall foliage, as well as great hiking opportunities and picnic spots in magnificent and seldom-seen portions of the southern Appalachian National Forests.
After exploring winding East Tennessee roadways, switch gears from your convertible or motorcycle to a kayak or canoe. Dip into Monroe County’s great river and lake resources. Step into a rippling retreat and try your hand at fly-fishing in the Tellico, stocked weekly by the Tennessee Wildlife Resource Agency. Nearby at Indian Boundary Lake, campers, swimmers and bicyclists redefine the term "outdoor enthusiasts."
Waterfront golfing at Rarity Bay offers a championship course on 150 acres of rolling green hills with views of Tellico Lake and the Great Smoky Mountains. Kahite Golf Course in Tellico Village offers an additional par 72, 18-hole opportunity.
History buffs can explore Fort Loudoun State Historic Park. The National Historic Landmark (1965) situated on 1,200 acres is one of the earliest British fortifications on the western frontier, built in 1756. The fort was reconstructed during the Great Depression.
Along with living history and monthly interpretive programs, the park offers seasonal events such as the 18th-Century Trade Faire in October and Christmas at Fort Loudoun.
Festivals are a year-round Monroe County mainstay. Experience the sweetness of the National Muscadine Festival in historic Sweetwater, with events taking place at Tsali Notch Winery, Tennessee’s largest muscadine vineyard. Enjoy the splendor of the autumn season with the Cherokee Fall Fest or take a step back to experience the holidays at a slower pace with “A Small Town Christmas” in historic downtown Sweetwater.
Sweetwater, a Tennessee Main Street Community, offers year-round shopping in unique boutiques. Monroe County is also conveniently located to major shopping destinations in Knoxville.
Monroe County welcomes you home with miles of shoreline and outdoor recreation, easily accessible modern amenities and an average population of 45,265 combined with a low cost of living. We enjoy four glorious seasons that afford us gorgeous gardens, road trips and a rich diversity of sporting life.
Examples of 200k Homes
Those looking to relocate to Monroe County have the option to explore independent living and vast available real estate with mountain views, or to take advantage of master-planned waterfront and golf communities. Located on the shoreline of Rarity Bay in Vonore, Tellico Lake is the perfect place for water sports that include water skiing, boating, jet skiing and swimming. In addition, Tellico Lake is known for its views of the beautiful mountains as well as its fishing, where you can find brown or rainbow trout, bass and many other great catches.
Monroe County gives peace of mind with easily accessible healthcare. Home to Sweetwater Hospital Association, Monroe County provides medical specialties, such as family practice, general surgery, internal medicine, geriatrics, gastroenterology, obstetrics/gynecology, pediatrics, orthopedic surgery, urology, pulmonology, podiatry, oncology, otolaryngology, emergency medicine and anesthesiology. A 59-bed hospital offers acute care.
Access to additional major medical facilities is within close proximity: The University of Tennessee Medical Center, Blount Memorial, Fort Sanders and Tenova.
Tax and Living Expenses
Tennessee has no state property tax. Property taxes are locally determined and collected.
The median home value in Monroe County is $116,111.
Hiwassee College located in Madisonville offers retirees the opportunity for educational growth in academic programs for baccalaureate degrees, associate degree and specific interest certificates.
Monroe County is also close to the University of Tennessee, Tennessee Wesleyan College and Cleveland State.
Experience Living in Monroe County
We initially were looking at property in East Tennessee, and the real estate company suggested that we look at Rarity Bay. We fell in love with the community, found a lot and built our home with a beautiful view of the lake and the wonderful golf course. We sit on the deck and have the mountains to the right of us.- Jim Post, Nashville, Tennessee
We were living in Texas, about to retire. My wife was looking for a more moderate climate. We received a brochure from an ad for a golf course in East Tennessee. While on I-75, I saw a sign for Rarity Bay Golf Course in Monroe County, Tennessee. I liked it so much I called my wife and she came down the next week. We found a house, made the move to Monroe County, and we have no regrets.- Bob Mundle, Houston, Texas
Monroe County can take some of the hassle out of your lifestyle visit. We have arranged discounts with select hotels and have coordinated VIP treatment for our visitors with participating development partners (subject to availability).
Discover Tennessee Tour
Tennessee’s array of amenities will please any interest. Whether you enjoy a active lifestyle or prefer a more leisurely pace, Tennessee provides natural beauty, a mild climate, urban conveniences and rural peacefulness.
Contact us for your personal tour of a Retire TN county.