Tennessee Wonderland: A Great Smoky Mountains Treasure from 1912-2001


I’m here in the Great Smoky Mountains in East
Tennessee, and today I’m going to check out an old abandoned hotel called the Wonderland
Hotel. It’s right over here in the Elkmont region. I’m going to go check it out.
So I had to go down a dead end road and that eventually led me to two or three different
pull-ins. This one, a long one, looks like it finally leads to the old hotel and
all the houses coming up. I turned a corner, and here’s some electrical equipment. Ah of
course, the Elkmont Road Xbox. Pretty steep. Making a turn here. Here’s one of the
first houses, still here in the very back of the property. Gotta get through here. Old
lights. Back in here, the floorboards are pretty ripped up. I don’t really think I want
to go in there. Looks like the kitchen is actually on a slant, which means this property
is not in very good condition. If you look over here, you can see a kitchen right
back there. Looks like an old counter with some jugs. Zoom back out. This is concrete
here so I’m ok stepping on this. Some glass. Let’s have a look in the window. Can’t really
see a lot. I mean there’s not a lot to see. There’s some kind of a mattress when
I looked in there. I’m definitely not going in. As you can see the roof has collapsed.
If I go in there, I could get stuck, and believe it or not, that’s not part of my goal
here today. Back behind the house, there’s a river. It’s just right down there.
It’s kind of far. I can’t really get all the way down to there, but as you can see,
there it is in the middle, going from left to right. Spotted something else interesting.
As I step on this metal, let’s get through all this. Let’s get this branch out
of my way. I’m ok stepping on these steps. And it’s the basement. Looks like an old washer
and dryer in there. Some barrels. Pretty cool. I didn’t see a way down, so I’m
going to have to head back the same way I came up this drive. And I think there’s another
road that leaves to everything else. Yeah, here’s that electrical stuff again.
And here’s the other road. There’s the house up there. You can barely even see it. There
are so many trees and leaves. And it’s all the way down here, the road is. I don’t see
any steps. Up here on my left, another house. This one does have steps. Here’s a
good look at this one from up here. We’re going to have a look inside too. Used to be
a screened-in room. Living room. There’s the porch back there, looking down to the river.
Ok. I see now three houses ahead. Let’s take a peek in the bottom of this one. Looks like
somebody, there are the stairs to this one, somebody busted the lock. Let’s just go inside,
since there aren’t many that are probably stable like this. I once saw a timber rattlesnake
in this area. I don’t know what’s inside here, so I have to be very careful. There are probably
some broken floorboards in here. Let’s just take a look left in here. Ah, the shower.
There’s still a shower curtain. The wall’s all ripped up right here. All right, this
is just the bottom area and as you can see somebody busted the door open. Interesting
to see a house with a shower in the bottom and no way to get up unless you go outside.
A house on the left, and a very badly damaged house on the right. Let’s check this one out
first. There’s that house we just left. Oh, even better view of the river here. You can
hear the birds, very beautiful here. The river raging down there. And check that out. The
roof collapsed on that one but it hasn’t fallen down yet. The floorboards in these houses
did not do well over time. But, we can peek in the window since it looks a little too
dangerous to go in. We can get a good vantage right here of the main room. There’s a ladder
on the ground down here in the middle there. And we can go down a step or two here. It’s
a little slippery. Here are the remains of the back porch. Now let’s have a look at the
other house. Yeah, no way I’m going into this one. It’s all ripped up. Before we go in here,
there’s an old tv antenna. The door’s wide open. Let’s see what we’ve got in here. Pretty
cool. There’s even some hardware stuff left. Looks like there’s light coming in. Let me
go to the other side and stick my lens through one of these holes. There used to be an old
building over here with the old hotel. There’s still a building that remains. But, I guess
first off we can take a look at this. It is May 2013 whenever I am shooting this video,
if anybody comes afterward and wants to see what changed over time. Before we get to the
hotel, let’s go to what appears to be the last house, and wow, the most damaged house
of them all. Can’t really get in there. As you can see, in there, you can see floorboards
and forest behind it, so no way anything is happening going in there. Ah, over here though
we have a screen door blocking our path. So let’s just take a peek from outside. There’s
an outlet on the wall. The front door looks like it’s back there, leaning against the
wall. There’s an electric box. Let’s peek in the window. Oh, spider. Let’s check this
guy out. And let’s go and look inside. Are there boards in there? No. There’s a shelf
of some kind in there. Not much to see in this place anymore. We’ll have a look at this
sign here, and you can pause if you want to read. We can have a closer look at these photos.
Up there, that is the old building that’s no longer here, although a piece of it is
and I’ll show you in a second. This, some steps. Remember these steps in a few minutes.
The steps that they’re sitting on in that building up there. And then down here, some
old advertising for the place. All right, these are brick columns. There used to be
a big sign right about here that said Wonderland Hotel or something like that. There’s the
sign again. Now, as we head up here, there’s an old staircase in there. Boarded up windows
and not boarded up windows on the second floor of course. Now I’m going to do a pan of the
hotel here. I’ll get a wider shot later. This is one of the remaining buildings, or the
only remaining building really. Some glass has been broken on the upper floors. If I
follow the path over here, do you remember the staircase on that sign I told you to remember?
This is not it. This is a staircase that led to the left side of the building that was
at the top. And here, we can go over here, let’s just jump right here. Here’s the fireplace
that remains. And there’s the house on the left that we went to last. Checking out the
hotel, or the club, one more time. There’s one place you can look in, maybe two. Let’s
try to get a good shot. Nice and focused. So I don’t know what the purpose of this room
was. Obviously a fireplace, a very big fireplace. And some doors that led to another room. A
very big room. Pretty cool. Going around the side now to check out the back. Oh wow. No
way to get around over there. There’s that fireplace up close. This looks like one of
the only rooms that isn’t damaged. I see lots of floorboards that are damaged. I’m not going
to go any further. Some of the stairs have fallen in like the other buildings. Is that
a mail slot or something? Yeah. Whoa. No way in there. That floor goes up like it’s Inception.
And the staircase up top is completely damaged. But, here’s this. And there’s even some carpet
left right here. And some ceiling tiles. This is the last thing. Remember, here’s the hotel
so you can get a sense of direction. Always helpful in these exploration videos that have
so many cuts. Let’s head down here. We’ve not gone this way yet. This is where I need
to be careful. I can see that police station to the right through the trees. I can see
some different colors down there. It’s hard to see maybe on camera. Look over here. I’m
going to make this quick. If you look over here, here is this which led up to that main
building. And very slickly doing this, there’s the road down there where I originally parked my car and they told me I had to move it. And these are the stairs. They’re very hidden if you drive past. You’re probably not even going to notice them.

Comments 17

  • Hello everyone. You can support my future films by shopping on Amazon with this link: http://amzn.to/2tXeffU. Please update your Amazon bookmark with it. Prices are no different. The difference is that Amazon knows I referred you, so they give me a tiny cut of whatever you spend at no extra cost to you!

    Thanks for watching. Also I want to help clear something up about this film. This film shows a part of Elkmont that most tourists don't see when they look around at a different row of empty homes at the campground. The Wonderland area of Elkmont is somewhat hidden and is located up on a hill behind trees across from the river. Most people leave Elkmont thinking that they saw the row of homes that are shown in this film, and that's part of what makes this such a special part of Elkmont. It's very likely that far less than 1% of Elkmont's visitors even stop to see this specific area before they reach the campground.

  • The loss of these home is because of comrade mcconnell

  • I am so happy I came across this vid. Awesome work!

  • I live in Knoxville & get to Gburg quite often- I've never been to these places. Where exactly are they? I'd love to see for myself.

  • its all gone now.They torn down every single cabin and only left the fire places standing.The main annex building burned to a crisp.Its all just a memory.

  • Looks kinda creepy

  • I felt so sad while watching this…

  • Recently visited this location and it's amazing how time changes thing. Hardly anything is left in the current locations…

  • We've got it marked on our map for when SHTF places…. We've camped out there a few times, and the place really comes alive at night…Very peaceful!!

  • I thought that area had a bunch of Bigfoots running around?

  • Everything in and of this World is temporary. Our bodies are temporary. They wear out, like everything else on this earth. What goes on is the Soul. Who we truly are. Only God knows our Souls and hearts. Only through Jesus Christ can one approach The Father, Almighty God. It is ONLY in and through Jesus Christ, His suffering, Him Crucified and Resurrected from the dead to eternal life and Majesty, that we are saved!

  • My grandma was Jeanette Ownby . Her father was Simpson Ownby . Her grandfather was john Ownby . John and uncle lem were brothers .
    Uncle lem was my great great great uncle . He died when I was in the 7th grade .

  • I was raised in the mountains of Virginia,our house was back in the woods away from everyone.I had a good childhood there.This reminds me of home

  • I was just thinking that place is probably infested with snakes. And one goes in front of the camera. Creepy….

  • I love to explore. I've been exploring all my life. When I was a kid, I had three brothers and two sisters and I was the fourth child. We lived in Hollister, California way out in the country. And there was a creek that ran through our property. Summertime after chores we would fix a lunch and something to drink and then we saddled up the horse's and off we were exploring for the day. We had so much fun..

  • Some people just refuse to obey posted signs, and they put themselves at risk. You could get hurt and you would be in the middle of nowhere with no one around to help. All these buildings should be demolished.

  • I wonder what it is like now.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *