They’re back! Great Smokies announce synchronous firefly viewing dates

GREAT SMOKY MOUNTAINS NATIONAL PARK (WLOS) — Great Smoky Mountains National Park officials have announced the dates for firefly viewing in Elkmont.

Shuttle service to the viewing area will be provided on Thursday, May 30 through Thursday, June 6.

All visitors wishing to view the synchronous fireflies at Elkmont must have a parking pass distributed through the lottery system at

Every year in late May or early June, thousands of visitors gather near the popular Elkmont Campground to observe the naturally occurring phenomenon of Photinus carolinus, a firefly species that flashes synchronously.

Since 2006, access to the Elkmont area has been limited to shuttle service beginning at Sugarlands Visitor Center during the eight days of predicted peak activity in order to reduce traffic congestion and provide a safe viewing experience for visitors that minimizes disturbance to these unique fireflies during the critical two-week mating period.

Read more here.

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