Best 5 Coziest Small Towns in Tennessee - To Visit This Winter [New Study]

Dec 06, 2022 at 12:31 pm by WGNS News

(Middle Tennessee) Have you ever been to a town and said to yourself, “This sure is a cozy place!” Chances are good that some of the places you think are nice and comfortable are the same places that others feel at home in as well.

The matchmaking platform compiled the recent ranking of the coziest small towns in the US and as luck would have it, some of the nice little towns are in our own backyard. One of those cozy towns is Bell Buckle, which is literally next door to Rutherford County in Bedford County. Bell Buckle, ranked as the 135th coziest town in the United States, had a population of 500-residents at last count. Bell Buckle is home to the annual RC and Moon Pie Festival.


Some of the other cozy places in the Volunteer State include the beautiful area of Sewanee, which is just a hop, skip and a jump from the ‘Boro. Sewanee, at only 60-miles South of Murfreesboro, is ranked as the 145th coziest spot in America. The population of Sewanee stands at just over 2,500 residents and is home to the University of the South.

About 3 and a half hours from Rutherford County, you’ll find the mountainous region of Gatlinburg, Tennessee. That area of the Volunteer State is ranked as the 84th coziest spot in America.

More Details - Best 5 Coziest Small Towns in Tennessee - To Visit This Winter 

It's the time of year when we’re layering on sweaters and blankets, and to celebrate the winter season, the dating reviews website has ranked the coziest small towns in the USA. 

These Tennessee towns are considered the coziest: Gatlinburg (ranked No. 84 coziest in the nation), Bell Buckle (135), Sewanee (145), and Columbia (158).

To determine the coziest small towns in America, MyDatingAdviser compared 170 well-known small towns across the country on ten key metrics.  

They looked into winter temperature, average snowfall, cafes, bakeries, crafts, and bookshops, among other indicators of a cozy small town. By analyzing the data points, each town has been given a ‘Cozy Town Index Score,’ representing the level of coziness you might experience in that small town. 

If you’re in the mood for cozy towns to get into the winter spirit, here are some of the best small towns across the country to visit for some serious winter comfort.

Here are the 4 coziest towns in Tennessee:  

  1. Gatlinburg  

Of all the towns on this list, Gatlinburg boasts one of the best natural settings—the Smoky Mountains, to be exact. It is often referred to as the gateway to Great Smoky Mountains National Park, which means you’re always a stone’s throw away from dense forests, hiking trails, and waterfalls. As for the town itself, expect to find old-school Southern restaurants, moonshine distilleries, and log cabins galore. And did we mention that Dollywood is just a 20-minute drive away? That’s reason enough to plan a lengthy visit. 

  • Rank: #84 out of 170 cities 
  • Average Winter Temperature: 40.5 °F, Winter Season: 2.9 months, Snowfall: 9 inches, Days Below Freezing: 96.3
  1. Bell Buckle 

Found between Nashville and Chattanooga, visit Bell Buckle, the home of RC Cola and Moon Pies. Every summer, the town celebrates both with an RC-Moon Pie Festival in June. But the city isn't just home to old-fashioned sweets; antique stores and Victorian homes are lining the streets. A visit to Bell Buckle promises an unforgettable experience. You’ll see antiques, crafts, and art from local artists – from the store’s shelves and walls to the numerous events held in Bell Buckle. 

  • Rank: #135 out of 170 cities 
  • Average Winter Temperature: 41.5 °F, Winter Season: 3 months, Snowfall: 2 inches, Days Below Freezing: 83.2
  1. Sewanee 

“Downtown” Sewanee offers a collection of charming shops and some of the best dining in Middle Tennessee. Many of the town’s 2,300 residents are teachers and artists, creating a lively community that highly values the arts and education—the University of the South and St. Andrew’s-Sewanee School host frequent lectures, art exhibitions, and concerts. In addition, the community’s Friday Nights in the Park series and annual Angel Fest provide free concerts in the village, closing the street to create a festival-like atmosphere for friends and neighbors to enjoy good food and music. 

  • Rank: #145 out of 170 cities 
  • Average Winter Temperature: 40.5 °F, Winter Season: 3 months, Snowfall: 4 inches, Days Below Freezing: 84.7
  1. Columbia 

Columbia is a small Tennessee town just 45 miles south of Nashville, TN. The historic downtown is vibrant, with a live music scene and the main street with vintage shops, national landmarks, and restaurants featuring locally sourced menu items. The new Columbia Arts District is next to downtown and displays funky and creative artwork brought to life by local artists and artisans. Southern hospitality and community pride are ingrained in Columbia’s culture and felt by those who visit. Some major attractions include historical museums, churches, parks, breweries, and a vintage marketplace. 

  • Rank: #158 out of 170 cities 
  • Average Winter Temperature: 40 °F, Winter Season: 3 months, Snowfall: 2.4 inches, Days Below Freezing: 87.2

Find the 20 coziest small towns in the USA: 

  1. Stockholm, Wisconsin
  2. Stowe, Vermont
  3. Stanley, Idaho
  4. Ellicottville, New York
  5. Breckenridge, Colorado
  6. Medora, North Dakota
  7. Lake Placid, New York
  8. Keystone, South Dakota
  9. Mackinac Island, Michigan
  10. Lake George, New York
  11. Deadwood, South Dakota
  12. Leadville, Colorado
  13. Silverton, Colorado
  14. Saugatuck, Michigan
  15. Leavenworth, Washington
  16. Kohler, Wisconsin
  17. Telluride, Colorado
  18. Harpers Ferry, West Virginia
  19. Talkeetna, Alaska
  20. Baileys Harbor, Wisconsin
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