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Rent SUPs, take lessons and even take a guided river trip. Fun way to see fall color, too! Be a kid again and splash around in a cool mountain swimming hole. Ride down Sliding Rock, swim under a waterfall, sun on a mountain beach or pristine lake, or spend a lazy day tubing down a river. So many options for mountain bike riders of all skill levels. Plus, bike the Blue Ridge Parkway or a greenway. Traveling with your dog?

See our Pet-Friendly Guide to Asheville and the North Carolina mountains that includes lodging, hiking, Biltmore, kennels, dog parks and more. Explore the most visited national park in the country!

Four entrances to the Park are within 60 miles of downtown Asheville. There are thousands of miles of hiking trails near Asheville, many of which are in pristine national forests or parks. We picked our favorites and created extensive guides for each with photos and details.

Find hikes for all skill levels in the Blue Ridge and Smoky Mountains. Dine outdoors in nature! Plan a picnic at some amazing locations where you can enjoy sweet views. There are lots of options if you want to plan a few fun day trips while you are in Western North Carolina.

Explore our favorite cool small towns in the NC mountains near Asheville, each with its own personality, local shops and restaurants, friendly residents, and relaxed atmosphere. See gorgeous countryside, mountain views and charming communities on a windshield tour via national and state scenic byways near Asheville.

Lots of opportunities for stops along the way. Fly above the trees and experience the mountains’ natural beauty from a bird’s perspective. No experience is needed. Canopy guides provide all instruction and assistance. It’s fun for all fitness levels! The summit of this mountain is choked with rhododendrons and laurel bushes, but with a little creativity — or just a very long pair of legs — hikers can gain a pretty impressive view from the top.

Hikers can use the Blue Ridge Parkway to reach the Mountains to Sea Trail, or the Douglas Falls Trailhead, both of which will lead to a smaller, steep, 1-mile path to the top. Rocky Face Mountain is a great location for rock climbing, with an old stone quarry where climbers will find a number of challenging and fun routes. There are also about 5 miles of trails on the mountain, which are all incredibly well made and kept, although no camping is allowed anywhere within the park.

Places to visit near me: Connecticut beaches , Anniversary trip ideas , Jeffersonville The hike to the summit begins at the parking area for the Florence Nature Preserve and extends for 5.

On a clear day, even Linville Gorge can be spotted. The mountain, which is located near Morgantown, is home to the Harper Creek Trail, a loop trail that brings hikers into the Harper Creek Drainage, which is home to the waterfalls. The trail follows a gorge, where a cold, clear mountain stream travels down cascades, over rocks, and makes for some incredibly beautiful waterfalls. During the spring and summer, the area is packed with colorful wildflowers, making it a truly picturesque spot.

There are no direct trails to the summit, but hikers can make their way there nonetheless with some bushwhacking. This hike is not for amateur hikers, and items like a GPS, map, or compass are suggested when attempting this route. From its summit, hikers can find views of Mount Mitchell to the north as well as of the Swannanoa Valley. The privately owned but publicly accessible town of Montreat is where the trailheads originate for this mountain, and signs clearly point to Graybeard Trail, which is the main trailhead.

The trail extends for about 6 miles to the top of the mountain, and the change in elevation is steep, about 2, feet. The mountain rises above the Eno River and is one of the most dramatic summits in the state. The Occoneechee Mountain Loop Trail will lead hikers up stairs and hills, through forests of mountain laurel and rhododendron, and even over an old stone quarry known as the Panthers Den.

The rock in this quarry is unsuitable for climbers and should not be explored. For a gentler hike, the Summit Road will also lead hikers to the top, albeit with less scenery. Most of the hike to the summit is in forested areas, although there are some lovely views near the summit, where trees have difficulty growing.

Make sure you spend some time outdoors exploring the nearby waterfalls or the Fire Mountain Trails. If you visit this majestic settlement during July and August, then make sure you visit Geneva Hall. Events are held every Friday and Saturday evening and include music, traditional dancing, and the iconic cake walk.

The scenic Burnsville is home to the towering Mount Mitchell. With endless outdoor adventures waiting for you, stunning scenery, and plenty of unique stores, Burnsville has plenty to offer! This mountain town is home to a natural hot spring, which is the only known spring of its type in North Carolina!

People have been visiting the hot spring since the s due to the belief that it contains healing properties. The Appalachian Trail runs through Hot Springs, so allow some time to hike along a portion of it. For those not interested in adventure activities, you can go horseback riding or visit the Artisan Gallery and Cafe.

The scenic mountain town of Morganton is located along the Catawba River and has been inhabited since the early s, making it one of the most historic North Carolina mountain towns to visit!

Morganton is situated within the base of the Blue Ridge Mountains, so travelers are surrounded by breathtaking scenery no matter where you look! There are lots of outdoor activities to get involved with here, including hiking, cycling, and fishing. There is much to do and explore, with its alluring mountain views, cool attractions, and natural beauty. Scott Fitzgerald and Nina Simone, whose childhood home is a historical landmark you can visit.

Covering an impressive acres, Norma Wilder Forest is home to plenty of fantastic trails, beautiful wildflowers, and birdwatching opportunities. While Asheville is decidedly a city, not a town, no list of the best places to visit in Western NC could leave it off! Plus, if you ask the locals, Asheville often feels more like an oversized town than a city, anyway.

Be sure to check out the historic courthouse and the wonderfully restored mansion that now houses Morganton Savings Bank. If you are looking for things to do, the TGIF Summer Concert Series features a wide variety of musicians playing free Friday night concerts in the main square.

In early September, the Morganton Festival is a huge event with big name bands, celebrations, games, and arts and crafts vendors set up in the streets. For a tasty and unique treat any time, stop in at the Toasted and Rolled Ice Cream and Bakery , where you can watch your custom ice-cream creation being made right in front of you.

Cream is poured on a frozen sheet and rolled up in a Thai tradition, and capped with your favorite toppings. Accommodation: Where to Stay in Morganton. If you decide to walk up the stairs to the courthouse, you’ll be rewarded by panoramic views over the downtown and surrounding countryside, including the Blue Ridge Mountains. Main Street is a mix of restaurants and retail shops, including a disproportionate number of bookstores considering the size of the town.

If you are in town on a Friday, be sure to catch one of the free summer musical events taking place at Concerts on the Creek at the Bridge Park. Fans of fly fishing may have already heard of Sylva. The Tuckasegee River flows nearby and is regarded as a hot spot for trout and whitewater fish populations.

Accommodation: Where to Stay in Sylva. Brevard Photo Copyright: Lana Law. Brevard is ideally situated at the base of the Blue Ridge Mountains, close to some of North Carolina’s most spectacular waterfalls.

It makes an excellent base if the main purpose of your trip is to spend some time sightseeing in the mountains, or a good lunch stop if you are out on a day trip from Asheville or Hendersonville. Brevard has a pleasant feel about it. The downtown area has many restored buildings and interesting shops, and you’ll have no trouble finding a place for lunch or dinner at one of the many restaurants.

Accommodation: Where to Stay in Brevard. A little over an hour west of Asheville, Bryson City calls itself the gateway to the Smokey Mountains , and is, in fact, a great option for travelers looking to visit the park. The town is home to the Great Smokey Mountains Railroad , a popular sightseeing excursion that has several different routes, the most popular is the Nantahala Gorge return trip. Rolling hills surround the town, and the Tuckasegee River runs through the middle. In summer, you may see people fishing.

These two streets are also home to numerous shops and restaurants. Beyond the downtown, you will find lovely homes and streets with manicured yards and views in all directions. Accommodation: Where to Stay in Bryson City. Waynesville Photo Copyright: Lana Law. The busy Main Street is lined with covered sidewalks, and is an ideal place for a bit of retail therapy. You’ll also find a fine assortment of restaurants, many with outdoor patios.



5 Fantastic Mountain Escapes in North Carolina |

Sep 12,  · Highlands is one of the best North Carolina mountain towns if you are looking for waterfalls! Banner Elk. Located in North Carolina’s beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains, Banner . Banner Elk is a popular winter destination and one of the most beautiful mountain towns in North Carolina. It is within 15 minutes distance of Sugar Mountain Ski Resort and Beech Mountain . Sep 14,  · The Best North Carolina Mountain Towns to Visit Blowing Rock. Blowing Rock, North Carolina, is a quaint mountain town that sits on the scenic Blue Ridge Parkway and is.


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