Look no further than one of these tranquil locations in the North Carolina mountains if you are in search of a retreat at a higher elevation and are hoping to get away from the hustle and bustle of the major metropolis.
These towns, parks, and attractions are ideal destinations for solitary travel, romantic getaways, and family vacations because of the abundance of chances for outdoor activity, magnificent scenery, and wide-open spaces that can be found in these locations.
There are also historical and cultural sites, luxurious accommodations, and superb eating options available if you prefer a more laid-back style of trip. And if you’re a fan of craft beer, you’ll be pleased to learn that North Carolina is home to more than 370 breweries and brewpubs, making it the state with the most of its kind in the American South.
Best Places to Visit in NC Mountains
Check out the top locations to go in the North Carolina mountains if you are looking for a vacation that is either full of exciting activities, one that allows you to relax and unwind, or one that offers a little bit of both.
1. The City of Asheville
Asheville, with its unique Bohemian atmosphere and great location in the southern Blue Ridge Mountains, has become one of the most popular vacation destinations in the state of North Carolina.
The bustling cultural, craft beer and culinary scenes are just some of the things that visitors can look forward to exploring in addition to the historic Biltmore Estate, which is one of the primary attractions.
Along the 1.7-mile route, there are 30 memorial sites that may be found with the use of an interactive app that can be downloaded to your smartphone.
2. Biltmore Estate, Asheville
If you are planning a trip to Asheville and would like to see the Biltmore Estate while you are there, you should add a few additional days to your itinerary so that you have enough time to tour the estate’s 8,000 acres of property and grounds.
The historic Biltmore House is sometimes referred to as “America’s Largest Home,” and it was the home of George and Edith Vanderbilt in its earlier days. If you would like to remain in close proximity to all of the activities, there are a number of different lodging options available on the property.
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You can choose to stay at either the cozy Inn on Biltmore Estate or the more relaxed Village Hotel on Biltmore Estate.
3. Blue Ridge Parkway
The Blue Ridge Parkway is a winding road that spans 469 miles and connects the Blue Ridge Mountains, Shenandoah National Park in Virginia, and the Great Smoky Mountains National Park in North Carolina.
This road is known as “America’s Favorite Scenic Drive.” There are four primary entrances to the parkway in the Asheville area, and there are 252 miles of Western North Carolina that are really breathtaking to explore.
You have the option of driving your own vehicle along the route or going trekking on some of the most beautiful trails in the United States.
4. Great Smoky Mountains National Park in the United States
The Great Smoky Mountains National Park is the national park that receives the most visitors each year in the United States. The park is situated in the western part of North Carolina and the eastern part of Tennessee.
It extends across a total area of 520,000 acres, which is equivalent to 800 square miles, and it is home to numerous species of wildlife. Great Smoky Mountains National Park is also famous for the beautiful blue mist that hangs over the park’s mountains and valleys, which is where the name of the park comes from.
If you are going to be staying in Asheville, the Oconaluftee Visitor Center, which serves as the park’s primary western entry, is around 55 miles away from the city.
5. Linville, also known as Grandfather Mountain
Grandfather Mountain, which has a height of 5,946 feet in the northwest corner of the state, is a part of the UN-run Southern Appalachian Biosphere Reserve.
There are rock formations atop the mountain in North Carolina that have been dated as far back as 1.2 billion years, giving the mountain an estimated age of roughly 300 million years.
The Grandfather Mountain Stewardship Foundation, Inc. manages a portion of the park as a tourist attraction, and a portion of the proceeds from that operation go toward the preservation of the mountain.
6. The Blowing Rock
Since 1933, Blowing Rock has been one of the most popular tourist locations in the North Carolina mountains and is often regarded as the state’s oldest tourist attraction.
An old rock that was formed during the process of the construction of the Blue Ridge Mountains is now a jagged cliff that sits at an elevation of 4,000 feet above sea level and overlooks Johns River Gorge, which is located 3,000 feet below.
You can also see Hawksbill Mountain and Table Rock to the southwest from the precarious ledge, and Grandfather Mountain and Mount Mitchell to the west. Both of these mountains are in the Blue Ridge Mountains.
7. Bryson City is Home to the Nantahala Outdoor Center
More than one million visitors come through the Nantahala Outdoor Center each year to participate in a wide variety of land- and river-based activities and excursions. NOC was established in 1972 as a little motel and petrol station situated beside the Nantahala River.
Today, it is recognized as one of the most extensive facilities for outdoor activity in the United States. In addition to that, Olympic competitors come here to train and prepare for their competitions.
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At NOC, you may choose from almost an overwhelming number of activities that will get your heart racing, and there are also a lot of these kinds of things to do in other places in North Carolina and in other states like Tennessee and Georgia.
8. The City of Bryson
Plan to spend an extra day or two in Bryson City when you go to the Nantahala Outdoor Center to take advantage of the many exciting things it has to offer.
This laid-back hamlet is located along the Tuckasegee River, and it has quite a lot to offer for its tiny size. There are craft galleries, bookstores, fly-fishing shops, a history museum, an aquarium, and several restaurants, among other things.
9. Pisgah National Forest, Asheville
In the Pisgah National Forest, there are more than 500,000 acres of old-growth trees, and George W. Vanderbilt previously owned about 100,000 of those acres.
Edith Vanderbilt, after the death of her husband in 1914, sold the grounds to the United States government, which resulted in the establishment of the first national forest located east of the Mississippi River.
Additionally, Pisgah was the location of the very first school of forestry in the United States. Within the park, visitors will find the Cradle of Forestry in America Historic Site, also known as the Cradle of Forestry in America Historic Site.
10. The Resort at Sugar Mountain
If you are interested in mountain sports, the mountains of North Carolina also provide a variety of opportunities for wintertime outdoor experiences. Sugar Mountain Resort is widely considered to be the best ski destination in North Carolina.
The ski resort can be found around 110 miles northwest of Charlotte International Airport and is situated close to the mountain towns of Boone and Blowing Rock. It is the most popular ski resort in North Carolina and boasts the greatest vertical drop of any mountain in the state.
In addition to this, it is distinguished from the other ski resorts in the state by offering a wider range of terrain and more challenging runs.
North Carolina mountain villages, which are located in the heart of the Blue Ridge Mountains and are less than an hour’s drive west of downtown Asheville, make it possible for the whole family to spend quality time together at an inexpensive price.
On your trip to the mountains, make sure to avoid the congested tourist traps and take advantage of the many free outdoor activities that are available. The majority of the southeast can reach Jackson County quickly and on a single tank of gas if they travel there.
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