Exploring Emerald Village: North Carolina Gem Mines in Little Switzerland

Emerald Village Discovery Mill in Little Switzerland NC

Located just 31 miles from Asheville and three miles off the Blue Ridge Parkway, Emerald Village proved to be one of our favorite things to do in Little Switzerland NC. Featured on shows such as National Geographic Channel’s The Savage Line and Travel Channel’s Ultimate World Access, the complex offers a family-friendly immersion in NC … Read more

The 27 Best Waterfalls Near Asheville NC

Waterfalls near Asheville NC

Asheville’s reputation as a forward-thinking, nature-loving town in the heart of the Blue Ridge Mountains precedes it. Despite being only the 12th largest city in the state, Asheville still ranks among the most popular tourist destinations in North Carolina. In addition to the famous Biltmore Estate, the mountain town has a fantastic collection of art … Read more

The Appalachian Culture & History of the Blue Ridge Mountains

Appalachian Culture at the Foxfire Museum in Clayton GA

If you’ve lived in the Southeast for a good portion of your life (as our team has), chances are you’ve been exploring Appalachia and the Blue Ridge range for years. Maybe you’ve visited state parks in North Georgia and North Carolina, hiked to various waterfalls, soaked in the scenery atop majestic mountains, or taken a road … Read more

30 Fascinating Blue Ridge Mountains Facts

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Stretching north to south across the eastern United States, the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains are truly an iconic American landscape. The Blue Ridge range encompasses over 34,000 square miles of gorgeous mountain terrain filled with towering summits, meandering rivers, lush forests, gleaming lakes, and cascading waterfalls. So there is no shortage of breathtaking scenery to … Read more

Fall in North Carolina: The Best Places to See Fall Colors in Western NC

Autumn Leaves at the Linn Cove Viaduct on the Blue Ridge Parkway

Fall in North Carolina is particularly special because the autumn leaves are around for an extended amount of time. The vibrant fall colors almost seem to develop in shifts, gradually working their way down the Blue Ridge mountainsides as seasonal temperatures begin to drop. Changes at the higher altitudes (see: Mount Mitchell, Clingmans Dome, Richland … Read more

The 15 Best Pisgah National Forest Hiking Trails in North Carolina

Pisgah National Forest Hiking Trails

If you enjoy getting deep into the forest, exploring the Blue Ridge Mountains, and looking up as gorgeous waterfalls cascade down, then Pisgah National Forest is going to be a winner. Encompassing over 500,000 acres in Western North Carolina, Pisgah Forest offers lots of room to roam. Its hundreds of miles of trails provide an ample … Read more

Pisgah National Forest: A Beginner’s Guide

Pisgah National Forest - Blue Ridge Mountains

Pisgah National Forest encompasses over half a million acres of the Appalachian Mountains in Western North Carolina. The forest is separated into three ranger districts: Appalachia and Grandfather are located north of Asheville, while Pisgah is south of it. Within the national forest’s boundaries, visitors can explore sections of the Blue Ridge Mountains and the … Read more

The 20 Best Western North Carolina Waterfalls for Hiking

20 Western North Carolina Waterfalls - School House Falls

Spend any time in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Western North Carolina and you’ll quickly realize that waterfalls are a big thing here. Waterfalls in NC can be as literally big– as in over 800 feet high– as they are numerous. You’ll find approximately 250 waterfalls just in the 381-square-mile Transylvania County, located just south … Read more

The 10 Best Blue Ridge Parkway Hikes for NC Day Trips

Best Blue Ridge Parkway Hiking Trails

The Blue Ridge Parkway road trip is an American classic. It’s possible to traverse the entire 469-mile route on rubber alone, stopping at some of the 400+ overlooks for those famous scenic mountain views, without ever breaking a sweat. The list of the area’s attractions is so extensive, your Blue Ridge Parkway itinerary could easily … Read more

20 Best Blue Ridge Parkway Overlooks in NC & VA

20 Best Scenic Overlooks Blue Ridge Mountains Parkway

If ever there was a perfect time to take a road trip with little outside social interaction, plenty of open spaces to roam, and lots of beautiful landscapes to cover, the summer of 2020 is it. Cruising the Blue Ridge Parkway makes social distancing easy. And in our opinion, a Blue Ridge Parkway road trip … Read more