10 Best Plaza Midwood Restaurants in Charlotte, North Carolina

Plaza Midwood Restaurants

Plaza Midwood, a neighborhood just southeast of Uptown Charlotte NC, is one of the fastest growing (and fastest changing) areas of the Queen City. As a longtime local resident, it is also one of my personal favorites! I love to explore Charlotte’s eclectic and culturally diverse neighborhoods, with their always intriguing mix of new and … Read more

The 20 Best Things to Do in Waynesville NC & Haywood County

Best Things to Do in Waynesville NC Header

[Updated June 7, 2023] When my wife and I explore the Blue Ridge Mountains, it’s typically with two main goals in mind.  The first objective is to create in-depth guides on the best things to see and do there. The second is to use that information to decide whether or not we want to move … Read more

The 20 Best Things to Do in Brevard NC & Transylvania County

Transylvania County Courthouse in downtown Brevard, one of the Best Things to do in Brevard NC

[Updated May 29, 2023] In the three years since we launched this site, we’ve visited more than 50 Blue Ridge Mountain towns in the search for our future mountain home.  From Blue Ridge and Blairsville GA to Bryson City and Waynesville NC, there have been several different places that made their way onto our shortlist.  … Read more

The 15 Best Smoky Mountain Waterfalls to Visit

Laurel Falls Smoky Mountains

Of all the Great Smoky Mountains attractions, chasing waterfalls is arguably among the most popular and rewarding activities.   The Great Smoky Mountain waterfalls are abundant and breathtaking, with hikes that appeal to every age and ability level. In our experience, many of these Great Smoky Mountains waterfalls are among the most impressive natural attractions … Read more

Exploring the Mt Pisgah Campground in Canton NC

Mount Pisgah Overlook

If you’re eager to spend time at one of the best campgrounds near Canton NC, look no further than the ever-popular Mt Pisgah Campground. Located at Blue Ridge Parkway Milepost 408.8, at an impressive elevation of 4,980 feet, this particular Pisgah campground is in a perfect spot for exploring the surrounding areas. Camping in the Pisgah … Read more

The 10 Best Things to Do in Franklin NC & Macon County

Downtown Franklin- Best Things to do in Franklin NC & Macon County Lead

We’ve explored more than 50 different Blue Ridge Mountain towns over the last few years. Thanks to research skills I’ve developed over 25+ years as a professional travel writer, it’s pretty rare for a place to surprise me in the way Franklin NC did. Nestled in the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains, just 2 … Read more

The 15 Best Things to Do in Maggie Valley NC

Maggie Valley NC Seen From Ghost Town in the Sky

[Updated May 22, 2023] Located about halfway between Bryson City and Asheville, Maggie Valley NC is a small mountain town with something of a split personality.  The town has been home to colorful characters such as bluegrass legend Raymond Fairchild, bootlegger Marvin “Popcorn” Sutton, and Deliverance actor Herbert “Cowboy” Coward (who got his start at the … Read more

Where are the Blue Ridge Mountains? A State-by-State Guide

Blue Ridge Mountains North Carolina - Sunset at Jump Off Rock in Hendersonville NC

“Where are the Blue Ridge Mountains?” is a question we get fairly often, and it’s understandable why so many people are confused by the geographical definition of the region.  Stretching 550 miles from North Georgia to Southern Pennsylvania, the Blue Ridge Mountain range is part of the larger Appalachian Mountain range. So all Blue Ridge … Read more

The 10 Best Things to Do in Mount Airy NC (& Surry County)

Things to Do in Mount Airy NC

Though we’ve lived within an hour of Mount Airy, North Carolina, for the last five years, we’ve rarely found time to make our way over to the beloved mountain town. For those who haven’t heard of Mt Airy, actor Andy Griffith was born there, and it was the inspiration for the fictional town of Mayberry … Read more

The 20 Best Things to Do in Cherokee NC & the Qualla Boundary

The Best Things to Do in Cherokee NC & the Qualla Boundary

[Updated May 9, 2023] Cherokee, North Carolina is not like any other town we’ve ever visited during our extensive explorations of the Blue Ridge Mountains.  That’s partly because most of the area lies within the Qualla Boundary, which is held as a land trust by the US Bureau of Indian Affairs for the federally recognized Eastern … Read more