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Highlands Region: Day Trip Sample

A one day trip through the Highlands reveals the shift from flat plateau to mountain ridges. Find yourself in the rolling pastures of Doughton Park (Milepost 240 – 245) or exploring the Grandfather Mountain corridor (Milepost 295 – 300) or the rugged Linville Gorge (Milepost 317). A high degree of original Parkway design remains here and you will find mountain cabins in close proximity to magnificent country estates from the early twentieth century.

Morning

Heading south through Cumberland Knob (Milepost 218), be aware that you are traveling through the first section of the Parkway to be constructed, beginning in 1935. At Brinegar Cabin (Milepost 238.5) you can make a quick stop at the mountain home where Martin and Caroline Brinegar raised their family. Depending on the season or day of the week, costumed interpreters may be demonstrating farm life. This is the only Parkway structure on the National Register of Historic Places. Continuing south, you may want to stop at the Northwest Trading Post (Milepost 258.6) for some snacks or shopping. At E.B. Jeffress Park and the Cascades (Milepost 272), take time to picnic or stroll a short ways on the trail to the Cascades waterfalls (1.2 miles total) or head across the Parkway (.5 mile trail) to the Cool Springs Baptist Church and Jesse Brown Cabin. If picnicking isn’t an option, Blowing Rock is an easy access off of the Parkway and just twenty miles down the road.

Mid – Late Afternoon

After lunch enjoy the Grandfather Mountain corridor here in North Carolina’s High Country. Along the Parkway, visit the Moses Cone Memorial Park (Milepost 294) with the Cone family’s summer resort, Flattop Manor, serving as the Parkway’s official craft center. Views off of the front porch, a system of carriage trails, and shopping are available. Julian Price Park (Milepost 297) and the beautiful Price Lake Overlook (Milepost 297) are just a few miles south. The Linn Cove Viaduct and Visitor Center (Milepost 304.4) is an opportunity to experience the Parkway’s “last link” completed in 1987.

Late Afternoon – Early Evening

Linville Falls (Milepost 317) is one of the Parkway’s busiest areas. Lying along the Linville River, the visitor center has educational items for sale and is the trailhead for short or long hikes that will take you to a variety of overlooks, giving the visitor glimpses into one of the most rugged gorges and the first national wilderness area in the east.

Fifteen miles south, the Museum of North Carolina Minerals (Milepost 331) is the place to learn about the geology of the Blue Ridge region through highly interactive, educational exhibits. A night’s stay in Spruce Pine, Linville, or Little Switzerland completes a busy day!

Calendar

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23

The Polar Express™

Sunday, November 23, 2014, 6:00 pm

Common Threads: Five Influential Women and their Legacies

Sunday, November 23, 2014, 10:00 am

Battle of the Brushes Exhibit

Sunday, November 23, 2014, 10:00 am

Blow your own holiday ornament

Sunday, November 23, 2014, 11:00 am

Informal Jam on the Porch

Sunday, November 23, 2014, 2:00 pm

Marion Christmas Parade

Sunday, November 23, 2014, 3:00 pm

The Polar Express

Sunday, November 23, 2014, 5:00 pm

Christmas by Candlelight Tours

Sunday, November 23, 2014, 6:30 pm
24

The Polar Express™

Monday, November 24, 2014, 6:00 pm

Common Threads: Five Influential Women and their Legacies

Monday, November 24, 2014, 10:00 am

Battle of the Brushes Exhibit

Monday, November 24, 2014, 10:00 am

Blow your own holiday ornament

Monday, November 24, 2014, 11:00 am

The Polar Express

Monday, November 24, 2014, 5:00 pm

Annual Tree Lighting

Monday, November 24, 2014, 6:00 pm

Christmas by Candlelight Tours

Monday, November 24, 2014, 6:30 pm
25

The Polar Express™

Tuesday, November 25, 2014, 6:00 pm

Common Threads: Five Influential Women and their Legacies

Tuesday, November 25, 2014, 10:00 am

Battle of the Brushes Exhibit

Tuesday, November 25, 2014, 10:00 am

Blow your own holiday ornament

Tuesday, November 25, 2014, 11:00 am

The Polar Express

Tuesday, November 25, 2014, 5:00 pm

Christmas by Candlelight Tours

Tuesday, November 25, 2014, 6:30 pm
26

The Polar Express™

Wednesday, November 26, 2014, 6:00 pm

Thanksgiving Family Festivities at Fontana

Wednesday, November 26, 2014, 8:00 am

Common Threads: Five Influential Women and their Legacies

Wednesday, November 26, 2014, 10:00 am

Battle of the Brushes Exhibit

Wednesday, November 26, 2014, 10:00 am

Blow your own holiday ornament

Wednesday, November 26, 2014, 11:00 am

The Polar Express

Wednesday, November 26, 2014, 5:00 pm

Christmas by Candlelight Tours

Wednesday, November 26, 2014, 6:30 pm
27

The Polar Express™

Thursday, November 27, 2014, 6:00 pm

Marion Mountain Music

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Fashions for Evergreens

Thursday, November 27, 2014, 7:00 am

Thanksgiving Family Festivities at Fontana

Thursday, November 27, 2014, 8:00 am

2014 Union Drumstick DASH

Thursday, November 27, 2014, 9:00 am

Common Threads: Five Influential Women and their Legacies

Thursday, November 27, 2014, 10:00 am

Battle of the Brushes Exhibit

Thursday, November 27, 2014, 10:00 am

Turkey Day Crafts

Thursday, November 27, 2014, 10:00 am

Blow your own holiday ornament

Thursday, November 27, 2014, 11:00 am

Thanksgiving Day Buffet

Thursday, November 27, 2014, 11:30 am

The Polar Express

Thursday, November 27, 2014, 5:00 pm

Christmas by Candlelight Tours

Thursday, November 27, 2014, 6:30 pm
28

The Polar Express™

Friday, November 28, 2014, 6:00 pm

Christmas in the Park & Lighting of the Town

Friday, November 28, 2014

Fashions for Evergreens

Friday, November 28, 2014, 7:00 am

Thanksgiving Family Festivities at Fontana

Friday, November 28, 2014, 8:00 am

27th Annual Hard Candy Christmas Arts & Crafts Festival

Friday, November 28, 2014, 10:00 am

Common Threads: Five Influential Women and their Legacies

Friday, November 28, 2014, 10:00 am

Battle of the Brushes Exhibit

Friday, November 28, 2014, 10:00 am

Blow your own holiday ornament

Friday, November 28, 2014, 11:00 am

Holiday Arts & Crafts Market

Friday, November 28, 2014, 11:00 am

Free Guided Walking Tours of Historic Lexington

Friday, November 28, 2014, 3:00 pm

The Polar Express

Friday, November 28, 2014, 5:00 pm

Christmas by Candlelight Tours

Friday, November 28, 2014, 6:30 pm

Old Fort Mountain Music

Friday, November 28, 2014, 7:00 pm

Woody's Original Mountain Music

Friday, November 28, 2014, 7:00 pm
29

The Polar Express™

Saturday, November 29, 2014, 6:00 pm

Christmas in the Park & Lighting of the Town

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Fashions for Evergreens

Saturday, November 29, 2014, 7:00 am

Thanksgiving Family Festivities at Fontana

Saturday, November 29, 2014, 8:00 am

Saturdays with St. Nickolas

Saturday, November 29, 2014, 10:00 am

27th Annual Hard Candy Christmas Arts & Crafts Festival

Saturday, November 29, 2014, 10:00 am

Common Threads: Five Influential Women and their Legacies

Saturday, November 29, 2014, 10:00 am

Annual Thanksgiving Kiln Opening

Saturday, November 29, 2014, 10:00 am

Battle of the Brushes Exhibit

Saturday, November 29, 2014, 10:00 am

Blow your own holiday ornament

Saturday, November 29, 2014, 11:00 am

Fall Stroll Around the Lake

Saturday, November 29, 2014, 2:00 pm

The Polar Express

Saturday, November 29, 2014, 5:00 pm

Santa by Rail

Saturday, November 29, 2014, 5:00 pm

Christmas by Candlelight Tours

Saturday, November 29, 2014, 6:30 pm

Music at the Star

Saturday, November 29, 2014, 9:00 pm
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30

The Polar Express™

Sunday, November 30, 2014, 6:00 pm

Fashions for Evergreens

Sunday, November 30, 2014, 7:00 am

Saturdays with St. Nickolas

Sunday, November 30, 2014, 10:00 am

Common Threads: Five Influential Women and their Legacies

Sunday, November 30, 2014, 10:00 am

Battle of the Brushes Exhibit

Sunday, November 30, 2014, 10:00 am

Blow your own holiday ornament

Sunday, November 30, 2014, 11:00 am

Informal Jam on the Porch

Sunday, November 30, 2014, 2:00 pm

The Polar Express

Sunday, November 30, 2014, 5:00 pm

Christmas by Candlelight Tours

Sunday, November 30, 2014, 6:30 pm
           

Highlights & Happenings

  • Craggy Gardens, MP 364
  • These high elevation summits are home to spectacular floral displays. June and July are usually prime times to view the pink and purple blooms of rhododendron, but don’t despair if you miss the peak bloom. Violets, blackberry, May-apple, a
  • Folk Art Center, Milepost 382
  • Open year round, the Folk Art Center on the Blue Ridge Parkway showcases the finest in traditional and contemporary craft of the Southern Appalachians.
  • Doughton Park, MP 240
  • Renew your senses amid this landscape of open meadows. Doughton Park is one of the best places along the Blue Ridge Parkway to view white-tailed deer, raccoons, red and grey foxes, and bobcats.  Flowers burst on the scene in late spring and crea
  • Julian Price Memorial Park, MP 297
  • A majestic 4,200 acres at the foot of Grandfather Mountain, named in honor of Julian Price, comprises this popular park and lies directly adjacent to the Moses H. Cone Memorial Park. Together these parks make up the largest developed area set as
  • Blue Ridge Music Center
  • The Blue Ridge Music Center is a state-of-the-art performing arts facility built to preserve and promote the historic music of Virginia and the Blue Ridge. The Blue Ridge region has produced more old-time and bluegrass musicians per capita than any o
  • Mount Pisgah, MP 408
  • Mount Pisgah’s spectacular views, hiking trails, camping and the Mount Pisgah Inn make this area a popular destination for visitors along the Blue Ridge Parkway. The mountain and thousands of surrounding acres was originally purchased by indust
  • Peaks of Otter, MP 86
  • With stunning views, natural beauty, and the surrounding Jefferson National Forest, it’s no wonder the Peaks of Otter area has attracted people to the region for more than 8,000 years.
  • Fall Color - Tips for Leaf Season
  • Tips for planning your scenic drive or vacation to see the fall color along the Blue Ridge Parkway.
  • Hiking Trails
  • A journey on the Blue Ridge Parkway offers motorists spectacular views of Southern Appalachia’s diverse beauty for 469.1 uninterrupted miles.
  • Camping
  • Camping is one way visitors traveling through the Blue Ridge Parkway can spend the night under the stars in one of America’s most beautiful natural settings.
  • Nearby Accommodations
  • Explore the quaint towns and vibrant cities that the Blue Ridge Parkway weaves through, and a variety of lodging choices.
  • Parkway Road Conditions
  • An open Parkway is a safe Parkway. Be sure to check road conditions online or by phone before you travel and during your visit.
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