Visit Moses H Cone Memorial Park
Where Julian Price Memorial Park is all about savoring the tranquility of nature, Moses H Cone Memorial Park is also great for those interested in Appalachian history.
The park is named after North Carolinas renowned Denim King, whose 3500-acre estate included a unique 19th century summer home designed in the Beaux-Arts architectural style.
Now listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the 120-year-old property also includes some 25 miles of horse carriage trails, apple orchards, and three beautiful lakes that Cone stocked with bass and trout.
The property also features numerous hiking trails lined with beautiful North Carolina wildflowers, including the popular Bass Lake Loop, Flat Top Road , and the short Figure 8 Trail right next to the Cone Manor House.
Things To Do In North Carolina: Elijah Mountain Gem Mine
At Elijah Mountain Gem Mine, visitors have the opportunity to mine gemstones and gold that they can then bring home. The mine offers both indoor and outdoor flumes, so it is a great destination no matter what the weather. General admission is free, and visitors can choose from a variety of mining packages.
Other attractions at the mine include a baby goat petting zoo, the world’s largest gem mine bucket, a rock shop, and a number of picnic tables. Special rates and packages are offered for groups, families, and birthday parties. The mine is open 7 days a week all throughout the year.
2120 Brevard Rd, Hendersonville, NC 28739, Phone: 828-692-6560
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Drink Some Craft Beer
Asheville is known as Beer City USA. Because with 26 different craft breweries in the city, and another 60 nearby, beer lovers wont want to leave.
About 100 local beers can be enjoyed in Asheville, and each brewery has its own unique character. From strong hoppy IPAs to dark stouts, to fruity raspberry ales, youre bound to find something youll love.
On top of the incredible beer scene, the city is also steeped in tea culture.
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Best Luxury Hotel In Asheville: Omni Grove Park Inn
The Omni Grove Park Inn is the epitome of luxury when staying in Asheville. Set in a historic building built in 1913, you can enjoy mountain views, decadent rooms, and amenities like multiple restaurants, the on-site spa, a golf course, and swimming pools.
Located close to all the downtown shops and attractions, you really cant get more luxurious than the Omni Grove Park Inn!
DISCLAIMER: Some of the links in this article are affiliate links, which means if you book accommodation, tours or buy a product, we will receive a small commission at no extra cost to you. These commissions help us keep creating more free travel content to help people plan their holidays and adventures. We only recommend the best accommodations, tours and products, and regularly review these. Thanks for your support, kind friend!
About the Author – Gabby Boucher
After four years of working in hospitality, volunteering abroad and travelling for fun, Gabby has developed a knack for budget travel and admiration for different cultures. Her travels have taken her through the cloud forests of Ecuador, into the villages of eastern Europe, across the islands of Thailand, and to the beaches of New South Wales, Australia, where she is currently living with a working holiday visa. She plans to continue her adventures around the world for as long as possible. Follow her on her blog, and on
Things To Do Around Me: Airborne And Special Operations Museum
The Airborne and Special Operations Museum is part of the United States Army Museum System, and it has been open to the public since 2000. The main gallery is arranged in chronological order, with exhibits dating from the 1940s to the present.
There is also a temporary exhibit that changes regularly. Other features of the museum include a motion simulator ride and a large theater that is four stories tall. The museum is handicap accessible, and there is plenty of parking for cars, RVs, and buses. Admission is free of charge, but there is a charge for the motion simulator ride.
100 Bragg Blvd, Fayetteville, NC 28301, Phone: 910-643-2778
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Things To Do In Western North Carolina Nature Center With Family And Kids
Western North Carolina Nature Center is one of the best cities in the world for family holidays, with its many attractions and historical landmarks to explore. The West End, in particular, is a big draw for tourists and locals alike. Think theatreland. Think epic history. Not enough? Well, visitors of all ages are guaranteed to be swept up by the high energy street performers and unique shops too.
Some of these Western North Carolina Nature Center attractions for kids are my own childhood favourites, some are things and places my kids and our family loved to do in Western North Carolina Nature Center.
Western North Carolina Nature Center with kids so exciting, and yet so overwhelming! With such a wealth of world-class attractions and cultural icons, it can be tough to get your arms around what are the best places to do in Western North Carolina Nature Center, much less sift through them all to come up with the perfect sightseeing plan for your family.
Day Trip To Knoxville Tn
A little under two hours away, you also might want to head over to Knoxville, Tennessee for the day. Like Asheville, Knoxville has a historic downtown filled with distilleries, breweries, bookstores, and endless fun.
The last time we went, we ice-skated in the historic square around the holidays.
Our good friend, Clayton, runs a Knoxville travel blog, KnoxRoadTripper. He shares all that there is to love about the city and hes full of unique tidbits and history.
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Wine Taste At The Hipster Wineries
If beer isnt your thing, there are plenty of wineries in and around Asheville. Directly in Asheville, check out pleb urban winery in the River Arts District.
Of course, Biltmore has a famous winery, and wine tasing is included with your ticket. Biltmore also offers a Behind-The-Scenes winery tour and a Chocolate And Red Wine Tasting Tour.
If you head out of Asheville, our personal favorite wineries are in Hendersonville, including Sawyer Springs, St. Paul Mountain Vineyards, Stone Ashe Vineyards, and Point Lookout.
Relax With A Drink & Good Book At The Battery Park Book Exchange
The Battery Park Book Exchange is a really unique book store/champagne bar in downtown Asheville. If you are a lover of books and/or champagne, you will want to check this place out. What a unique concept to combine 2 of lifes greatest pleasures! Thousands and thousands of used books fill up several rooms you could literally browse here the entire day. Not a fan of champagne? Wine and coffee are also available.
Location: 1 Page Ave #101, Asheville, NC 28801
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North Carolina Tourist Attractions: Cape Hatteras Lighthouse
Located on an island in the Outer Banks, the 210-foot Cape Hatteras Lighthouse was erected in 1870. It was situated a safe distance of 1,500 feet away from the water when it was first built, but the shoreline gradually eroded, and by 1999 the lighthouse was only 15 feet away from the shore.
The city was forced to move the structure to preserve it, and it exceeded expectations by remaining in great condition. There is a Visitors Center and Museum located right next to the lighthouse, which showcase a number of exhibits about the history of the area.
46368 Lighthouse Rd, Buxton, NC 27920, Phone: 252-475-9000
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Hike To Glen Burney Falls
Although its rated as somewhat strenuous due to elevation changes, this 2.7-mile round-trip hiking trail is worth doing for the 3 wondrous waterfalls youll see along the way.
The trail starts at Broyhill Park in the Annie Cannon Gardens , following New Years Creek to Glen Burney Falls, Glen Marie Falls, and Cascade Falls.
Along the way youll pass The Ruins, Blowing Rocks sewage treatment system from the 1920s.
But the trek is worth it once you reach the stunning Glen Burney Falls, which tumbles 50 feet down a rock face into the tranquil pool below.
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Kayak On The French Broad River
The French Broad River flows through Downtown Asheville and into Tennessee, and eventually into the Mississippi River.
It is apparently one of the oldest rivers in the world, dating back hundreds of millions of years. The river is large and wide and is perfect for many activities.
The French Broad River is one of the best spots for fishing in North Carolina, particularly for trout.
Kayaking, canoeing, or tubing are also fun things to do on the river. There is no better way to spend a hot, sunny summers day in North Carolina than getting out on the water.
You can book a guided kayak tour, or head to a local tourism office in town and enquire about renting inner tubes for floating.
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Amazing Hidden Gems In North Carolina
A quintessential southern state in the United States, North Carolina has a lot more to offer than its majestic mountains, intriguing hiking trails, charming piedmonts, and picturesque coastline.
The ninth most populous state in America, North Carolina shares its borders with South Carolina, Georgia, Tennessee, Virginia, and most prominently the Atlantic Ocean. The state is divided into a hundred counties and the capital, Raleigh, along with Durham, houses the largest park in the States.
Cape Hatteras, commonly known as the Graveyard of the Atlantic, has a history of over 1,000 lost ships since 1526.
With a fascinating history and rich heritage, North Carolina is home to some of the best-kept secrets in the world.
Let us explore some of the most mysterious spots in the state.
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Morehead Planetarium And Science Center
Space exploration comes to life when you visit the Morehead Planetarium and Science Center. It’s one of the top attractions in North Carolina located on the UNC-Chapel Hill campus it was donated to the university. The center is one of the largest planetariums in the US and hosts lots of interactive activities for all ages.
Morehead Planetarium and Science Center was built in 1949 as one of the first planetariums in the United States. It serves as a training site for NASA astronauts and has lots of fun things to do to learn about outer space.
One of the highlight features is the planetarium, which has 240 seats to see universe projection displays on the massive dome. Carolina Skies is a popular show to see constellations from a local perspective.
Visit the top-level observatory to peer through the telescope or attend one of the live educational events.
Address: 250 E Franklin St, Chapel Hill, NC 27514
Cape Lookout National Seashore
An undeveloped seashore full of history and wild horses
You can see wild horses at Shackleford Banks!
Just off the North Carolina mainland are the barrier islands that make up Cape Lookout National Seashore. This area has pristine beaches that stretch for 56 miles and the area remains largely undeveloped. To reach Cape Lookout, youll need to take a ferry.
The main appeal of Cape Lookout is its untouched natural beauty. Visitors can stay in rustic cabins or even camp on the beach. Another must-see attraction, though, are the wild horses that can be seen on Cape Lookouts southernmost edge, Shackleford Bank. Other attractions include Cape Lookout Lighthouse and Keepers Quarters, and Portsmouth Village.
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Great Smoky Mountains Railroad
The Great Smoky Mountains Railroad is an amazing reason to visit Bryson City, especially in winter when theyre running the Polar Express.
That popular ride is one of the best things to do in North Carolina. Holiday magic takes over the attraction, as the 75-minute train ride reenacts the classic story.
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Go Horseback Riding In The Blue Ridge Mountains
If you are looking for the best way to explore North Carolina in spring, this is it. This guided adventure on horseback takes you through rows of wild flame azaleas and fern groves into pine forests.
The well-trained and gentle horses are children-friendly and this is an activity for almost any type of traveler!
This horseback ride is the best way to explore the stunning Blue Ridge Mountain area without having to hike. Riding helmets and raincoats or ponchos are provided for this ride.
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Walk The Historic Grove Arcade
The Grove Arcade is architectural eye candy filled with a little yuppie love, including places like the Battery Park Book Exchange and Asheville Proper.
For a little history lesson: E.W. Grove, also infamous for constructing the Grove Park Inn, opened the Grove Arcade in 1929 as a retail center. Grove was all about fresh mountain air and serving up quinine to fight diseases.
Like George Vanderbilt with Biltmore, Grove didnt live to see his gem to fruition however, the Grove Arcade bloomed into a thriving center for commerce and trade.
During WW2, the Arcade transformed into a more covert military hub. Then, in 1951 the National Weather Records Center took over the building until the city reclaimed the space in the 90s. Today, find shops and restaurants.
Take A Day Trip To Green River Gorge
Another one of the best things to do in Asheville NC is visiting Green River Gorge. Full of magical old growth forests and exciting river rapids, ravines, and caves, there is so much to see and do here.
The Green River has multiple different sections, some of which have intense white water rapids and some of which are calm and peaceful. Adrenaline seekers can go white water rafting, and those looking for a more mellow experience can drift down the calm parts of the river on an inner tube.
Either way, coming here on a hot, sunny day for swimming and floating in the river is the best way to spend a summer day.
The surrounding Green River Game Lands are popular for hunting, fishing, and hiking. There is also a 225-foot high bridge over Green River Gorge, which is the highest bridge in North Carolina and one of the highest in America.
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Enjoy The Local Botanical Gardens
If youre wondering what to see in Asheville, the Botanical Gardens must be on your list
Full of beautiful flowers and plants, there is no better place to relax on an afternoon of sightseeing in Asheville NC. With multiple landscaped gardens and peaceful walking trails, you can meander through the greenery and admire the beauty of nature.
Like most other nature centers in North Carolina, these gardens focus on the preservation of the areas native plants.
The gardens are lovely year round, but mid-April and mid-August are prime because most flowers are in bloom.
- Address: 151 W.T Weaver Boulevard
- Hours: Open daily sunrise to sunset
- Cost: Free admission and free parking
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Best Things To Do In North Carolina
North Carolina is a great place to unwind and explore no matter where your interests lie. The geography of the state ranges from busy, bustling cities to towering mountains to the beaches, lakes, lighthouses and Outer Banks islands. Visitors can immerse themselves in some of the best museums in the country, admire the beauty of nature from the top of Grandfather Mountain or take a trip to the past by visiting some of the many Civil War sites. Here are the best things to do in North Carolina. Certain attractions may be temporarily closed or require advance reservations. Hours/availability may have changed.
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