15 days in North Carolina Mountains Itinerary

15 days in North Carolina Mountains Itinerary

Created using Inspirock North Carolina Mountains route planner

Make it your trip
Fly to Knoxville, Drive to Highlands
1
Highlands
— 3 nights
Drive
2
Cherokee
— 4 nights
Drive
3
Valle Crucis
— 3 nights
Drive
4
Asheville
— 4 nights
Fly

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Highlands

— 3 nights
Highlands is an incorporated town in Macon County in the U.S. state of North Carolina. Explore Highlands' surroundings by going to Fishing Charters & Tours (in Franklin) and Whitewater Falls (in Sapphire). And it doesn't end there: admire the sheer force of Dry Falls, take your sightseeing to a higher altitude at Sunset Rock and Ravenel Park, and explore the activities along Lake Glenville.

For other places to visit, reviews, traveler tips, and other tourist information, read Highlands online trip planner.

Austin to Highlands is an approximately 7-hour combination of flight and car. You can also drive; or do a combination of bus and taxi. The time zone difference when traveling from Austin to Highlands is 1 hour. Plan for slightly colder temperatures traveling from Austin in July, with highs in Highlands at 83°F and lows at 62°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 25th (Sat) early enough to drive to Cherokee.

Things to do in Highlands

Nature · Parks · Wildlife · Tours

Side Trips

Cherokee

— 4 nights

Trails of Legends and Adventures

The center of Cherokee culture in the eastern part of the country, the town named after this Native American tribe serves as a base camp for hiking in the Great Smoky Mountains.
Explore Cherokee's surroundings by going to Robbinsville (Wehrloom Honey & Santeetlah Lake), Maggie Valley (Wheels Through Time Transportation Museum & Waterrock Knob) and River Rafting & Tubing (in Bryson City). The adventure continues: get outside with Carolina Outfitters, view the masterpieces at Pincu Pottery, look for gifts at Unique Gift Outlet, and examine the collection at Fly fishing Museum of The Southern Appalachians.

To see photos, more things to do, where to stay, and more tourist information, read our Cherokee attractions planner.

You can drive from Highlands to Cherokee in 1.5 hours. In July, plan for daily highs up to 83°F, and evening lows to 62°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 29th (Wed) to allow time to travel to Valle Crucis.

Things to do in Cherokee

Nature · Parks · Museums · Outdoors

Side Trips

Valle Crucis

— 3 nights
Valle Crucis in an unincorporated community located in Watauga County, North Carolina, United States. Your day by day itinerary now includes Dutch Creek Trails. You'll find plenty of places to visit near Valle Crucis: Backbone Rock Waterfall (in Shady Valley), Adrenaline & Extreme Tours (in Elizabethton) and Grayson Highlands State Park (in Mouth of Wilson). The adventure continues: take your sightseeing to a higher altitude at Grandfather Mountain, stop by Mast General Store, take in the dramatic scenery at Otter Falls, and delve into the lush surroundings at Cherokee National Forest.

To see more things to do, ratings, where to stay, and more tourist information, read Valle Crucis trip itinerary builder app.

Getting from Cherokee to Valle Crucis by car takes about 3 hours. While traveling from Cherokee, expect little chillier days and about the same nights in Valle Crucis, ranging from highs of 78°F to lows of 61°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 1st (Sat) to allow enough time to drive to Asheville.

Things to do in Valle Crucis

Nature · Parks · Tours · Outdoors

Side Trips

Asheville

— 4 nights

Land of the Sky

Asheville nestles between two major mountain ranges in the scenic western section of North Carolina.
Venture out of the city with trips to Blowing Rock (Bolick and Traditions Pottery, Moses H. Cone Memorial Park, &more), Chimney Rock at Chimney Rock State Park (in Chimney Rock) and Bobby McLean Memorial Park (in Newland). And it doesn't end there: contemplate the long history of Biltmore, indulge your thirst for a good beer at Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. Tours & Tastings, tour the pleasant surroundings at Bearwallow Mountain, and explore the wealth of natural beauty at The North Carolina Arboretum.

Inspirock's itinerary builder makes planning a Asheville trip simple and quick.

You can drive from Valle Crucis to Asheville in 2 hours. When traveling from Valle Crucis in August, plan for a bit warmer days in Asheville, with highs around 82°F, while nights are about the same with lows around 64°F. Cap off your sightseeing on the 5th (Wed) early enough to travel back home.

Things to do in Asheville

Outdoors · Parks · Trails · Scenic Drive

Side Trips

North Carolina Mountains travel guide

4.5
Historic Sites · Zipline · River Rafting & Tubing
Called the "Land of the Blue Mist" by the Cherokee Indians, the North Carolina Smoky Mountains are one of the world's most biologically diverse wilderness areas. The vast national park sheltering the native wildlife of these ancient mountains offers a close look at the area's nature and its people. A perfect spot for a tranquil vacation, the blue-misted mountains are one of the country's few World Heritage Sites, protecting the largest old-growth forest east of the Mississippi River. Things to do for adventurous visitors include whitewater rafting and river tubing, while those interested in more urbane entertainment can explore the area's many small towns on the 750 km (470 mi) scenic road meandering over the mountains.