9 days in North Carolina Mountains Itinerary

Created using Inspirock North Carolina Mountains vacation planner
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Blowing Rock
— 1 night
— 3 nights
— 2 nights
— 2 nights


Blowing Rock — 1 night

Blowing Rock is a town in Watauga and Caldwell counties in the U.S. state of North Carolina. Kick off your visit on the 23rd (Tue): contemplate the long history of Flat Top Manor, stroll around Grandfather Mountain State Park, then take your sightseeing to a higher altitude at Grandfather Mountain, and finally look for gifts at Mast General Store. Here are some ideas for day two: discover the riches below the earth's surface at Foggy Mountain Gem Mine, take in breathtaking views at Linville Gorge, and then trek along Bass Lake.

To find traveler tips, maps, ratings, and tourist information, you can read our Blowing Rock trip planner.

Charlotte to Blowing Rock is an approximately 2-hour car ride. You can also drive; or fly; or take a bus. Traveling from Charlotte in May, things will get a bit cooler in Blowing Rock: highs are around 69°F and lows about 49°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 24th (Wed) early enough to drive to Asheville.
Parks · Wildlife · Nature · Historic Sites
Side Trips

Asheville — 3 nights

Land of the Sky

Asheville nestles between two major mountain ranges in the scenic western section of North Carolina.
Visit Grovewood Village and Cradle of Forestry for their historical value. Take a break from the city and head to River Rafting & Tubing and Climbing Tours. Go for a jaunt from Asheville to Marshall to see Horseback Riding Tours about 32 minutes away. The adventure continues: surround yourself with nature on a nature and wildlife tour, take in the exciting artwork at Blue Spiral 1, and stop by New Morning Gallery.

To find other places to visit and other tourist information, read our Asheville sightseeing planner.

Drive from Blowing Rock to Asheville in 2 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. Traveling from Blowing Rock in May, expect nights in Asheville to be about the same, around 53°F, while days are a bit warmer, around 75°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 27th (Sat) to allow enough time to drive to Cherokee.
Tours · Outdoors · Wildlife · Museums
Side Trips

Cherokee — 2 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.
On the 28th (Sun), take in the dramatic scenery at Soco Falls, then take your sightseeing to a higher altitude at Waterrock Knob, and then trot along with a tour on horseback. Here are some ideas for day two: get a new perspective on things with Boat Tours & Water Sports, view the masterpieces at Qualla Arts and Crafts Mutual, and then get engrossed in the history at Mountain Farm Museum.

To find ratings, traveler tips, where to stay, and other tourist information, go to the Cherokee tour planner.

Traveling by car from Asheville to Cherokee takes 1.5 hours. In May in Cherokee, expect temperatures between 75°F during the day and 49°F at night. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 29th (Mon) early enough to drive to Highlands.
Tours · Museums · Parks · Nature
Side Trips

Highlands — 2 nights

Highlands is an incorporated town in Macon County in the U.S. state of North Carolina. Start off your visit on the 30th (Tue): take in the awesome beauty at Whiteside Mountain, then stop by Lake Glenville Scenic Waterfall Cruises, and then take in the dramatic scenery at Whitewater Falls. On your second day here, identify plant and animal life at Highlands Biological Station, Nature Center and Botanical Gardens, admire the sheer force of Dry Falls, and then admire the sheer force of Glen Falls.

To see more things to do, other places to visit, ratings, and other tourist information, refer to the Highlands trip itinerary builder site.

Traveling by car from Cherokee to Highlands takes 1.5 hours. In May, plan for daily highs up to 75°F, and evening lows to 49°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 31st (Wed) early enough to fly back home.
Parks · Nature · Wildlife · Tours
Side Trips

North Carolina Mountains travel guide

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.