Many people are familiar with Asheville, North Carolina, especially residents of The Cliffs and The Reserve, as this stunning city is located in the Blue Ridge Mountains and is exploding with art and delicious restaurants (and so much more)! But what about some of the smaller towns nestled in the surrounding areas? Let’s explore a few!
One very charming town is Saluda. Since the late 1890’s, this railroad town has attracted many tourists with the quintessential Main Street. Most of the building located along this one-street downtown area are on the National Register of Historic places! Close to Saluda, you can explore Pearson’s Falls, a magnificent 90 foot tall waterfall accessed by only a quarter mile hike (note: this is a privately-owned waterfall so please check on admission cost and when the gates are open).
In the mood for some live theater? Try visiting Flat Rock and the officially designated State Theatre of North Carolina. The Flat Rock Playhouse has been presenting shows since the summer of 1940 and always bring their lineup of shows to life. Also housed in this quaint town is the shop The Wrinkled Egg. Here you can find antiques, clothing, pottery, and art! And let’s not forget about the wonderful places to eat! This town dates back to when the Cherokee met on the still visible flat rock and became known as the “little Charleston of the mountains” with many summer homes for people to escape the heat.
Just a little ways up the road from Lake Keowee and Asheville is another popular vacation spot – Cashiers, North Carolina. Located along scenic Highway 64, this town is in the Nantahala National Forest at an elevation of 3,500 feet! Surrounded by many mountain peak (some more than 5,000 feet), this area is known for stunning waterfalls as well as welcoming shops. At the center of the community, you will find boutiques, studios, and restaurants. One extra special attraction is the Zachary-Tolbert House. Now a museum, this home that was built in 1852 is a unique example of Greek Revivalist Architecture in Western North Carolina. The structure has remained intact for more than 150 years without any electricity, central heating, or indoor plumbing. Further out, you can experience some terrific hiking, especially in the Pantertown Valley (pictured) and the waterfalls are too plenteous to mention!
Please do not view this in any way as an exhaustive list of charming towns! This is a small sampling and we hope you enjoy exploring the area for yourself.