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In celebration of the beginning of the autumn season, here are Five North Carolina Destinations to Discover this Fall.
It is officially the first day of fall! It’s kind of hard to believe since we’re expecting highs of the 80s and even 90s this week in Durham. (So frustrating!) But I know the cooler temps are just around the corner. We did have a few cool nights this past week and I was able to blissfully sleep with my windows open. There are also a few patches of leaves here and there that are starting to turn colors.
These little hints of fall bring me so much joy! It gets me excited for all the potential
As I began to think about all these incredible spots it occurred to me that I should share a few of them with you. So here are Five North Carolina Destinations to Discover this Fall.
Mount Airy, also known as Mayberry, is where actor Andy Griffith grew up and served as inspiration for the iconic television show. Fans of the show can get a taste of Mayberry by visiting attractions such as the Andy Griffith Museum, a Mayberry Replica Courthouse, and even Floyd’s Barber Shop.
Today marks the beginning of the 30th Annual Mayberry Days festival. This week-long festival is held every year the last week of September. Enjoy live music,
There’s more to Mount Airy than Mayberry. It’s close to Pilot Mountain, the Blue Ridge Parkway, and the Yadkin Valley Wine Trail. You can also explore historical sites, go antique shopping, and visit a pick-your-own-pumpkin farm.
Mount Airy is host every October to the Autumn Leaves Festival. This year’s festival is set to take place October 11th – 13th. Visitors will enjoy delicious food, live music, and browse handmade items made by arts and crafts vendors.
Over the past few years, Boone and its nearby towns have become the area of North Carolina that Derek and I visit the most. We love coming here year-round to hike the trails, enjoy local wineries, and indulge in the delicious local restaurant fare.
The fall season is not complete without at least one trip to the gorgeous Carolina High Country. I love driving along the Blue Ridge Parkway to get my eyeful of leaf
Starting September 25th Blowing Rock will be posting weekly foliage updates so visitors have a better chance of catching peak season. Because of the area’s high altitude, it is usually one of the first in the state to hit peak color.
Asheville is the most popular spot in the state this time of year but there are so many cities and towns that surround it that are worth mentioning. Lake Lure is one of them. This beautiful lake and town are perfectly situated in the Blue Ridge Mountain Foothills. Close to Chimney Rock Park and numerous trails, outdoor adventurers can enjoy hiking, fishing, and even rowing.
Lake Lure is also one of the filming locations of one of my all-time favorite movies, Dirty Dancing. In fact, earlier this month a Dirty Dancing Festival was held in Lake Lure. For two days festival
Lake Lure’s close proximity to Asheville, about an hour drive, makes it easy to spend a day exploring the best of Asheville. Discover everything from the splendid Biltmore to the River Art’s District and everything in between including some amazing local restaurants, breweries, and wineries!
Maybe I’m a little bit biased but Raleigh and its surrounding cities really are beautiful this time of year. It may not seem as remarkable as the mountains to our west but the last week of October through early November is quite stunning.
With three major universities in the area, it’s almost impossible not to catch a football game every weekend and we have a ton of sites to see including free museums, a new festival every weekend, and incredible restaurants.
One of my favorite spots to visit this time of year is the State Farmer’s Market near downtown. We’ll indulge in a yummy breakfast or lunch at the Farmer’s Market Restaurant. Sometimes we’ll mix it up with a “Calabash-Style” seafood lunch at the NC Seafood Restaurant. Then we’ll shop for Carolina apples, pumpkins, sweet potatoes, and more local Carolina produce.
Every October Raleigh hosts the North Carolina State Fair. This year it’s happening October 17th – 27th. This year’s theme is “Nothing Could Be Finer” and the list of activities and exhibitions is quite impressive. There’s more than rides, games, and sinfully fried fair food to enjoy. You’ll find cultural exhibits, competitions, flower shows, arts and crafts, and so much more!
Wilmington is really a year-round destination. I’ve experienced this charming coastal city in every season and I like it best in the fall, winter, and early spring. There are no summer crowds to compete with and you can just enjoy the history, coastal breezes, incredible restaurants, and shopping at your leisure.
History lovers can tour the USS Wilmington or one of the stately antebellum homes like the Bellamy Mansion. Downtown is filled with some wonderful local stores along Front Street, Market Street, the Cotton Exchange, and the Riverwalk.
Wilmington is also close to several beaches. Wrightsville Beach, Carolina Beach, and Kure Beach are all within quick driving distance. Carolina’s waters stay quite warm in the early fall season. You can also enjoy the boardwalk at Carolina Beach, explore the aquarium at Fort Fisher in Kure Beach, or hop on the ferry and head over to Southport and Oak Island for more coastal charm and fun! You can quite easily fill up not only a weekend but a whole week with everything Wilmington and its nearby towns have to offer.
The first weekend of October Wilmington will be celebrating its 40th Annual Riverfest. Visitors can enjoy the street fair, live music, car shows, and fireworks.
North Carolina is such a special state, from mountains to beaches and everything in between there is so much to experience and enjoy. I am so blessed to be able to call this wonderful place my home. I hope these Five North Carolina Destinations to Discover this Fall will give you some travel inspiration for not only this season but all the ones to follow.
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