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Visit Boone, North Carolina

Updated on February 6, 2013
Hickory Ridge Homestead
Hickory Ridge Homestead | Source

Beautiful Country

It's time to visit Boone, North Carolina! I never knew how beautiful the "high country" of North Carolina was until we visited.

I had heard about the original Mast General Store in Valle Crucis, a community near Boone, so we decided to visit. It was built in 1883 and was and is truly a general store, offering everything from "cradles to caskets" in its day. Today there is still a huge variety of merchandise and several trips through the store still didn't allow us to see all that was offered. The Annex down the road was opened in 1982. The store has several locations in the Southeast and has an online store.

Grandfather Mountain, in nearby Linville, is an International Biosphere Reserve. The road up the 5,946 foot high mountain offers pull-offs for easier viewing and there are numerous picnic areas, as well. The wildlife habitats behind the Nature Museum offer views of black bear, cougars, otters and other creatures native to the area. We enjoyed eating from the snack bar which had a wonderful sunporch where we could watch ruby-throated hummingbirds dart back and forth between several hanging feeders. The chipmunks were also a delight to watch. The drive to the Mile High Swinging Bridge was quite steep and curvy but a new visitor was waiting at the top. I never felt the metal bridge swing, but walking across in a thunderstorm was interesting. The views were fabulous in spite of the inclement weather. Not an experience I recommend for those afraid of heights!

"Horn in the West," a Revolutionary War Outdoor Drama is presented during the summer months in Boone. The play has been performed since 1952 and is a real treat. It's very educational for young and old alike and shouldn't be missed. On the grounds is the Hickory Ridge Homestead, an 18th century living history museum. Demonstrations are held before performances.

Honey Bear Campground in Boone is a quiet woodland campground offering a variety of lodging options. We enjoyed our site on the creek, which was private and scenic.

The Blowing Rock is North Carolina's oldest attraction, in operation since 1933. The highlight of the short trail is a tall cliff overlooking the Johns River Gorge. The views are fabulous. Rumor has it that it’s the only place where it snows upside down.

Located between markers 292 and 295 on the Blue Ridge Parkway is the Moses H. Cone Memorial Park. The highlight for us was Flat Top Manor, which houses a craft shop and demonstration center. There are hiking and horseback riding trails.

We didn't get to visit downtown Boone on this trip but did drive through. There are numerous quaint little shops and eateries to visit on a leisurely stroll.

We can't wait for our next vacation time in Boone, North Carolina. We'll definitely be back.


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