With a new year and a new decade underway, many are gearing up for 2020 with a wealth of resolutions for better health and wellness in the coming months. As luck would have it, the Western NC Mountain Towns of Jackson County are the ideal places to kick off those resolutions. After all, the area is home to 494-square miles of adventure and relaxation that will keep you engaged, focused, and motivated to stick to your resolutions. With so many activities available, creating a custom itinerary tailored to your wants, needs and goals couldn’t be easier to do here. Plus, given that it’s our “Secret Season,” the crowds have thinned out, so you have more space to get up and get active, mountain style! Gear up for mountain biking Home to miles of multi-use trails, mountain biking is a great, low-stress way to get the blood pumping and the heart racing as you zip and zoom up and down the mountain. A great place to start is Fire Mountain Trails, just 20 minutes from Sylva in Cherokee. Here, mountain bikers will find more than 10.5 miles of trails featuring fun berms, more than 20 switchbacks in a single run, and exciting elevation changes. Another fun spot for the family is the Jackson County Kids’ Bike Park at Tuck Greenway located along the Tuckasegee River Greenway. The 750-foot bike trail features berms, tabletop jumps, pumps and an inner gravel track for younger kids. Get your hike on Throughout Jackson County, hikers […]
Nestled in the heart of the Western North Carolina mountains, Jackson County is surrounded by winter scenes and natural beauty that serve as the perfect backdrop for any winter retreat. On even the coldest of winter days, visitors can see miles upon miles of layered, scenic mountain ranges and valleys. The area’s stunning landscape coupled with a calendar full of festive winter and holiday events, makes Jackson County the perfect place to reconnect with nature and celebrate the season. Enjoy the mountains in all their glory this ‘Secret Season.’ When crowds thin out, accommodations are more affordable and you have the trails all to yourself. Breathtaking views Jackson County abounds with scenic hiking trails that lead to some of the most panoramic winter views in North Carolina. In fact, winter offers some of the best hiking due to fewer crowds on the trails and clear skies that allow hikers to see for miles. With the trees void of their leaves, you may even discover some beautiful overlooks along the way that were previously unrevealed. Jackson County also offers an abundance of hiking trails for every skill level. For a trail fit for every family member, explore the sights along the Whiteside Mountain Trail. This path makes a great winter hike because it is not too steep and is set at 4,930 feet in elevation, setting the stage for breathtaking views of the Nantahala National Forest below. Tip: Peregrine falcons soar above you in January to nest on rock ledges, so […]
The return of the holiday season means reminiscing on years past, spending time with loved ones and sharing in traditions that are carried on through generations of families year-after-year. One such tradition that we enjoy being a part of in Jackson County is to choose and cut your own Christmas tree. Thanks to our county’s elevation, location, quality soil conditions and abundant rainfall, the county is perfectly situated for growing beautiful Christmas trees. In fact, genetics show our trees are the fastest-growing, most aesthetically pleasing trees in the region. As a result, Jackson County is home to many locally and family-owned Christmas tree farms offering a gorgeous selection of these holiday decoration centerpieces.
We all vacation in hopes to find a secret escape where we can experience our own little piece of paradise that is away from the large crowds. During the winter to early-spring months, the Western NC mountain towns of Jackson County, NC offer just that! Cashiers, Cherokee, Dillsboro and Sylva come alive during this ‘secret season’, offering visitors a wide array of hidden benefits to traveling during this less crowded and more affordable time of year. Within driving distance of many of the Southeast’s biggest cities, Jackson County is bustling with activities for every kind of traveler, including winter hiking to frozen waterfalls, scenic drives through the rolling mountainsides, quality shopping, a thriving culinary scene and much more. Winter – particularly midweek – is the ideal time to enjoy the best of winter travel without the crowds and the most affordable accommodations. Unplug, unwind, sit back and relax. The downtime you’ve starts here. Your adventure awaits When visiting Jackson County during the secret season, you’ll love being able to take advantage of front row “seats” at the prime scenic viewing spots, have the best photo backdrops all to yourself, or the grab the best seat in the house at the county’s most popular dining spots. Traveling during secret season provides visitors a chance to try the best eats in the county. Plus, with minimal to no wait, you can select the best seat in the house for the perfect secret season dining experience. Another bonus? The potential of a snowy vacation. […]
Autumn has finally arrived in the Southeast, bringing with it cooler temps and spectacular fall foliage. Known for sweeping mountain views, the Western North Carolina mountain towns of Jackson County are expecting spectacular color this year. Whether this is your first or hundredth time visiting Jackson County, now is the best time to plan a trip to enjoy all the beauty the region has to offer. The best time to experience the fall colors with lighter crowds is during the week. Monday through Wednesday is the ideal time to plan your stay to receive the lowest rates, experience smaller crowds and have the colorful views to yourself thanks to the lightest foot traffic of the season. In addition, there will be low wait times at resident favorite restaurants, less traffic resulting in shorter drive times between attractions and more one-on-one time with the people that make Jackson County so special at locally-owned businesses. So, go ahead and take advantage of those unused vacation days to get the best out of the fall season here! Due to Jackson County’s geographic location between 2,000 and 6,000 feet above sea level, fall’s colors last well over a month here, ranging from early October to mid-November. Plus, the area’s mild temperatures lend themselves to a very vibrant season, with prolonged color in the lower elevations. Best views for fall hues Throughout Jackson County, you’ll find a wide array of opportunities to experience the brightest fall color. Whether biking, hiking or driving, you’ll find elevated […]
Listed as one of the “Top 10 Destinations for Fall Foliage,” by USA Today, the Western NC mountain towns of Jackson County are a must-visit for a seasonal getaway. According to WCU Biologist, Beverly Collins, “the mountains of Western North Carolina should produce a typically bright display of fall leaf color this year.” Beginning in early September, vibrant reds, yellows and oranges will start lining the towns surrounding peaks and inviting guests from all over to experience fall in these cozy, quaint mountain towns. Although well-known for our popular hikes, waterfalls and outdoor adventures, the area is also home to incredible sights and hidden experiences that are more under the radar. Some of the best parts of a visit to the area during the fall months involve attractions that may be more off the beaten path. Here are eight insider tips to fully experience fall in Jackson County. 1. Uncover the best spots for viewing fall foliage. Given Jackson County is home to the most named peaks in North Carolina, it’s no wonder also has the best locations for viewing the autumnal hues when fall arrives. Drive along the Blue Ridge Parkway in search of overlooks to take in the spectacular sights. A few favorites include Richland Balsam and Waterrock Knob. Another breathtaking view awaits high atop Whiteside Mountain. Set out on the Whiteside Mountain Trail to find yourself surrounded by glorious fall foliage. Another popular spot for leaf-lookers is the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, where you can check […]
From hiking and biking to fishing and camping, there’s so much to do in and around the mountain towns of Jackson County during the summertime, it is hard to beat as the perfect summer getaway. Along with endless adventures, the area is home to an excellent al fresco dining scene with places for picnics, patios and more to enjoy a meal in the great outdoors and take in the area’s beautiful natural surroundings.
Covering 494 square miles of the Western N.C. mountains, the towns of Cashiers, Cherokee, Dillsboro and Sylva are home to some of the best hiking, fishing, backpacking and other nature pursuits. The area is also ideally located to many of the Southeast’s top visitor attractions. Thanks to its central location in the middle of two of the most popular National Park Sites, Great Smoky Mountains National Park and the Blue Ridge Parkway, Jackson County makes an ideal and affordable home base for all adventures in this beautiful part of the state.
Spring has sprung in the Western North Carolina mountains, making it a fantastic time to get outdoors and enjoy the sunshine. One of best ways of doing just that is by attending the popular Greening Up the Mountains festival in downtown Sylva. Now in its 22nd year, this highly-anticipated annual event celebrates the arrival of spring, making it the perfect time for a spring weekend getaway.
With more than 260 craft breweries throughout North Carolina, it’s no wonder there is an entire month dedicated to celebrate the state’s beer culture. NC Beer Month, which will be celebrated in April, is now in its seventh year. With a growing craft beer scene of its own, Jackson County proudly welcomes visitors to come sample the smooth golden ales, hoppy IPAs and other tasty offerings at its trail of local breweries.