The holidays are right around the corner, and we’re looking forward to the joy of gathering with loved ones this year. Finding the perfect gift can be difficult, but our NC Mountain towns of Cashiers, Cherokee, Dillsboro, and Sylva, make it easier than you’d think. The best way to avoid the stress of black Friday bustle, supply chain issues, and agonizing online shopping is by taking a shopping sabbatical to Jackson County – located about an hour west of Asheville. Check out our Holiday Gift Guide for one-of-a-kind gift inspiration and finish your holiday shopping with a stroll down Main Street.
Artisan Village of Dillsboro
Start at Dogwood Crafters – located on the corner of Front and Webster Street, a long log cabin-like structure sits, paying homage to a simpler time before Amazon one click. This humble treasure known as Dogwood Crafters has served as a popular co-op of Appalachian artists for over 40 years and offers a welcoming atmosphere as soon as you enter the building. Here you’ll find various arts and crafts gifts such as jewelry, Christmas ornaments, paintings, home décor and more.
Continue along Front Street – and find Cannon’s Corner on the left. Located in a charming commons area, you’ll find several gift shops including Monkey Toes, with a wide variety of gift types from funky socks to tee shirts, and the The Artsy Olive, a gourmet cooking boutique for the cooking aficionado in your life. Next up, you’ll want to head into The Corn Crib to meet the mother-daughter ownership team, Carolyn and Anita, for a warm welcome. Their store houses homemade crafts, home goods, and unique gifts you won’t want to miss.
Take a right on Church Street – to discover two shops on either side of the small corridor. The Front Porch General Store sells unique finds and antiques that owner Lisa sources herself. Directly across from the Front Porch, the delicious Dillsboro Chocolate Factory will surely satisfy your sweet tooth. Options range from craft cocoa confections to fudge, coffee, and more. Make sure to check out the visitor board when you enter and place a pushpin on the map of where you call home.
Head Back Down to Front Street – and make sure to explore Tunnel Mountain Crafts. The iconic ‘LOCALLY HAND MADE’ sign will greet you as you enter the small shop. Tunnel Mountain Crafts offers gifts ranging from pottery and homemade soaps to locally made clothing and more. If you’re feeling ‘lazy,’ stop by the Lazy Bear General Store & Ice Cream next door for a pick-me-up.
Historic Downtown Sylva
Your Journey Begins at the Jackson County Chamber & Visitors Center – located at the foot of the Historic Courthouse on the corner of Keener & West Main Street. Walk in to meet the welcoming visitor center staff who has the expertise to guide you to some of the best deals in town. Our Visitor Center sells unique Sylva gifts that can’t be found anywhere else, including a Courthouse Tree Ornament, WNC Fly Fishing Trail® gear, magnets, stickers, and more!
Two Blocks Down – the shopping begins at Dixie & Co., a sizable antique store with two stories of keepsakes. Continue down West Main Street to shop at B&B for fun decor and monogrammed goodies. Cross Spring Street to find The Farmhouse Mercantile, Black Balsam Outdoors, and the Tuckasegee Fly Shop. On the other side of the street, check out unique vinyl records at In Your Ear Music Emporium or antiques at Sassy Frass. Head up Spring Street to discover City Lights Book Store, a staple of Sylva where you can ‘read local.’
End of Main – is an antique shop that sells a little bit of everything. Owner John Wermuth specializes in finding primitive–modern furniture, antiques, and more, plus he always decorates for the holidays.
Baxley’s Chocolates – sweeten things up on your trip to Sylva by swinging by Baxley’s Chocolates. The Baxley’s have been creating chocolate confections for over 25 years, and their charming storefront on Main Street has become the go-to place for a sweet fix.
Mill Street – or “Back Street,” as locals call it, houses several stores worth exploring for a unique holiday gift. Located near the iconic Sylva Mural, Treasures Unknown is an expansive antique with several thousand square feet of treasures to sort through. For unique handcrafted gifts in town, head to Noon or Snake Song just a block away.
Upscale Shopping in Cashiers
The Mountaintop Village of Cashiers – offers a kicked back upscale vibe with several high-end boutiques, art galleries, home furnishing stores, and much more. Get the gear you need for outdoor adventure at the Highland Hiker, the plateau’s premiere hiking store, for over 25 years. With one of the best hiking shoe collections in the southeast, you’re sure to find the perfect pair before you tackle the trail. Behind the Highland Hiker, anglers will want to check out Brookings Anglers with the latest and greatest rods, reels, waders, and more for sale. Give a ‘reely’ great gift by booking your loved one a trip along the WNC Fly Fishing Trail® at Brookings or any of our Outfitters & Guides.
Village Walk – is located across the street. Here is where you’ll find McDonough Antique Prints & Maps, Swangar’s Cellar, Nora & CO, the Corner Toy Store, Graceware Collection Boutique, and The Cashiers Store for the perfect keepsake from your trip. Don’t forget to pick up a gift for your furry friend! The ‘Woof Gang Bakery’ is a must for fido’s stocking stuffers.
Relax and Recharge – with a spa day. Canyon Spa is housed in the charming Caretaker’s Cottage overlooking Lonesome Valley’s iconic landscape. This boutique spa offers a calming environment with treatments such as Swedish, deep tissue, and the ‘Canyon Stone Massage.’ Check out our complete lists of spas here.
Non-Chain Dining – options are plentiful in Jackson County. With many locally sourced and award-winning restaurants to choose from, there’s something to enjoy for every palate and diet type. Reward yourself after a day full of shopping by grabbing a locally crafted beverage along our Ale Trail, made up of seven breweries from across the county or check out our wine & cocktail lounges.
Finding the Perfect Holiday Centerpiece
Choose and Cut Tree Farms – have long been a holiday tradition for many families. Jackson County is known for its ideal elevation for growing the favorite tree species, the Frasier Fir. The Glenville/Cashiers area has several choose and cut tree farms to ‘choose’ from. Learn more here.
Holiday Shopping Events – The Best Time to Shop
Check out these Holiday happenings and holiday events for great deals and experiences to enjoy while finding the perfect gift – no Black Friday lines included!
Sidewalk Sale in Downtown Sylva – Saturday, November 20, 11 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Mountain Artisans Hard Candy Christmas (Cullowhee) – Friday-Saturday Nov. 26 & 27, 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Santa on the Green & Mistletoe Market (Cashiers) – Friday, November 26, 2 – 6:30 p.m.
Small Business Saturday (Dillsboro) – Saturday, November 27, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Dillsboro Festival of Lights & Luminaries – Dec. 3 – 4, & 10 – 11, 5 – 9 p.m.
Holiday Market at Innovation Station (Dillsboro) – Friday Dec. 3 & 10, 5 – 9 p.m.
Sylva Christmas Tree Lighting & Concert – Friday, December 3, 6:30 – 7:30 p.m.
Jackson Arts Market (Sylva) – Fridays & Saturdays, year-round 1 – 3 p.m.
The Best Gift of All
The best gift to give is that of memories. Consider booking Your Mountain Home for the Holidays this year in Jackson County. Our mountain towns have options for your preferences, from luxury resorts to cabins, hotels, inns, and more. Check out our Trip Planner for more inspiration!