relaxing. A stop at almost any overlook or trail will reveal much of the
natural and cultural history here. The Parkway meanders 469 miles between
Shenandoah and Great Smoky Mountains National Parks, so explore the many
communities along the way that make our region so special. Enjoy the view,
but watch the road!
Blue Ridge Parkway Overlooks For more information
Crabtree Meadows Recreation Area: Milepost 339.5. Crabtree Falls (70 ft.), 4-mile roundtrip hike.
Blue Ridge Parkway vacation guide: This site has a lot of great information. For more information
Mt. Mitchell State Park For more information
There are a few places in the world that still stand apart from the ordinary. Rising more than a mile high, surrounded by the gentle mist of low-hanging clouds, Mount Mitchell State Park is one of these extraordinary places. In the crest of the timeworn Black Mountains lies the summit of Mount Mitchell, the highest point east of the Mississippi.
Linville Caverns, Falls & Gorge 828-756-4171 or 800-419-0540 For more information
Located at the base of Humpback Mountain, these limestone caverns offer many interesting stalagmite &
stalactites formations. This is great fun for the entire family. Open from MAR – NOV.
Duggers Creek Falls Trail: Off the main parking area for Linville Falls
The Orchard at Altapass 888-765-9531 For more information
The Orchard at Altapass is an Appalachian cultural and historical center celebrating the people, music, art, and natural beauty of the Blue Ridge mountains in North Carolina. Built by the Clinchfield Railroad over 100 years ago, the Orchard sits right on the Parkway providing some of the most amazing scenery in the Appalachian Mountains.
Grandfather Mountain 800-468-7325 For more information
Named for the line of its ridge, which resembles the profile of a grandfatherly man, visitors come here for a variety of attractions besides the beautiful scenery. Grandfather Mountain is the highest peak in the Blue Ridge mountain range and the only private park in the world designated by the United Nations as an International Biosphere Reserve. Marvel at 360-degree views of mountain ridge after mountain ridge retreating to the horizon and discover sanctuary for the human spirit.
Plumtree Canopy Tours 800-451-9972 For more information
Experience a real canopy tour and zipline adventure that takes you into the trees with Plumtree Canopy Tours.
More than just a 3 hour zipline experience, enjoy 11 zips and 4 sky bridges.
Hikes near Little Switzerland
Armstrong Creek Trail: A primitive hiking trails on an old logging road, this easy to moderate trail totals
6 miles. Take NC 226A to Armstrong Fish Hatchery Rd. Trail head begins past hatchery parking lot.
Bad Fork Trail: A primitive trail that connects Woods Mountain & Armstrong Creek Trails. It is an 8-mile,
moderate trail. Take NC 226A to Armstrong Fish Hatchery Rd. Drive 3 miles to trail head on left side at confluence
of Bad Fork with Armstrong Creek.
Tom’s Creek Falls Trail: Take NC 226A toward Marion, go right on 221/226S. Look for Woodlawn Motel,
just after motel is Hutchinson Branch Rd., go right. Take this road for 1.3 miles. On right is a small gravel parking
spot and the entrance to the trail to the falls. The trail is about 1/2 mile of easy hiking.
Woodlawn Fitness Trail: Workout outdoors. This fitness trail consists of seven stations, two exercises per station,
on a ¼-mile jogging path. 1.25 mile trail located behind picnic area. 6 miles north of Marion on 221.
Table Rock Mountain Hike, Linville Gorge Table Rock Mountain's distinctive summit above Linville Gorge can be seen easily from many parts of the North Carolina mountains and foothills. For more information
Waterfalls of the Blue Ridge Parkway For more information
Other Recreation Areas
Lake James 828-295-7851 For more information
Tucked away in rolling hills at the base of Linville Gorge is Lake James, a 6,510-acre lake with more than 150 miles of shoreline. This impressive waterway is the centerpiece of Lake James State Park. Here, nature offers scenic vistas of the Appalachian Mountains and beckons to those with an appetite for recreation. More info
Chimney Rock Park 800-277-9611 For more information
The stone entrance to this park lies in Chimney Rock Village, one of the state’s smallest incorporated villages. The highest elevation in the park is Exclamation Point at 2480 feet. Once at the top, you have a 75-mile view in any direction. Trails for all skill levels are available. A nature center, picnic areas and a café with a view are also on site. Admission fee.
Lake Lure 828-625-9983 For more information
Below Chimney Rock Mountain lay the waters of 700-acre Lake Lure, a man-made lake whose depths reach 110 feet at the dam. The lake offers visitors access to water sports, boating, fishing and local wildlife, a public beach and picnic area. The town of Lake Lure also provides visitors a taste of small town life.
Blowing Rock 828-295-7851 For more information
This quaint, mountain town is known as the “Crown of the Blue Ridge”. This town is a fun place to shop for unique gifts and arts& crafts.
More hiking information and photo gallery
Things to do
Tom’s Creek Falls Trail