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Interesting areas East of Knoxville, TN and North of Charlotte, NC

Interesting areas East of Knoxville, TN and North of Charlotte, NC

Old Aug 10th, 2011, 03:07 PM
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Interesting areas East of Knoxville, TN and North of Charlotte, NC

HI Fellow Travelers!

I will be in Knoxville, TN on August 27th and will have the 28th & 29th and portion of the 30th to kill before having to be (by car) in Washington DC on August 30th.

I am unsure how to spend this excess time... I am open to suggestions, areas of good scenic roads, historical significance, beauty, etc. I will have a car so everything will have to be within driving distance and I must be in Washington DC afternoon-ish of August 30th.

I am completely, 100% unfamiliar with this whole area so any advice is greatly appreciated!!

Thanks
gompertz is offline  
Old Aug 10th, 2011, 03:28 PM
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I can think of three towns right off the top of my head that I would recommend. Asheville NC is a great town - it has a great downtown and many good restaurants! The famous Biltmore House and Grove Park Inn are located in this area. Richmond and Charlottesville VA are neat college towns that are full of historical significance and also have great downtowns and good food. These two towns are on your way to DC. All three of these towns are near the Blue Ridge Parkway and you could hop on or off to see some of the scenery if you would like (the speed limit is very slow, so I am not sure how long you would want to stay on the Parkway). If you have more specific things you are looking for I would be glad to give you more details.
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Old Aug 10th, 2011, 03:51 PM
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I second the idea about the Blue Ridge Parkway. You could spend some time in Asheville and drive up the parkway to Blowing Rock and Boone and then continue on into VA on the parkway. The weather will be beautiful. Speed limit on the parkway is 45 mph. Distance on parkway from Asheville to Blowing Rock is about 90 miles. There are lots of pretty lookouts and hiking trails. When you get up in Northern VA, you can cut across the wine region for more beautiful rolling hills and end up in D.C.
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Old Aug 10th, 2011, 04:08 PM
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I would recommend going into Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg and you can take 441 and ride over the mountains into Cherokee,NC and go to the Biltmore. There is lots of things to do and see in the area. Cherokee has a nice casino if your in to that thing. The Smoky Mountains are beautiful. I would drive some on the Blue Ridge Parkway and go up to Cades Cove and drive thru Roaring Fork Motor Nature Trail. There is lots of nice shopping and restaurants in the area.You could always rent a cabin and do things in the park. There is over 800 miles of hiking trails in The Smokies. Heres some links that will help you out.

http://www.discoverthesmokies.com/

http://www.gatlinburg.com/default.asp

http://www.nps.gov/grsm/index.htm

http://www.gatlinburgtnlive.com/gatl...rg-web-cam.asp

http://www.yourcabin.com/default.aspx
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Old Aug 10th, 2011, 04:08 PM
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I would recommend going into Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg and you can take 441 and ride over the mountains into Cherokee,NC and go to the Biltmore. There is lots of things to do and see in the area. Cherokee has a nice casino if your in to that thing. The Smoky Mountains are beautiful. I would drive some on the Blue Ridge Parkway and go up to Cades Cove and drive thru Roaring Fork Motor Nature Trail. There is lots of nice shopping and restaurants in the area.You could always rent a cabin and do things in the park. There is over 800 miles of hiking trails in The Smokies. Heres some links that will help you out.

http://www.discoverthesmokies.com/

http://www.gatlinburg.com/default.asp

http://www.nps.gov/grsm/index.htm

http://www.gatlinburgtnlive.com/gatl...rg-web-cam.asp

http://www.yourcabin.com/default.aspx
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Old Aug 10th, 2011, 04:22 PM
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Personally, Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg are a little too hokey/touristy/honkr tonk for me. I much prefer Asheville. I would second (or third) a drive on the Blue Ridge Parkway over to Asheville, maybe even spend the night and look aroud. There is a lot to see & do - Biltmore, Grove Park Inn, local artisan craft displays, lovely restaurants, a short drive east to Black Mountain or Lake Lure as well.
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Old Aug 10th, 2011, 06:09 PM
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Asheville/BRP is a good way to go. There is also quite a lot up around Galax in Va. All the places mentioned by gatlinburglvr are over-populated tourist trap kitsch, if you like that sort of thing.
You'll also be passing throguh the heart of both Va. & NC wine country, if you have that interest.
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Old Aug 19th, 2011, 06:05 PM
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Another vote for Asheville/BRP. Nice town & people, beautiful scenery. In Virginia we also enjoyed visiting Jefferson's Monticello near Charlottesville and the Civil War battlefields near Fredricksburg, if you enjoy historical content. In Fredricksburg (near Washington, DC) we stayed at the historic Kenmore Inn; greatly enjoyed a tasty meal there with our wonderful stay.
HotWheels is offline  
Old Aug 20th, 2011, 05:40 AM
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Asheville and the BRP--Blowing Rock, etc. It is a beautiful ride. You can get off the Parkway at various places and sort of parallel it to make better time, if you want.
Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge--and pretty much Cherokee also are wall to wall tourist traps--a real shame for what is a beautiful Park. The GSMNP BETWEEN Gatlinburg and Cherokee is beautiful, of course, but since you need to be sort of heading north and east, just keep on heading that way.
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Old Aug 20th, 2011, 06:21 AM
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In Virginia, Floyd is off the Parkway and is a great place for local music and crafts. Looks like you wouldn't be around there for their Friday night jamboree, but they have music other days as well.
http://www.floydcountrystore.com/
http://www.floydvirginia.com/visitor...d-attractions/

I agree with others, avoid Gatlinburg/Pigeon Forge, but the Smokey Mountains themselves and Asheville are very pretty areas.
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Old Aug 20th, 2011, 08:54 AM
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Waynesville, NC is a fun place to stop on the BRP. Stay at Pisgah Inn.

Pisgah Inn @ 408 Blue Ridge Parkway, Waynesville, NC 828 - 235 - 8228.
http://www.pisgahinn.com/
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Old Aug 20th, 2011, 09:50 AM
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The Pisgah Inn is heading south a bit on the BRP. It is a "nice" place--a plain pipe rack BRP hotel with a restaurant. There is just the possibility that the clouds will be low and you will have a view as if from an airliner window! There are other nice inns on north on the BRP, or near the Parkway. Just a note of clarification. It is the highest point on the Parkway.
Gretchen is offline  
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