North Carolina

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From the Outer Banks’ secluded barrier islands to the Smoky Mountains’ majestic peaks, North Carolina is an outdoor enthusiast’s dream. There are championship golf courses, beautiful gardens, scenic drives along the Blue Ridge Parkway, and numerous opportunities for hiking, biking, and fishing. Urban adventures include hip Asheville, host to America's largest privately owned home, Biltmore Estate, and university-centric cities like Raleigh, Durham, and Chapel Hill.

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Asheville

Asheville is the hippest city in the South. At least that's the claim of its fans, who are legion. Visitors flock to Asheville for its arts...

Charlotte

Don't expect to hear many Southern accents in this melting pot, the biggest city in the state. Visiting Charlotte is much more of an urban experience...

Raleigh

For a state capital, Raleigh is surprisingly approachable. The very walkable downtown, smaller than you might think, is not only home to a multitude...

Durham

For many, Durham and Duke University are synonymous, and for good reason. Duke's well-manicured lawns, tree-lined streets, and stately buildings...

Wilmington

The city's long history, including its part in the American Revolution, is revealed in sights downtown and in the surrounding area. The Cotton...

Greensboro

With its aging brick buildings and outer ring of small-city sprawl, Greensboro might not seem all that romantic at first, but let it grow on...

Chapel Hill

Chapel Hill is the smallest city in the Triangle, but it probably has the biggest personality. Home to the nation's first state university,...

Winston-Salem

Even in the heart of downtown, there's something not entirely modern about Winston-Salem. And that's a good thing. The second-largest city in...

Nags Head

It's widely accepted that Nags Head got its name because pirates once tied lanterns around the necks of their horses to lure merchant ships...

New Bern

This city of nearly 30,000 was founded in 1710 by a Swiss nobleman who named it after his home, Bern, Switzerland. Since bern means "bear...

Blue Ridge Parkway

The Blue Ridge Parkway's 252 miles within North Carolina wind down the High Country through Asheville, ending near the entrance of Great Smoky...

Hatteras Island

The Herbert C. Bonner Bridge arches for 3 miles over Oregon Inlet and carries traffic to Hatteras Island, a 42-mile-long curved ribbon of sand...

Roanoke Island

On a hot July day in 1587, 117 men, women, and children left their boat and set foot on Roanoke Island to form the first permanent English settlement...

Cherokee

The Cherokee Qualla Boundary consists of almost 57,000 acres, and the town of Cherokee is its capital. Truth be told, there are two Cherokees...

Waynesville

This is where the Blue Ridge Parkway meets the Great Smokies. Waynesville is the seat of Haywood County. About 40% of the county is occupied...

Ocracoke Island

Around 950 people live on what is the last inhabited island in the Outer Banks, which can be reached only by water or air. The village, one...

High Point

High Point earned its name through simple geography: it was the highest point on the railroad line between Goldsboro and Charlotte. Nowadays...

Brevard

This small town in the Pisgah National Forest has a friendly, highly walkable downtown. In summer, more than 400 talented music students from...

Beaufort

There's a feeling of having stepped back in time in this small, historic seaport with a charming boardwalk. Residents take great pride in the...

Kure Beach and Carolina Beach

A resort community on a strip of sand locals know as Pleasure Island, Kure Beach is home to Fort Fisher State Historic Site, a 712-foot fishing...

Bryson City

Bryson City is a little mountain town on the Nantahala River, one of the lesser-known gateways to the Great Smokies. The town's most striking...

Hendersonville

With about 14,000 residents, Hendersonville has one of the most engaging downtowns of any small city in the South. Historic Main Street, as...

Blowing Rock

Blowing Rock, a draw for mountain visitors since the 1880s, has retained the flavor of a quiet New England village, with stone walls and buildings...

Wrightsville Beach

A short drive from Wilmington, Wrightsville Beach is a good day-trip destination. This is a small (5-mile-long), partly upscale, and quiet island...

Boone

This college town is home to Appalachian State University (ASU) and its 18,000 students. Suburban sprawl has arrived, especially along U.S....

Highlands

Highlands is a tony town of only 900 people, but the surrounding area swells to 20,000 or more in summer and fall, when those with summer homes...

Black Mountain

Black Mountain is a small town that has played a disproportionately large role in American cultural history because of the college located near...

Banner Elk

Surrounded by the lofty peaks of Grandfather, Hanging Rock, Beech, and Sugar Mountains, this ski resort bills itself as the "highest town in...

Cape Lookout National Seashore

Extending for 55 miles from Portsmouth Island to Shackleford Banks, Cape Lookout National Seashore includes 28,400 acres of uninhabited, remote...

Cashiers

Cashiers (pronounced CASH-ers) is not a quite a town. Until recently, it was just a crossroads, with a store or two, a summer getaway for wealthy...

Southport

This small town, quietly positioned at the mouth of Cape Fear River, is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. An increasingly...

Seagrove

What golf is to Pinehurst, pottery is to Seagrove. This little town is home to upward of 100 potters, many whose families have been making ceramics...

Robbinsville

If you truly want to get away from everything, head to the area around Robbinsville in the far southwest corner of North Carolina, a little...

Valle Crucis

This tiny mountain town has the state's first rural historic district; vintage stores line the downtown streets. ...

Chimney Rock and Lake Lure

Chimney Rock and neighboring Lake Lure—both day trips from Asheville—were the dream projects of a single man, Dr. Lucius Morse. In the early...

Asheboro

Asheboro, the seat of Randolph County, sits in the Uwharrie National Forest, which is popular with those who like hiking, biking, and horseback...

Lake Toxaway

A century ago, a group called the Lake Toxaway Company created a 640-acre lake in the high mountains between Brevard and Cashiers. Nearby, a...

Flat Rock

Flat Rock has been a summer resort since the early 19th century. It was a favorite of wealthy planters from Charleston eager to escape the Lowcountry...

Hot Springs

...

Pinehurst

...

Morehead City

...

Dillsboro

...

Aberdeen

...

Asheville

Asheville is the hippest city in the South. At least that's the claim of its fans, who are legion. Visitors flock to Asheville for its arts...

Charlotte

Don't expect to hear many Southern accents in this melting pot, the biggest city in the state. Visiting Charlotte is much more of an urban experience...

Raleigh

For a state capital, Raleigh is surprisingly approachable. The very walkable downtown, smaller than you might think, is not only home to a multitude...

Durham

For many, Durham and Duke University are synonymous, and for good reason. Duke's well-manicured lawns, tree-lined streets, and stately buildings...

Wilmington

The city's long history, including its part in the American Revolution, is revealed in sights downtown and in the surrounding area. The Cotton...

Greensboro

With its aging brick buildings and outer ring of small-city sprawl, Greensboro might not seem all that romantic at first, but let it grow on...

Chapel Hill

Chapel Hill is the smallest city in the Triangle, but it probably has the biggest personality. Home to the nation's first state university,...

Winston-Salem

Even in the heart of downtown, there's something not entirely modern about Winston-Salem. And that's a good thing. The second-largest city in...

Nags Head

It's widely accepted that Nags Head got its name because pirates once tied lanterns around the necks of their horses to lure merchant ships...

New Bern

This city of nearly 30,000 was founded in 1710 by a Swiss nobleman who named it after his home, Bern, Switzerland. Since bern means "bear...

Blue Ridge Parkway

The Blue Ridge Parkway's 252 miles within North Carolina wind down the High Country through Asheville, ending near the entrance of Great Smoky...

Cherokee

The Cherokee Qualla Boundary consists of almost 57,000 acres, and the town of Cherokee is its capital. Truth be told, there are two Cherokees...

Waynesville

This is where the Blue Ridge Parkway meets the Great Smokies. Waynesville is the seat of Haywood County. About 40% of the county is occupied...

High Point

High Point earned its name through simple geography: it was the highest point on the railroad line between Goldsboro and Charlotte. Nowadays...

Brevard

This small town in the Pisgah National Forest has a friendly, highly walkable downtown. In summer, more than 400 talented music students from...

Kure Beach and Carolina Beach

A resort community on a strip of sand locals know as Pleasure Island, Kure Beach is home to Fort Fisher State Historic Site, a 712-foot fishing...

Beaufort

There's a feeling of having stepped back in time in this small, historic seaport with a charming boardwalk. Residents take great pride in the...

Bryson City

Bryson City is a little mountain town on the Nantahala River, one of the lesser-known gateways to the Great Smokies. The town's most striking...

Wrightsville Beach

A short drive from Wilmington, Wrightsville Beach is a good day-trip destination. This is a small (5-mile-long), partly upscale, and quiet island...

Blowing Rock

Blowing Rock, a draw for mountain visitors since the 1880s, has retained the flavor of a quiet New England village, with stone walls and buildings...

Hendersonville

With about 14,000 residents, Hendersonville has one of the most engaging downtowns of any small city in the South. Historic Main Street, as...

Boone

This college town is home to Appalachian State University (ASU) and its 18,000 students. Suburban sprawl has arrived, especially along U.S....

Highlands

Highlands is a tony town of only 900 people, but the surrounding area swells to 20,000 or more in summer and fall, when those with summer homes...

Black Mountain

Black Mountain is a small town that has played a disproportionately large role in American cultural history because of the college located near...

Banner Elk

Surrounded by the lofty peaks of Grandfather, Hanging Rock, Beech, and Sugar Mountains, this ski resort bills itself as the "highest town in...

Robbinsville

If you truly want to get away from everything, head to the area around Robbinsville in the far southwest corner of North Carolina, a little...

Cashiers

Cashiers (pronounced CASH-ers) is not a quite a town. Until recently, it was just a crossroads, with a store or two, a summer getaway for wealthy...

Seagrove

What golf is to Pinehurst, pottery is to Seagrove. This little town is home to upward of 100 potters, many whose families have been making ceramics...

Southport

This small town, quietly positioned at the mouth of Cape Fear River, is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. An increasingly...

Cape Lookout National Seashore

Extending for 55 miles from Portsmouth Island to Shackleford Banks, Cape Lookout National Seashore includes 28,400 acres of uninhabited, remote...

Valle Crucis

This tiny mountain town has the state's first rural historic district; vintage stores line the downtown streets. ...

Chimney Rock and Lake Lure

Chimney Rock and neighboring Lake Lure—both day trips from Asheville—were the dream projects of a single man, Dr. Lucius Morse. In the early...

Asheboro

Asheboro, the seat of Randolph County, sits in the Uwharrie National Forest, which is popular with those who like hiking, biking, and horseback...

Lake Toxaway

A century ago, a group called the Lake Toxaway Company created a 640-acre lake in the high mountains between Brevard and Cashiers. Nearby, a...

Flat Rock

Flat Rock has been a summer resort since the early 19th century. It was a favorite of wealthy planters from Charleston eager to escape the Lowcountry...

Pinehurst

...

Morehead City

...

Aberdeen

...

Hot Springs

...

Dillsboro

...

Central North Carolina

While visiting the Piedmont, it's easy to forget what state you're in. Though it’s in the geographic center of North Carolina, this collection...

The North Carolina Coast

Three hundred miles of breathtaking barrier islands and mainland beaches make North Carolina's coastline a beach lover's dream. White sands...

The North Carolina Mountains

Majestic peaks, meadows, shrub-covered balds, and valleys of the Appalachian, Blue Ridge, and Great Smoky Mountains epitomize the western corner...

Northern Beaches

The small northern beach settlements of Corolla and Duck are largely seasonal, residential enclaves full of summer rental homes and condominiums...

Southern Pines

The center of the Sandhills, Southern Pines is a good place to begin exploring the region. Perhaps because its golf resorts are out of town...

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