For a wonderful day trip, the Highlands of North Carolina provides visitors with picturesque mountain views, delicious dining options, and exciting activities that are enjoyable for the entire family. It’s magnificent beauty and peaceful atmosphere make the Highlands the perfect place to spend the day outside amongst nature.
If you have a taste for adventure, the Highlands has an endless amount of activities to connect you to the great outdoors. Some of their best attractions include a multitude of area waterfalls, where visitors can watch in awe as nature does its thing. Bridal Veil Falls is a 45-foot waterfall just north of the Highlands and is the only waterfall in the state that you can drive a car under! Other memorable locations include Glen Falls, Rainbow Falls, and Whitewater falls.
For adrenaline-junkies, try the world-class zip line at Highlands Aerial Park. There, you can take a journey on 7 different zip lines and enjoy the beautiful scenery from a unique perspective. Their most notable zip line is the Squealing Mare, which gives guests a 1/4-mile ride 210 feet above the ground. With incredible views of the Smoky Mountains, this is one activity you just have to try.
The Highlands of North Carolina has a wide variety of cuisine to choose from, and each is unique and delicious in its own way. Before you start your day, take a trip to Southern Belles Restaurant, where you can enjoy salads, wraps, and other fresh country favorites at a lovely table outside.
At dinner time, treat yourself to Wolfgang’s Restaurant & Wine Bistro, where you can dig into decadent favorites like fresh mountain trout or roast loin of lamb. Or, if you’re in the mood for Italian, head over to Paoletti Ristorante, where you can satisfy your craving with ricotta & basil gnocchi or lobster ravioli. Your stomach will be thanking you after a meal at any of Highlands restaurants.
The Highlands are a great place to visit any time of year, but a day trip becomes even more special around the holidays. On Halloween, the streets are closed for kids (and adults!) to celebrate and collect scrumptious candy. During Christmastime, the Highlands hosts a Christmas parade, complete with reindeer dancers and Santa on a sled. Santa also makes a point to visit with all of the children after the parade and listen to all of their gift requests. Bringing your family to the Highlands for the holidays is sure to be the highlight of their year.
Not only do the Highlands have tons of fun activities for day-trippers, the drive up is just as enjoyable! You’ll have stunning views of all the surrounding areas, with plenty of look-out spots to take in the sites (and maybe even a few family photos!). After you’ve made your way back from North Carolina, be sure to download our free vacation guide. It’s full of tips and tricks for making your vacation in the Northern Georgia Mountains one you’ll never forget.