The Nantahala National Forest is the largest of the four national forests in North Carolina, lying in the mountains and valleys of western North Carolina. The Nantahala is the second wettest region in the country, after the Pacific Northwest. Due to its environmental importance and historical ties with the Cherokee, the forest was officially established on January 29, 1920, by President Woodrow Wilson. The word "Nantahala" is a Cherokee derived, meaning "Land of the Noonday Sun." In some spots, the sun reaches the floors of the deep gorges of the forest only when it is high overhead at midday. This was part of the homeland of the historic Cherokee and their indigenous ancestors, who have occupied the region for thousands of years.
Located in Transylvania County near the tripoint where North Carolina, South Carolina, and Georgia meet, Gorges State Park showcases plunging waterfalls, rugged river gorges, and sheer rock precipices. Backcountry-style recreation is a hallmark of the park, from backpacking to horseback riding. This park located in the Blue Ridge Escarpment spans over 8,000 acres of temperate rainforest and hosts extraordinary biodiversity. The park features 26 waterfalls, the northern boundary of Lake Jocassee, and a portion of the 70-mile Foothills Trail.
Western North Carolina is full of waterfalls, literally 1000s of them are scattered around the mountains of Western NC such as Rainbow Falls, Silver Run Falls, Turtleback Falls, and Whitewater Falls to name a few. North Carolina's hiking trails are as epic as they are plentiful.
Panthertown Valley is a treasured 6,311-acre public backcountry area and bear sanctuary located on Nantahala National Forest in Western North Carolina, on the Continental Divide, straddled between the Great Smoky Mountains and the Blue Ridge Mountains. It has often been called the “Yosemite of the East”. There are 30 miles of public trails for your hiking enjoyment.
Affectionately known as "The Heart of the Blue Ridge Mountains", Cashiers offers everything from a bustling town center to waterfalls, lakes, and stone mountains. Four distinct seasons draw families to experience this classic mountain community year-round. The Village Green Park is a 13 acre park that hosts 80 events per year. You will find unique boutique shopping and local eateries in this quaint town.
Ski Sapphire is a family oriented winter sports resort! Discover the fun of skiing or boarding the slopes with snowmaking machines. Boasting a 1,600 foot main run with a vertical drop of 200 feet, complete with a state-of-the-art quad-lift, a learning slope, and Frozen Falls Tube Park.