In any case, let’s get this out of the way immediately. Sure, you should plan a vacation to the Appalachian highlands this year. Sandra Marra, president and CEO of the Appalachian Trail Conservancy, told Travel + Leisure that the Appalachians attract “millions of visitors from around the world” every year. “The historic mountains we manage and maintain are home to incredible natural features and exciting recreational opportunities, like as the 2,194-mile Appalachian Trail. There are hundreds of historic towns and attractions spread out over the area, allowing visitors to enter and exit these landscapes for a day or a few months at a time, and maybe inspiring them to help preserve them for the long term.”
Marra further pointed out that the Appalachians are easily accessible to millions of tourists because of its proximity to many major cities in the United States. Yet there’s more to this region of Country than the iconic route flowing through it. What follows is a short list of recommended places to visit in the Appalachians this year.
Being the only state wholly included inside the Appalachian mountain range, the appropriately called Mountain State has its own section. It boasts every ounce of charm you’d expect from John Denver’s renowned ballad “Take Me Home, Country Roads.” The state is filled with scenic overlooks worthy of a movie. Hike, cycle, rock climb, whitewater raft, or picnic in sites like the New River Gorge National Park & Preserve, Harpers Ferry Historical National Park, and renowned locations like Seneca Rocks and Dolly Sods Wilderness, both in the Monongahela National Forest.
Go away to West Virginia and stay at Adventures on the Gorge in Fayetteville. Accommodations at the resort range from luxurious cabins and glamping sites to more basic cabins and campers. West Virginia has the greatest number of family-owned farms in the country, so no matter where you Vacation stay, you can be sure to enjoy the state’s Appalachian cuisine, where fresh food reigns supreme.
Allegany County, Maryland
Put on your protective gear, cyclists, and get ready to go! Base yourself at Frostburg, located in Allegany County, on the “Mountain Side” of Maryland. The Great Allegany Passage (also known as the Gap Trail) links Cumberland, Maryland, to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and is easily accessible from this picturesque hamlet of around 8,550 people.
The Western Maryland Scenic Railroad operates an excursion train from Cumberland to phrazle Frostburg, so you can skip the hiking boots and the bike. We also recommend the new rail bike expedition offered by Tracks and Yaks, where you may ride two- or four-person rail bikes on a guided trip from the Frostburg Station to Cash Valley and then take shuttle buses back to Frostburg. The Appalachian Festival is held every year in September at Frostburg University, and is a great opportunity for visitors to experience the region’s rich cultural heritage via film, music, dance, storytelling, and more.
Because outdoor activities are so popular in Allegany County, the warmer weather and longer days in the summer are always well-received. In addition to GAP Trail, Green Ridge State Forest has around 80 miles of built paths for hiking and bicycling. Trees aplenty and the Potomac River may be seen on Vacation the Green Ridge State Forest Driving Tour, which is another excellent opportunity to take in the region’s natural splendor. The Allegany County Ice Cream Trail is a great place to stop for a treat.
North Carolina’s Mountainous Upstate
The North Carolina High Country is a mountainous region that comes alive in Vacation the warmer months of the year. Grandfather Mountain may seen from several points along the Blue Ridge Parkway, including the picturesque villages of Banner Elk, Beech Mountain, Blowing Rock, Boone, West Jefferson, and Sparta. Your journey to this stunning summit, home to many endangered plant species, will take you through the Blue Ridge Parkway. Walk over the Grandfather Mountain Mile High Bridge if you have no fear of heights.
Investigate Beech Mountain, which is located about 45 minutes distant. Check into a West Jefferson cabin like Lazy Daze Cabin and spend the night before a float trip down the New River with High Mountain Expeditions. The New River is one of the oldest rivers in the world. Roan Mountain, roughly 40 minutes from Grandfather Mountain, is where you may pick up the Appalachian Trail.
Wilderness Area of Kentucky
Maybe you haven’t heard of the Kentucky Wildlands before, but you should. This summer, set off from Cumberland Gap National Historic Site, which was an important crossroads in the lower central Appalachians during the American colonial era. Go for a hike on the Vacation Chained Rock Trail at Pine Mountain State Resort Park.
The section of U.S. 23 from Ashland, Kentucky, to the Virginia state line known as “The Country Music Highway,” because it where musical legends like Loretta Lynn and Chris Stapleton born. After seeing Butcher Holler, Loretta Lynn’s childhood home, you may enjoy the best of Kentucky in the summer at one of the state’s many lakes. Renting a Vacation pontoon boat on Dewey Lake at Jenny Wiley State Resort Park is the finest way to see the park. Following a lazy day at home, go to Prestonsburg, a quick 15-minute drive away, to explore the historic district and enjoy a walk along the Passage Rail Trail, which has a one-of-a-kind school bus bridge.
Although outdoor activity predominate in these bucolic regions, the area’s coal Vacation mining heritage is worth mentioning. Explore Portal 31 in Harlan County, Kentucky, to learn about a coal camp that served as home to individuals from 38 different countries in the early 20th century. Lastly, before leaving town, be sure to check out some of the region’s breathtaking waterfalls, including the one located along Bad Branch Trail, a quarter of an hour’s walk from Portal 31.
Ulster and Dutchess Counties, New York
NYC Yorkers have unexpectedly simple access to the A.T. Ulster and Dutchess counties Vacation are among our top recommendations. Mohonk Preserve (stay at Mohonk Mountain House; you’ll be grateful to us), Minnewaska State Park, and Sam’s Point Preserve are all located in the Appalachian Mountain region that extends into Ulster County. Every year in August, towns like Ellenville (home to the Blueberry Festival) and New Paltz (home to the Hudson Valley RibFest) hold a slew of exciting celebrations.
The Wallkill Valley Rail Trail is a 22-mile long walkway that follows the route of the historic Wallkill Valley Railroad and is accessible from the Samuel F. Pryor III Shawangunk Gateway Campsite in Gardiner. In addition to the 10-acre Huguenot Street National Historic Landmark Area in New Paltz, New York, we also suggest visiting the Mohonk Testimonial Gatehouse, which serves as a trailhead for hiking and cycling. After all that hiking and exploring, cool down at one of the local swimming holes like Split Rock Coxing Kill or Tillson Lake in Minnewaska State Park.