Six Ways to Explore the Natural Beauty of North Carolina: From Beaches to Mountains

North Carolina is among the top ten most beautiful states in the US. It has over 100 towering mountains that reach higher than 5,000 feet and is home to the sixth-longest coastline in America. The destination offers everything from rocky mountains to hot, sandy beaches. There’s something special for everyone, whether you’re looking for an adventure or a relaxing getaway. Use the following article as a map of the most magnificent spots in North Carolina to immerse yourself in its natural beauty and discover its charms.

Visit the Great Smoky Mountains

The Great Smokies are some of the oldest mountains in the world, with over 4,000 plants and 140 species of trees. To truly indulge in the magnificence of nature, you must visit this rich biodiverse landscape. It’s full of beauty and fun activities, which include the following:

Rent cabins with beautiful views

North Carolina ranks 16th  as one of the top states for summer vacation in 2023, with a room availability score of 91.8 . The high score indicates thatyou can easily find and book quality lodgings. You can also rent a comfortable rusty cabin in the woods. Many charming mountain towns, like Murphy, also offer lodgings. It’s a 30-minute drive from the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and offers stunning views of the mountains from the cabins.

These rustic cabins offer a bit of luxury in the wilderness by providing amenities like hot tubs, fire pits, and air hockey tables for your entertainment. You have a plethora of cabin rentals in North Carolina to choose from. There’s something for everyone. You can find the perfect cabin according to your preferences by choosing views overlooking rivers, lakes, or mountains. These multiple options can help you plan your retreat effectively and provide a comfortable space to set up camp.

Camp under the stars

Looking for smooth plains to set up camp and enjoy an unforgettable night in the woods?Visit an open valley like Cades Cove. Enjoy a walk in the green valley until you find the perfect spot to put down your blankets for a starry show in the sky. Stargazing is only worthwhile if you get the best view of the sky. The peak experience starts after 11 pm, so keep your eyes peeled. Check the weather for a clear night before going to make the most of this adventure. However, letting your eyes adjust to the darkness first can also make a significant difference. Since regular torch lights can cause your eyes to adapt to their light, use a red-tinted flashlight instead.  

Discover new hiking trails

The Smoky Mountains National Park has more than 800 miles of hiking trails with the most captivating views. If you love flowers and colorful trails, the ideal time for hiking is spring. You can go hiking on one of the park’s highest peaks, like the Clingmans Dome.This 45-foot-tall observation tower shows the most captivating sunsets.

You can also hike to Mount Cammerer for an unforgettable experience. Though the initial hike can be challenging, you get rewarded with a tower at the top of the mountain. This viewing point gives you a complete view of the mountains surrounding you, each a different color under the setting sun. For instance, the mountains turn into shades of red, gold, and orange in the fall as the leaves change color. 

Seeing the night sky come to life is breathtaking, and you can gain more from this experience by installing stargazing apps to help you identify constellations or by bringing a telescope or binoculars to quench your thirst for space exploration. Remember to bring jackets and blankets because it could get chilly up there.

Discover coastal charms

North Carolina’s coastline stretches 3,375 miles along the Atlantic Ocean and is divided into three segments. Each division of the coastline has its distinct appeal, from the northernmost regions close to the Virginia border to the southernmost areas close to South Carolina. It has multiple warm, sandy beaches, such as: 

Wrightsville Beach

Wrights ville Beach is among the ten best beaches in the US, according to Travel + Leisure. It’s anidyllic paradise with white shores and gentle waves. This place is perfect for surfing, especially for beginners, because of its calm waters. It’s an expansive island that gives you a lot of room to stroll through the shores, make sand castles with your loved ones orgo snorkeling!

Emerald Isle

USA Today ranks Emerald Isle 2nd on the top must-see beaches list in 2023. It gets its name because of its gorgeous emerald-green waters. This beach has soft sandy shores,perfect for a family retreat where you can indulge in numerous activities like sunbathing and swimming. Most people visit this place during the summers. However, there are numerous annual events that can entertain you throughout the year! In March, the people havea St. Patrick’s Day Festival,which is bustling with street vendors, arts, and live music. You can also visit its music festival during September and discover talented local artists.

Outer Banks

Also known as Barrier Islands, this coastline blocks high-energy waves and storms, protecting the coastal mainland. It’s a popular tourist spot, with nearly 4  million visitors recorded in 2021. These people come to see North Carolina’s top attractions, from towering lighthouses to culturally rich museums. However, it’s the water sportsthat rake in the most tourists. You can go on a Kayak adventure in the Alligator Riveror go paddle-boarding along the outer banks. You can also sign up for surfing lessons to learn a new skill with your family and loved ones.


Exploring the wonders of North Carolina helps you appreciate the beauty of nature and breathtaking adventures you will remember forever. It’s easy to lose yourself in your daily life’s repetitive routine. However, a trip to nature can help break that monotony and rejuvenate your spirit. So, pack your bags and use this guide to explore new horizons.

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