Here’s Why You Need a Winter Getaway to North Carolina
Christmas Time is Here
Most of the South isn't exactly famous for snow. We're those people who sprint to Publix for bread and milk at the first sight of a flake (which usually doesn't stick because the ground is too warm, but even so, we like to be prepared). That said, we do have a few winter wonderlands that sparkle and glow this time of year, and Jackson County, NC, is one of them. If the idea of celebrating the season in the kind of small Southern towns where the annual Christmas parade is big doin's and you could luck into enough snow for tubing and skiing (or napping by a roaring fire) we think we've found your spot. (FYI, the Sylva Christmas parade, pictured above, is coming up soon—December 2 beginning at 2 p.m.—so if you'd like to greet Santa on Main Street, you'd better pack your parka and get on up there.) Weekend getaways in North Carolina offer something for everybody, whether you go there to celebrate Christmas or recover from it.
Filled with Tradition
Built in 1914, the historic Jackson County Courthouse is reportedly the most photographed courthouse in North Carolina. Climb the 107 stairs for a Christmas card-worthy view of downtown Sylva decked out for the holidays.
Dillsboro All Aglow
Enjoy extended store hours, live music, horse and buggy rides, holiday treats, and the Claus couple in downtown Dillsboro, which is lit with some 2,500 luminaries December 7-8 and 14-15, from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m.
This part of North Carolina is known for spectacular outdoor scenery, including waterfalls transformed into icy wonderlands in the wintertime. The Schoolhouse Falls in Panthertown Valley are particularly magical this time of year.
Beginning in mid-December, Ski Sapphire Valley cranks up the snow machines to supplement natural snowfall and offers multi-lane tubing with better control, thanks to high walls on both sides of each lane.
A Cashiers Christmas Celebration
Another idyllic small town, Cashiers celebrates the season with a parade held this year on December 8 beginning at noon. The town population is just shy of 160—and we'd be willing to bet most of that number will turn out for the parade.
Whether you're looking for outdoor winter adventure or just a walk in the snow, North Carolina's Sapphire Valley delivers.