Boone NC Weekend Itinerary: Best Things to Do

Located in Western North Carolina, you will find the mountain town of Boone nestled in the Appalachian Mountains. Regardless of the season, Boone definitely has a lot to offer! In this guide, I am covering some of the best things to do in Boone, NC, for a weekend itinerary! 

So is Boone worth visiting? Most definitely! This Appalachian town is located right on the Blue Ridge Parkway, surrounded by major ski resorts, and has lots of food and shopping options around being it’s a college town! 

In this Boone itinerary, you will find 10 plus fun things to do, which is perfect for 2 – 3 days.

Boone NC weekend Itinerary

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Best Things to Do in Boone for the Weekend 

With a weekend in Boone, you can see the best attractions in Boone and the surrounding towns.

I think 2-3 days in Boone gives you the perfect amount of time in the area and is a great jumping point location for some epic Boone day trips and East Coast road trips. 

Boone, NC fun fact: Tourism to the Boone area began in the 1800s to escape the heat. 

Blue Ridge Parkway sunset road trip
Sunset near Rough Ridge Parking Lot at Grandfather Mountain

Grandfather Mountain

Grandfather Mountain is one of my favorite places in North Carolina! This mountain is a part of the Blue Ridge Parkway and also has some of the best stops along the way.

Blue Ridge Parkway at Grandfather Mountain in Boone NC is perfect for the weekend

There are two ways you can see Grandfather mountains. One is by driving the Blue Ridge Parkway. This is totally free to do and gives you access to beautiful mountain views, lots of pullovers, and tons of hiking. 

One of the most popular hiking trails is Rough Ridge, which offers beautiful views of the mountain range. The trail is about 1.2 miles round trip and is marked as a moderate trail. Other popular great places to see around Grandfather mountain include Price Lake, Wilson Creek Overlook, and Linn Cove Viaduct. 

The other way to see Grandfather Mountain is to go inside the Grandfather Mountain State Park. To visit the park, you need to buy a ticket ahead of time. 

Inside the park, you can cross over the mile-high swinging bridge, which is a suspended footbridge. The Swinging Bridge is known as one of the highest suspension bridges in the world!

Fun Fact: They estimate the mountain to be 300 million years old, with certain rock formations dating back 1.2 billion years.

They also have a wildlife habitat enclosure where you can see cougars, black bears, and river otters in their natural environment. Additionally, you can hike Grandfather Mountain, attend special events, or explore the nature museum. As you can see, Grandfather Mountain has a lot to offer and makes for a perfect weekend activity in Boone, NC! 

You can spend a whole day enjoying this or a half day with one of the attractions below.

Tickets: Adult: $22; Children: $9

View Of Linn Cove Viaduct
View Of Linn Cove Viaduct at Grandfather Mountain

Blowing Rock

Blowing Rock is known as the oldest tourist attraction in North Carolina. Located in the Town of Blowing Rock, the mountain stands 4,000 ft above sea level and offers epic mountain views! 

This attraction also has a famous legend of a love story between Chickasaw chieftain’s daughter and a Cherokee brave. Legend has it that one day, a strange red sky beyond the rock signaled a sign of trouble, so he leaped off of the rock and down toward the light. 

The maiden prayed for his return each day. One day, the sky turned red again and blew her lover back up the rock (and back to her). From that day, the wind has always blown up toward the rock! 

In actuality, the phenomenon of how the wind blows up the rock is caused by the rocky walls of the gorge 3,000 feet below. It forms a flume through and makes the wind sweep with such force.

During your visit, you can enjoy the nature trails, see the blowing rock, look down on the gorge, view the gardens, and view the overlooks. On top of that, leashed pets are welcome, and you can even have your wedding at the rock!

If you are considering whether to visit Grandfather Mountain or Blowing Rock and you can only see one, I’d go with Grandfather Mountain – but technically, you can likely do both in one day.

Admission: $9 USD

Drive the Blue Ridge Parkway

One of the most epic things to do in Boone is driving the Blue Ridge Parkway. Driving the parkway was what actually brought us to Boone in the first place!

Whether you start your trip in Boone or you end your trip in Boone, I believe it is one of the best places for access to the parkway.

Did you know the Blue Ridge Parkway is actually known as “America’s favorite drive” and saw over 15.9 million visitors in 2021? That is even more visitors than the Great Smoky Mountains!

From Boone, you can choose to drive the Blue Ridge Parkway North into Virginia. You might even want to consider driving further to Sky Line Drive in Shenandoah National Park

Or, you can drive the parkway south down through Cherokee (what we originally did). From Cherokee, you will actually be at the North Carolina entrance to the Great Smoky Mountains! 

You might also be interested in: Why you should drive the Blue Ridge Parkway in Fall!

I would suggest making this a full-day activity.

Road on the Blue Ridge Parkway is the perfect weekend attraction from Boone NC
The Blue Ridge Parkway during the Fall

Visit Downtown Boone

Another great thing to do with a weekend or 2 -3 days in Boone is to explore the Downtown area. Stroll down King Street and peek into antique stores, dining options, and more!

While downtown, you might also want to consider visiting the Mast General Store, where you will find tons of goodies! 

They also have events happening downtown. To see events and businesses in downtown Boone, NC, click here!

Fun Fact: Boone, NC, was actually named after Daniel Boone, a lover of the highlands who settled in the area around the 1760s.

Hit the Slopes in Northwestern NC

Visiting Boone in the Winter? Then you are in for a treat with 3 ski slopes to choose from! Boone is also a perfect USA winter getaway in general!

You can head to Banner Elk, where you will find the adorable ski town of Sugar Mountain. Sugar Mountain offers all the skiing, snowboarding, ice skating, and even snow tubing, all within 30 minutes from Boone. 

Nearby, you also have Beech Mountain. Beech Mountain Ski Resort is known to have the highest slopes on the East Coast and also offers snowboarding, skiing, ice skating, and snow tubing. 

Lastly, you have Appalachian Mountain, which is more of a local gem right in Boone. They were the first places to go skiing in Northwestern North Carolina and the second oldest ski area in the State.

Additionally, if you visit Boone in the winter, you can also visit a Christmas Tree farm! Did you know that North Carolina was one of the largest producers of Christmas Trees?

Some Christmas tree farms are C & J Christmas Trees, Clawson’s Choose and Cut, and Panoramic Choose and Cut.

Visit the ski slopes during the winter with a weekend in Boone, NC
Weekend in Boone during the winter by Sugar Mountain

Explore the Vineyards Around Boone

Did you know North Carolina has a wine country? What is better than wine and mountain views, am I right? Some vineyards to consider visiting around Boone include Grandfather Vineyard and Winery, Banner Elk Vineyard, and Linville Falls Vineyard!

If you visit Boone during the fall, you might even want to visit apple orchards! Altapass Apple Orchard is right on the Blue Ridge Parkway near Linville. Additionally, there are tons of apple orchards in and near Hendersonville, south of Boone.

Boone NC mountains are a must visit in a weekend

Visit Linville Caverns

We haven’t had a chance to visit the Linville Caverns yet, but I hear it is a pretty unique experience! They are the only Caverns open to the public in North Carolina! The caverns are open Thursday- Monday and offer 30 tours a day. 

Caverns are caves inside the mountain. You will explore geological wonders and the ecology inside the caves.

Attend an Annual Event in Boone

Depending on when you plan to visit Boone, NC, you might be able to attend one of their annual events! They do a Blowing Rock Winterfest every winter, an Oktober Feast, and Scottish Highland Games in the area.

See more events happening for your weekend itinerary in Boone, NC here!

Honorable Mention: Tweetsie Railroad

If you are traveling as a family, you might want to also consider adding Tweetsie Railroad to your Boone itinerary. I’ve personally never been, but they are known to be a very popular family-friendly theme park with wild-west vibes. You can find all the details on visiting Tweetsie Railroad on their website here.

How to Get Around

The best way to get around Boone is by car. Boone is one of those towns you will want to be able to take road trips from. There are also a lot of nearby towns that are nice to visit, including Banner Elk and Blowing Rock. Having a car will help you explore the best areas in and around Boone! Find car rentals here.

Beacon Hike on Grandfather Mountain in Boone during fall in NC
Beacon Trail on Grandfather Mountain

Where to Stay

Boone offers a decent amount of accommodations, including those that are pet-friendly. Places to consider staying in Boone include: 

Chetola Resort at Blowing Rock (Lodge) | Hampton Inn & Suites Boone | Courtyard by Marriott Boone

If you plan on visiting Boone around the fall, I recommend booking well in advance. Thousands flock to the area for peak leaf-peeping season, which is likely one of the busiest times in the area. 

Boone Weekend Itinerary: Wrap-up

This wraps up some of the best things to do in Boone for an epic weekend itinerary! Do you have any questions about visiting Boone, NC, or feel like I missed something? Let me know in the comments below!

Did you like this Itinerary? I’d appreciate it if you could share it below!

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Samantha Oppenheimer

Samantha Oppenheimer (Sam Opp) quit her corporate marketing job in 2018 to travel the world and become a travel writer, blogger and content creator. She loves experiencing authentic travel experiences, photography, and nature. Sam shares helpful travel itineraries, travel tips, budget tips, and travel advice from her personal experiences. You can also find Sam's words featured in large publications including Mirror, Thrillist, and Well + Good. Learn more here:

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