Top Ways to Explore Brevard - NC Blue Ridge

Brevard is the perfect base camp for outdoor adventure in the North Carolina Blue Ridge Mountains. Discover numerous state parks, miles of hiking and biking trails through national forests, and hundreds of waterfall adventures throughout the region. Planning a trip to Brevard? Here are the best things to do when visiting the area.

Land of Waterfalls

Brevard is located in Transylvania County, which is famous for its 250 waterfalls throughout the region. Visit some of more popular ones including Turtleback Falls, Rainbow Falls, Triple Falls, Bridal Veil Falls, and Looking Glass Falls. During the summer months, beat the heat with a ride down a 60-foot waterfall at Sliding Rock, an all-natural water slide adventure in the Pisgah National Forest, which ends in arefreshing mountain swimming hole. Looking for a waterfall that feels undiscovered? One somewhat secret waterfall is Merry Falls. This one is completely off the beaten path (read: no trail or parking lot) so you have to be careful finding it, but the payoff is a beautiful cascade.

Nearby Hiking Trails

Surrounded by the Pisgah National Forest, Gorges State Park, and DuPont State Forest, there are plenty of hiking trails to choose from ranging from easy to strenuous. Popular hiking spots near Brevard include the Pink Beds Trail, the Art Loeb Trail, Looking Glass Rock Trail, and the John Rock Trail Loop. Some of these trails may take you all day to complete so be sure to stop by the Food Matters Market in Brevard to pack a picnic and water before you embark on your adventure.

Downtown Brevard

In the heart of Brevard you’ll find a thriving town center with unique stores, restaurants, and coffee shops to visit. The kids will love panning for treasure in the indoor flume of Crystal Mountain Gem Mine. You can also find rare minerals and unique fossils available for sale at Vessel. When you’re ready to relax head over to Brevard Brewing to enjoy a cold one, and chat with the locals. Downtown Brevard is also home to many festivals throughout the year. The White Squirrel Festival, July 4th Festival, and Halloween Festival are among the most popular.

Local Points of Interest

The Blue Ridge Parkway – considered America’s favorite scenic drive – is easy to access from Brevard and offers breathtaking views of the mountains. As it leads you through Pisgah Forest stop by the Cradle of Forestry. This American heritage site is the birthplace of science-based forest management and the living legacy of George and Edith Vanderbilt who donated 87,000 acres of their property to become what is now known as the Pisgah National Forest. Hiking trails, educational events, and children’s discovery activities are offered. Other family friendly activities nearby include the Pisgah Forest Gem Mine, a riverfront mine with indoor and outdoor flumes.

Just outside of the city center, don’t miss the Oskar Blues Brewery Taproom, a popular and well-known brewpub offering craft beers on tap, casual dining, and a retail shop. For any music lover, the Brevard Music Center is a must. Their summer concert series is one of the best in the nation, and it brings in top musical talent from around the world – including Keith Lockhart, the Conductor of the Boston Pops Orchestra, who leads the creative direction. Finally, plan to take a short drive to neighboring towns including Lake Toxaway, Sapphire, and Rosman.

Where to Stay in Brevard

You have a lot of options when it comes to where you want to sleep for the night. Popular vacation rentals with great amenities include Pilot Cove Forest Lodging and Waterfall Country Cottages. The Sunset Motel is a classic roadside motel with comfortable accommodations. If you want something more familiar, then the Hampton Inn in Brevard is an excellent choice. There is also no shortage of places to sleep under the stars. The Davidson River Campground is an excellent choice if you want to go that route.