The High Country owes a lot to Henry Ford and other automobile pioneers for the success of our region as a tourist destination. After all, it was only after automobiles became affordable for the working class did visitors begin to come “up the mountain” in large numbers.
Flash forward to 1935 and you have the opening of the Blue Ridge Parkway. This unique part of the National Park System has allowed millions of motorists to view stunning Appalachian Mountain scenery from the comfort of their vehicle. It has also given them access to fantastic hiking trails, camping sites and panoramic views of the beautiful Southeast.
Today, folks are still in love with their automobiles and use them as the primary way of visiting the High Country (we currently have no train service and just a couple of small airports).
If you visit during the winter, it is advisable to use a vehicle that has four-wheel drive. The combination of wintry weather and steep and curvy roads can make for hazardous driving conditions.
The High Country and the Blue Ridge Parkway have also become a must-drive destination for motorcyclists and it is not unusual to see dozens of bikers riding together in the summertime. North Carolina laws state that all motorcyclists must wear helmets and burn their headlights while on the road.
Whatever you choose to drive in the High Country, we wish you happy motoring!