Boone, named for the frontiersman of the same name, is located at a lofty 3,200 feet in the northwestern North Carolina Mountains and is home to Appalachian State University (ASU). Nearby Blowing Rock, named for a natural phenomenon, is known for its array of arts, music and drama. Both towns serve as bases for nearby mountain recreation.
Boone's primary attraction, other than outdoor recreation, is history. Appalachian Cultural Museum, located at ASU, preserves the culture of the mountains and is open for touring. The Horn in the West, an outdoor drama presents the area's history. On the same site, Homestead Museum offers mountain crafts created by costumed artisans and Daniel Boone Native Gardens features native plants.
Boone has most of the typical college town amenities, in particular, restaurants that are especially unique for the area. Angelica's Vegetarian Restaurant includes a vegetarian juice bar while The Bistro serves a full menu of special entrees.
Blowing Rock, founded in the 1800s as a vacation spot, is situated on the Blue Ridge Parkway and is a tiny town with lots to see. Art in the Park is a one day a month spring through fall festival of juried arts and crafts shows. Blowing Rock is the summer home of the NC Symphony and professional summer stock theater.
On the edge of town is Blowing Rock's namesake. Due to a unique phenomenon, the wind updraft from a gorge has such force that it returns light objects thrown over the edge. Back in town, there are unique restaurants such as Tijuana Fats and quaint accommodations like the Inn at Ragged Gardens.
Nearby towers Grandfather Mountain, the only privately owned park in the world designated a United Nations International Biosphere Reserve. In addition to the nature the mountain shields, try the mile-high swinging bridge and enjoy hiking.
Other outdoor recreation nearby centers on snow skiing at Beech Mountain, Sugar Mountain or Seven Devils?the season is long here. Spring and summer bring hiking, whitewater rafting and camping.
Boone and Blowing Rock are located in northwestern North Carolina, about two hours northeast of Asheville, NC. Roads are rugged here. Both towns are located off Hwy. 321.