- 38 miles (61 km)
- One hour
The Hanging Rock Scenic Byway is named for an outcropping in the Sauratown Mountains, but there are many other aspects of central North Carolina to entice travelers to drive this byway.
The ancient peaks of the Sauratown Mountains are an indication of diverse natural splendor below. Visit Cascade Falls with a double drop of 200 feet in the upper cascade and 60 feet in the lower cascade. This area of natural beauty holds a history as well. Visitors will want to explore places like Tory's Den, a cave used as a hiding place for loyalists to the king during the Revolutionary War.
Byway towns like Danbury date back to pre-colonial times when Indian villages still dotted the piedmont. Founded in 1849, the town evolved from Indian village to trading post to a pre-Civil War city. Other towns like Mount Airy have a more recent claim to fame as the settingfor Andy Griffith's Mayberry.
Enjoy the rivers, mountains, and towns of this lesser known area.When a drive on the byway is over, take the time to explore Pilot Mountain State Park nearby. In the town of Pinnacle, you will find the Horne Creek Historical Farm, where the old ways of life on the North Carolina piedmont are recreated. Every stop along the drive will take you to the heart of North Carolina.
Points of Interest
Points of Interest Along The Way
With a unique history, this town is on the National Register of Historic Places.
On NC 8 just off NC 89 on the byway.
Gertrude and Robert Smith Houses (NC)
Visit these two historic houses in Mount Airy owned by brother and sister.
Mount Airy Main Street
Hanging Rock State Park (NC)
Named for an outcropping in the Sauratown Mountains, Hanging Rock State Park offers an outdoor getaway in a lesser known place of North Carolina. Hiking and camping are the most notable activities with nearly a dozen trails to some of the many unique places in the park.
Off of Moore's Spring Road (SR 1001)
Horne Creek Living Historical Farm (NC)
This historic farm recreates earlier ways of life on the North Carolina Piedmont
Off of highway 52 near Pinnacle, North Carolina.
Mount Airy (NC)
Step back to a simpler time when you visit Mount Airy. Actor Andy Griffith grew up here, and it’s no coincidence that a stroll down Main Street in the “Friendly City” reminds people of the town of Mayberry on the endearing and enduringly popular ‘60s hit TV series.
Fans of The Andy Griffith Show can visit Floyd’s City Barber Shop, the Old Mayberry Jail, Snappy Lunch, the Andy Griffith Playhouse and even Andy’s childhood home. Open seven days a week, the Mount Airy Visitors Center houses the world’s largest collection of Andy Griffith memorabilia, on loan from childhood friend Emmett Forrest.
Surry County, N.C., offers something for everyone. Outdoor enthusiasts will enjoy riding down the breathtaking Blue Ridge Parkway, which is located just 14 miles north of Mount Airy in Carroll County, Va. Three state parks are nearby Mount Airy, which provide adventurers with hiking, canoeing and rockclimbing expeditions.
History buffs can delve into the area’s colorful past at the Mount Airy Museum of Regional History and by visiting the county’s myriad of historic sites, such as the Victorian-style Gertrude Smith House and the antebellum William Alfred Moore House.
Off of Highway 89 west of the byway.
Pilot Mountain State Park (NC)
This lone mountain peak was once part of the Sauratown Mountain range.
Near Pinnacle off of US 52