Chimney Rock State Park is a nationally recognized heritage site located in Rutherford County, North Carolina, just southeast of Asheville. It has everything you’re looking for during a family vacation- nature trails, outdoor adventure, plenty of photo ops, designated areas for the kids, live music, and the very best view of the North Carolina mountains.
There is a ton of things to do inside of this natural playground. Walk or hike the mountain, look for birds on the recognized birding trail, stop by the 400 ft. waterfall- Hickory Nut Falls, take a guided rock climbing lesson, visit the Animal Discovery Den, and sign up for one of the many educational courses designed to help preserve the biodiversity.
There are trails for the entire group, from novice to more experienced. The Great Woodland Adventure Trail is perfect for kids with 6 miles of interactive displays at 12 different discovery stations. The Four Seasons Trail is for more experienced climbers, with climbs that reach up to 400 feet. Next you will find a breathtaking waterfall is inside of Hickory Nut Falls Trail. Then, for the best view in the whole park, head over to Chimney Rock where all of North Carolina is visible up to 75 miles in every direction. Finally, at Exclamation Point Trail, you will discover how it got its name- it might have something to do with the elevation reaching 2,480 feet! During your trek upward, lookout for the Devil’s head, an infamous rock said to look like a menacing face.
Shop & Refuel
Outdoor adventure is great! But, even adventurers need to take a break and refuel. Stop inside of the Cliff Dwellers Gifts and Sky Lounge Gift Shop & Deli for lunch and to shop all sorts of handmade goods from local vendors, made out of everything from blown glass to handfired clay.
Hours of operation slightly vary, depending on the dates you are looking to go. Ticket booth hours are as follows:
Jan 1- March 11 open 10am- 4:30pm, March 12- Nov 4 open 8:30am- 5:30pm, Nov 5- Nov 25 open 8:30 am- 4:30pm. Nov 26-31, open 10:00am – 4:30 pm.Closed on Thanksgiving and Christmas. The park stays open 1 and half hours after the ticket booth closes. And good news, if ever you purchase your ticket at 4 pm or after, your ticket is good for the next day also. The Park remains open 1½ hours after the Ticket Plaza closes.
Want to see more of North Carolina? Stick around for awhile. You can take a look at some of the best last-minute hotel deals in the area with the help of our sister site, HotelCoupons.com.