10 Romantic Things To Do in the Blue Ridge Mountains

Whether you are just dating, newly in love, just married, or married for years, the Blue Ridge Mountains are full of romantic things to do.  We've been exploring these mountains for years, when we were dating, just married, and even now as a long-time married couple.   Here are just a few of our favorite romantic things to do in the Blue Ridge Mountains!   Tell us yours in the comments!

1 - Enjoy a Romantic Picnic on the Blue Ridge Parkway

Doughton Park Picnic Area

The Blue Ridge Parkway in and of itself makes for one of the most romantic and beautiful adventures in the world.  A picnic on the Blue Ridge Parkway is extra special, offering , stunning views, alone time, and your picnic can be done with very little planning.  Even the drive to your picnic location is part of the fun and romance.   All you really need to do is grab the picnic items, and then head up onto the Parkway, choosing which incredible view is best for you.

A few options for picnic areas include: Mabry Mill, Peaks of Otter, Doughton Park, Crabtree Falls, Linville River, Craggy Gardens, and Mount Pisgah.  If you prefer something more quaint, find an overlook with picnic tables, or just to place a blanket down, overlooks such as: Bluff Mountain Overlook, Mabry Mill, Groundhog Valley Overlook, Mt. Michell, Black Balsam Knob, Cowee Mountain (great for a sunset), or Waterrock Knob all meet the requirements, along with many others along your drive.   Part of your adventure could be just picking the overlook together.

Would you like to have your picnic delivered and set-up for you when you arrive?  Contact Smoky Mountain Picnic Company or many of the other picnic providers - This is sure to impress your better half!

2 - Overnight Camping at a Waterfall

Crabtree Falls Blue Ridge Parkway

The Blue Ridge Mountains offer a number of opportunities for overnight camping next to or near to a waterfall.   One of our favorites, is Crabtree Falls and the Crabtree Falls Recreation area, which has cabins, tent camping and RV camping.   The hike down the falls is literally next to the trailhead, and it's less than a mile down to the beautiful 70+ waterfall.

For the perfect visit, hike early, bring breakfast and coffee, and watch the sunrise over the falls, it's a magical and romantic scene.  If you're lucky, you may be the only ones there.  If you're not a morning person, arrive in the evening with dinner and some hot tea, for romantic sunset view of the falls.  See our Crabtree Falls Guide for details.

Of course Crabtree Falls is just one of thousands of waterfalls in the Blue Ridge Mountains.  See our Waterfalls Guide for many other great options!

3 - Watch a Blue Ridge Mountain Sunset Together

Sunset at Waterrock Knob on the Blue Ridge Parkway

Watching a sunset in the Blue Ridge Mountains with the one you love, is one of the most romantic moments you can share.   The scenery, colors, and stillness of the moment is beyond words.

Fortunately, there is many special locations that offer incredible sunset views.   Here are just a few of the many locations to consider: Peaks of Otter, Linville Gorge, Roanoke Mountain, Craggy Gardens, Cowee Mountain Overlook on the Parkway, Devil's Courthouse on the Parkway, Waterrock Knob on the Parkway, and Newfound Gap in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.  Another great location with a beautiful lake overlook is Jumping Off Rock in Sunset, SC.

These locations often offer picnic tables, and grassy areas to put a spread if you want to picnic as well. 

4 - View the Stars

Due to the high elevations, low levels of air and light pollution, the Blue Ridge Mountains offer some of the most fantastic star viewing you can see in the world.    Just the number of stars you'll see vs in a normal metropolitan area is astonishing.

An evening of viewing the stars with your significant other, an offer a unique and romantic adventure.  The skies are so clear at times, that you can see the Milky Way with your own eyes.

Stars can be viewed from a number of locations, including locations that you will need to hike too.   The easiest way to access great locations to view the stars is from the Blue Ridge Parkway.   Overlooks such as Raven's Roost VA, Rocky Knob in VA, Waterrock Knob in NC, Roy Taylor Forest Overlook (with a secluded viewing deck) NC offer exception views of the stars at night.

Other locations include: Doughton Park Picnic area VA, Wayah Bald NC, and its fire tower, and Craggy Gardens outside of Asheville NC.

With so many great options, you'll definitely want to try romantic adventure by itself, or maybe even combined with a picnic and a sunset!

5 - Escape For The Weekend

Probably the most popular romantic adventure in the Blue Ridge Mountains is the weekend escape.   This involves getting a hotel/motel room, cabin, bed and breakfast or even glamping in one of the many popular towns and cities located in the Blue Ridge Mountains.

Towns like Asheville NC, Maggie Valley NC, Gatlinburg TN, Pigeon Forge TN, Franklin NC, Roanoke VA, Helen GA or Blue Ridge GA offer excellent options, all with various pros and cons to fit your need, style and budget.

Staying for the weekend gives you a chance to enjoy many of the options here, and not have to choose.   You can also enjoy relaxing soaks in the hot tub, hiking, waterfalls, eating out at many of the wonderful restaurants, and just taking your time, enjoying all there is to offer.

For a truly unique and romantic experience, try Glamping.  We've personally been to Nurture + Nature in Franklin NC, and enjoyed it immensely.  We've also heard great things about Rusty's Roost Rivercamp in Green Mountain NC.

If you are looking for true luxury, stay at the Omni Grovepark Inn in Asheville NC.   This historic provides luxurious accommodations, dining, and one of the top spas in the US.   For a hotel with incredible scenic views, visit the Pisgah Inn on the Blue Ridge Parkway.

6 - Visit one of the Amazing Blue Ridge Spas

Spas in Asheville NC

They say these mountains refresh and renew your soul, and we agree!  Visitors looking to escape to the Blue Ridge Mountains for a romantic retreat, can add to their enjoyment and relaxation by visiting one of the numerous spas.  

Soothe your body and mind, by soaking away your stress in one of the beautiful spas.  You can make your experience even better with a couples massage (trust us, get the hot rock massage).

Blue Ridge Spas combine the best of nature and luxury treatment.   Our personal favorites are: Shoji in Asheville, Hot Springs in Hot Springs NC, The Spa at Biltmore Estate and in our opinion, the best of the best, The Spa at the Omni Grove Park Inn (pictured above).

7 - Visit Biltmore in Asheville NC

Biltmore Estate

If you are looking for true luxury, and the quintessential "story book" romantic getaway in the Blue Ridge Mountains, look no further than Biltmore.  Biltmore is more than just a historic home, it's an entire adventure and getaway.

On a day visit, you can tour the home, and take a stroll through the gardens, or even have Biltmore assist with a romantic picnic, or pack it yourself.   They have hiking trails, horseback riding, 4x4 trails, bikes for rent, and more.  There are multiple dining options as well.

If staying overnight, they offer multiple hotel options and a spa.   There are also multiple dining options just a short walk away, including our favorite, Cedric's Tavern.   Learn more about Biltmore in our Biltmore Guide.

8 - Go on a Blue Ridge Mountain Horse Back Ride

An amazing, unique, and fun way to experience the beauty of the Blue Ridge Mountains is to take a romantic horseback ride for two.   Few things are more romantic than riding into the sunset on top of the Blue Ridge Mountains.  The Blue Ridge Mountains offer numerous options for horseback riding, and making your romantic trip even more memorable.

We highly recommend Appalachian Trail Rides just outside of Blue Ridge GA.  They offer a number of special rides, including a proposal ride, dinner ride, and a campfire.   Cataloochee Ranch in Maggie Valley offers stunning mountain top horseback rides, that provide incredible views.   

In the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, is Smokemont Stables.  They offer shorter and longer rides, and even a waterfall ride.

9 - Visit Cataloochee Valley

Cataloochee Valley Elk

If you enjoy being outdoors, and experiencing and watching wildlife, take the rustic drive out to Cataloochee Valley in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.  

Bring a picnic lunch or dinner, some chairs, find the perfect spot to park, and sit back and relax, enjoying the sights and sounds of the creek, Elk, and other wildlife.  If you're lucky you might even see a bear!

If you get tired of sitting, there are a number of hiking trails to explore, and historic structures as well.  See our Cataloochee Valley Guide for details!

10 - Get in the Water!

Couple Kayaking

Not only are the Blue Ridge Mountains famous for their beautiful green peaks, but also for their water.   The Blue Ridge Mountains contain thousands of rivers, creeks and streams, full of crisp, clear and cool water.

There are numerous ways to enjoy the crystal clear water as well, including: Kayaking, White Water Rafting, swimming, and boating.   For Kayaking, one of the small lakes surrounded by mountains makes for the perfect romantic adventure.   We recommend Price Lake off the Blue Ridge Parkway, near Boone NC.

For white water rafting, you'll find nothing better, than the Nantahala Outdoor Center, near Bryson City NC.  These guiding trips will take you down multiple levels of rapids, though some of the most beautiful scenery you'll find anywhere.

For Boating, we highly recommend Fontana Lake and Fontana Marina boat rentals.  Rent a pontoon boat for the day, explore the lake, or just anchor and relax.

For swimming, one of our favorite options, there are numerous spots, but our personal favorite is Midnight Hole in Big Creek area of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park!   Hike out, enjoy a few hours of swimming and jumping into the crisp waters of Big Creek, then return to the picnic area for romantic evening picnic, water side.

Of course these are all just a few of the many different options.   Other items include zip-lining, shopping, scenic drives, train rides, amusement parks, and so much more!  See our Things To Do guide for details.


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