Since we ventured to Boone for the first time this past weekend, I am sharing a list of things to do (and things to skip) in Boone, North Carolina. Every Fall, we take a trip to the mountains to enjoy some fall foliage (for some odd reason, there isn’t much in Raleigh). Because of Covid, we were itching for a trip. We usually go to Asheville but decided to explore a new city – plus, it’s only 2.5 hours away as opposed to Asheville which is 4!

We didn’t get to do all of the things on our list but I marked those we do recommend with an asterisk* below.


We stayed at an Airbnb that was directly in between Boone and Blowing Rock. It made getting to both towns quite easy. If you are looking to book a hotel, I did find that Blowing Rock had more to offer than Boone so I would suggest booking a hotel in Blowing Rock instead of Boone.

THINGS TO DO (in Boone)

  • *Booneshine Brewery: Make a reservation online if you want to sit inside. If not, there is plenty of outdoor seating and pretty views to enjoy a beer.
  • *Rooftop at Horton: A great spot to grab rooftop drinks but I recommend showing up 1-2 hours before sunset to make sure you get a spot!
  • *Shops in Downtown Boone: I fell in love with everything at Common Ground Company. I also liked poking around the vintage stores (lots of them) and the Mast General Store (featuring a candy shop!)
  • *Watauga Farmers Market: A great place to buy local food and handmade gifts during the weekends.

THINGS TO DO (around Boone)

  • *Linville Winery: We stopped here after our hike to Linville Falls. It was so pretty, calming, and the wine was delicious. If there wasn’t a line, I would have purchased at least 6 bottles.
  • Grandfather Mountain: Buy tickets online days, or even weeks, in advance! We tried to snag tickets a few times but they were sold out. You can spend as much time as you want exploring once you’re in so no need to rush. After, head to Grandfather Winery!
  • Appalachian Mountains Brewery
  • The Boone Area Wine Trail: includes all 3 wineries: Grandfather, Linville and Banner Elk.
  • Shops in Downtown Blowing Rock
  • Zip Line Adventures
  • Wilderness Run Alpine Coaster: Ryan really wanted to do this but I said no, haha.


  • *Linville Falls: Featuring the most stunning waterfall I have ever seen! We hiked both paths on the Gorge Trail and found the trails were nearly empty – one trail was easy, one was tough. I highly recommend getting there before rush hour to avoid bumper to bumper traffic for miles, which is around 12 PM.
  • Blowing Rock Trail
  • Elk River Falls
  • Howards Knob
  • Rough Ridge Trail

WHERE TO EAT (in Boone)

  • *Melanie’s: A delicious breakfast spot right downtown on King Street (with vegetarian options).
  • *Stick Boy Bakery: We stopped for a quick breakfast on our way to hike – great place for fresh bread! Their bagels were mediocre but Ryan’s breakfast sandwich looked bomb.
  • *Coyote Kitchen: A very popular restaurant located in a strip mall next to Publix..random. The good was really good (plenty of vegetarian options) and the portions were large but may be best for take-out rather than dine-in.
  • *Proper: A highly recommended restaurant which is currently only open for take-out. I didn’t get anything but Ryan said his dish was pretty good (not great).
  • Lost Province (Pizza)
  • Cabo Sushi
  • Comeback Shack
  • Our Daily Bread
  • Boone Saloon
  • Wild Craft Eatery

WHERE TO EAT (in Blowing Rock)

  • *Bistro Rocka: We stopped here after hiking and had an amazing meal. The service was great, the drinks were strong, and the food tasted like your mother made it.
  • Speckled Trout: Highly recommended by many.
  • Cafe Portofino


If you’re driving from Raleigh, here are a few things we recommend to do on the way there/back:

  • Duck Donuts: We always grab a few donuts in Cary before our trip begins.
  • Tanger Outlets: We love spending a few hours here to shop before our weekend begins. We always find great deals!
  • Winston Salem, NC: We stopped here on the way home and spent a few hours at Incendiary Brewing. It was a super cool brewery with great beer and awesome pizza!
  • Greensboro, NC: Another fun city to check-out and drive through, if you have the time!

I hope this helps and if you go anywhere in or around Boone, NC that is not on this list, please let me know!

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