17 days in North Carolina Itinerary

17 days in North Carolina Itinerary

Created using Inspirock North Carolina trip planner
Make it your trip
Drive
1
Asheville
— 4 nights
Drive
2
Cherokee
— 3 nights
Drive
3
Highlands
— 2 nights
Fly
4
Charlotte
— 2 nights
Fly
5
Wilmington
— 3 nights
Drive
6
Corolla
— 2 nights
Drive

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Asheville — 4 nights

Land of the Sky

Asheville nestles between two major mountain ranges in the scenic western section of North Carolina.
Get out of town with these interesting Asheville side-trips: Hendersonville (Grandad's Apples & Elijah Mountain Gem Mine and Goat Farm), Sweet Betsy Farm (in Marion) and Chimney Rock at Chimney Rock State Park (in Chimney Rock). There's still lots to do: admire all the interesting features of Blue Ridge Parkway, indulge in some personalized pampering at some of the best spas, examine the collection at Asheville Pinball Museum, and go on a hair-raising tour with a ghost and vampire tour.

To find ratings, reviews, maps, and more tourist information, you can read our Asheville trip builder site.

Durham to Asheville is an approximately 4-hour car ride. You can also fly; or take a bus. Plan for little chillier nights when traveling from Durham in October since evenings lows in Asheville dip to 47°F. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 5th (Wed) so you can go by car to Cherokee.
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Cherokee — 3 nights

Trails of Legends and Adventures

The center of Cherokee culture in the eastern part of the country, the town named after this Native American tribe serves as a base camp for hiking in the Great Smoky Mountains.
Explore Cherokee's surroundings by going to Wheels Through Time Transportation Museum (in Maggie Valley), River Rafting & Tubing (in Bryson City) and J. W. Mitchell Farms (in Franklin). The adventure continues: try your luck at Casino at Harrah’s Cherokee, hike along Max Patch, see the interesting displays at Museum of the Cherokee Indian, and take your sightseeing to a higher altitude at Waterrock Knob.

To find more things to do, ratings, maps, and tourist information, refer to the Cherokee trip planner.

Getting from Asheville to Cherokee by car takes about 1.5 hours. Expect a daytime high around 70°F in October, and nighttime lows around 44°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 8th (Sat) early enough to drive to Highlands.
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Parks · Nature · Museums · Outdoors
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Highlands — 2 nights

Highlands is an incorporated town in Macon County in the U.S. state of North Carolina. Start off your visit on the 9th (Sun): take your sightseeing to a higher altitude at Whiteside Mountain, then see exotic creatures in open habitats at Lake Glenville Scenic Waterfall Cruises, then explore the striking landscape at Sunset Rock and Ravenel Park, and finally take in the dramatic scenery at Dry Falls. Here are some ideas for day two: take in the dramatic scenery at Bridal Veil Falls, then admire the sheer force of Whitewater Falls, and then take in the dramatic scenery at Silver Run Falls.

To see ratings, other places to visit, reviews, and tourist information, refer to the Highlands trip itinerary maker tool.

You can drive from Cherokee to Highlands in 1.5 hours. October in Highlands sees daily highs of 70°F and lows of 44°F at night. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 10th (Mon) to allow time to fly to Charlotte.
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Nature · Parks · Tours · Wildlife
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Charlotte — 2 nights

The Queen City

A rapidly growing city in central North Carolina, Charlotte is the state's largest urban center and a major regional hub for finance, industry, technology, and entertainment.
Start off your visit on the 11th (Tue): test your problem-solving skills at popular escape rooms, experience rural life at Darby Acres Farm, then join the crowd at Charlotte Motor Speedway, and finally look for all kinds of wild species at Latta Plantation Nature Center & Preserve. On your second day here, examine the collection at NASCAR Hall of Fame, then find something for the whole family at Carowinds, and then experience rural life at Wise Acres Organic Strawberry Farm.

For where to stay, maps, and other tourist information, go to the Charlotte route planner.

You can fly from Highlands to Charlotte in 2.5 hours. Other options are to drive; or do a combination of car and bus. Traveling from Highlands in October, you can expect nighttime temperatures to be somewhat warmer in Charlotte, with lows of 51°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 12th (Wed) so you can fly to Wilmington.
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Theme Parks · Museums · Fun & Games · Wildlife
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Wilmington — 3 nights

Holiday in Willington to discover a charming coastal city filled with azalea gardens, historical neighborhoods, and cozy cafes.
Explore the numerous day-trip ideas around Wilmington: Southport (Southport-Fort Fisher Ferry & Trinity United Methodist Church), Sunset Beach Waterfront Park (in Sunset Beach) and Sacred Willow Spa (in Calabash). And it doesn't end there: test your team's savvy at popular escape rooms, make a trip to Riverwalk, stop by Historic District, and stroll through Wrightsville Beach Municipal Complex.

To find where to stay, reviews, ratings, and other tourist information, go to the Wilmington online vacation planner.

Traveling by flight from Charlotte to Wilmington takes 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. Traveling from Charlotte in October, Wilmington is a bit warmer at night with lows of 57°F. Cap off your sightseeing on the 15th (Sat) early enough to go by car to Corolla.
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Corolla — 2 nights

A trip to Corolla will add a bit of slow-paced fun to your Outer Banks holiday.
Start off your visit on the 16th (Sun): tour the pleasant surroundings at Currituck Beach, then see Off-Road Tours, and then get a dose of the wild on a nature and wildlife tour. On the 17th (Mon), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: visit a coastal fixture at Currituck Beach Lighthouse and Museum, contemplate the long history of Whalehead Club, then take in the waterfront at Duck Town Boardwalk, and finally fly like a bird with a parasailing or paragliding tour.

For maps, traveler tips, ratings, and other tourist information, go to the Corolla driving holiday planner.

Getting from Wilmington to Corolla by car takes about 5.5 hours. Other options: do a combination of flight and car; or do a combination of bus and car. October in Corolla sees daily highs of 76°F and lows of 56°F at night. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 17th (Mon) early enough to drive back home.
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North Carolina travel guide

4.5
The Tar Heel State
A top destination for a holiday in nature, North Carolina provides a seemingly endless variety of outdoor activities, including hiking, mountain climbing, and skiing. While the state's rural regions offer a taste of traditional Appalachian music and culture, its increasingly diverse big cities feature modern skyscrapers, renowned museums, and historical neighborhoods perfect for sightseeing tours. The coastal region, famous for its year-round temperate climate, attracts millions of annual visitors, making North Carolina the sixth most-visited state in the country. Though it's hard to find a quiet time of year in coastal North Carolina, the state's inland areas retain many secluded corners where you can experience the laid-back Old South atmosphere.
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