Tynecastle Corner

Fall in Banner Elk

Autumn in Oz

Banner Elk Cafe

Sunset in Banner Elk

Banner Elk Winery and Villa

The Vistas is nestled in the charming town of Banner Elk

Famous for its small town atmosphere, it has all the luxuries and amenities that one usually finds in bigger cities.

The Vistas at Banner Elk—Luxury Condominiums

The Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina is an outdoor lover’s paradise.

Whether playing outdoors or only enjoying the views, the Blue Ridge Mountains offer a lifestyle that many only dream of.

Now, that dream can be yours at The Vistas at Banner Elk. With 4,000 feet in elevation, the views are phenomenal, with a South facing panoramic view of the famous Grandfather Mountain.

The Vistas in nestled in the charming town of Banner Elk, North Carolina, famous for its small town atmosphere. It has all the luxuries and amenities that one usually finds in bigger cities.

Summer temperatures in the high country average a cool 75 degrees. So, you’ll want to get outdoors or simply sit on your deck and enjoy the views that surround the Vistas.

When you enter the property at the Vistas, you’ll feel like you’re in a park-like setting. With unique tree-lined streets that are well-lit for peaceful early evening strolls in the clean mountain air.

It’s also pet friendly.

The Vistas at Banner Elk feels like it’s miles from civilization. But in realty, it’s just a few minutes from fine dining, upscale shopping, and the area’s best skiing and golfing.

We invite you to call us for more information while there are still units available.

Come and see for yourself and you will realize that there’s nothing else that compares to quality, luxury, and affordability of The Vistas at Banner Elk.


The Blue Ridge Mountains are a nature lover’s paradise

There are a variety of things to do and see in this area of the country. It’s a perfect mountain retreat.

Banner Elk, NC

Apple Hill Farm
If you love animals, this is the place to visit. This beautiful farm has breathtaking mountain views, walking paths, landscaped gardens and most importantly, loved and cared for animals that include alpacas, horses (some of theirs and some who board), llamas, goats, donkeys, chickens, dogs and cats. They give very informative guided farm tours, so wear comfortable shoes and definitely don’t forget your camera!
Phone: 828-963-2343
Website: http://applehillfarmnc.com/

Banner Elk Winery
This winery is located outside Banner Elk off of Highway 194 on a 25 year old blueberry farm. They offer wine for sale, wine tastings and educational tours. For more details, click on the link on the right side of the page.
Phone: 828-898-9090 or 828-260-1790
Website: http://www.bannerelkwinery.com/

Lees McRae College & Summer Theater
The picturesque campus of Lees McRae College enhances the landscape and downtown area of beautiful Banner Elk NC and enlivens this sleepy mountain town. Lees McRae College is a private four year college that is affiliated with the Presbyterian Church. For more details, click on the link on the right side of the page.
Phone: 828.898.5241
Website: http://www.lmc.edu/conferencing_and_events/summer_theatre/

Beech Mountain, NC

Brick Oven Pizzeria Miniature Golf:
They have an 18-hole miniature golf course that will present a challenge for any age. They supply the balls and putters. They also have an indoor arcade. This restaurant has it all. It has really great food and the kids can be entertained while you relax with friends. For more information, call 828-387-4209.

Fred’s General Mercantile:
Since it opened in 1979, Fred’s General Mercantile has become a symbol of Beech Mountain life. Located atop Beech Mountain, the owners, Fred and Margie Pfohl, have created a quaint general store that offers it all and is central to the wonderful allure of Beech Mountain. For more details, click on the link on the right side of the page.

Blowing Rock, NC

The Blowing Rock:
The Blowing Rock attraction is located on Highway 321 South in Blowing Rock. It is North Carolina’s oldest travel attraction since 1933. It is an enormous cliff 4,000 feet above sea level that overlooks the Johns River Gorge 3,000 feet below. It is open all year weather permitting. For more details, click on the link on the right side of the page. Also, you can call them at 828-295-7111.

Mystery Hill:
Mystery Hill is a fascinating exploration of science, optical illusion and natural phenomena. The tour includes the Mystery House where visitors stand at a 45 angle, the Hall of Mystery, the Puzzle Room, and Bubble-Rama. It also features the Appalachian Heritage Museum and the Native American Artifacts Museum with 50,000 relics. Open 7 days a week, year-round, rain or shine. It is located 4 miles from Blowing Rock at 129 Mystery Hill Lane, Blowing Rock. For more information, please call 828-264-2792.

Tweetsie Railroad:
For an old-fashioned day in the Blue Ridge Mountains, Tweetsie Railroad is celebrating 50 years of unforgettable fun! Tweetsie Railroad is a unique High Country attraction that incorporates historic steam locomotive Number 12, cowboys, Indians, engineers, animals, and loads of rides and live entertainment. They are located on Hwy 321 between Boone and Blowing Rock. For more details, click on the link on the right side of the page. Also, you can call them at 1-800-526-5740, 828-264-9061 or email them at info@tweetsie.com.

Boone, NC

Appalachian State University (ASU):
Appalachian State University is an internationally recognized comprehensive, public, university commonly referred to as App State, ASU or App. The sixth largest in the University of North Carolina system, ASU maintains an impressive student/faculty ratio of 17:1 with an average class size of 24. Appalachian offers more than 140 undergraduate and graduate major programs from five colleges. For more details, click on the link on the right side of the page.

Daniel Boone Native Gardens & Hickory Ridge Homestead:
The Daniel Boone Native Gardens opened in 1966 and are located near downtown Boone and are open daily, May 1 through October. Hours are from 10 AM to 6 PM, having extended hours during Horn in the West outdoor drama season. Admission is $2, ages 16 and up. You will find an outstanding collection of native Appalachian trees, shrubs, and wildflowers, and hundreds of plant varieties blooming throughout the growing season.

The three-acre Daniel Boone Native Gardens is spread over 3 acres and were an educational and conservation effort to nurture rare or endangered Appalachian plant species. A project of the Garden Club of N.C., Inc., these public gardens are made up of a bog garden, fern garden, rhododendron grove, rock garden, rock wishing well, vine-covered arbor, pond alongside the historic Squire Boone Cabin, and several grand vistas. The wrought-iron gates at the entrance were made by a descendant of Daniel Boone, who hunted in the area. Group tours can be provided, and the gardens are available for weddings and other events. For more information, call 828-264-6390. The Hickory Ridge Homestead is located on the grounds at “Horn in the West in Boone and is an 18th century living history museum created in 1980 demonstrating how our mountain ancestors lived. You will step back in the past and learn all about pioneer life and their culture. There are demonstrations in weaving and hearthside cooking as well as many other crafts showing the skills that the early settlers possessed to survive. This is a very educational tour for young and old, and will truly take you back in time. For more information about these or any other programs, e-mail hickoryridgehomestead@hotmail.com.

Fun ‘n Wheels Family Race Park:
Fun N Wheels is an exciting go-kart race track located on Highway 105 in Boone. They feature an exciting arcade, a small kiddie Ferris wheel, krazy cars and bumper cars, an amazing gyro, and fast paced go-cart racing. The entire family is sure to have a good time and enjoy some friendly competition. They are open daily from Memorial Day to Labor Day from 10:30 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. (weather permitting). For more information or to get group rates, call 828-262-3780.

Blue Ridge Parkway:
The parkway starts at the Shenandoah National Park and ends at the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. It winds through gorgeous scenery with stops all along the way for picnicking, hiking or just taking pictures. For more details, click on the link on the right side of the page. Also, check out our Hiking & Biking page for what you will find at each milepost.

Moses H. Cone Manor & Memorial Park:
Near Blowing Rock on the Blue Ridge Parkway is the Moses H. Cone Memorial Park, a preserved country estate of Moses Cone who was a “prosperous textile entrepreneur, conservationist, and philanthropist of the Gilded Age.” Its focal point is Flat Top Manor, a magnificent white 20-room, 13,000 square foot mansion built in 1901 in the grand Colonial Revival style.

The Manor is home to the Parkway Craft Center, one of five shops of the Southern Highland Craft Guild that has handmade crafts by hundreds of regional artists. Throughout the season, local artists demonstrate crafts such as quilting, embroidery, weaving, pottery, glass-blowing, and woodcarving on the front porch of the Manor. Call the Parkway Craft Center for the daily schedule at 828-295-7938. They are open from March 15 through November 30 from 9am – 5 pm daily. For more details, click on the link on the right side of the page.

Foscoe, NC

Grandfather Trout Farm:
Grandfather Trout Farm is located on Highway 105 just past the town of Seven Devils in Foscoe. It has three ponds to choose from small, medium and large. All the ponds are stocked to the brim, so you are sure to catch one. You can clean them yourself, or they can do it for you. Bring a cooler to pack your catch on ice, and you will be ready for a fresh mountain trout dinner. There is also gem mining and a miniature putting course. There is something for the entire family. For more information, call 828-963-5098.

Seven Devils Zipline:
Opening in late June, 2009, Hawksnest Tubing Resort will turn into the biggest zipline attraction on the east coast with 13 different cables and more than two miles of soaring through the air for people ages five and up. The zipline cables at Hawksnest zig and zag across the valley ranging from less than a dozen to more than 200 feet above the ground, giving riders incredible views of the property and all across the surrounding mountains. In addition to the normal cables, it will have a SuperZip that will carry riders more than 2,500 feet while suspended more than 200 feet in the air. Just like the Scream Time Zip Line in Zionville, safety is also their top concern, and having fun is right behind it. Customers are encouraged to call ahead for updates and reservations. There must be at least two people in your party to make a reservation. For more information or to make a reservation, call 828-963-2343 or email info@hawksnesttubing.com.

Linville/Linville Falls, NC

Grandfather Mountain:
Grandfather Mountain is located in Linville and is the second highest peak east of the Mississippi, rising 5,964 feet and donning a distinctive, trademark silhouette of an old man lying on his back, perhaps sleeping or taking in the beauty of the High Country sky. For more details, click on the link on the right side of the page. You can also call them at 1-800-468-7325, 828-733-2013 or email them at nature@grandfather.com.

Linville Caverns:
Linville Caverns gives visitors the opportunity to take a guided tour through natural limestone caverns filled with stalactites and stalagmites and watch the trout swim through streams running below the caverns. The caverns stay a constant 52 degrees all year long! The caverns are open from March 1 to November 30 and are very family-friendly. Don’t forget to visit the gift shop containing souvenirs, local pottery and rock specimens. They are actually located on Highway 221 North, Marion, NC. For more information, please call Linville Caverns at 800-419-0540 or email them at info@linvillecaverns.com.

Linville Falls:
Linville Falls is located on the Blue Ridge Parkway at milepost 316 where Highway 221 and Highway 181 intersect the Parkway. Located at the northern end of the Linville Gorge, Linville Falls cascades 90 feet in multiple interval cap-falls. There are numerous places along your hike to have a picnic. Be sure to bring lots of water and don’t forget to bring a camera. For more details, click on the link on the right side of the page.

Spruce Pine, NC

North Carolina Mineral & Gem Museum:
Located in Spruce Pine and maintained by the National Park Service in conjunction with the North Carolina Department of Conservation and Development. The Museum is located just off the Spruce Pine / Mineral Museum exit from the Blue Ridge Parkway, near the end of the Grassy Creek area of town. Open since 1956, but completely renovated in 2002, the museum explores the unique geological makeup of Spruce Pine and the surrounding areas. There are also displays about the history of mining. They are located at 79 Parkway Maintenance Rd in Spruce Pine. For more information or directions, call 828-765-2761.

Orchard at Altapass:
Orchard at Altapass is a 100-year old historic apple orchard located directly off The Blue Ridge Parkway at Mile Marker 328.3 near Spruce Pine. It specializes in family entertainment and activities, featuring old- time mountain apples, storytelling, hayrides, live local music on weekends, and demonstrations by local artists. It has orchard-made fudge, books and naturalist’s activities. Open late May through October, 7 days a week. It is located at 1025 Orchard Road in Spruce Pine. For more information, please call 828-765-9531 or toll-free at 888-765-9531.

Valle Crucis, NC

Mast General Stores:
Located in Valle Crucis, the historic Mast General Store is a must-see and experience while you are here. There is also one in Boone, but Valle Crucis has two! They carry everything from barrels of candy (including old-fashioned favorites) to rugged footwear and quality outdoor gear for all mountain seasons. The Valle Crucis stores are located on Broadstone Road. For more details, click on the link on the right side of the page. Also, for more information, call them at 1-866-367-6278, 818-963-6511 or email them at info@mastgenerralstore.com.

Other Areas

Elk River Falls:
The swimming hole and falls are located in Elk River off Highway 19-E. Just follow the signs. You will travel through numerous neighborhoods, lots of twists and turns and finally you will see what looks like a very wide, flat, calm, slow-moving shallow riverbed. As you walk along this river, you soon see it gets deeper and the water starts to move faster. There are a few picnic tables, but bring a blanket just in case the tables are taken. There is a small walk down to get to the swimming hole. Once you get there, it is absolutely gorgeous! Swimming is great especially on a hot day. The waters are deep and clean. You could swim out to the falls and even go behind them or lay on one of the huge rocks that just seem meant for sunbathing.

Bristol Motor Speedway:
The Bristol Motor Speedway, originally know as Bristol International Speedway, has been drawing visitors to its iconic NASCAR short track since 1960. Today, Bristol Motor Speedway seats approximately 160,000 people in an all-concrete oval facility that is so steep and compact that its races have been likened to “flying fighter jets in a gymnasium.” For more details, click on the link on the right side of the page.

Watauga Lake in Hampton, TN:
Less than an hour away from Banner Elk, Watauga Lake is 16.3 miles long and covers 6,430 acres (10.05 square miles). It boasts 104.9 miles of shoreline. Just 47 miles of shoreline are privately owned. The other 58 acres of shoreline are public land. Most of those 58 acres are part of the Cherokee National Forest and can never be developed, making Watauga Lake the TVA’s most beautiful and pristine mountain-surrounded lake. On the southern shore of the western arm of Watauga Lake, there are several National Recreational Areas where you can swim, picnic, camp and just relax.

Plumtree Canopy Tours:
Experience a real canopy tour and zipline adventure that takes you into the trees with Plumtree Canopy Tours. More than just a 3-hour zipline experience, enjoy 11 zips and 4 sky bridges while learning about the trees and wildlife habitats. Also learn about the community of Plumtree, the vast mica mines, and how this mountainous region with peaks of 5500 feet transformed into an agricultural world leader. All equipment is provided including helmet, full body harness, trolley, gloves, tether lines, and two canopy rangers per group. Included with all Plumtree Canopy Tours is a fabulous lunch or the famous Sunday Brunch experience at the popular Vance Toe River Lodge. Please confirm if lunch is before or after your canopy tour. All flyers must be in good physical condition. Flyers must be at least 10 years old and between 70 and 250 lbs. Closed-toe shoes required, modest clothing recommended. Located in the heart of western North Carolina’s High Country on US Hwy. 19, 14 miles north of Spruce Pine and just a short drive from Banner Elk, Blowing Rock, Boone, and Asheville. Open Fri, Sat & Sun April 1-May 8; Wed-Sun May 11-Oct 30; $79 per person (includes lunch). Directions from Banner Elk: Take 194 to 19E; follow 19E to Plumtree and watch for signs @ Plumtree; turn left onto Big Plumtree Creek Rd. and follow signs to Isaacs Branch Rd. and Sugar Plum Farms; From Newland: Take Spanish Oak Rd to Squirrel Creek Rd.; from Squirrel Creek Rd. turn left onto Lick log Rd.; near the end of Lick Log Rd. turn left onto Big Plumtree Creek Rd; then follow signs to Isaacs Branch Rd. and Sugar Plum Farms. Call for tour availability and reservations: 866-319-8870. Also, check out their web site at: http://www.adventureamericaziplinecanopytours.com/ptct.html.

Grandfather Vineyard & Winery:
Grandfather Vineyard was founded in 2003 when Steve and Sally Tatum, in search of a hobby, planted a small block of wine grapes for some home wine making. After a few years they realized the High Country of North Carolina had a similar climate as many of the famous grape growing regions around the world. In 2005 Steve and Sally tripled the size of the vineyard. His hobby then became more than just a hobby. After years of hard work and many long hours with help from their family, Dylan Tatum , Jesse and Lance Blalock and the Dept. of Enology at Appalachian State University we opened our doors in May of 2011. NOW TASTING Thursday   Saturday from 12:00pm – 6:00pm; Sunday from 1:00pm – 5:00pm or by appointment: 828-963-2400.

As was mentioned under some of the attractions listed above, you can click on any of the
blue links for more information.

Horseback Riding on the Slopes of Sugar Mountain

Lees Mc Rae Lacrosse Team

Tynecastle Corner, Banner Elk, NC

Appalachian State University Football

Sugar Mountain Ski Resort

Linville Falls, NC

The Mile-High Swinging Bridge at Grandfather Mountain, NC


The Blueridge Parkway


The Blowing Rock, North Carolina


Tweetsie Railroad


Valle Crucis Mast Farm Gardens