During the fall people flock to the mountains to get a glimpse of the beautiful foliage, but there are plenty of reasons to take a quick road trip to the mountains during the summer as well. From special art installments by famous artists to movies under the stars — here are some of our favorite reasons to visit the NC mountains this summer:

Beech Mountain Family Fun Month

Now through June 30 | Beech Mountain

The popular ski resort town of Beech Mountain transforms into the ultimate summer destination for families during the month of June. Every day during Beech Mountain’s Family Fun Month there are several family-friendly activities prearranged for guests to enjoy in the area. Activities range from guided mountain biking tours and trout fishing excursions to a backyard cook out and movies under the stars. For an entire schedule of events, click here. There are also a number of lodging specials during Family Fun Month.

Chihuly at Biltmore

Now through October 7 | Biltmore

Visiting the Biltmore Estate comes with an added perk this summer with the addition of a limited-time art installment that features 16 mesmerizing sculptures by famous artist, Dave Chihuly. The vibrant glass sculptures are on display throughout the estate’s lawn and gardens for guests to enjoy while visiting. There are also select evenings where the gardens will be open later for Chihuly Nights at Biltmore, which will feature live music, an alfresco wine bar, and the chance to see the sculptures completely illuminated at night.

Asheville Art In The Park

June 23-30 | Asheville

In case you needed another excuse to visit Asheville add Asheville Art In The Park to your calendar. During the month of June the festival takes over the city’s Pack Square, which is located in the heart of downtown, with hundreds of talented artists selling their handmade goods that range from jewelry and paintings to pottery and sculptures.

Cherokee Pow Wow

June 29 – July 1 | Cherokee

Immerse yourself in Native American traditions during the three-day Cherokee Pow Wow. The event features authentic Native American music, drum contests, dances, tribal foods, crafts, and even fireworks. Tickets to the 43rd annual Pow Wow are $12 and it is cash only. (Children ages six and under are free).

Mile High Fourth Of July

June 29 – July 4 | Banner Elk & Beech Mountain

While there are plenty of Fourth of July celebrations to choose from the popular Mile High Fourth Of July celebrates the holiday for six days with live music, a pig roast, parade, party in the park, and of course fireworks. All celebrations take place between the charming towns of Banner Elk and Beech Mountain.

Grandfather Mountain Highland Games

July 12-15 | Grandfather Mountain

For three days Grandfather Mountain will be taken over by the 63rd annual Highland Games where Scottish Clans gather for a festival unlike any other. Over the three-day event there will be bag pipe parades, traditional Celtic dances, live music, and more. The festival’s athletic competitions are absolutely captivating and worth the trip alone with a hammer throw, turning of the caber (large pole), and tug-o-war on the schedule. There will also be several food and craft vendors onsite.

60th Annual Blowing Rock Tour Of Homes

July 27 | Blowing Rock

Get a rare glimpse inside some of the most notable and historic private homes in Blowing Rock during the 60th annual Blowing Rock Tour Of Homes. This year’s featured homes include the Owl’s Roost, Far Horizons, Merlin Glenn, Tuckaway, and Maymont. Tours begin at 9 a.m. and go to 5 p.m. Tickets for the tour are $30. Once guests have finished the tour there will be a $15 luncheon at St. Mary of the Hills Episcopal Church, as well as a bazaar and tag sale.

Concert Under The Stars

Aug 2,3,9,11, 16 | Biltmore Estate

Enjoy a relaxing evening full of music and fun on the South Terrace lawn of America’s largest home. During the month of August Biltmore Estate’s Concert Under The Stars series will host nationally recognized bands like Creedence Clearwater and The Temptations, as well as a stand-up performance by comedian Jay Leno.


Dirty Dancing Festival

August 24-25 | Lake Lure

Relive parts of the classic movie Dirty Dancing in the town where parts of the movie were filmed during Lake Lure’s 9th annual Dirty Dancing Festival. The two-day festival features dance performances, lessons, competitions, and even the movie’s famous lake lift. Along with live music and plenty of dancing there will be a lakeside showing of the movie and an artisan village full of crafts and locally made products. Tickets are $25.