We’re visiting a place that is at once one of the oldest places on earth, and at the same time one of the southeast’s newest attractions. A place that is a mile high and that is deep in the North Carolina wilderness. If you’re ready to reacquaint yourself with Mother Nature… then it might just be time for you to visit your Grandfather.
This is Grandfather Mountain. The Cherokee, Daniel Boone, and John Muir all enjoyed a trip to this beautiful mountain. But just this year the park has added something new to its billions of years of history – The Wilson Center for Nature Discovery!
Located about halfway up the mountain by the impressive wildlife habitats, this place opened just this year – and entry is included with your ticket. This gorgeous building contains a world of interactive exhibits just waiting for your exploration.
There’s the Paul & Susie O’Connell Exhibit Hall with the 16 natural communities that comprise Grandfather Mountain… with 12 interactive exhibits. There’s the Flora Wall… the Fauna Wall… the weather exhibit… migration mapping… a mineral cave… and more. So much love, innovation, and energy has been poured into The Wilson Center that you could spend a whole day just in here. And you might work up an appetite.
Named for long-time resident Mildred the Bear, Mildred’s Grill offers a great spot for lunch. Or you can pack that Ingles picnic and dine al fresco at one of the park’s many, many stunning outdoor areas.
Speaking of outdoor areas – make sure and visit some of the animals here in their big and beautiful outdoor habitats. Check out the gardens. And no visit to Grandfather Mountain is complete without a visit to the mile high swinging bridge.
This North Carolina icon celebrates its 70th birthday this fall. So, come on out and wish it many happy returns. One thing’s for sure, you’ll be looking forward to your happy return once you visit this stunning American treasure.