At its very core, Linville is true Appalachia. It’s the home of seasonally-evolving beauty with breathtaking hikes, good eats, mountain brews, and locals who have a story to share. Situated in Avery County in North Carolina, Linville is a quaint town comprised of its remarkable gorges, waterfalls, hikes, and abounding nature.
Established as a town in 1883, Linville, once called Clay, or sometimes Porcelain, was named such after William and John Linville. Designed by Samuel T. Kelsey of Kansas, the East Tennessee and Western North Carolina Railroad, also known as the Tweetsie, once ran through the town from 1916 until 1940 until flooding destroyed the tracks and the initial route was redirected.
WIth natural wonders in abundance, Linville Falls is acclaimed as the most popular waterfall in the Blue Ridge Mountains. The waterfall itself has three tiers which pour into Linville Gorge, another notorious spot to see—known as the “Grand Canyon of the Southern Appalachians.” Three trails wind through the Gorge with views of the Falls, such as the more moderate Plunge Basin Trail and challenging Gorge Trail. Nearby Linville are countless other beautiful hikes and views along the Blue Ridge Parkway; Grandfather Mountain is a short drive away, and popular lookouts along the Parkway include Rough Ridge, Wiseman’s View, and Julian Price Park.
After a long day of hiking and exploring, there is nothing better than the classic southern eats that are served up at Old Hampton Store and BBQ. With local performers and live music frequenting the evenings, it’s a place to hear the music of the mountains while digging into their homemade cornbread collard and bacon sliders or blueberry jam biscuits, not to mention staple favorites such as pulled pork, coleslaw, black-eyed pea salad, and Brunswick stew.
To taste some of the local wines of the region, the Linville Falls Winery has a beautiful Tuscan-style tasting room and wine tastings available every day. Sometimes, food trucks also make an appearance at the winery, alongside occasional local musicians. For local brews, numerous spots such as Beech Mountain Brewing Company, Blind Squirrel Brewery, and Flat Top Mountain Brewery offer a wide range of craft beers to choose from.
For a spot to stay, play, and dine, check into the Eseeola Lodge at the Linville Golf Club. The room packages at the Lodge are simultaneously luxurious and cozy, inviting and warm. Alongside their featured golf, there are ample opportunities to enjoy recreation, such as tennis, croquet, a dazzling swimming pool, sporting clays, fly fishing lessons, and canoeing and paddle boarding. For those hoping to take a break indoors, the spa at the Lodge offers a range of services from day packages to facials, massages, and more. Additionally, dining at the Lodge is a culinary extraordinaire; with a four-course meal in the evenings, the crab and trout, gnocchi primavera, and filet mignon sound sumptuous. Meanwhile, the Lodge’s more casual dining option, The Red Fox Tavern, offers equally tempting choices such as lobster mac and cheese or pimento cheese tater tots.
With generous outdoor charm and enduring Blue Ridge Roots, Linville is the epitome of an old-fashioned Carolina town. The home-cooked dishes, bountiful opportunities for exploration, and live regional music continues to define the town’s surviving sense of classic Appalachian identity.