Weekend getaways to make this fall
Apple pies baking in the oven. Pumpkin spice treats. Cool and crisp temperatures perfect for cozy sweaters. Crackling fires. Breathtaking fall foliage views. Summerville is a perfect place to usher in fall, and its location puts us a short drive from some of the South’s most breathtaking places. Below – our top three weekend trips to make the most of the season.
Asheville, North Carolina | 3-hour drive
Pack a weekend bag and hop in the car to Asheville, North Carolina. Within 3 hours you can be taking in the breathtaking Blue Ridge Mountains, hiking waterfalls and sipping on local apple cider.
Explore the great outdoors
For an off-the-beaten-path experience, hook up with Land & Lore Ecotours. They’ll take you and yours to waterfalls that only the locals know, sharing the history of the land along the way. Up the adventure factor with a zipline canopy tour or whitewater rafting experience with French Broad Rafting. If low impact is more your style, a scenic drive along the Blue Ridge Parkway is a stunning way to explore miles of awe-inspiring beauty. Head up to Grandfather Mountain and take in the views on the highest peak in the Blue Ridge Mountains.
Taste the flavors of fall
There is nothing that says fall like fresh apples or a glass of warm apple cider. Dozens of apple orchards offer free visits during harvest where you can pick your own apples. One of the nation’s top growing apple areas is located just south of Asheville. For Mom and Dad, hard cider is also available at Noble Cider, Urban Orchard Cideo Co., and Ciderworks and Meadery.
Take in local art
Asheville is also home to the 70th Annual Craft Fair of the Southern Highlands. From October 20-22, 2017 take in three days of nearly 200 regional artists of the Southern Highland Craft Guild as they showcase their designs. You can also take in a demonstration.
Savannah, Georgia | 1.5-hour drive
Fall is a great time to visit one of the most beautiful cities in the south – Savannah, Georgia – when cooler and calmer weather have moved in and the tourists have returned back to their everyday lives. Savannah is just an hour and a half away from Summers Corner.
Bone up on history
Savannah’s rich history is as pervasive as it is fascinating, from the historic squares dotting the city to the stories that haunt – sometimes literally! – the old hotels and homes. Savannah is well known for ghost tours based on real life people and events. And Bonaventure Cemetery is a natural stop for literature buffs, made famous by the novel Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil. There, admire live oaks draped with Spanish moss and a repository of Victorian funerary sculptures.
For the nature-lover
A tributary of the Savannah River, Ebenezer Creek is a blackwater cypress swamp described as equally spooky and enchanting. Paddle or kayak around, admiring exposed cypress knees and the inky water beneath. If bird-watching is more your style, visit one or more sites along the Colonial Coast Birding Trail. More than 300 species have been spotted along 8 sites, from bald eagles to egrets to endangered wood storks.
Like Charleston, Savannah’s a beacon for food lovers, and fall marks two food-centric celebrations. The Great Ogeechee Seafood Festival began in 1985 and today celebrates southern hospitality and some of the country’s very best seafood. The festival also includes national and local music acts and fun for the whole family.
If you didn’t get enough of the Charleston Fine + Food Festival (who can?), plan an encore with the Savannah Food + Wine Festival, November 6-12. The historic city is the perfect backdrop for enjoying some of the south’s best culinary happenings.
Other don’t miss Savannah activities: The Tybee Island Pirate fest (October 6-14) and antique hunting.
Beaufort, SC | 1-hour drive
Beautiful Beaufort is just an hour from Summers Corner and offers all the charms of the Lowcountry and a variety of fall fun that begs you to take a day-trip (or two). October kicks off with the Beaufort Shrimp Festival. Experience the best shrimp recipes from 13 local restaurants as they compete to win the honors for their creative dishes.
Chili fans, anyone? Party in the Park Chili Cookoff is the place for you. Local chili cookers bring out their best recipes for a chance to win a $1,000 grand prize. In addition to mouth-firing chili, you can enjoy live music, a wide variety of craft brews, and plenty of activities for the kiddos.
All things fun and fall come together at the Habersham Harvest Festival. Browse local artisan vendors, sample and savor local eats, kids activities like a petting zoo, vintage carousel, other rides, and a pickle eating contest.