There are a number of attractions in Candler that are popular with tourists. These include Bear Den Mountain Resort & Campground, Pisgah Inn & Restaurant, and the Carl Sandburg Home. Other attractions include the Nanatahala River Gorge and the nearby Smoky Mountains National Park.
Bear Den Mountain Resort & Campground
Bear Den Mountain Resort & Campground is a National Forest campground that features a lake and other amenities for visitors. It also has a playground and game room for kids. The campground is a popular destination for families. There is even a free shuttle service available for guests.
The resort offers a variety of accommodations, including chalets that can be rented on the slopes. Other amenities include a 46,000 square foot clubhouse with restaurants and shops. The resort also offers a laundry facility and other conveniences.
Carl Sandburg Home
If you’re a history buff, the Carl Sandburg Home is a must-see. This historical home is a perfect place to learn more about the man who influenced so many of the writers in America. There are many things to do at the Carl Sandburg Home, including a bookstore where you can purchase Sandburg books. You can also tour the grounds and barn. While you’re here, you can take a walk along the 5 miles of hiking trails.
The Carl Sandburg Home is located near Hendersonville in Flat Rock. It was the home of the famous author for over two decades. He lived there with his wife Lilian, and later transferred the property to the United States Government. Now, it is managed by the National Park Service.
The house was built in 1838 and is easily visible from the parking lot. The home has 10 stories and is presented as if it were “lived in” by the Sandburg family. It is set on a rocky outcropping. Inside, you can see how Sandburg would have sat in his study, with a pen and tablet.
There are also five miles of hiking trails at the Carl Sandburg Home, which are easy to moderate. The trails take you to quiet ponds, rock outcroppings, and the summit of Glassy Mountain. The Entrance Trail leads you to the main house from the parking lot, while the Front Lake Loop offers an alternative steeper trail. Another trail, Memminger Trail, wraps around Little Glassy Mountain.
The Carl Sandburg Home National Historic Site is open seven days a week, except for holidays. Admission is free, but guided tours fill up quickly, so make your reservation early to avoid the disappointment of missing a tour. During your visit, you can also hike the grounds and see the farm where Mrs. Sandburg raised champion goats.
Nanatahala River Gorge
The Nanatahala River Gorge is an excellent destination for anyone who enjoys a whitewater rafting adventure. The river is about 45 miles long and has a variety of rapids ranging from gentle to thrilling. There are plenty of spots for families to spend time rafting together.
The Nantahala River Gorge is a beautiful place to visit throughout the year. In the spring, the gorge is filled with white dogwood flowers and flaming azaleas. The gorge is also surrounded by a mist of emerald green water.
The Nantahala River flows through steep mountain terrain before joining the Little Tennessee River at Fontana Lake. The Nantahala River is also a training ground for canoe and kayak Olympians. In fact, the Nantahala Gorge was the site of the Freestyle World Championships in 2013. The gorge is also home to the “Championship Wave” for public use. In 1942, the Nantahala Dam was built, forming a reservoir for World War II defense projects and allowing control of water for recreational purposes. Today, the Nantahala Dam is owned and operated by Duke Energy.
The Nantahala River is part of the Mountain Waters National Scenic Byway. This scenic route crosses Western North Carolina and features the Upper Nantahala River Gorge. This part of the river has a narrower flow and has waterfalls. If you enjoy a hike or a picnic, the Nantahala is a great destination.
If you’re looking for an adventure, the Nantahala Gorge Adventure Center is the place for you. You can go zip-lining, rafting, or take a train ride. The tour is about four and a half hours long and covers 36 miles.
Mount Mitchell State Park
If you are looking for a great day trip from Candler, Tennessee, Mount Mitchell State Park is a must. It is a 4,789 acre state park in Yancey County. It was created in 1915 by the state legislature. It is also one of the state’s first state parks.
This park is about a half hour drive from Candler. It’s usually about 10 degrees cooler here than Asheville, but the weather can change very quickly. It’s always a good idea to bring rain gear, as Mt. Mitchell is often covered in clouds. The drive to the park is easy, though you might find that traffic can be a bit slow on weekends.
There are a variety of hiking trails in the area. You can hike the Old Mitchell Trail (2.2 miles), which was used as the main hiking trail in the early 1900s. The hike should take you about three hours. The park also has a museum, shop, restrooms, and an on-site restaurant.
The park is also a great place for bird-watchers. There are over 90 species of birds recorded in the park, including a variety of songbirds and raptors. While many of these species are characteristic of the New England and Canadian mountains, there are also some distinctive species found here. A few of these include golden-crowned kinglets, slate-colored juncos, winter wrens, and red crossbills. You can even catch a glimpse of a peregrine falcon if you go up to the observation tower.
The park’s summit, Mount Mitchell, is the highest point east of the Mississippi. Located 35 miles northeast of Asheville, Mount Mitchell is accessible via the Blue Ridge Parkway and NC Highway 128. The park includes a 1/4 mile accessible hiking trail, as well as an observation deck where you can enjoy 360-degree panoramic views. In 2019, the park doubled its size, and the surrounding area received $600,000 for improvements.