Wednesday's Wish We Were Here: Old Edwards Inn and Spa in Highlands, NC

Fall can be spellbinding in the mountains of Highlands, North Carolina.  The beautiful autumn colors that surround a town known for being storybook quaint can provide leaf lookers a magical experience.

Situated at 4,118 feet above sea level in the southern plateau of the Blue Ridge Mountains, the mountain village of Highlands is a destination that surprisingly was only 12 miles from where I grew up in the little town of Cullowhee.  But let me be the first to tell you that was the longest 12 miles ever for a little girl who was prone to motion sickness.

The road that leads to Highlands has hairpin curves and cliff drops that can make you weak in the knees if you look out the window.

Unfortunately, I don’t remember much about my earlier visits to Highlands because it’s been well over 20 years.  A lot of times, I just saw an inside of a gymnasium when our high school basketball team played the town school’s team.  Sometimes, we even saw a few snowflakes as the van carrying car-sick cheerleaders slowly got us back down the mountain.

Now that I’ve grown up and have developed a taste for the finer things in life, I wish I had paid more attention to this little mountain village that welcomed affluent southerners who made the trip in their horse-drawn carriages to escape the South’s scorching heat.

The quaintness and charm of the town makes me want to take a Dramamine and experience the luxury of a mountainside escape at the Old Edwards Inn and Spa first-hand.

My Savvy Spending Lodging Choice

As you know, I always try to find my readers a savvy spending hotel (under $200 per night) choice as well any time I talk about a travel destination on this blog.  The catch is that I will only mention the hotel here if I would consider staying there myself.   I found a lot of other great properties, including some vacation homes for rent by owner, in Highlands, but all of these properties would be in my splurge category.  There are some less expensive options in Highlands, but none met my personal criteria. 

I didn’t give up, though.  Instead, I extended my hotel search into a neighboring town, which is just as beautiful as Highlands. 

The Laurelwood Mountain Inn is located in Cashiers, North Carolina, which is 11 miles away from Highlands.
This inn would be a perfect budget-friendly base for your family to explore the mountains.  It’s a family-owned hotel, and it is very obvious by reading the reviews that they take great pride in their inn.  They have standard and deluxe rooms for under $100 a night.  Suites and log cabins are priced under $200 per night.  The inn requires a two-night minimum stay during peak times.  It’s a great savvy spending choice for families who want to visit this fall and early winter.

See you in the mountains.  If you go, let me know!

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