The 5 Best North Carolina Mountain Towns to Live In

The majestic peaks of the Blue Ridge Parkway, charming towns offering luxurious properties with panoramic beauty are just a few of the reasons that many seek out the best place to live in the North Carolina mountains. Whether drawn to the fresh mountain air, top dining, award-winning art galleries and unique shopping boutiques all and more can be found in the mountains of North Carolina.

Imagine waking up each morning to stunning 360-degree mountain views, the rushing sound of nearby waterfalls and in close proximity to some of the nation’s top hiking trails, prize fly fishing and a list of other pursuits. There is a lot to discover when you live in North Carolina mountain towns.

Cashiers, NC

The town of Cashiers is centrally located in the Plateau region and attracts thousands of visitors between May to October each year. Cashiers is in the heart of the Nantahala National Forest and provides a front row view to the spectacular annual fall foliage. At an elevation of 3,500, the town is surrounded by mountain peaks of 5,000 feet or more and is within close proximity to a number of natural resources to enjoy. The history of Cashiers showcases the rich heritage of several buildings circa 1800s that have been restored overtime and are still in use today. The rustic charm of Cashiers honors the region’s former prominence in the timber industry. Today, Cashiers is home to only a few hundred full-time residents but is a much sought out vacation destination

Cool Temperatures is What Residents Love About Cashiers, NC 

The cool summer breeze in the mountains is one of the things residents and visitors love most about Cashiers. Visitors flock to the region each summer to enjoy the outdoors whether it’s hiking a mountain trail, fishing in a nearby river, or visiting the network of waterfalls. There is plenty to keep you busy here and you’ll get to know everyone too!


Highlands, NC

Highlands attracts those looking for a quaint atmosphere, in this hidden mountain gem. North Carolina is home to over 250 waterfalls with a number of them located in the Plateau region. Dry Falls along Highway 64 where visitors can walk behind a beautiful 75-foot waterfall. Bridal Veil Falls, which is between Highlands and Dry Falls, offers North Carolina’s only drive behind the waterfall. It’s truly a unique experience. Then there is The Cullasaja Falls, about nine miles outside of Highlands, which is only visible by car. After a day of taking in the sights, stroll downtown Highlands along Main Street to discover a number of boutiques, specialty shops and make reservations at any of the fine dining options in this mountain town.

Residents of Highlands, NC love the Rich History of the Area & More

Festivals are a big deal in Highlands, especially those hosted in the fall which feature arts & crafts, the annual Halloween celebration, and the Culinary Weekend. The attraction to Highlands is the ability to get outdoors on area trails, browse the Highlands Historic Village, or just explore downtown.


Lake Glenville, NC

Lake Glenville, NC

While high in the mountains in North Carolina’s western region, Lake Glenville has evolved into a paradise for anglers, especially those looking to reel in bass. The lake, actually a reservoir near Cashiers, is home to a number of sought after fish like Largemouth Bass and Rainbow Trout. Lake Glenville has the distinction of being the lake with the highest elevation east of the Mississippi River. As many of the stately properties in this mountain area also enjoy stunning waterfront views, it’s the best of both worlds to be surrounded by the natural beauty.

Residents Enjoy Access to the Water in Lake Glenville, NC

Access to enjoy kayaking, canoeing, waterskiing or just spending a day out on the boat is what most love about Lake Glenville. Some describe the area like a country-club environment within a short drive of other amenities like shopping and dining.


Lake Toxaway, NC

A perfect getaway in an idyllic private setting welcomes all to the tranquil Lake Toxaway. This vacation destination is located on the eastern edge of the Plateau region near Sapphire Valley. Several streams high in the Nantahala National Forest and the Pisgah National Forest feed the state’s largest private lake. The shores of Lake Toxaway are known for beautiful properties which date back to the turn of the century when industry giants such as the Fords, Edisons and Rockefellers vacationed here.  There are many magnificent properties to select as a summer vacation home or a cozy winter getaway for the holidays to relax and recharge.  

The Scenic Beauty of Lake Toxaway, NC Is a Favorite with Residents 

The unmatched beauty and privacy of the area is the most appealing aspect of what residents love about Lake Toxaway. And while private, the close proximity to explore other North Carolina mountain towns is a plus.


Sapphire Valley, NC

Once a mining hub has now become a top vacation destination as part of the Plateau region of western North Carolina. Come in the summer to experience the cool refreshing mist of any of the breathtaking waterfalls in the area or grab some skis to hit the snow-covered slopes in the winter. Sapphire Valley is tucked away in a scenic niche of the North Carolina mountains but offers visitors an experience like none other. Experience a mountain resort atmosphere in Sapphire Valley. The fresh air calls most outside to enjoy nature. This is a haven for hikers to set off on the trails of either Gorges State Park or in a portion of the Panthertown Valley. The water also calls anglers to cast their lines in a variety of streams great for fly fishing.

Festivals and Golf is What Residents Love About Sapphire Valley

The various festivals and several golf courses is what residents have come to love about Sapphire Valley along with the peaceful scenery that attracts many to the area.


Let Landmark Realty Group Help You Find Your Dream North Carolina Mountain Home

Let Landmark Realty Group Help You Find Your Dream North Carolina Mountain Home

North Carolina mountain towns have a lot to offer those looking for extraordinary property surrounded by picturesque views to take in the natural beauty of the region and exquisite activities accompanied by top dining options. It’s all here and Landmark Realty can help find your dream North Carolina mountain home. Whether Cashiers is the ideal location or an elegant private estate on the shores of Lake Toxaway beacons, contact any of our Landmark real estate brokers to help you explore the area and find your next North Carolina dream home. Feel free to browse the available properties on our website and contact us if you see something you love.

We are captivated by the Plateau’s beauty and special charm and are passionate to share it with others looking to make the area home. Let us know what piques your interest or just tell us what your dream home looks like in your vision. Trust us, we will find it here in one of our great mountain towns.

It’s easy to relocate to North Carolina and you’ll be convinced of that after talking to our Relocation Director, Karen Danner, who can assist you with every detail of your move to North Carolina. We welcome you to the North Carolina mountains; we know you’ll just love it here!

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