Highlands and Cashiers are two charming resort towns located in the western part of North Carolina, USA. They are situated in the southern Appalachian Mountains and are known for their picturesque beauty, outdoor recreational opportunities, and cool, refreshing climate, making them popular destinations for both residents and tourists alike.
Most of the places to stay in this region are cabins and rentals, but there are also resorts and smaller hotels. We occasionally accept complimentary accommodations in exchange for a review to offset costs but write honestly about our experiences.
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Between the two towns, Highlands has more to see, including The Bascom: A Center for the Visual Arts, and plenty of restaurants and shops. This is also where you’ll find more accommodation options.
Highlander Mountain House
Highlander Mountain House is an 18-room inn that resembles an English country home brought into the modern age. The inn’s restaurant, The Ruffed Grouse, welcomes both guests and the public to enjoy the Appalachian cuisine featuring local produce and wild game. Read our review here.
Old Edwards Inn & Spa
Old Edwards Inn & Spa is an award-winning resort with well-appointed lodgings featuring elegant furnishings, modern amenities, and many provide stunning views of the surrounding mountains. In addition to the top-notch spa and multiple restaurants, amenities also include a heated mineral pool, a fitness center, a golf course, and access to outdoor activities such as hiking and fishing.
The inn also has two sister properties nearby, 200 Main in downtown Highlands and Half Mile Farm a short drive away.
Skyline Lodge opened in the past few years atop the ridge between Highlands and Cashiers. It is located in a 1929 converted motor lodge that was designed by a student of Frank Lloyd Wright. The lodge also has an outpost of Charleston‘s Oak Steakhouse.
The Wells Hotel
The Wells Hotel is a modest hotel on the outskirts of town with budget-friendly rooms and an onsite coffee shop. The company also operates The Wells Cashiers, which has the same emphasis on design, plus an onsite brewery.
Highlands Airbnbs and Rentals
Another popular option is to rent a vacation home or condo. This is a great choice for families or larger groups, as it provides more space and often includes a kitchen for self-catering. Visitors might enjoy a charming Highlands cottage or English-style manor.
The location of Highlands in the Blue Ridge Mountains offers several camping opportunities. Van Hook Glade Campground is a Forest Service campground located in the Nantahala National Forest, 20 minutes from downtown. It offers tent and RV camping plus easy access to hiking trails.
Cashiers features several boutique inns and small hotels that offer a cozy and intimate atmosphere. There are also a handful of restaurants and shops, but expect to drive the winding road between Cashiers and Highlands during your trip.
Hotel Cashiers feels like a home away from home with modern decor and live music in the lobby bar. Guests can enjoy rooms, suites, and full homes overlooking the lake. The hotel is also within walking distance of the shops and restaurants in Cashiers.
High Hampton Resort
High Hampton Resort has a rich history dating back to the late 19th century when it was established as a private estate. Over the years, it has evolved into a beloved resort with modern conveniences while maintaining its historic character.
Meals are served in a communal dining room, including favorites like fried chicken and homemade biscuits. One unique feature of High Hampton Inn is its lack of in-room televisions and phones. This encourages guests to unplug, relax, and connect with nature and fellow visitors.
Cashiers Airbnbs and Rentals
If you’re looking for a more rustic experience, you can find lodges and cabins in the area. These options are ideal for those who want to be closer to nature and enjoy the mountain surroundings. There are plenty of places to choose from, but we recommend this Cozy Cashiers home.
Most of the camping is closer to Highlands, so if you’re traveling with an RV, staying there might be a better fit.