All posts tagged daytrip

Trip Planning in Wilkes


Why not make a daytrip a weekend stay in Wilkes!

Daytrips can be nice but driving can really eat up your time, especially if you are traveling further than an hour or so from home. If you have an hour and a half drive from home that would mean spending at least three hours on the road if you were planning on going back home at the end of the day.  Booking a hotel may cost more but if you are staying at the right place the value can far outweigh the price. Waking up to free hot coffee and breakfast and not even needing to make the bed or clean anything is wonderful! All of a sudden, a rushed day trip becomes a relaxed weekend vacation. You can see more, do more and may even be able to enjoy your time on the road more.


Why stay in Wilkes?

Wilkes has long been called the Key City, as it is the gateway to the Blue Ridge Mountains, but it is much more than that. Wilkes is a county that welcomes you in and invites you to stay awhile.

Centrally located near Winston-Salem, Boone, Hickory, Statesville, West Jefferson and Lenior, Wilkes is an ideal place to visit and the perfect place to stay and see all there is to see in Western North Carolina. Highway 421 runs straight through town making accessing food, fuel and supplies most convenient. Wilkes is also a convenient location for lodging. Hampton Inn, located just off the highway, sits on a hill making it easy to find and plenty quiet for a good night”s rest. Lodging prices are often lower than neighboring cities and the streets aren”t crowed with manic city traffic.


What to do, where to go and what there is to see.

Where to start! There is so much to do during your stay. Wilkes offers numerous attractions, festivals, and shops as well as plenty of places for recreation, entertainment and weddings. Hiking at Stone Mountain, cycling the trails at W. Kerr Scott Dam and Reservoir, shopping downtown and touring the many art galleries are only a few activities, among many, in the county.

If you are planning on visiting cities nearby, you”ll find that Wilkes offers competitive lodging prices and can help you escape heavy traffic and crowds at the near local events. Wilkes is close enough to Appalachian State University to stay for game days and is near enough to go skiing in the Appalachian Mountains without the worry of severe weather.


Strawberry Fields Forever!



Strawberry Picking in Wilkes

Spring is a wonderful time filled with great weather (kinda rainy), beautiful nature and short sleeve shirts.  But each year as April arrives, the conversation at my house turns to…. Strawberries.  Yep, believe it or not, my wife and I begin to imagine the taste of locally grown, ripe to the center, red, delicious strawberries and strawberry pie.  As they say…. It is the simple things in life.

Dan’l Boone Inn

Danl Boone Inn

No day trip to the High Country of North Carolina is really complete without a meal

with Dan’l Boone.

The Dan’l Boone Inn doesn’t have rooms to rent, but after eating there, you just might need one. This award winning restaurant is located in the heart of downtown Boone and has served delicious southern cuisine for over 50 years. This near-local restaurant is just a short 30 minute drive from Wilkesboro and well worth the trip. (the drive is worth the drive)

I arrived on a Saturday morning in March at around 9:00 and much to my surprise was taken to a table and within 5 minutes I was drinking my first cup of hot coffee and making decisions about what to eat first. While I am sure this is not the case year round, not having to wait in line was a nice bonus. The waiter was a really nice young man who very quickly became a member of our family. He made sure we had everything we needed before we needed it. We had a window seat and enjoyed the morning sun and the view of a bustling Boone.

We were outfitted with country ham, sausage and bacon. Each cooked just the way I like it. Other folks might prefer the ham fried a little more, this way it was nice and tender. Along with the meats, we were served a basket of biscuits. It was a nice touch to have both regular southern biscuits and some cinnamon biscuits as well. Both were excellent. Of course gravy was an essential ingredient at this morning feast; both red eye and cream. My recommendation is to put a little red eye on the biscuit first and then smother it with the sausage cream gravy. Scrambled eggs, grits, cooked apples, pancakes and Black Cherry Preserves filled the table to capacity.

The more we ate, the more food appeared on the table. It would seem that Dan’l Boone has an endless supply of the southern delicacies and he is not stingy with them. I had skipped the evening meal the night before, planning for the morning outing with my family. Even with the extra space and the early planning, I was easily defeated by this colossal breakfast. Every bite seemed to taste better than the last. I had to be very careful what I said, as my wife (who is amazing cook) was sitting beside me. For sure, the Dan’l Boone Inn serves up a breakfast that is a close second to what my sweetheart can whip up on a Saturday morning.

The restaurant is an old home/ inn that has been lovingly cared for and will make the meal even more enjoyable. There was plenty to look at and lots to talk about with my in-laws. There is a little shop located at the front of the restaurant that is well stocked with High Country souvenirs to take home with you. And while I would recommend that, the better option is to grab a couple of the bags beside the register and pack up some country ham biscuits to eat on while driving the Blue Ridge Parkway. They encourage you to take what you don’t eat and we did.

Any way you slice it, the Dan’l Boone Inn is a great place to enjoy some of what the south is famous for; food, family, friends and faith. It is an easy going place and I never felt rushed. We talked and talked and enjoyed our time together over several cups of coffee.  At roughly $10 per person (children less), it seemed like a bargain. Sure, McDonalds is a little cheaper, but seriously….. we are talking apples and oranges. Go, enjoy, and fill up on some of that good southern cooking. Oh yeah, and tell them that the VisitInsider told you about it, maybe next time I am there I will get to eat for free. God bless you.

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