Within just a couple of hours drive you can find world-class whitewater rafting, hiking in the mountains, the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, fly fishing, casino gambling, access to the world via Atlanta airport and some of the best motorcycling roads in existence.
The John C. Campbell Folk School in Brasstown attracts students of mountain music and traditional arts and crafts from all over the world. Learn blacksmithing, pottery, fiddle-playing or story-telling and stay in the beautiful Brasstown valley area.
If you're a motorcyclist it doesn't get any better than here. Anybody who rides on two wheels knows about The Tail of the Dragon: 318 curves in 11 miles and every one of those curves is a pure joy to ride.
You can even get a copy of your own picture snapped automatically as you blast through one of those curves at Killboy.com. Not to mention just about any other road through these mountains of western North Carolina invites you to slow down and enjoy the cool air and long-range views or roll on the throttle and hug the curves.
Whitewater rafting can take you from the Ocoee River, where the whitewater portion of the 1996 Olympics was held to the Nantahala River, with its miles of gentle curves and rolling rapids. Whatever you choose, there is a river suited to your enjoyment and skill level. Sign up with a group and a guide or go solo on a rapid-response kayak.
The Appalachian Trail stretches 2160 miles from Mt. Katahdin in Maine to Springer Mountain in Georgia and some of the best hiking is not far from Murphy where the AT crosses Blood Mountain. You don’t need a permit to use the AT but they are required in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.
The nearby Blue Ridge Parkway is a gorgeous drive whether on 2 wheels or four. It winds through the mountains with numbered mileposts guiding the way and pinpointing interesting spots.
The Great Smoky Mountains National Park is America’s most visited national park. You’ll see why when you experience the wide variety of natural beauty along the border of western North Carolina and Tennessee. Over 1500 bears live in the park, along with deer and elk. You can hike some of the 800 miles of trails, camp, snap photos and enjoy the views.
Appreciate the history of the Cherokee nation along the Valley River, drive the Cherohala Skyway, explore the Trail of Tears and visit the ancient crossroads at Tellico Plains where wild game, Native Americans and early explorers have crossed the mountain passes for centuries.
In an online article in Forbes entitled "Buying The Perfect Vacation Home" Murphy, NC was referenced as one of the top ten developing second home markets in the U.S.
This page just touches on the rich cultural history and the wild natural resources of western North Carolina. You can spend years exploring all that the area has to offer to enrich your life.