Located between Asheville and Boone, in the shadow of the highest peak east of the Mississippi, Burnsville is home to 1,700 residents who call this gorgeous, quaint mountain town home. Although it was once a locals-only place that revolved around the grassy town square dating back to 1834, over the last decade, Burnsville has grown into a destination for travelers.
The historic town square has long been a gathering spot for locals. With fall in the air, the leaves bursting with color, and almost perfect temperatures, now is the best time to visit!
As of recently, the Burnsville downtown has undergone a sort of renaissance, with new shops and even a brewery opening up in the quaint town. One historic point of interest includes the Yancey Theatre. Opened in 1939, the historic theatre has long been a staple of the town, and you can catch a movie there.
Burnsville is also home to Blind Squirrel Brewery. If you love craft beer, or even if you want a hearty bite to eat, this is a perfect place and situated in a gorgeous, bright, and airy building.
One thing many outsiders don't know is that Burnsville (and all of Yancey County) is home to one of the largest communities of crafts people in the nation. You'll find potters, artists, artisans, and glass blowers. Galaxy Arts is an amazing place to stop in downtown Burnsville. Aside from being a retail space for homemade goods, it also hosts workshops. Owner Caty Carlin also rents the cozy upstairs on AirBnB.
Harvey Littleton, "the father of the American studio glass movement" relocated to this beautiful area in the 1970s. His presence started the movement and relocation of other glass blowers and artisans. Today, Yancey County is considered the center of studio glass in the U.S. One way to experience the legacy and culture for yourself is to take a self-guided studio tour hosted by the Toe River Arts Council. Hosted twice a year in June and December, the free tour allows you to walk through over 100 studios.
Burnsville 100th Block
On your visit, you might wonder why beautiful quilts adorn buildings throughout the town and county. That's due to the Western North Carolina Quilt Trail. Burnsville and Yancey County are home to 9 separate trails.
The prominent wooden blocks display quilt squares associated with the history of the place.
There are over 200 quilt blocks in Yancey County. You'll find them on prominent buildings (like the Burnsville Courthouse pictured above), places of business, and even farmhouses in the countryside.
You can stroll, drive, or even bike through the trails to get your own glance at this unique slice of western North Carolina culture.
If you're looking for the perfect spot to grab a bite to eat - Garden Deli is a Burnsville staple. It also lives up to its name, with a gorgeous patio surrounded by lush greenery overlooking the town square. It's the perfect place for a hearty sandwich and unbeatable atmosphere.
With close proximity to Mount Mitchell, Burnsville is a popular pitstop for outdoor enthusiast. Yancey County is home to six of the 10 tallest peaks on the East Coast, making it a popular destination for not only outdoor enthusiasts, but avid hikers, campers, and those looking for a bit of adventure.
If you're not ready to leave and looking for a place to rest your head, gorgeous B&Bs like Nu Wray Inn (pictured above) and Terrell House are perfect.
There's plenty to do in Burnsville and just outside. From browsing unique, handmade arts and crafts, touring an artist studio, grabbing a craft beer, driving through stunning scenery, and even hiking the highest peak east of the Mississippi, this town is perfect for a fall day trip!
Burnsville really is such a picturesque place, and you can’t beat the diverse amount of activities and culture found here. Have you visited Burnsville before?