What's the Deal: Getting romantic in WNC with Date Day ideas

Photo credit: WLOS Staff

Date night doesn't have to be dinner and a movie, especially here in the mountains.

Better yet, why settle for “date night” when you can have date day!

With so many unique options available in the region, we sought out to find out What's the Deal with having the best romantic experience.

What's more romantic than a picnic? And we have so many places to have a picnic and a lot of folks just forget to do that. The Blue Ridge Parkway is a prime picnic spot. "Overlooks are a great place for a picnic. You can picnic out of your car. Tailgate. Take your blanket along and enjoy the view,” says’s Mark File. “If you like to hike, pack a backpack and make a day of it. In the summer, we love to go to Mount Mitchell because that's the highest point picnic area in the eastern U.S. So, it's always 10 to 15 degrees cooler there. If you want to do some guided hikes, join the Carolina Mountain Club. It's very inexpensive for a membership."

Canton reside Dale Treadway agrees, a hike it the way to go, “"We do hike. We like to go over to the Dupont and go over there and go into Brevard and do things and usually we will end up eating in Brevard somewhere."

Brevard is also home to the White Squirrel Festival, held this year May 25th-27th. In fact, there are plenty of festivals to keep you busy this summer. "In Western North Carolina there is a festival every weekend in the spring and summer," says File. "Our small towns really do a fantastic job. A lot of them will only have a festival or two a year so they put a lot into it." And not just your basic festivals, think outside of the box! "Marion, they're going to have the Big Foot Festival this year. You can't find that anywhere."

Bigfoot not your thing? No worries, the 55th annual Coon Dog Day in Saluda is July 7th. "So much fun with the dogs howling and the parade and people are packed in the street."

Better yet, all the street festivals are FREE! "The International Day in Waynesville is very well done because you have dancers all over and performers and lots of arts and crafts."

Speaking of art, how about exploring all the local options, "this is one of the top art destinations in the country. We have hundreds of world class artists." Especially in Asheville's River Arts District, "you can visit artists and they will tell you about their work and you can see the process and you can see after. Or head to Spruce Pine in Mitchell County, "Penland is just an amazing place to go to explore art and the whole historic campus is great to explore.” In Asheville there will be live demos too, “this summer we have the summer of glass, so lots of glass blowing."

What about taking your own painting or art class? "You can go to village potters and take a 2 hour pottery class with a potter and get your hands dirty and you can take home a piece of art that you can enjoy for a lifetime."

Looking for a bit of a thrill? Good with puzzles…how about an escape room or a trip through some of Asheville’s best haunts on a ghost tour! "The LaZoom Bus Tour in downtown you see the purple bus and people waving out the window, well, be a tourist and hop on and go and the Pubcycle you can cycle around downtown," says File.

The mountains now have many breweries, but we also have local vineyards with great views, "two places, Catawba Valley in the Morganton area and then Tryon Foothills have several wineries so you can visit 3 or 4 in the same day."

Our rivers offer tubing, rafting and other outdoor sports, "for a romantic outing, do something different that you haven't done before so fly fishing is a great one." There are even fly-fishing trails in Jackson County! "They have the guides that will take you out and they give you all the equipment and all you do is show up and have a great experience."

How the question is, how will you choose? "There are so many things to do, you could do something different every day of the year and it would take you many years to finish it."

Of course, we are a foodie town. There is also a section of that lists some of the best restaurants in the area. You can also find that and restaurant reviews on

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