Waterfalls dot the mountainscape around Franklin. Just 2 miles from the house starts one of the most breathtaking drives through the Cullasaja Gorge aka Mountain Waters Scenic Byway. The Mountain Waters Scenic Byway is a 61-mile paved route that winds through some of the most spectacular country in the Nantahala National Forest, including multiple waterfalls, a roaring whitewater river, and tremendous mountaintop views. Few, if any other routes in North Carolina go so close to as many large waterfalls and rushing whitewater rivers and streams. You can drive the westbound route through the Nantahala Gorge or the eastbound route through the Cullasaja Gorge. The Cullasaja Gorge has been named one of National Geographic's 50 Drives of a Lifetime and one of the drive’s waterfalls, called Dry Falls, you can walk behind and not get wet. Another must see waterfall in our area is Whitewater Falls, the highest waterfall east of the Rockies.

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More Scenic Drives – From our great central location you can plan some amazing day trip adventures - visit the highest point of the Blue Ridge Parkway in about 45 minutes through Balsam. Or discover the unspoiled beauty of the most visited of our National Parks, the Great Smoky Mountain National Park. Other nearby areas include Asheville NC and the Biltmore House and Winery. Visit Bryson City, where you can ride the Great Smoky Mountain Railway – a superb way to see the breathtaking countryside and mountains. They have such fun theme trains such as PEANUTS™ The Great Pumpkin Patch Express and the Polar Express. During the year you’ll find special wine & dinner trains, fun BBQ and Local Brew rides.

Hiking is another of our area’s favorite activities. Hundreds of miles of hiking trails criss cross the mountains. The famous Appalachian and Bartram Trails are easily accessible. You’ll also discover many trails that take you to hidden wonders in the Nantahala National Forest. For the experienced or the novice you’ll find plenty of good times in the great outdoors.

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Rafting – some of the best Whitewater rafting in the U.S. can be found along the Nantahala River. Numerous outdoor centers offer guided trips for rafting or kayaking for both the notice and the adventurous.

Fishing – Our area provides so many great fishing opportunities. Areas include the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, the Tuckasegee River, Nantahala River and Lake, the Little Tennessee River, Fontana Lake and Cherokee Trophy Trout waters. Whether you are fishing from the river bank, fly fishing or hiring a guide, you’ll love fishing in our area. The Western North Carolina Fly Fishing Trail features some of the best trout waters in the Great Smoky Mountains. The trail takes you to 15 excellent spots for catching brook, brown and rainbow trout. A map is provided at the cabin. We’ll be happy to recommend a guide so you’ll be sure to find the best location for whatever type of fishing you would like.

Gem Mining has been a popular activity in our area since mining was introduced in 1870. Tiffany & Company (the world famous jeweler) as well as 2 other companies, American Prospecting & Mining Co. and US Ruby Mining Co. came to the area prospecting for ruby, sapphire, emerald and more. This area is one of the few places in the world where gem stones are accessible at the earth’s surface. We’ll provide a map to the mining locations. “Salted” mines plant either native gems (ones found in the area) or non-native gems.- These “salted” buckets are great for kids. They have a blast when the water rushes through the dirt in their sifter box. And, if you are a true rock hound, then make sure you are at a mine that offers “native dirt”or “dig your own bucket”. At every mine, staff will show you what to look for.

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Shopping & Antiquing / Restaurants / Local Brews – Shopping is a great sport in both Franklin as well as our surrounding towns. You’ll find wonderful local home & kitchen décor, hiking gear, clothing, souvenirs and great antique shops/malls. Downtown Franklin, Highlands, Cashiers, Dillsboro, Sylva, Waynesville and Asheville will have you shopping til you drop. You’ll find fast food & both local and fine dining in the area. And, if you are a beer lover, North Carolina has some of the best local microbreweries just waiting for you to come sample.

Celebrate mountain life with one of Franklin or surrounding area's many festivals and heritage events. Plus there are great arts & crafts festivals including Pumpkinfest, the Dillsboro Pottery Festival, Bele Chere and dozens more!

Franklin's historic past includes many interesting diversions including the Gem & Mineral Museum housed in an over 100 year old jail, Scottish Tartans Museum (the only one of its kind in the U.S.) and the Macon County Historical Museum. We're also part of the Civil War Trails project.

Main Street in Franklin, North Carolina comes alive Saturday nights from late spring through fall with Pickin' on the Square. This free event is sponsored by the Town of Franklin and provides hours of great entertainment featuring many styles of music and dance including bluegrass and clogging.

Smoky Mountain Center for the Performing Arts is your home for great performances year round. National recording artists, musical productions and comedy are featured throughout the year.


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More to Explore - Once you book your visit with us, we’ll provide our favorite things to do, restaurants, etc. and we have books of activities, maps and restaurant menus at the house. And, for more in depth information on activities, visit our sister website –

While you are planning - be sure to keep some free time to simply relax and enjoy the peaceful easy feeling you’ll get at your home away from home, the Pond House.

If you are a motorcycle enthusiast we hope you will decide to choose our home for your next vacation in Franklin, NC.

The Pond is a great place to base your motorcycle trip. All roads are easily accessible from the house. There’s nothing better than returning to The Pond after a spectacular ride, enjoy a beverage of choice, recall all the favorite spots, and ponder your next day from the peace & quiet of the screened porch or large deck.

Western North Carolina is endowed with some of the greatest motorcycle rides in all of America. It hosts a beautiful diversity of inspiring scenery. People from all walks of life are drawn to the seducing curves of the Dragon at Deal’s Gap, also known as US Hwy 129. They make their pilgrimage to test their skills, or in some cases, to be bitten by the Dragon.

Other motorcycle rides include the Blue Ridge Parkway, and southern access to The Great Smoky Mountain National Park.

Visit to learn more about your next motorcycle vacation in Franklin, NC! Saddle up and come experience the breathtaking scenery of Western North Carolina.

And into the mountains I go to lose my mind and find my soul.