Welcome to the Boone Adventure Guide’s Best Family Adventures section. Below you will find information on the best family adventures in the Boone, NC area including Worley’s Cave, the New River, Valle Crucis Community Park, Mt. Jefferson State Park, and the Linville River Picnic area.
Clamber through massive corridors, splash through an underground river and explore the gigantic rooms of Worley’s Cave. With more than more than 37,000 feet (8-10 miles) of mapped passages on two levels, the cave, also known as Morril’s Cave, is home to an incredible variety of geologically unique cave formations. The upper level of the cave is the site of many aptly named formations, such as the crystalline “Cave Troll”. A fast-flowing river courses through the lower level and is home to a wide variety of rare species, including the elusive white crayfish. Worley’s is a beginner to intermediate cave which makes for an ideal family adventure.
Directions from Boone: Worely’s is open to the public but for the safest and most complete caving experience we recommend hooking up with a local outfitter such as River & Earth Adventures.
This section of the gently flowing waters of the New River offers just enough small rapids and waves to keep it interesting for the whole family on a canoe, kayak, or tube. At nice 5 mile section begins at Zaloo’s Canoes and takes out at the New River State Park at the Wagoner Access. Most families can expect to float, paddle, and swim for more than 4 hours on this scenic section of the New River. This area is also an excellent option for multi-day family camping/float trips.
Directions from Boone: Take Highway 421 S for 10 miles to a left onto Hwy 221 N. Follow for 16 miles, passing through the town of Jefferson. When Highway 221 turns left, stay straight on Hwy 88 E for 3 miles to right turn past bridge on to Hwy 16 S to .5 miles to Zaloo’s.
Valle Crucis Park, a 22 acre park just behind the landmark, nearly 130-year-old Mast General Store, is a family friendly hotspot. There’s great birding in the park that includes a small wetland pond and gurgling stretch of the Watauga River. Take the easy, paved 1-mile loop along the stream on Wednesday morning and join the weekly bird hike with local authority Curtis Smalling. Also, each Friday night from May to September the park offers Music in the Valle-a free, family friendly music concert series featuring local acts. Can’t get much better than that.
Directions from Boone: Take NC 105 S for 4.8 miles to right on Broadstone Rd. Head 2.8 miles to right on to a dirt road. Park adjacent to the Mast Store.
West Jefferson is a small town with a lot of character just a short drive from Boone. The nearby Mt. Jefferson State Park provides visitors with a great opportunity to drive up and check out the view from one of the highest mountains in the area (4,684 ft.) Several short trails near the summit offer informative signs on local flora and fauna with great views, beautiful wild flowers, and the chance to view the elusive Peregrine Falcon.
Directions from Boone: Take Highway 421 S for 10 miles to a left onto Hwy 221 N. Follow for 14 miles to right turn onto Mt Jefferson State Park Rd. Follow 3.5 miles to the state park.
If your idea of a relaxing afternoon involves grilling out beside a fast moving stream brimming with hungry trout, then the Linville River Picnic area is your spot. The area features a wide-range of different grills at various locations throughout the one acre park offering visitors a chance to take in the natural beauty of the Blue Ridge Mountains while enjoying the amenities of a developed recreation area.
Directions from Boone: Take 105 S and follow for 17 miles to Linville to a left onto Hwy 221 S. for 3 miles to the Blue Ridge Parkway. Head south (right) to mile marker 316.5 and the Linville Falls recreation area.