Banner Elk, Beech Mountain, Blowing Rock, Boone, West Jefferson, Wilkesboro, Blue Ridge Parkway

Banner Elk NC Fall Color Festival Guide 2024

Our Banner Elk NC Fall Color & Festival Guide 2024 highlights when to visit to see the best fall leaf color, best fall hikes and Blue Ridge Parkway overlooks, fall festivals, corn mazes and apple picking not to be missed! 


Leaf color prediction forecasts are done based on elevation (Banner Elk's Elevation is 3,701). Some things to consider that effect leaf color is the amount of rain, wind and heat the High Country receives during September and October.  That is something we cannot predict! Normally, the 3rd Week of October is the best time to view peak leaf color in Banner Elk NC.


  • View the latest leaf color prediction from Appalachian State University's Biology Department starting mid-September HERE

  • View Grandfather Mountain's daily fall color photos starting in October HERE


  • Grandfather Mountain
    The top attraction in the High Country does not dissappoint in October! Visit during October 1-11 and take a Fall Color Ramble Walk.  These 20 minute guided walks highlight Grandfather Mountains fall color.

  • Rough Ridge Trail
    Blue Ridge Parkway Milepost 302.9
    This 1.45 mile trail overlooks the Linn Cove Viaduct and the meandering Blue Ridge Parkway below.  While the views are spectacular, the walk to get there is not that strenuous. View our entire guide to this Banner Elk section of the Blue Ridge Parkway HERE

  • Tate Evans Park
    Located in downtown Banner Elk, this park has a greenway trail, fishing spots and lots of picnic tables. Grab a coffee at one of the cafe's located across the street and take in the fall color on your stroll.


  • Woolly Worm Festival
    October 19-20, 2024
    Downtown Banner Elk
    The event features live music, arts & crafts and food vendors, a children's area featuring inflatables, and of course the famed Woolly Worm waces.  The winning worm receives a $1,000 prize and winter weather predicting rights.

  • Valle Crucis Fair
    October 19, 2024
    Valle Crucis, NC 
    The fair features homemade Brunswick Stew, BBQ and Apple Butter to warm you up on a crisp Autumn Day.  Children's activities include storytelling, pumpkin carving and pumpkin bowling.  Fair goers can peruse over 150 juried arts & crafts vendors and listen to live bluegrass and country bands and watch cloggers and square dancers. For more details, click HERE

  • For a list of fall festivals in the region, click HERE


  • Orchard at Altapass
    Take a road trip to the Orchard at Altapass. Located about 30 minutes away on the Blue Ridge Parkway, this historic orchard offers apple picking in Sept-Oct.  Take a hayride to the perfect picking spot or pick up a bag of freshly picked apples in the store. Don't forget to get a piece of warm apple pie while you sit back and listen to live mountain music that plays daily (except Tuesdays) in October.

  • View a list of apple orchards and corn mazes in the region HERE

  • Looking for a place to stay? Rooms can book quickly during peak leaf color and festival weekends. Call the regional visitor center for more information on the best times to visit and for the most up to date availability at 828-264-1299.

For more fall fun, join the Fall Lovers League of the High Country Facebook group HERE!