11 Year Anniversary Trip- Banner Elk/Blowing Rock, N.C.

This is a blog post to help me remember what we did and where we went and also if this is helpful to anyone else- great!
Before we go on a trip, I kind of look through different blogs to get new ideas for hikes, places to eat, etc...SO a few of the things we did were based on that!

This picture is from our honeymoon in New Zealand- Waiheke Island at Mudbrick Vineyard.
You take a ferry from Auckland to get to the Island- such a great memory! 

Our friends own a cabin near Linville Falls in North Carolina and they are so kind to let us use it for some trips! I think we have been here at least 5 times now? 

*Linville Falls* Some easy + beautiful trails close to our cabin- highly recommend.

*Catawba Falls*closer to Asheville
Starts off "easy" and then it gets crazy at the top- beautiful falls but to get up and down the part up top, someone had tied some ropes so we used them-maybe not the best idea but an adventure for sure! 

*Lookout Trail-Lookout Mountain/Montreat* (near Asheville as well)
Parking is definitely limited but a beautiful out and back- or rather up and down- almost 365 degree views from the top--

^My best view^

*Profile Trail*
Near Banner Elk- okay, so this one is loooong- we ended up going 5.4 miles round trip- lots and lots of up and then lots and lots of down...eventually gets you up to Grandfather Mountain (for free) but your body puts in lots of work! 

*Rough Ridge* along the Blue Ridge Parkway-
I think we have done this one every time we come- the parking lot fills up quickly, esp on the weekends but great views! 


*Los Aricoiris Mexican*
Really basic-- it has become an easy first night restaurant for us- don't go out of your way but it is decent! 

*Bistro Roca* Blowing Rock-
^Roasted Figs/Honey + Manchego Cheese^

^Ben's burger- bacon, crispy fried onions, etc...he LOVED it^

^A little blurry but Corvina (fish), turnips/potatoes and haricot verts^

*Homegrown* Asheville- 
^Sunburst Trout + Spaghetti Squash^

^Local Asheville Kombucha^

*Berliner Kindl* Black Mountain
So, I lived in Germany for 6 years growing up and I love some legit/authentic German food and I can't believe we found a place that was legit! 
^Jagerschnitzel, sauerkraut + pan-fried potatoes^

^Nuremburger bratwurst (they are smaller in size than regular bratwursts) + red cabbage + potatoes^

*Knife and Fork* Spruce Pine
So, we go here every.single.time. They moved locations and it is a little less cozy but still delish. 
^Grilled radicchio, lettuces, some amazing cheese (don't know what kind) + balsamic dressing^

^Grilled trout + parsnip puree + haricot verts^

*Dripolator* Black Mountain
Last but not least- this cute coffee shop in Black Mountain- they have sipping chocolate- Oh man! It was rich and creamy and chocolately- and I got mine with almond milk instead of 1/2 and 1/2 and it was still decadent. 

If you stayed along this long, I am impressed! Hope this helps for ideas/recommendations if you are ever in this neck of the woods! 


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