One of the most popular outdoor activities our guests come to Brookside Mountain Cottages to enjoy is to ride The Virginia Creeper Trail. The Virginia Creeper Trail is a 34-mile rail-trail that is one of the most popular bike trails in the country. From Abingdon to Alvarado Station, the trail crosses rolling farmland and then changes to a beautiful mountain trail between Damascus, Virginia, and Whitetop Station.
The most popular section of the trail is a relaxing and scenic 17-mile bike ride from Whitetop Station to Damascus. With a 5% downhill grade most of the way, the ride is easy for beginners and families. This is a multi-use trail so it isn't uncommon to see hikers and horseback riders, too. There are several outfitters in nearby Damascus, Virginia, where you can rent bikes and catch shuttles to Whitetop Station. Below is a list of biking outfitters with links to their websites:
Boating & Swimming
Just a short and scenic drive from our cottages is beautiful Watauga Lake. Here you can rent pontoon and ski boats from a marina, go kayaking, canoeing, or just enjoy a relaxing swim at one of the designated swimming areas. Below are links to marina websites that offer boat rentals:
Doe Mountain Recreation Area
Doe Mountain encompasses over 8,600 acres and features adventure trails for hiking, horseback riding, mountain biking, and OHV. Permits are required and can be purchased at the Doe Mountain Visitors Center, 1203 Harbin Hill Rd. (off Hwy 167 W.) or in the Mayor's office at the Johnson County Courthouse, 222 West Main St., both are located in Mountain City, Tennessee.
For more info, call (423) 727-9696.
East Tennessee ATV & Powersports
For more info, call (423) 542--6109. Or click below:
Appalachians Outdoor Adventures
Appalachians Outdoor Adventures offers guided ATV and Horseback riding year round in the beautiful Appalachian Mountains of North Carolina and Tennessee, including tours at Doe Mountain Recreation Area.
For more information, call (828) 297-1289. Or click below:
The area surrounding Brookside Mountain Cottages is chocked full of incredible hiking trails. We are blessed to have the Appalachian Trail pass through this area as well as many other fantastic day hikes or overnight hikes should you choose. For your convenience, click below to view and download our hiking guide.
Whitewater Rafting & Tubing
There are a few great choices in the High Country for whitewater rafting, or if family-friendly float trips are more your speed, they, too, are available. One of our favorite trips is whitewater rafting on the Nolichucky River accessed in nearby Erwin, Tennessee. We have provided links below to a few recommended adventure outfitters where you can book the trip that is right for you.
Towering above northwest North Carolina, Grandfather Mountain is the region’s premier and most ecologically diverse nature preserve; a vast wild place, where knowledgeable guides and modern conveniences make a personal mountain adventure accessible to all. Whether you spend your day at Grandfather Mountain hiking, walking nature trails, enjoying the wildlife habitats, the Nature Museum, or having a family picnic, a day at Grandfather Mountain is a day well spent. To learn more about all Grandfather Mountain has to offer, click below:
We are fortunate to have some terrific venues nearby for concerts, plays, and more. Our hometown of Mountain City features Heritage Hall Theatre located downtown at Heritage Square. And one cannot forget world famous Barter Theatre located just 35 minutes north of our cottages in Abingdon, Virginia. In nearby Marion, Virginia, the Lincoln Theatre has been presenting world-class entertainment since 1929. And finally, in Bristol, Tennessee, Paramount Center for the Arts has been operating since 1931 and to this day presents a wonderful variety of entertainment.
Bristol Motor Speedway is the fourth largest sports venue in America and the eighth largest in the world, housing up to 162,000 people. The track is so short that speeds here are far lower than is typical on most NASCAR oval tracks, but they are very fast compared to other short tracks due to the high banking. The speedway is just an hour away from Brookside - close enough to be convenient, and far enough away to escape the congestion on race days. For more information about BMS, please click the link below: