RALEIGH – Autumn in North Carolina brings an abundance of beautiful leaves from the mountains to the coast. The N.C. Department of Transportation encourages motorists to explore fall’s vibrant hues by traveling along the state’s Scenic Byways. NCDOT has designed 55 byways to give motorists a chance to explore North Carolina’s geography and culture, while taking in the colorful change of seasons.
“Taking the road less traveled is a perfect way to experience the beauty of fall in our state,” said NCDOT Scenic Byways Coordinator Jeff Lackey. “Our Scenic Byways offer an opportunity for drivers to leave the hustle and bustle of busy interstates behind and slow down their pace, so they can to stop and enjoy North Carolina’s natural treasures.”
NCDOT suggests touring the following scenic byways to see picturesque fall foliage:
Forest Heritage Scenic Byway – This 65-mile byway features some of the state’s rich forestlands where the trees tout bright red, orange and yellow leaves. The rocky byway travels through Haywood, Jackson and Transylvania counties. The route begins on U.S. 276 North from the U.S. 64/N.C. 280 intersection near Brevard and ends at the intersection of N.C. 215 near Rosman. The byway offers many amenities, including Sliding Rock Falls, Pisgah Forest National Fish Hatchery and the Looking Glass Falls, which is 85 feet high. It takes a total of two hours to drive the entire length of this byway.
Football Road Scenic Byway – This rural, tree-lined byway is popular with football fans traveling between the Triad and Triangle. The 37-mile route filled with farms, ponds and creeks begins at the intersection of Alamance Church Road and Blakeshire Road in Greensboro, and ends in the town of Carrboro at N.C. 54. The beautiful byway winds through Alamance, Guilford and Orange counties. The estimated time to travel this byway is 45 minutes.
Coastal Plains Region
Edenton -Windsor Loop Scenic Byway – This byway passes through wooded areas and over two creeks that form the Edenton Bay. The 87-mile route begins at the intersection of N.C. 32 and U.S. 17 Business, makes a circle through Edenton and ends at the same intersection where it began. While driving through Bertie, Chowan and Washington counties, motorists will encounter historical sites such as the Hope Plantation, Rehoboth Church and Cupola House. Drive time is two hours.
For more information and detailed driving directions for these and other North Carolina scenic byways, visit the Scenic Byways website to view the N.C. Scenic Byways book online. To order a hard copy, call NCDOT’s Customer Service office at 1-877-DOT-4-YOU (1-877-368-4968) or mail your request to:
NCDOT Scenic Byways Program
1557 Mail Service Center
Raleigh, NC 27699
The book is free; however, a $5 donation is requested to offset the costs of future publications and shipping. Copies of the book are also available at North Carolina welcome centers on interstates.
(Editor’s note: For photos of the byways, visit the NCDOT Flickr page.)
Photo of Forest Heritage Byway
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