North Carolina Mountains
North Carolina Mountains is the mountain region in western North Carolina.
Counties just to the east of this group (sometimes called Land-of-Sky) include Buncombe (home to Western North Carolina's largest city, Asheville), Henderson, Madison, and Transylvania.
The northern counties of Western North Carolina are commonly known as the state's High Country. Centered around Boone, the High Country boasts the area's most popular ski resorts and is known for it's production of Fraser Fir Christmas Trees. High Country counties include Alleghany, Ashe County, Avery, Mitchell, Watauga, Wilkes, and Yancey (home to Mount Mitchell, highest mountain on the East Coast).
On the eastern end of Western North Carolina lie the counties of Burke, Caldwell, McDowell, Polk - known as The First Peak of the Blue Ridge, and Rutherford.
The mountains of western North Carolina are among the oldest on Earth, and contain the highest mountain (Mount Mitchell), deepest gorge (Linville Gorge), and several of highest waterfalls (Whitewater Falls, Glassmine Falls, etc.) in the eastern United States, and is also home to the oldest river in North America (the New River) and the two most visited National Parks in the country (the Blue Ridge Parkway and the Great Smoky Mountains National Park).
The region also has a stunning diversity of plant and animal life, more, in fact, than the whole of Europe.
People living in the Appalachian dialect area pronounce the word "Appalachia" as App-a-latch-ah, while those who live outside of the Appalachian dialect area or at its outer edges tend to pronounce it App-a-lay-csh-ah. If you visit the Qualla Boundary (Cherokee Indian Reservation), you may hear the native language Cherokee spoken.
By plane, the closest airport to most of the region is the Asheville Regional Airport (AVL) located fifteen miles southeast of Asheville. The nearest regional airport to Boone is the Tri-Cities Regional Airport (TRI) located between Johnson City and Bristol, Tennessee. The next nearest international airports are the Greenville-Spartanburg International Airport (GSP) in Greenville, South Carolina, Charlotte Douglas International Airport (CLT) in Charlotte, North Carolina, and McGhee Tyson Airport (TYS) in Knoxville, Tennessee. The massive Hartsfield–Jackson Atlanta International Airport (IATA: ATL ICAO: KATL), while slightly further as the crow flies than other options, is about the same drive-time.
By train, the closest Amtrak  station to the region is in Greenville, South Carolina.
By car, two major Interstate highways cross the region: Interstate 40, which traverses east-west, and Interstate 26, which traverses north-south. The scenic Blue Ridge Parkway also runs through the region.
By bus, Greyhound  has stops in Asheville and Waynesville.
Keep in mind that Clay, Graham, Mitchell, and Yancey counties are "dry", meaning no alcohol is sold within their borders. In most other counties in the region, if you want to buy liquor by the bottle you must do it at state-run ABC (Alcoholic Beverage Commission) stores rather than at a traditional liquor store. The exceptions to this are Yadkin and Madison counties, which, though not "dry" do not have ABC stores. ABC store hours vary by county. The alcohol laws of North Carolina prohibit the sale of alcohol after 2AM Monday through Saturday, and from 2AM until noon on Sundays.
Throughout the High Country you will find a growing number of Craft Beer breweries. Asheville being the epicenter of the Craft Beer scene in the High County. There are no less than 75 breweries within 100 mile radius of any town in the High Country