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Plan A Romantic Date In The Smokies

Couple looking at Cullasaja Falls' upper section in the NC Smoky Mountains

Many places can be considered romantic destinations, but few of them compare to the adventure and allure of the NC Great Smoky Mountains. Outdoor hot tubs, couple’s massages, candlelit dinners, and sweets for your sweet all add up to one very romantic getaway.

Take Your Love To New Heights

Start your day with an exhilarating hike to the Wesser Bald Fire Tower near Franklin. It’s a moderate, 2.8-mile, out-and-back hike along the iconic Appalachian Trail. The trek takes you through an especially scenic and beautiful hardwood forest on your way to the historic metal fire tower with incredible 360-degree views. They added a wooden platform around the lookout, creating one of the most romantic spots imaginable for a picnic. In fact, this spot is the perfect place for a memorable proposal!

Could drinking wine at On The Verandah in Highlands NC
On The Verandah in Highlands NC

The Way To His Heart is Though His Stomach

For a special dinner, look no farther than On The Verandah in Highlands, NC. Delight your sweetheart with a bottle of sparkling Veuve Clicquot to toast your love. Then order both the Spicy Thai Coconut Shrimp in Coconut Curry with Basmati Rice and the Filet Mignon Au Poivre with Three-Pepper Brandy Cream and share to create your own couple’s version of surf and turf.

Believe it or not, we also consider eating barbeque an exceptionally romantic experience. There’s just something about licking all of that sweet and spicy goodness from your fingers and the corners of your mouth. Fat Buddies Ribs and BBQ has locations in both Franklin and Waynesville, and a NC barbeque sauce that you’ll be talking about for years to come. Don’t miss the BBQ Beef Platter for tender, wood-smoked deliciousness.

After dinner, feed your craving for something sweet at Jack the Dipper in Waynesville, Sylva, and Franklin. They are best known for their warm waffle cones made to order and their hand-dipped ice cream. For a quintessential romantic moment, order a milkshake with 2 straws!

woman getting massaged

Pamper Yourself

After an almost-3-hour hike and all those stairs at the Wesser Bald Fire Tower, you’ll be ready for a massage! Book a romantic couple’s massage at the Mandara Spa at Harrah’s Cherokee Casino and Resort. They offer 60-, 75-, and 90-minute sessions. Then head to Myst Bar, a vibrant, sprawling circular bar in the middle of Harrah’s, for a handcrafted cocktail for 2.

Or, relax and breathe at the Waynesville Salt Room. Book your Halotherapy (salt therapy) in a micro-environment that mimics the Polish salt caves. Expect to feel energized and refreshed after your visit. Please note that you cannot book an appointment for 2 online; they ask that couples call the front desk directly.

For a most memorable experience, Shoji Spa in Asheville offers traditional Japanese bathing and soaking in outdoor salt tubs. You and your honey will find a peaceful retreat in your own private setting overlooking the lush forest that defines the NC Great Smoky Mountains.