Giddy up and bed down in one of these hotels, located within a horseshoe’s toss of this family-friendly theme park.
All aboard for a fun-filled family vacation to Tweetsie Railroad! This Wild West theme park in Blowing Rock, North Carolina, lets kids – and the young-at-heart – play at being locomotive engineers, cowboys and cowgirls, all while riding trains, petting zoo animals and watching live shows. Your vacation will certainly be on track with a stay at one of these nearby hotels, bookable on Culture Trip.
Destinations Unlocked:Let our travel expert Stefano help you find your perfect Culture trip
Looking for an expert's perspective?Uncover my top 3 recommended places from each continent on the map.
1. GuatemalaAn express adventure for those with limited time off. Prepare yourself incredible experiences. You will hike a volcano, visit mayan temples and witness a ceremony and take in beautiful colonial Antigua.
2. BelizeA quick trip not too far away for those seeking a relaxing mini break. You will have plenty of free time to relax but also some awesome activities to experience the rainforest and the caribbean sea.
3. MexicoAn exciting mini trip exploring the lesser known colonial towns of central Mexico. This is hte perfect trip for someone with limited time off and still wants to turn on explorer mode and do something different.
1. EcuadorA remarkable 8 days adventure through the Andes and the Amazon rainforest. The best choice for adventure seekers wishing to visit the 2 most iconic areas of South America, in only 1 week and no flights.
2. PeruAn alternative itinerary to classic Peru, from Cusco to Arequipa. This itinerary is great combination of highlights Cusco and Machu Picchu with the lesser known Arequipa and Colca Canyon.
1. ItalyThe ultimate Italian experience from the vibrant streets of Naples to the breathtaking sceneries of the Amalfi Coast followed by Matera and down to Puglia with its golden beaches, intense flavours and fascinating destinations.
2. ScotlandEmbark on this great adventure starting from London all the way to Scotland with a true Scottish experience made of breathtaking sceneries, whisky tasting and ..lots of fun! Ideal for train lovers and explorers.
3. PortugalA wonderful train journey around Portugal, from the romantic city of Porto to the Douro Valley, to the beautiful Aveiro all the way to Lisbon and Sintra. The perfect trip to train, culinary and culture lovers.
1. South KoreaDiscover incredible temples, mountains and modern cities on this 10 day adventure. This trip is perfect for those seeking immersion in the cuisine, culture and natural wonders of South Korea.
2. ThailandFrom Bankgok to Angkor Wat to Ho Chi Minh City and everything in between - adventure through the heart of South-East Asia. Taste the delights, see history brought to life and unwind on a Mekong River cruise.
3. Sri LankaA fantastic adventure that showcases Sri Lanka's fantastic landscapes, wildlife and flavours. With 3 epic rail journeys, 3 UNESCO heritage sites and time to relax, this trip has loads to offer at a great price
1. MoroccoAn epic journey across Morocco: from Casablanca to Marrakech, through the blue city of Chefchaouen to the wonders of the desert and deep to the High Atlas Mountains - this trip has it all! Ideal for true explorers!
2. EgyptFrom Cairo to Aswan, this trip brings the land of the pharaohs to life. You'll visit the Pyramids, Valley of the Kings and Luxor Temple and cruise down the Nile in style. This is the perfect way to explore Egypt.
If an eight-acre (3ha) lake stocked with brown and brook trout is all you need to be convinced by Chetola Resort, then we’ll leave it at that. But in case you’re also interested in sleeping, we can tell you that the large lake-view lodge rooms are too cozy for their own good, tempting you to stay in and savor the silence. You’ll certainly need a solid night’s rest with all the hiking trails, lawn games and sports courts on offer here.
Courtyard by Marriott gives you comfort and convenience without asking for too much cash. Close to the highway and minutes from Tweetsie Railroad, this hi-tech hotel has a lobby with a large flat-screen weather display, so you can take a rain check before heading to the park. Fancy yourself something of a meteorologist? Stick a finger in the air while you get toasty, cuddling up by the outdoor fire pit.
Only six minutes’ drive from Tweetsie Railroad, Hillwinds Inn is perfect for those determined to be at the theme park from opening time to the bitter end. Ride until the Big Dipper constellation appears, then return to Hillwinds for some much needed relaxation – there’s no queuing necessary for the rocking chair on the front porch. Kids tucked in? Exercise your grown-up muscles with a wine-lubricated social hour in the lounge area.
When the crisp mountain air meets the front porch rocking chair, you’ll know you’ve found the rustic getaway you craved. Call Boxwood’s log cabin your own for a spell, and whittle away time however you wish – whipping up wholesome meals in a full-sized kitchen, or playing cards by the flickering fireplace. Need to pop out for supplies? Downtown is just moments away – as is Tweetsie Railroad.
The Inn at Crestwood invites you and your furry family members to call their country resort home. Book a villa with a private terrace, gas fireplace, and full whirlpool bath; we suggest the Hawthorne Cottage (and won’t judge if you dub it Pawthorne). Spend the nights warming up in your villa, but spend the sunlit hours exploring Boone’s backwoods by following the Hebron Falls trailhead from right outside your suite.
Are the trains at Tweetsie Railroad a little slow for your big kids? Hampton Inn & Suites will help you kick it up a notch. This unfussy hotel is a few traffic lights west of the Rocky Knob Mountain Bike Park, where your preteens can catch some air. Back at the hotel, you’re free to relax at the indoor pool while they use as much free wifi as possible, uploading their action shots to YouTube.
The historic Hemlock Inn is one of the best base camps for anyone exploring Blowing Rock. All rooms are equipped with kitchens, but there’s nothing to stop you heading for nearby Blowing Rock Brewing Company or the Grilled Cheese Cafe. The art and history museum gives you another sample of the area, but to really get a taste of local life, you should cross the street and hop on a trailhead.
Booking a stay at the Manor is like stumbling into a goldmine. This mountainous escape has five suite types to sift through, from high-country modern deluxe options to presidential kings that boast wet bars and deep soaking tubs. Blowing Rock’s easy pace seeps through your suite door, convincing you to switch to mountain time – by which we mean time for uninterrupted relaxation. If you do need a thrilling activity, Doc’s Rocks Gem Mine is up the road and may send you home with some rare stones.
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meet our Local Insider
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WHAT DO YOU LOVE ABOUT YOUR JOB?
It's the personal contact, the personal experiences. I love meeting people from all over the world... I really like getting to know everyone and feeling like I'm traveling with a group of friends.
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I have so many places on my list, but I would really lobe to go to Africa. I consider myself an “adventure girl” and Africa feels like the ULTIMATE adventure!
Every CULTURE TRIP Small-group adventure is led by a Local Insider just like Hanna.
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Since you are here, we would like to share our vision for the future of travel - and the direction Culture Trip is moving in.
Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.
Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.
Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.
We know that many of you worry about the environmental impact of travel and are looking for ways of expanding horizons in ways that do minimal harm - and may even bring benefits. We are committed to go as far as possible in curating our trips with care for the planet. That is why all of our trips are flightless in destination, fully carbon offset - and we have ambitious plans to be net zero in the very near future.