Balloon Landing was not as secluded as we thought it would be, but there was ample privacy to make you feel as if you were deep in the woods. We could hear the rush of Howard's Creek below us drowning out the occasional car. The location is very convenient to shopping and restaurants in Boone and Blowing Rock, as well as the Blue Ridge Parkway and area ski resorts.
The cabin is absolutely beautiful! The owners thought of everything you could possibly need to enjoy your stay. The fully-equipped kitchen and gas grill makes it easy to enjoy meals in the home. The furnishings are very comfortable and stylish. The Bose system sounded so good, we didn't watch TV all weekend! The layout of the house offers privacy for adults and plenty of kid space in the basement. The kids enjoyed the big screen TV in the basement as well as darts and bumper pool. Our youngest daughter was especially impressed by the enormous stuffed animals in the kids room. There were games and plenty of books throughout the house. But our favorite part of the house was the hot tub!
In the winter months, you will definitely need 4WD to get up the very steep gravel driveway. Even in April, with all of the rain, we worried our minivan wouldn't get up the hill. Fortunately -- it did!
While in Boone we went to Grandfather Mountain and walked across the mile high swinging bridge and saw the black bear, eagle, cougar, deer, and otter habitats. We pulled off at one of the many picnic tables to enjoy a picture perfect picnic lunch. GFM was a little expensive for a family of 6, but considering we didn't see any other animals (besides cows and horses) on our entire trip -- it was worth it! It takes about 3 hours to see everything at GFM, so arrive early or in the late afternoon to avoid the mad rush at midday. We waited for at least an hour on the Blue Ridge Pkwy to get in on a Saturday. The next day we drove by at the same time of day without any delays.
On Sunday we hiked Linville Falls and Cascade Falls along the BRP. The hikes are listed as moderate, but the trails are wide and pretty easy to hike. Our 5 year old did just fine. The views are incredible!
There's so much to do in the Boone area, but we ran out of time! We will definitely be back one day!
BTW Blue Ridge Mountain Rentals did a great job handling our reservation. They were very polite, professional, well organized and provided detailed instructions on all aspects of our rental. We will definitely use them again!
|Check-in / front desk||Service|
|Young singles||Friends getaway|
|A romantic getaway||People with disabilities|
|Older travelers||Families with young children|
|Families with teenagers||Tourists|