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Sitting on a plateau in the Appalachian Mountains, Highlands is a beautiful resort town sitting within the lush sprawl of the Nantahala National Forest. It is located in the southeast portion of Macon County and has a year-round population of approximately 3,000 residents, based on the most recent estimates.

Brief History of Highlands, NC

Highlands traces its history back to the late 19th century when it was founded by Clinton Carter Hutchinson and Samuel Truman. They founded Highlands in hopes that it would become a hub for trade and commerce. In the 1930s, the mountain resort town attracted golf enthusiasts thanks to the establishment of the Highlands Country Club, founded by Bobby Jones, one of the most influential American golfers.

Because of its remarkably cooler climate, Highlands has long been a renowned summer destination, a retreat from the scorching North Carolina heat. Today, however, it attracts throngs of tourists all year round.

Highlands NC Real Estate and Property Types

Highlands’ undeniable beauty and spectacular location make its collection of vacation homes and second residences some of the most sought-after real estate investments in North Carolina. Property types in the market include single-family homes, townhouses, condominiums, cabins, golf properties, and luxury homes.

Highlands is also home to several notable communities and subdivisions, each offering a unique take on the Highlands lifestyle. For instance, Apple Mountain, near the downtown district, is conveniently located and minutes away from Highlands culture and dining. Gated Brushy Face offers stunning mountain vistas as well as seclusion. Cold Springs is best known for its equestrian properties and outdoor amenities.

Other communities in Highlands include:

• The Cotswolds
• The Birches at Wildcat Cliffs
• Cowee Ridge
• Cullasaja Club
• Highgate
• Hemlock Ridge
• Highlands Country Club
• Old Edwards Club at Highlands Cove
• Shelby Place
• The Ridges of Highlands

Living in Highlands NC

• Local culture: Although Highlands only occupies under 7 square miles of area, the town is packed with arts and culture. Highlands’ streets are lined with elegant restaurants, independent specialty boutiques, and art galleries.

• Events: Highlands locals always find a reason to celebrate. The town’s calendar is filled with a variety of festivities, such as the annual Easter Egg Hunt, the Highlands Food & Wine Festival, the Highlands Village Square Art and Craft Show, the Highlands Motoring Festival, and the Highlands Olde Mountain Christmas Parade, among others.

• Outdoor recreation: Located in the Nantahala National Forest, Highlands is rich with outdoor recreational pursuits. Popular activities include paddling at Lake Sequoyah, fishing in Cullasaja River, hiking in the Highlands Plateau Greenway, bird watching, and camping. And that’s just scratching the surface.

• Dining: Sample Appalachian food and more in Highlands’ lineup of restaurants. Ristorante Paoletti, Lakeside Restaurant, Madison’s, Wild Thyme Gourmet, on the Verandah, Wolfgang’s Restaurant and Wine Bistro, and Bistro on Main are some of the top recommendations.

Explore second and vacation homes in Highlands, NC

We’re inviting you to take a look at what Highlands NC Real Estate has to offer. Browse our website or get in touch with us at 828.526.8784 for more details.