Lake Lure Travel Guide

Lake Lure, NC

One of the most beautiful man-made lakes in the country, Lake Lure is nestled in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina. Located about 27 miles from Asheville, Lake Lure sits in the Hickory Nut Gorge, surrounded by lush mountain tops and sheer granite cliffs. Look up to see the famous Chimney Rock. From the top of Chimney Rock, there are spectacular views of the lake and gorge. It has been a filming location for scenes from the movies Thunder Road, Dirty Dancing, A Breed Apart, Forrest Gump, The Last of the Mohicans and Firestarter. Don't miss the Dirty Dancing Festival!

Lake Lure

Take a relaxing walk on the boardwalk any time of the year (free) and cross the Flowering Bridge. Enjoy a picnic by the lake. Nearby is shopping and restaurants in the village of Chimney Rock. The lake is owned by the town of Lake Lure, with private homes surrounding most of the lake. Access is provided via a town marina, beach and park.

Lake Lure

Things To Do at Lake Lure

The Beach: While the wide sandy beach and lake are owned by the town, a private company maintains the beach and its amenities that include a waterslide into the lake and a water park perfect for a hot summer day. There are also restrooms, changing rooms, snack bar and picnic tables. 2018 Hours & Admission: Open Memorial Day Weekend and June 1-2. Starting June 9, open 7 days through mid August. Then weekends through Labor Day. $9/adults, $8/seniors, $7/age 4-12 - includes water park. No pets allowed. The beach is along US Highway 64 / 74A. Street address is 2930 Memorial Hwy, Lake Lure.

Rumbling Bald Trail: Now part of the Chimney Rock State Park, this is a popular spot for rock climbing, bouldering and hiking. Hike the 1.5-mile loop by the boulders and cliffs. Read more.

Town Center Walkway: From the Flowering Bridge, walk the Town Center Walkway along the lake for spectacular mountains views, extending 3/4 of a mile by Morse Park, the Marina and the beach.

Morse Park & Greenway: Enjoy spectacular vistas of the Hickory Nut Gorge with a picnic or stroll at this 23-acre community lakeside park. Get lots of great information at the Rutherford County Visitors Center there.

Lake Lure Tours (2930 Memorial Hwy) offers guided boat tours and boat rentals. In April-October, relax on one of their covered tour boats while your skipper guides you past local attractions and landmarks such as the locations used in filming the popular film Dirty Dancing. Tour tickets are sold at the Marina.

Mountain Biking (and hiking): Buffalo Creek Park is the gateway to 1,500 acres of conserved land that protects the northern headwaters of Lake Lure. When fully developed, it will offer over 10 miles of intermediate to advanced mountain biking trails and picnic facilities along Buffalo Creek. The current mountain trail snakes upward in a 3.5-mile loop that climbs approximately 500 feet through forest terrain and boulder fields. An additional one mile trail is open for two miles out and back. Directions: From Asheville, drive the curvy road around Lake Lure on U.S. Highway 64/74A about a mile past the dam to Bill's Creek Road. Turn left and go about 2 miles and turn left on Buffalo Creek Road. Follow this road for 2.2 miles, past the golf courses and condos. Turn right at the sign for Rumbling Bald Resort, cross the small bridge and continue for 1.6 miles. The park entrance will be on your left. Weed Patch Mountain Trail extends for 8.5 miles to Eagle Rock

Lake Lure Golf Club: This nine-hole public course offers a challenging golf game amidst the beautiful scenery of Hickory Nut Gorge. The course is open year round and has a clubhouse, driving range and two putting greens.

Lake Lure Adventure Company: Dedicated to providing a safe, fun, exciting, and adventurous experience on Lake Lure with watersport trips, wakeboard, wakesurf, waterski, kneeboard, tube, fishing and more. Boat rentals also available.

The Right Track Toy Train Museum is an interactive toy train museum with 100% of the proceeds going to Pancreatic Cancer Action Network. It is fun for children as well as adults. Open Wednesday-Sunday during the summer and Friday-Sunday afternoons the rest of the year. 2414 Memorial Highway, Lake Lure.

Lake Lure is located 27 miles from downtown Asheville. Follow I-240 East to Exit #9, Highway 74A East to Bat Cave and continue on Highway 74A (and Highway 64) to Lake Lure.

See more cool North Carolina mountain small towns.

Lake Lure Cabin Rentals, Timeshares & Attractions

Rumbling Bald Resort, Lake Lure
Nestled on the north shore of beautiful Lake Lure by the towering cliffs of Rumbling Bald Mountain, this 3,000+ acre resort has a private beach, two championship golf courses, spa, four restaurants, mountain biking, tennis, pickleball and all sorts of lake activities. From $155/night, a big variety of studio villas, 2 & 3 BR condos and... read more
Lake Lure Cabins
Lake Lure Cabin Rentals
Find a big variety of cabins, condos and other vacation rentals at Lake Lure - as presented by Rutherford County Tourism.
Spring House Farm Cabin
Each of these luxury cabins near Asheville are located on 92 acres of private and secluded romantic mountain property, and have a four-person hot tub and wood burning fireplace. "Spa Treats" include Swedish massage. Couples only. 6 cottages, $199-$295, stocked breakfast items and snacks, front porch hot tub, private... read more
Pine Gables Cabins, Lake Lure
You will find “something old and something new" in these historic and romantic honeymoon log cabins on beautiful Lake Lure. 8 cabins, $140-$175/night, two night minimum. All cabins have fully-equipped kitchens, satellite TV,  DVD player and covered deck. Linens and towels are provided. The... read more
Lodge on Lake Lure
This luxury inn combines southern elegance with rustic serenity at a beautiful lakeside retreat. After a wine and cheese hour at 5 PM on the deck, enjoy a locally-sourced dinner in their Tree Tops Restaurant. Explore the lake with complimentary paddleboards, canoes and kayaks. 17 rooms, from $245, pet-friendly, plush bathrobes, WiFi,... read more
Lake Lure Welcome Center
Lake Lure & Rutherford County Welcome Center
Stop by for free travel guides, brochures and advice for fun in Lake Lure, Chimney Rock and Rutherford County. See a display of movies filmed here, including Dirty Dancing and Last of the Mohicans. The “Map Room” includes a wall-sized timeline of local heritage with folklore, local culture, and topography map of Hickory Nut Gorge. Open daily! 2932 Memorial Highway (US-64/74), Lake Lure
Lake Lure Guide
Lake Lure & Rutherford County Guide
Order a free copy of the award-winning travel guide to the Rutherford County foothills that includes Lake Lure, Chimney Rock, Rutherfordton, Forest City and much more!

Lake Lure Festivals

May 26-28, 2018: Lake Lure Arts Festival
Featuring handmade creations from more than 60 artisans from across the region, visitors enjoy a sophisticated collection including painting and graphics, photography, jewelry, leather, metal, soaps and candles, wood, glass, pottery, textiles or fiber art and more. Festival admission is free. Located across from The Beach at Lake Lure, 2771 Memorial Highway. 

August 10-12, 2018: Lake Lure Olympiad 
This 3-day family sports festival showcases the beautiful scenery of Lake Lure and Chimney Rock. Compete in a triathlon, junior Olympiad, 10K Dam run, Race to the Rock and more. Try 3 races in 3 days! Plus, there’s plenty to do and see for families and non-athletes. Go to their Web site for details

August 24-25, 2018: Dirty Dancing Festival at Lake Lure
The Dirty Dancing Festival at Lake Lure is a dance and music festival for all ages that pays tribute to the classic American movie filmed in Lake Lure. Fans can relive their favorite Dirty Dancing moments with a film screening, live music, dance performances and lessons, special guests, games and more! Fans from more than 24 states and two foreign countries have attended this coveted affair. See our Dirty Dancing Festival Guide.

October 20-21, 2018: Lake Lure Arts Festival
With 60+ vendors from nearly 20 disciplines, plenty of food and live music, and talent from across the region, visitors shop for fine, hand-made goods and enjoy the stunning beauty of Lake Lure all in an effort to fight hunger in the area. Festival admission is free. Located across from The Beach at Lake Lure, 2771 Memorial Highway.

January 1: Lake Lure Polar Plunge
Take a chilly dip in the lake on New Year's Day! See our Polar Plunge Guide.

Also see nearby Chimney Rock Park Events

A Brief History of Lake Lure: The idea of this resort community in western North Carolina was the vision of Dr. Lucius B. Morse. Soliciting the financial backing of his brothers, Dr. Morse purchased 400 acres around Chimney Rock in 1902 to create Chimney Rock Park. Additional acreage was acquired over the next several years to bring the total to 8,000 acres. Dr. Morse conceived the idea of building a dam on the Rocky Broad River to create a lake and a year-round resort. The dam was completed in September 1926, forming the lake which was named Lake Lure by Dr. Morse’s wife, Elizabeth Parkenson. The Town of Lake Lure was incorporated in 1927. 

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