Saluda, a tiny town of 700 residents, boasts a picturesque Main Street packed with an impressive selection of longtime restaurants, shops and galleries surrounded by beautiful scenery. It's been a popular mountain tourist town since the late-1800s and definitely one of our favorite towns to explore. Nearby is Pearson's Falls and the Green River Gorge.

 

Saluda NC

Just 35 miles from downtown Asheville, the one-street downtown hasn’t changed much since it was founded in 1878. Most buildings on Main Street have been added to the National Register of Historic places.

Saluda Depot

Saluda came about when the Spartanburg and Asheville Railroad arrived, at the crest of the Saluda Grade, the steepest mainline standard-gauge track in the eastern United States. Businesses moved in, summer homes were built and tourists from South Carolina filled local boarding houses to escape the hot summers. Saluda developed the reputation of a cool mountain resort town that offered health benefits to those who came. See a Saluda Grade Diorama in the Depot, open Thursday-Sunday afternoons.

Saluda, NC

Pace's General Store is worth the visit. This old-fashioned hardware and general store was founded in 1899 and was featured on Our Vanishing Americana. Inside you will find everything from Pointer overalls, jams and jellies of every variety, garden items, hardware and much more.

Thompson's Store, Saluda

Just down the street since 1892 is Thompson's Store and Ward's Grill. They have a great deli, the perfect place to pick up a picnic to take to Pearson's Falls!

Azalea Bistro Saluda

Restaurants include The Purple Onion, with an emphasis on the Mediterranean's simple, healthful cuisine and a focus on freshness, as well as offering live music and outdoor dining. Azalea Bistro, owned and operated by a three times beard nominated chef, offers a French lowcountry menu. Green River BBQ is another delicious and casual choice. A short drive from downtown is the more upscale Newman's Restaurant inside the historic Orchard Inn, serving dinner Thursday-Saturday and Sunday brunch by reservation only. 

Saluda_Heartwood_Gallery

This is an arts town! Browse many galleries. A must-visit is Heartwood Gallery, featuring 100% American craft for 30+ years in Saluda! And don't miss the highly recommended Saluda Arts Festival each May.  

Pearson Falls
Pearson's Falls

The Green River Gorge offers a big variety of outdoor adventures, including inflatable kayak trips down the whitewater, stand up paddleboard rental, tubing, fishing, camping and even waterfall rappelling. Read more

Nearby, check out the amazing Tryon International Equestrian Center and the Tryon Foothills Wine Country.

See more of our Coolest NC Mountain Small Towns - including nearby Tryon and Hendersonville.

Directions from Asheville: Take I-26 East about 35 miles to Exit 59.

Lodging & Things to DO

Tryon Foothills Wine Country

Visit five wineries in the prime isothermal wine growing area in the beautiful foothills near Columbus and Tryon: Parker-Binns Vineyard, Overmountain Vineyards, Russian Chapel Hills Winery,… read more

Visit five wineries in the prime isothermal wine growing area in the beautiful foothills near Columbus and Tryon: Parker-Binns Vineyard, Overmountain Vineyards, Russian Chapel Hills Winery, Mountain Brook Vineyard and Green Creek Winery. It's an easy 45-mile drive from Asheville via I-26 East (near SC line).

The Orchard Inn, Saluda

This historic inn is an elegant mountaintop retreat with peaceful views and plenty of amenities. Stay in a B&B room, suite or cottage and dine at their romantic Newman’s restaurant for a… read more

This historic inn is an elegant mountaintop retreat with peaceful views and plenty of amenities. Stay in a B&B room, suite or cottage and dine at their romantic Newman’s restaurant for a delicious farm-to-table dinner or Sunday brunch. Listed on the National Historic Register. 9 rooms, 5 cottages, $150-$315, pet-friendly, WiFi, fireplaces, whirlpools, 35 miles from Asheville.

Tryon

Home to an impressive arts community, with galleries and an arts center downtown. Also boasts a big equestrian community, with many horse-related events, including a Steeplechase each spring. The… read more

Home to an impressive arts community, with galleries and an arts center downtown. Also boasts a big equestrian community, with many horse-related events, including a Steeplechase each spring. The amazing Tryon International Equestrian Center attracts horse lovers and riders from all over the world. Near Saluda.

Pearson's Falls

This 90-ft. waterfall is privately-owned by a garden club and requires a small admission fee. Located between Saluda and Tryon, it's a must if you are driving on I-26 to/from South Carolina. Ten… read more

This 90-ft. waterfall is privately-owned by a garden club and requires a small admission fee. Located between Saluda and Tryon, it's a must if you are driving on I-26 to/from South Carolina. Ten miles away is the roadside Shunkawauken Falls.

Early Blue Motel

See some stunning views from your room at the Early Blue Motel, just 30 minutes from Asheville, NC, and some incredible nearby attractions and activities. Enjoy the stillness of a sunset over the… read more

See some stunning views from your room at the Early Blue Motel, just 30 minutes from Asheville, NC, and some incredible nearby attractions and activities. Enjoy the stillness of a sunset over the ridges and cliffs of the Green River Gorge from their scenic courtyard. Pack up the car and get ready for hiking, kayaking, riding, fishing, ziplining, and tubing, all within a few minutes drive. The…

Blue Ridge Mountain Treehouse

If you're looking for a unique and memorable rental experience for your next getaway vacation, look no further than this luxury treehouse in Saluda, NC. This rental is located in the heart of the… read more

If you're looking for a unique and memorable rental experience for your next getaway vacation, look no further than this luxury treehouse in Saluda, NC. This rental is located in the heart of the Blue Ridge Mountains and has everything you need to make your getaway truly special with all the comforts of home. 

Close to the Green River, the Gorge zipline, the small town of…

Cabin & Cottage Rentals: Tryon, Saluda & Columbus

Find log cabin, condo or cottage vacation rentals by ponds or with mountain views in the First Peak of the Blue Ridge - many options near the Tryon International Equestrian Center.

Find log cabin, condo or cottage vacation rentals by ponds or with mountain views in the First Peak of the Blue Ridge - many options near the Tryon International Equestrian Center.

B&Bs & Inns: Tryon, Saluda & Columbus

Find a great vareity of historic B&Bs and inns in the towns of Tryon, Saluda and Columbus, the First Peak of the Blue Ridge. Includes award-winning Pine Crest Inn and Orchard Inn with… read more

Find a great vareity of historic B&Bs and inns in the towns of Tryon, Saluda and Columbus, the First Peak of the Blue Ridge. Includes award-winning Pine Crest Inn and Orchard Inn with exquisite dining.

Green River Tubing

Rent a tube and set sail for a lazy day on the beautiful Green River near Saluda. Choose from three- to six-mile float trips. It's great for beginner kayakers, too. Tubing companies provide… read more

Rent a tube and set sail for a lazy day on the beautiful Green River near Saluda. Choose from three- to six-mile float trips. It's great for beginner kayakers, too. Tubing companies provide transportation. Stop at the jump-off rock to rope dive!

Area Events & Festivals

tier

Tryon Block House Steeplechase

A festive day with picnics, sundresses, elegant hats, tailgating and the sights & sounds of thoroughbreds thundering past in Tryon, at the longest running steeplechase in North Carolina. The… read more

A festive day with picnics, sundresses, elegant hats, tailgating and the sights & sounds of thoroughbreds thundering past in Tryon, at the longest running steeplechase in North Carolina. The National Steeplechase Association sanctions four of the races.

tier

Saluda Arts Festival

Outstanding festival with 100% hand-picked regional artists along Saluda's historic Main Street. See a big diversity of art media and enjoy music representing Americana, blues, folk and … read more

Outstanding festival with 100% hand-picked regional artists along Saluda's historic Main Street. See a big diversity of art media and enjoy music representing Americana, blues, folk and contemporary. Watch artist demonstrations. Free. 10 AM-4 PM.

tier

Coon Dog Day Festival

Jul 08, 2023

A street festival for dogs and their people with great food, live music, a very fun parade, crafts, street dance, dog competitions, and more in Saluda. Live entertainment until 11 PM. Free… read more

A street festival for dogs and their people with great food, live music, a very fun parade, crafts, street dance, dog competitions, and more in Saluda. Live entertainment until 11 PM. Free admission.

Thinking of Relocating

Explore moving, retirement and real estate options in Asheville and Western North Carolina

Learn More