Day Trip To West Jefferson, North Carolina, A True Gem!

West Jefferson, NC historic sign in the heart of downtown.

Why Visit West Jefferson, NC?

West Jefferson, North Carolina is the perfect place to visit if you want that small hometown feel and you will never meet a stranger with the locals. The population is around 1,500 people so you don’t have to worry about traffic or the hustle and bustle. West Jefferson is located within the Blue Ridge Mountain of the northwestern region of North Carolina. Before you do anything, go straight to the Ashe County Chamber of Commerce, which is also the visitor center. The staff working in the visitor center, are so friendly and very helpful. They will surely charm you with excellent customer service, and provide everything you need to make your stay pleasant. Nowadays, it can be hard to meet such friendly people. This is not the case for the locals in West Jefferson!

Art District

Rich Hill Baptist Church, Artist Stephen Shoemaker, 2017.

As I was driving downtown, I immediately noticed all of the lovely murals as well as several art galleries. There is a huge amount of public art right downtown. As a matter of fact there are seventeen murals, which were made mainly by the local artists. I must say the murals reflect West Jefferson’s history and beauty all at once. One of the first murals I noticed was the photo of the mural above, which is the Rich Hill Baptist Church.

New River Traditions, Artist Mary Ann DiNapoli-Mylet, October 1998.

The second mural, that I thought was absolutely beautiful and intriguing is the New River Traditions. As I mentioned, there is a total of seventeen murals. These are the two that I was most intrigued by.

There is no way you can miss the Cows sculpture!

Cows, Stephen Willingham. Ashe County High School Welding Class. 2014. Ashe County Cheese, Main Street.

I already love cheese, so when I saw the Cows sculpture; I was automatically drawn to see why the sign said “See Cheese Made”. That is exactly what I did too. The Ashe County Cheese Store, shows a free showing on a big screen TV, of how they make their cheese. Not only do you get to see a free showing, but they have this huge window that you look through. To see people actually making the cheese!

Ashe County Cheese Store

The Ashe County Cheese Store, had so much cheese! The variety of cheese blew me away instantly. What also blew me away, was the old fashion candy section. I saw candy that I hadn’t seen in years, probably since I was a child and I’m an 80s baby, baby!

Ashe County Cheese Retail Outlet

You can check out a short video on my YouTube channel of the candy store section

I ended up buying some Mary Janes, Bit-O-Honey, Cowtails, 3 color coconut Neapolitan coconut slice, and a John F. Kennedy milk chocolate coin. I can’t lie, that JFK coined piece of chocolate was delicious.

John F. Kennedy milk chocolate coin

Town Clock & Movie Theater

I love the towns clock and the movie theater. Both downtown.

West Jefferson Town Clock
Movie Theater

Food & Outdoor Activities

Kitchen Table Games and Bistro, Bobby D’s, and Havana Café are all yummy. I really like Kitchen Table Games and Bistro because their mission is to serve food and drinks, that are not only healthy but delicious as well. We can’t forget about Boondocks Brewing, local beer is always good, especially in the western region of North Carolina. If you are in the mood for some ice cream, drop by McB’s Mercantile Ice Cream Shop. They have an array of flavors for everyone.

Be sure to check out Mount Jefferson State Park, which happens to be beautiful. Ashe County Park is also worth visiting. If you want some outdoor adventure go to Zaloo’s, they offer river tubing, kayaking and canoeing.

Lodging

You must rent a cabin in West Jefferson, because their cabins are reasonable and so serene. 4 Seasons and Carolina Mountain Vacation Rentals are two places that can accommodate your wants and needs. If you chose not to rent a cabin, there are three hotels and its worth mentioning the Holiday Inn Express is your best bet.

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