Waynesville According to. . .Buffy Phillips


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Waynesville NC

Some not-so-hidden gems wait for any traveler fortunate enough to find themselves in Waynesville. The best way to uncover these? Just ask a local.

To make it a little easier, we’re reaching out to some of the business owners and residents that truly make Waynesville an exciting destination.

First on the list? Buffy Phillips, who has been the Executive Director of the Downtown Waynesville Association for over 12 years. She’s a through-and-through Waynesville local, born and raised in the blossoming Smoky Mountain town. So, what does she recommend you do while you’re in Waynesville?

The answer was easy: All of it.

“You should come here to experience all of what Waynesville has to offer. There are outdoor and more adventurous things to do, like hiking, biking, or seeing the elk.” It’s bugling season for the famous Cataloochee elk around this time of year and watching them duke it out (from a safe distance) has got to be a Waynesville bucket lister. Hiking here is just as fascinating, with the surrounding trail heads leading you to some of the most stunning views around.


Like the idea of outdoor adventure, but not the practice? Then Waynesville is right up your alley. Catch those sought-after views without having to hike anywhere: the mountain views are all around you wherever you are in Waynesville.

“You can also go downtown and visit all of the unique businesses because there is a wide mix of different types, including a chocolate shop and dog bakery.”

Waynesville’s restaurant scene has drawn more and more frequenters lately, due mostly to the variety and wide selection found in town. From fancy farm-to-table to casual pizza and classic southern BBQ, you’ll find it all in Waynesville. Paired with some of the best local breweries in the area, Waynesville’s a town bursting with flavor.

“People often tell me, ‘I don’t know why we felt like we had to go to Asheville to eat, because you have the best places to eat in the area,’” Buffy said.

Folkmoot Festival

Shopping in Waynesville is just another way to spend time enjoying the locally-owned boutiques and stores. Buffy recommends stopping into the Mast General Store, which she calls downtown’s “anchor store.” But remember: there’s more to downtown Waynesville than just Main Street, so pop into any side street and explore the more hidden spots. Further off the main drag, you’ll find some Waynesville neighborhoods coming into their own. Hazelwood and Frog Level now have bustling shopping centers and restaurants to boast about, too. There’s plenty opportunity to be found around any corner!

Downtown Waynesville before the Christmas Parade

One last thing: Why come to Waynesville?

“Because we’ve been entertaining guests for over 200 years,” Buffy said.

And with that history of hospitality, you know you’re in for a good time.

Whether you’ve taken dozens of trips to Waynesville or you’re just starting to discover our mountain town, we want to hear all about your adventures. Make sure to connect with us on Facebook and tag your social photos with #HayNow!

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