Friday, February 5, 2016

National Lands: North Carolina

An aerial view of the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse...
An aerial view of the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse prior to its 1999 relocation. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Off the coast of North Carolina is a line of barrier islands known as the Cape Hatteras National Seashore. This area has a different vibe and that is why it is so beloved by so many millions. Interstate 95 is the closest interstate, but it is still a good distance from Hatteras. This area obviously offers a myriad of water sports and hiking opportunities, but visitors can also climb giant sand dunes at Jockey Ridge. In this area is the Wright Brothers National Memorial at Kill Devil Hills. This memorial honors the Wright Brothers' achievements in the world of aviation. Cape Lookout National Seashore is directly south of Hatteras. Interstate 40 is the closest interstate, but will not get travelers very close to the area. Cape Lookout is undeveloped, so visitors need to take all their supplies on the boat over to the islands. Great Smoky Mountains National Park is located in the southwest corner of the state. The park is shared by Tennessee with Interstate 40 running to the east of the park. This park is so popular because many activities are available such as camping, hiking, biking and fishing.

The Blue Ridge National Heritage Area honors the traditions of the people of the North Carolina mountains. Asheville is the largest city in this area with Interstates 20 and 40 as the closest interstates. The Blue Ridge Parkway is a beautiful road that connects the Shenandoah National Park with Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Interstates that lead to the area are Interstates 26, 40, 64, 77 and 81. Traveling through fourteen states is the Appalachian National Scenic Trail. In North Carolina the trail is along the western section of the state with Interstate 40 as the closet interstate. The Overmountain Victory National Historic Trail is in four states. The trail, which is 330 miles long, is in the western section of the state and is crossed by Interstate 40. In nine states the Trail of Tears National Historic Trail commemorates the relocation of the Cherokee people. The trail is located in the southeastern corner of the state close to Interstate 26.

English: Shining Rock Wilderness Area, Blue Ri...
English: Shining Rock Wilderness Area, Blue Ridge Mountains, North Carolina. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Moores Creek National Battlefield in Currie provides displays, picnic areas and hiking opportunities. This park is located to the west of Interstate 40 and to the northwest of Wilmington. The site celebrates the 1776 victory over the British. Guilford Courthouse National Military Park in Greensboro commemorates the Revolutionary War battle. The park is north of Interstate 40. Fort Raleigh National Historic Site in Manteo is located on the the coast by one of the bridges to Cape Hatteras Seashore. The site features New World settlement displays. In Flat Rock is the Carl Sandburg Home National Historic Site which celebrates the poet's life. It is located to the west of Interstate 26 near the South Carolina border. In four states is the Gullah/Geechee Cultural Heritage Corridor which extends from Wilmington to Jacksonville. This area along the coast features the cultural influences of the people from West Africa.

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