I love all kinds of camping, from the simplicity of tent camping to longer stays in my travel trailer. And, occasionally, when I need just a little more comfort, I love a cabin for its home-like qualities. I recently took my daughter for a college tour in the Upstate of South Carolina and the Highlands region of western North Carolina. The weather was cool, gray and rainy. We traveled late on a Friday night and had to be home fairly early Sunday morning which did not leave me with a lot of time so we decided traditional camping was not going to work. I made a reservation for a cabin at the KOA Traveler’s Rest/North Greenville, and it was perfect! (The KOA Traveler’s Rest is located at 2400 US-25, Traveler’s Rest, SC. (864) 834-8150. https://koa.com/campgrounds/greenville/)
Honestly, I’m a huge fan of state parks and have shied away from KOA’s that feel like parking lots. This KOA is a true exception. It feels like a park with a nature trail, nicely spaced out lots, super clean facilities, and exceptionally well maintained grounds. Due to our late arrival, we did not see the staff Friday night, but they left a light on for us on the cabin porch, instructions to get in, and the heat was on making for a welcome and cozy entrance.
My daughter immediately loved the loft – she had her own space and was happy as a clam to stretch out. I had the bedroom – a comfortable queen size bed with linens provided. We shared the bathroom – all towels were provided, as well as travel sized shampoo and soap. After our long drive, we were both zonked out immediately.
Nearby (about a 10 minute drive) is the charming town of Traveler’s Rest. For such a tiny hamlet, it is packed full of restaurants, breweries, and small shops. Additionally, this is an access point (beginning or ending) to the Swamp Rabbit Trail, a 22 mile multi-use walking/running/biking greenway that traverses along the Reedy River, old railroad beds, and city parks.
While we didn’t have a great deal of time and our Saturday was pretty organized, we did enjoy dinner Saturday night at Farmhouse Tacos (164 S. Main Street, Traveler’s Rest, SC. 864-610-0586. www.farmhousetacos.com). It was absolutely delicious! On Sunday morning, we tried Tandem Creperie and Coffeehouse (2 S. Main Street, Traveler’s Rest, SC. 864-610-2245. www.tandemcc.com) for out of this world sweet and savory crepes, coffee, and tea. I’d make the four hour drive from Charleston back to Traveler’s Rest just to eat here again!
Also within range of the KOA, many grocery stores, gas stations, and other supplies as needed.
We spent Saturday absorbed in fall foliage as we made our way up Highway 25 to Brevard, North Carolina. Framed by the Pisgah National Forest and Dupont State Forest, this area is a nature lover’s dream with stunning mountain views, waterfalls, hiking trails, and excellent outdoor recreation for every kind of enthusiast. In addition to our college tour (which was excellent!), we strolled through uptown Brevard which was hosting its Halloween festivities. Families were out with every kind of small goblin. This small town has a big heart and I am secretly hoping my daughter chooses Brevard College so I can make many returns.
On our way back to the cabin we stopped in Flat Rock, North Carolina, another favorite small town that I adore. It is the home of poet Carl Sandburg, features an excellent playhouse, and restaurants. It is also home to Sky Top Orchard. While it was late in the season for apple picking, there were plenty of apple bundles ready for purchase. Don’t miss the hot cider donuts, apple cider, kids activity area, hay rides, and pick-your-own orchard experience. We’ve been to Sky Top several times with our girls over the years and it never fails to make for great memories. (1193 Pinnacle Mountain Road., Flat Rock, NC. 828-692-7930. www.skytoporchard.com)
As we headed out of Traveler’s Rest on Sunday we passed Furman University. Slightly larger than Brevard College, we took an easy drive through campus just to see it. The campus was alive with red, gold, yellow and orange leaves, lush green grass, and spectacular mountain views.
On Sunday we headed home with full hearts, stuffed bellies and happy memories. If you are looking for a great place to stay, try the KOA Traveler’s Rest/North Greenville. You’ll be happy you opted for this sweet campground as your home base in the Upstate.
To learn more about the KOA Traveler’s Rest/North Greenville, visit their website online at https://koa.com/campgrounds/greenville/
Written by Amy Kovach, Oct 31, 2022
Amy Kovach | Girl Camper Guide South Carolina
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