Wine glass at vineyard in elkin, nc

Elkin, North Carolina

Vineyard in elkin, nc

“Best Little Town in North Carolina”

The next destination on our list is one of our favorites and is near and dear to our hearts. Growing up part of my life in North Carolina, Elkin was always a smaller town without a lot of noise surrounding it until the 20th century, and it has continued to grow since then. We actually discovered it by accident one day talking to my friend Lauren who heard about it from a guy who did her lawn care in Monroe, NC, and had done some fishing on the Yadkin River and recommended it! Since then, every summer we go stay in Elkin a few times when their Trail Days start and try something different, whether it be hiking a new trail, or trying a new restaurant or winery. 

Found within the beautiful foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, Elkin holds an interesting history that dating back centuries ago. From where it began as a settlement for German and Scot Irish immigrants to the now booming hub of culture and commerce, Elkin’s story shows how adaptation and resilience carried it through.

History of Elkin and its Founding

The Sioux and Cherokee Tribes were the first known to settle in the Yadkin Valley before the 1700s, the Sious Indians settling first. Both tribes stayed in the area into the 1800s when English settlers began to inhabit the area by Richard Gwyn who was first living in Jonesville nearby. In 1840, he settled on Elkin Creek on the north end where he could access water and live off of the land with the nearby forests. By having access to the water, Gwyn later allowed others to settle in the area and Elkin Creek began to thrive. 

Past the 1800s, Elkin soon began to boom as more colonies formed and with Gwyn’s help, the area became more modernized with his push for development and growth. He is responsible for opening the cotton mill in Elkin, which unlike other failed cotton mills, Gwyn’s was very successful and even helped to support the town until the North Carolina Railroad came in 1890. Because of his success, he and a colleague by the name of, Alexander Chatham, ended up opening a woolen mill. This was where their success really started to take off and help the economic growth of Elkin and the Yadkin Valley. 

This is why the North Carolina Railroad was routed to Elkin bringing in more settlers and opportunities for manufacturing companies. 

Today, Elkin continues to grow and thrive because of its eclectic dedication to not only industry, but also the arts. Here you will find everything from outdoor activities, restaurants, quaint air bnbs, to theater and music, wineries, and more!

Things to Do

Wine glass at vineyard in elkin, nc


1. Southern on Main: One of our go-tos!

2. Camp Creek Brewery

3. The Angry Troll Brewery

4. Harry’s Place

5. The Yellow Door Cafe

6. The Wisdom Table

Where to stay:

1. Three Trails Hotel

2. Six28 House

3. Maggie’s Place Air Bnb


1. Wineries: 20 tasting rooms to choose from near downtown Elkin including a winery bus crawl. Golden Roads Vineyards was one of our favorites

2. Yadkin Valley Trail Days: Check out the many trails they have to offer for hiking

3. Kayaking and tubing down the Yadkin River: Check out North Carolina River Riders for more info

4, Foothills Art Center

If what you are looking for on your next trip is fun and relaxing, look no further than Elkin, NC. While bustling with growth, it is still a quaint little town that is surrounded by natural beauty that has many hidden gems to find. We find something or learn something new every time we go!


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