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Top 5 Easiest and Cheapest Weekend Road Trips

Looking for a quick weekend getaway from the stresses of school, but you don’t want to spend ridiculous amounts of money or days driving? Save money, time, and gas by road tripping to one of these nearby destinations. They all offer countless restaurants, shopping, and other attractions that perfectly fit into your conservative budget.

1. Asheville, North Carolina – 85.1 miles, 1 hour 44 minutes

This easy, breezy mountain town is just like good old Boone, but a little bit larger and a whole lot more fun! Countless restaurants, bars, boutiques, and music venues make Asheville the ideal weekend getaway with your girls or a romantic trip with your boy. And, if you’re willing to spend a little extra cash, the Biltmore Estate is a must-see attraction. 

2. Gatlinburg, Tennessee – 163 miles, 3 hours 9 minutes  

Tennessee has a lot to offer us North Carolinians, like a (close!) Ripley’s Believe It or Not! and the Great Smokey Mountains National Park. Cheap cabin rentals also allow you to spend the weekend in this little slice of heaven nestled in the mountains.  

3. Charlotte, North Carolina – 117 miles, 1 hour 53 minutes

The Queen City, the place most of us call home, is full of fun things to do and is only a two-hour drive from Boonetown! Charlotte is the home of several sports teams, along with countless restaurants and popular clubs in the uptown area. Also, you can see your favorite big-name artists at the Verizon Wireless Amphitheater, which is just a short drive from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. 


4. Columbia, South Carolina – 185 miles, 3 hours 5 minutes

The “Capital of Southern Hospitality” made this list solely because of the notorious party school the University of South Carolina calls this city home. This a great place for college students to visit, with the cheap eats and hoppin’ bars within walking distance of USC’s campus.

5. Banner Elk, North Carolina – 18 miles, 28 minutes 

Take a day trip to the quaint but cute town right outside of Boone’s city limits and discover a hidden gem amongst the rocky Appalachian Mountains. Banner Elk offers visitors scenic views, adorable shops, and nice restaurants. The town is also the home of Flat Top Brewing Company and the Banner Elk Winery and Villa, both of which are highly recommended by locals and tourists alike.  

Buckle your seatbelts, collegiettes! 

I'm a junior Hospitality and Tourism Management major with a knack for writing. I can't get through the day without at least two cups of coffee and scrolling through my inspirational quotes pinboard. 
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