Blowing Rock, NC

Blowing Rock, situated mostly in Watauga County, though a small part of the town belongs to Caldwell County, is a small town made up of 3.1 square miles.

2015 Best Guide to Blowing Rock, NC

June 20, 2018

Blowing Rock was settled in the mid-1700s by Scottish and Irish colonists. The town was incorporated in 1889.  

The town was founded primarily as a farming town. Farmers tended to let their livestock roam freely throughout the town, urging the town to pass an ordinance that made farmers keep their livestock fenced in.  

You can experience a comfortable and private cabin retreat or a lovely stay at the Village. Enjoy a round of golf, go horseback riding, fish the streams, do some whitewater rafting, take a hike, ride your bicycle, go climbing, or stroll through the beautiful park. Check out one of the main attractions - Appalachian Ski Mountain - one of North Carolina's best ski resorts. 

The Village of Blowing Rock NC is filled with galleries, museums and tours. Art and Artifacts is a gallery featuring paintings, sculpture, glass, fiber, pottery, and metal jewelry. The Blowing Rock Frameworks & Gallery, Iago, Main Street Gallery, Rock Galleries of Fine Art, Morning Star Gallery, Gaines Kiker Silversmith, Traditions Pottery, Winterfire Craft Gallery and Brittany Edsall Fine Art are other galleries you'll enjoy visiting. Look for the Blowing Rock Historical Society, Blowing Rock Art and History Museum, or take an evening stroll with the Walking Tours of Blowing Rock. 

While here, you'll certainly want to do some shopping. Blowing Rock offers shops with items ranging from home furnishings, gifts and crafts, books, antiques, apparel, etc. I'd recommend the Shops at the Martin House, Tanger Shoppes on the Parkway, and Southmarke. 

The Village of Blowing Rock NC gets its name from the cliffs on the mountain above and in particular a single rock formation that pokes out from top of Johns River gorge. It is known as "the blowing rock".

Stand on this rock ledge on a windy day and anything you toss over may fly upwards from the strong winds. Of course, the views of the Blue Ridge Mountains are probably the most exciting part of a trip up to the rock. Whatever you do, do leap from the rock! Unlike the fictional story of the Cherokee Indian jumping over and floating back up to his lover, you'll most likely become a blood stain on the rocks below.

Other attractions in Blowing Rock NC include the Tweetsie Railroad theme park, a visit to the Glen Marie or Glen Burney Falls, Moses Cone Memorial Park, Blowing Rock Equestrian Preserve, and the Art in the Park festival.

The land previously belonged to the native Catawba and Cherokee Indians. But, by 1889 Blowing Rock was incorporated, and tourism sky-rocketed. To support the influx of visitors several hotels were built, most of which still remain today.


The median resident age in Blowing Rock is 61 years. The median estimated household income is about $57,000 making it about $7,000 more than the North Carolina average. The estimated per capita is about $40,000. The average price for a home in Blowing Rock is about $585,000 (2016), which is $420,000 more than the North Carolina Average. Expect to pay about $1,200 a month for rent.

The racial makeup of Blowing Rock is 95% White, 2% Black, and 3% other. 94% of the population are high school graduates, with 65% holding a Bachelor's Degree or higher. 63% are married, 10% are divorced, 10% are widowed, 1% are separated, leaving 16% that have never been married.

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Watauga County

Blowing Rock primarily belongs to Watauga County in the north-western part of North Carolina, though a small part of the town is located in Caldwell County. The county, named after the Watauga River, was formed from parts of Ashe, Wilkes, Caldwell, and Yancey counties in 1849. Watauga County has a population of 51,000 its largest city Boone, with a population of 17,000, is the county seat. The county makes up part of the Boone, NC Micropolitan Statistical Area.

Watauga County borders Ashe, Wilkes, Caldwell, Avery, and Johnson (Tennessee) counties.

Watauga County is made up of 312 square miles; nearly all 312 square miles are land.

Caldwell County

Blowing Rock partly belongs to Caldwell County in the western part of North Carolina. The County, named after Joseph Caldwell, is part of the Hickory-Lenoir-Morganton, NC Metropolitan Statistical Area. Caldwell County has a population of 83,000 and its largest city Lenoir, with a population of 18,000, is the county seat.

In 1841, the county was formed from parts of Wilkes and Burke counties.

Caldwell County borders Avery, Burke, Catawba, Alexander, Wilkes, and Watauga counties.

Caldwell County is made up of 474 square miles. 472 of which is land with the remaining 2 as water.


The population of Blowing Rock, NC is about 1,200. The population has mostly increased at a steady pace since the town was founded, though it has seen some fluctuation by around 150 people over the past couple of decades.


The elevation of Blowing Rock, NC is 3,566 feet above sea level.

Zip Code

The zip code for Blowing Rock, NC is 28605.

Area Code

The area code for Blowing Rock, NC is 828.

Politics and Religion

Historically speaking Blowing Rock, Watauga County and Caldwell County have voted mostly Republican, with 51% going to Mitt Romney during the 2012 Presidential Election. This represents the trend for the previous two or three elections, barring the 2008 and 2016 elections, in which the area voted Democrat.

As of 2010, 58% of the population are religiously unafiliated (Nones). About 39% are Protestants, Catholics make up around 2%, and 1% other.


The unemployment rate for Blowing Rock is about 4% (2015), making it less than the state average of around 5%. Real estate, retail, and construction make nearly 50% of the most common industries in the town.

Newspaper & Obituaries

The Watauga Democrat and Blowing Rock News are the primary newspapers that cover the Watauga County and Caldwell County area.