A North Carolina mountain treasure!

Built in 1908 to serve the east’s highest railway station, the Balsam Mountain Inn, just off the Blue Ridge Parkway, now welcomes travelers with fifty cheerful rooms, broad, 100-foot porches, a large library and delicious dining.

Come rest, read ramble and romp in our mountains!

We serve breakfast and dinner each day and Sunday lunch, all by reservation, and we host private celebrations, meetings and meals.

Call +1(828) 456-9498 for seating times and more information.

The inn hosts regular Songwriters in the Round performances, special holiday dining celebrations and a year-around Art in the Mountains showcase.

Call +1(828) 456-9498 to learn more or email balsam.inn.events@gmail.com. 

Originally a 100-room grand railroad hotel, our inn, restored in 1990, now offers 50 rooms and suites.

Reserve online at Expedia.com, or book with us by phone at +1(828) 456-9498

Weddings are a time to celebrate! We offer several packages to make your wedding special. Contact balsam.inn.events@gmail.com to set up an appointment to discuss your wedding!


Our location: Near the heart of the Smokies and just off the Blue Ridge Parkway


Things to know before you reserve

The inn was built in 1908 and is different from most hotels. Here are some of the differences

Air Conditioning

During the warm months in Balsam, daytime temperatures average in the upper seventies, and nighttime temperatures in the fifties. We haven’t reached ninety degrees during the past eight years. There isn’t a single air conditioner in the entire building! Our rooms are cooled by box fans, with the help of attic fans in the evenings.


Before we restored the inn, there were no private baths. We’ve added them throughout, which accounts for their odd shapes and dimensions. Some are quite small, some are large. Some have step-in showers, some have clawfoot tubs. If you have a tub in your room and need a shower, there’s a separate, private shower room available.

Televisions and Phones

There are no televisions at the inn, or phones in the rooms. There is an open wifi network – no password necessary. We will deliver phone messages left at our front desk, and while cellular signal strength isn’t great, coverage is available.


The inn is over 110 years-old, and is made entirely of wood. It carries sound! We ask our guests to observe “quiet hours” after 10pm, and to remember the guests in the rooms beneath and around them. If guests choose to use laptops or tablets in their rooms, we ask them to keep volumes down or use headphones. Even with all these precautions, the inn is of another era – it isn’t even quiet when it’s empty!

  • The inn’s location at a glance
    • We are in the village of Balsam,  one-half-mile off of the Blue Ridge Parkway at Balsam Gap, milepost 443, where the Parkway crosses the Great Smoky Mountain Expressway.
    • Balsam is halfway between Waynesville and Sylva – about ten minutes from each – and 20 minutes from Cullowhee and Western Carolina University.
    • We are 25 minutes south of the Cherokee entrance to the Great Smoky Mountain National Park, and 25 minutes from the Cataloochee entrance to the Great Smoky Mountain National Park.

Balsam Mountain Inn


Balsam Mountain Inn in the Media


Balsam Mountain Inn Songwriters in the Round | Matt Rose photograph for Our State

Songwriters in the Round | Matt Rose photograph

“… the Balsam Mountain Inn is far from the bright lights of any big cities. But here, at this stately railroad hotel, you’ll find something the city can’t provide: quiet.


Not silence — quiet. In this 100-year-old wood structure, you hear squeaking floorboards, closing doors and transoms, and murmuring voices next door. But here’s what you don’t hear: telephones. Televisions. Alarm clocks. The white noise of modern life has no place at the Balsam.

Instead, you get older rhythms. The ones you can’t download. Wind on the Blue Ridge slopes. Boasting frogs. And, tonight, the sounds of three veteran songwriters seated in the middle of a packed dining hall, singing their life stories.”

Django Haskins

Travel Writer, Our State Magazine

bmi_southern_living“According to one guest when I visited last fall, the leaves beginning their magic show on the hills, ‘I just sort of fell in love with the rocking chairs on the porch.’ Couldn’t agree more. An added, and often overlooked, bonus to the driveway-wide porch? The restaurant there is fit for a Carolina king.”

Time, Inc.

Digital Lifestyle Editor, Southern Living Magazine

Blue Ridge Parkway, near the Balsam Mountain Inn

“Must-see mileposts on the Blue Ridge Parkway”

“The century-old Balsam Mountain Inn in Balsam is the perfect place for a romantic getaway …”


North Carolina Tourism

bmi_southern_living“The weather-worn patina of age makes up a big part of the atmosphere. The inn dates back to 1908, when it first welcomed guests escaping to the mountains.”

Mark Stith

Editor, Southern Living Magazine

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