Small Town Tour: Elkin, NC

On Monday, I found myself in Elkin, North Carolina with four hours to kill.  Elkin might not have been on your tourism radar because it’s a town of 4,000.  It’s also not particularly famous (to my knowledge).

Should it be on your tourism radar?  Maybe.  If it isn’t, I hope you’ll find an equally charming small town near you to explore.

So I started with a walk.  (Not really.  I really started with a chicken/bacon/barbecue sauce sandwich from heaven.  Or from 222 Public House.  But after the sandwich, I moved on to a walk.)  The little main street was so cute.  There’s a soda shop, a few downtown mainstays like a jewelry store and antique stores.  There were restaurants and a pub, not to mention a chocolate shop.  And a bookstore combined with a wine shop.  Believe me, I browsed that shop thoroughly.

Then there’s the other awesome thing about this town–the neighborhoods surrounding the downtown area.

house with fenceIt is full of houses like the one above–just oozing charm and character and old house things like that.  If your house is going to ooze anything, it should definitely be charm.

There were houses with great porches, houses with fun colors, houses with quirky details.  It was kind of my “let’s take a walk” dream come true.  There were even slight hills, so you get a tiny bit of a real workout without feeling like you were getting a workout.  Like I said, dream come true.

This is the Arts Council building, complete with miscellaneous hand-painted shutters:

arts councilThis teeny tiny building is a former bank drive-through location with room for about two people to stand very still inside and drive-through options in the back:

storeIf I ever moved to Elkin and had money to throw away, I would definitely buy that teeny tiny building and make it the world’s first ever recipe advice and paper goods store.  (The recipe advice is free, but you have to pay for the notecards and art.)  With a little bit of paint on the front door and some new blinds, it would be a top notch recipe advice hut.

mural with buildingI already have proof that this town approves of art and food together, because this nice mural is on the side of what appears to be a very nice restaurant.  Unfortunately, the restaurant is closed this month for the owner’s first vacation in ten years.  Good for them, mildly disappointing for me.  Still, nice building, nice art, and their website says that they make ice cream in house.  You can’t lose with homemade ice cream.

And if I’ve convinced you to move to Elkin by this point, I have a few real estate recommendations for your viewing pleasure.

First, you have the very lovely but possibly too small for real life (with guests) cabin in the woods:

29186b6f592e6da02363c507df0b9c04d15696375

photo from Realtor.com

Pretty perfect, in my opinion.  I’d be willing to lose some furniture to live in that cabin.

And second, you have the also small, also beautiful house in town:

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photo from Realtor.com

This house stole my heart yesterday.  You know that walk I took?  Well you pass the public library on the way away from downtown.  And you pass a cute little church with a red door.  And then you keep walking through all of those pretty houses with great porches.  And at the end of the street, just a 15-minute walk from all of that tasty downtown food, you run into this house.  I really hope somebody buys it and loves it and walks to the library every day.

And there ends our tour of Elkin, North Carolina.  With thoughts of bookstores and wine, homemade ice cream, and cute tiny houses.  It is a very nice place to spend a sunny winter afternoon.

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