Frequently Asked Questions
We've compiled a list of some of the questions we get asked the most:
Only the best place EVER! We are a unique resort located in the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina. Staying in the lodge is a one-of-a-kind experience that guests have been enjoying on their vacations for over 30 years. Located in beautiful Lake Toxaway, only a short drive from Asheville and Brevard, Earthshine Lodge is more than just a place to stay. We call ourselves your “basecamp for adventure” as we provide comfortable accommodations, incredible views, and amazing food to fuel your explorations. There is a lot to explore on our property, but we also encourage you to visit the amazing natural wonders in this area. The 76-acre property is ideally located near Pisgah National Forest, Gorges State Park, Nantahala National Forest and Dupont State Forest, offering access to all that western North Carolina has to offer!
Much more than a hotel. Earthshine Lodge offers exceptional outdoor education programs, vacations, weddings, and retreats. Our rustic lodge is comfortable and cozy with large stone fireplaces and incomparable views. The lodge has all the architectural elements that you would expect from a rustic mountain lodge – stone fireplaces, antler chandeliers, creaky wood floors, rocking chairs, and two large decks with mountain views for miles.
Anyone who loves the outdoors or wants to see what all the fuss is about (and sometimes, even those who don’t – we like a challenge). Earthshine is the perfect basecamp for hikers, mountain bikers, anglers, waterfall seekers, sunset watchers, families, friends, and adventurers. We welcome everyone to the mountain, regardless of race, class, ethnicity, gender, or sexual orientation. We are committed to providing an inclusive and welcoming environment for all of our guests and to doing our part to help make the outdoor adventure industry more diverse.
We make getting into (and to) outdoor adventure easy as we have all the conveniences of a lodge (home cooked meals, heat and air conditioning, queen sized beds, running water, flushing toilets!) while being ideally located to activities like mountain biking, fly fishing, paddling, etc. You can leave your tent at home and still go on an outdoor adventure. We are family friendly and now our renovated farmhouse units are pet friendly!
There are two types of rooms at Earthshine – in the lodge or cottage. Each room is private with its own bathroom.
Book a private room in our 8-room vacation lodge. Each room sleeps four and has a comfortable queen bed, loft with two twin beds, small private deck, as well as a private bathroom. We can also provide additional sleeping mats and linens to use in the loft to sleep up to six people.
Or, for a little more privacy, book one of the three units in our recently renovated farmhouse cottage. The cottage is about 100 yards away from the lodge and also offers beautiful views. Two of the cottage units have kitchenettes and one has a full kitchen.
Both options offer a unique experience for the whole family. For a full description of each accommodation type and what is included with your booking, please check out our Lodging page.
Earthshine Lodge is a great place to reconnect with friends, family, and the outdoors, and offers an opportunity to disconnect from technology. There are no TVs on property, but the evening stars and fireflies are a much better show. Many of our guests tell us that they are surprised how much they didn’t even miss having a TV! (Plus, we can tell you where to watch the game in town).
Yes! Keep in mind that we are at an elevation of 3,000 feet on top of a mountain, so the internet is limited to web browsing and email. We call it “outdoor adventure friendly” – it will not support streaming or video meetings, but you can easily pull up adventure maps and driving directions.
Most guests are able to get cell service depending on the carrier. Some areas of the lodge get better reception than others and typically, the service is better outside.
While we love our furry friends, they are not allowed in the main lodge since we operate as a restaurant. However, they are allowed in our three cottage units. Please refer to our pet policy below:
- Pets are allowed in Sunrise Cottage units ONLY.
- There is a $25 pet fee per night per unit (2 pet maximum).
- Small/medium pets only – under 40 lbs.
- Pet must be well behaved, appropriately restrained by guest, and not prone to excessive barking.
- Pet must be kept on a leash while on Earthshine Lodge property unless in the guest’s room.
- Pets are not allowed inside the main lodge or on the main deck areas of the lodge.
- Guests are responsible for cleaning up after their pet.
- Guests are responsible for all property damages and/or personal injuries resulting from their pet.
- Guests agree to indemnify and hold harmless Earthshine Lodge and its owners from all liability and damage suffered as a result of the guest’s pet.
- We ask that all guests respect that not everyone feels comfortable around pets.
Our check-in times are 3pm-5pm and check out is at 10am. If you plan to arrive outside of these check-in hours, please let us know. We do have staff on site, but there may be times they are leading activities, so if you arrive outside of check in time, we will put a sign out directing you to your room.
If you are staying in the cottage, the check-in and check-out times are the same, but the units have a key-code entry so you can arrive anytime after 3pm. You will receive the code to your specific unit the morning of your stay.
For our standard room reservations and activities, reservation changes or cancellations made at least 48 hours prior to arrival receive a full refund (minus the 3% booking fee). Within 48 hours prior to arrival, changes, cancellations, and/or early departures will result in the forfeiture of your payment.
Events and retreats have different cancellation policies due to staffing and meal requirements. For many of our programmatic retreats, at least two weeks notice is required. Please see specific event details for more information.
We believe that great food is an important part of the Earthshine experience. Our chef serves delicious and healthy meals from the kitchen in the main common area of the lodge. We call it healthy southern lodge food, but we think you’ll call it delicious. Our chef plans menus to appeal to all and includes kid-friendly options. We will post the menu each day so that you know what to expect.
Yes and yes. Please let us know as soon as possible if someone in your group has a food allergy or special dietary needs. If you booked in advance, at least two weeks before your arrival is ideal to let us know of any food concerns.
Your lodge reservation includes a delicious hot dinner and breakfast on the weekends from January to the end of May and September through December. During the summer, on holidays (Memorial Day weekend, Thanksgiving, etc.), and vacation breaks (spring break, etc.), meals are served every day. Meals are not automatically included in your cottage reservation but can easily be added if you so choose. Exceptions to this are group bookings, exclusive use rentals, and weddings.
Coffee is ready at 7am and breakfast is served from 8am-9am.
Dinner is served from 6-7:30pm.
*Box lunches are available for pre-order through our kitchen.
We also have some amazing restaurants in the area and we certainly encourage you to check them out. However, meals are included in your reservation for guests at the main lodge (or booked ahead of time if you are in the cottage) so guests will not receive a refund if they miss a meal. If you are stuck on the trails and miss dinner, we are happy to put a plate in the warmer for you. Just let us know ahead of time!
*We are doing meals a bit differently during the Covid-19 pandemic. For more information, please refer to our Covid-19 policies.
No! Linens and towels are provided for the length of your stay. Please help us be good stewards of the environment and keep your towels throughout your visit. If you do need a fresh batch, please ask our staff at the front desk during office hours.
Most guests end up playing outside while they are here. You may want to bring your own beach towels for creek hikes, paddling, swimming at local watering holes, wading in waterfalls, etc.
Daily housekeeping service is not provided during your stay.
Spring, Summer, and Fall Guests: Bug spray | Water bottles | Sunscreen | Outdoor-friendly apparel | Comfortable shoes (water shoes are recommended for creek hikes) | Rain gear (it rains a lot in Transylvania County!) | Outdoor games and gear (Fishing poles, mountain bikes, yard games, etc.)
Winter Guests: North Carolina has a mild winter climate so sometimes it is hard to tell what weather you will have for your winter trip. We suggest bringing LOTS of layers to be prepared. Make sure you bring a heavy coat in case it gets windy on top of the mountain!
Earthshine’s property isn’t just a quiet getaway, it’s an awesome place to explore and play! Several miles of trails on the property lead to amazing views and peaceful creeks. Spend an hour or two fishing for brim or catching bullfrog tadpoles at our pond. Play games (we’re currently BYOBG: bring your own board game) in the lodge or on a deck, soaking up mountain views. Or sign up for one of our on site activities, like a Llama Hike, Blacksmithing & Brews, Wilderness Skills, Nature Art, or Paint and Wine. Check out our activity calendar for more information.
As far as local activities…where do we start? This is western North Carolina and the hype you’ve heard is all true…and Earthshine is so close to all it has to offer! First of all: waterfalls. This area is home to over 250 waterfalls! There’s hiking for all ages and abilities at nearby Panthertown Valley, Gorges State Park, Pisgah National Forest, Nantahala National Forest, and Dupont State Forest. Visitors from all over the world come to this area to mountain bike on Pisgah and Dupont trails and, if you just want to give mountain biking a try, there’s some great beginner trails and gravel roads. We’re close to several gorgeous rivers and the nearby French Broad River is a great place for a tube or a beginning paddle trip. The legendary Davidson River is well-known for its fly fishing and Headwater Outfitters, right down the road from us, offers amazing guided trips (and a great pub). Rest your legs and just soak in views as you drive along the Blue Ridge Parkway. Or check out some nearby mountain towns. Asheville, Brevard and Highlands all have their own flavor, whether you’re a craft beer connoisseur or a retail adventurer (i.e., shopping enthusiast). Earthshine is close to it all!
Of course, there’s TONS more to explore and our staff will happily share our local knowledge to get you on your dream adventure.
As Covid-19 restrictions around the country are being cautiously lifted, we are continuously evaluating our protocols in order to mitigate pandemic threats in our facility and the greater Lake Toxaway/ Transylvania County community.
As of March 24, Transylvania County is in the low (green) category of the CDC’s COVID-19 Community Levels. Per CDC recommendations for the green category, guests “should wear a mask based on personal preference, informed by their personal level of risk.”
Check out our regularly updated COVID-19 information.
Our grounds and facilities are smoking-free zones.
We keep a stash of firewood on site as well as materials for using our fire pits so all you need to bring are the supplies for making s’mores! Please read the below guidelines when using the fire pits:
Clear all flammable materials away from your fire pit before using it to help prevent an escaped fire from spreading. If it is windy, please refrain from making a fire until the wind calms down.
Do not use any flammable fluids (gasoline, lighter fluid, etc.) to light or relight fires. If you need a fire starter, we can provide you with a commercial fire starter.
Never leave a fire pit unattended or burning overnight. Never leave children or pets unattended near a fire pit.
We have provided buckets near each fire pit. Keep water nearby in case of an emergency and extinguish your fire when you are finished enjoying it.