New Bern to Blowing Rock | July 5 - July 9, 2023

Our State’s Outlander North Carolina Journey

Enjoy North Carolina with fellow Outlander obsessed fans, as we journey from New Bern to Blowing Rock to experience many of the locations and places which appear prominently in Diane Gabaldon’s Outlander Series.

Join Our State on our Outlander Journey. We will visit Tryon Palace where Claire was held captive in a special Outlander tour. We’ll tour the Alamance Battleground where Roger was hung. We will delight in the day long activities of the Highland Games reminiscent of the Clan Gathering near Fraser’s Ridge. Inspired by Diane Gabaldon’s Outlander series.

July 5 – 9, 2023


Package includes:

  • Two nights accommodations at DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel, New Bern Riverfront
  • Two nights accommodations at Holiday Inn Express, Blowing Rock
  • Welcome Reception
  • Breakfast daily
  • Three dinners
  • Two lunches
  • Whiskey tasting
  • Tickets to all tours and scheduled events
  • Motor coach transportation from Raleigh
  • Our State Tour Director
  • AAA Tour Director


Itinerary Highlights:

  • Highland Games at Grandfather Mountain
  • Guided Outlander-themed tour of Tyron Palace as we trace Claire Fraser’s literary footsteps from the book A Breath of Snow and Ashes
  • Private cocktail reception under the portico of Tryon Palace followed by dinner followed by dinner in the Commission House across from the Palace. All courses selected from Outlander Kitchen: The Official Outlander Companion Cookbook and paired with wine. Live music accompanies the festivities.
  • Historic trolley tour of New Bern
  • Presentation on Scottish Highlanders in North Carolina by Hunter Ingram, The Assistant Museum Director at the Burgwin-Wright House and Gardens in Wilmington.
  • Visit to The Blowing Rock.
  • Free time in New Bern and Blowing Rock



Wednesday July 5, 2023

This morning we depart Raleigh to begin our Outlander North Carolina Journey to New Bern. Settled in 1710, New Bern was the 1st state capitol. It is the 2nd oldest city in NC and home to Tryon Palace, a replica of the original home built by Governor Tryon. It is easy to imagine the pages of The Fiery Cross come to life and to understand the Regulator’s escalating anger regarding the use of tax payer’s dollars. No wonder Governor Tryon accepted the commission of the Governor of the State of New York in late 1771 and quickly left town.

We will arrive late morning into New Bern and will be picked up at our hotel for a Historic Trolley Tour of New Bern. The town’s rich history, stately Colonial and Victorian houses, churches and location along the Trent and Neuse Rivers make it a charming place to soak in the sites. Lunch will be included at the Chelsea (or similar), an upscale bistro in downtown New Bern.

Following lunch, enjoy some free time before checking into your hotel, the Doubletree by Hilton Waterfront. Join us for a Welcome Reception, followed by dinner where we can all delight in our Outlander obsession.


Thursday July 6, 2023

This morning following breakfast, Hunter Ingram, The Assistant Museum Director at the Burgwin-Wright House and Gardens in Wilmington will present – “The Scottish Highlanders of North Carolina and Notable Highland Figures intertwined with their representation in Outlander and beyond.”

Hunter has a podcast called Outlander in the Cape Fear that uses the book and TV series to talk about Colonial North Carolina history.

Next, we visit the NC History Center where NC history will come alive through the artifacts and exhibits. There is also a great shop there for souvenirs, including a few inspired by Outlander. Lunch on own.

Later this afternoon is a tour highlight. We will have a special Outlander designed tour of Tryon Palace where we will travel in Claire Fraser’s literary footsteps in the Governor’s Palace and meet servants who will share insights regarding Claire’s place within the household, and other 18th century news. We will also meet the Governor’s Cook in the Kitchen Office, get advice from the Palace Apothecary, and learn about the fabrics best suited for this southern colony with one of the on-site weavers.

After the tour, we will enjoy a Private Cocktail Reception followed by dinner in the Commission House across from the Palace. Our feast is inspired by recipes featured in “Outlander Kitchen: The Official Outlander Companion Cookbook.” Scottish and Celtic folk music will accompany our lively gathering of food, friendship, and fun.


Friday, July 7, 2023

Breakfast is included this morning and then we begin our journey to Blowing Rock NC. The surrounding mountains are the inspiration for Fraser’s Ridge. Enjoy Outlander Trivia and prizes on the drive.

We will be making a lunch stop at Alamance Battleground for a guided tour and boxed lunches. The Battle of Alamance, which took place on May 16, 1771, was the final battle of the War of the Regulation, a rebellion in colonial North Carolina over issues of taxation and local control, considered by some to be the opening salvo of the American Revolution. In Outlander, Roger was hung after the battle. Luckily, he survived.

We will arrive at our home for the next 2 nights, Holiday Inn Express Blowing Rock, at approximately 4pm. You will have a little time to settle in and then we will make our way to Chetola Resort for an informative talk with Bill Caudill, the Director of The Scottish Heritage Center and Instructor of the St. Andrews University Pipe Band at St. Andrews University.

Following the talk we will do a bit of whiskey tasting followed by dinner. Enjoy the rest of the evening.


Saturday, July 8, 2023

Breakfast this morning will be followed by a day at the Highland Games at Grandfather Mountain. Celebrating the history and culture of Scots in North Carolina, it is among the first and largest modern Highland Games established in the United States. Watch traditional dancing, piping, drumming, athletic games and music and learn to speak Gaelic.

We will have a scheduled drop off and pick-up at the Games.

Dinner is on your own this evening. Enjoy one of the many great places in Blowing Rock. Reservations are highly recommended. We will offer a scheduled pickup to and from town.


Sunday, July 9, 2023

After breakfast, we will meet the mayor of Blowing Rock, Charlie Sellers during our visit to the actual “Blowing Rock”. Our visit will be followed by a short history of the town and then there will be time for lunch on your own before our journey back to Raleigh.

Approximate arrival back to Raleigh is 5pm.


Tour rates:

$1850.00 per person based on double occupancy


For reservations and more information:

AAA Vacations
Beth Rackham
(919) 832-0543 ext. 16012


Additional Information:

What to expect on an Our State trip:

Traveling with a group of Our State readers is an enriching, enjoyable, and safe way to experience new cultures, people, and places. In addition to the informative narration from the tour director and local guides, an Our State host will be available to assist in making your trip successful.

We usually fly to our destination, then travel by a comfortable motor coach with anywhere from 35 to 50 people who appreciate learning about new regions. Your entire trip will be guided, planned, and arranged for your upmost enjoyment. Many activities are things you can only do because you are traveling with Our State. There is some free time built in for you to explore on your own.

You can also choose not to attend an activity if you prefer something different. Please let your tour director know if you are not coming on a scheduled day.

Many meals are included. Where you have meals on your own, suggestions will be provided.

Most of the motor coaches have restrooms but every effort will be made to make regular rest stops.

One of the best parts of traveling with Our State is that you will meet new people, many of whom you will already have much in common with since most travelers read the magazine. Many guests often develop friendships that go on long after the tour is finished. Our State trips are generally filled with dynamic and friendly people.

Physical requirements:

Our tours are physically active but not meant to be strenuous.

Please be aware you will be on your feet, walking and standing for much of the day, indoors and outdoors, in all weather conditions and terrains. There will also be extended time on the motor coach when we travel from place to place. If there are any mobility issues you will need to have an able-bodied traveling companion to accompany and assist you.

Most days are moderately paced with approximately two to three total miles of walking, possibly including some hills and stairs.

We regret that we’re unable to provide individual assistance to guests with walking difficulties or other personal needs. The responsibility of the Trip Director who accompanies your trip is to ensure that the larger group enjoys a relaxing and informative journey, and he or she cannot be relied upon to provide ongoing individual assistance to any one guest. Guests requiring such individualized assistance must be accompanied by an able-bodied companion who can provide it.

If you have additional questions, please call Our State’s Travel Director Amy Wood Pasquini at 336-286-0600, or email


COVID-19 Travel Precautions – Update:

Effective January 1, 2023, Our State highly encourages, but no longer requires COVID-19 vaccinations or boosters for travelers on our domestic tours. This policy goes into effect for international travelers on April 30, 2023. We will keep all participants updated of any changes to these requirements.