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Lifestyle Travel

Sky Top Orchard: a day trip for doughnuts & apples

It’s that time of year again. And no, I’m not talking about apple picking (well, sort of). I’m talking about apple cider doughnuts. 

If you’ve been to Sky Top Orchard in Zirconia, N.C., you know exactly what I’m talking about. 

When Everette Butler purchased this land in the late 1960s, these doughnuts weren’t even on his mind. In fact, the land only had a few apple trees.

I guess the apples were good because eight years later, he had about 70 to 80 acres filled with the orchard. 

His son and daughter-in-law, David and Lindsey Butler, are now running the show, and all are welcome to visit the orchard and pick the apples. But not just any apples. They test the apples’ sugar content first to ensure you’re picking the best. 

You can purchase a small basket to fill for $20 or a large basket for $30. The small one was plenty for us. The apples were good, and the experience was even better.

And don’t forget to get an apple cider doughnut. Because let’s be honest, that’s the real reason you want to go, right?

If you’re not into the whole dodging rotten apples on the ground kind of thing, you can pick up a bag of apples under the shed or opt for one of their jams or apple butters.

One reason I love going to Sky Top is because it’s only an hour and a half away from downtown Greenville, S.C. and about a 45 minute drive to Asheville, N.C. You can make a day trip out of it. Apples in the morning, downtown in the evening. 

Or you could do what we did and hop on the Blue Ridge Parkway for a scenic day trip. We ventured off the Blue Ridge to hike to Black Balsam Knob. You have to work off those doughnuts one way or another. 



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