In western North Carolina, the Blue Ridge Mountains beckon with deep valleys and long, forested ridges. Montreat Conference Center — a contraction of the words “Mountain Retreat” — rests within a narrow valley and is an idyllic getaway to the quiet atmosphere and natural beauty of Appalachia. Of Montreat’s 4,000 acres, 2,500 are dedicated to pristine wilderness. The invigorating retreat and its historic Assembly Inn are the perfect setting to discover an exciting and diverse array of topics with Road Scholar’s renowned experts in the classroom and in the field.
The Montreat Conference Center’s Assembly Inn is a beautiful stone building overlooking picturesque Lake Susan, a small lake perfect for canoes and paddle boats. The historic Inn, which dates to 1928, has a spacious lobby with a fireplace, a baby grand piano and comfortable furniture for friendly gatherings, puzzles and games, or just relaxing. All accommodations, meeting facilities and the dining room are in this building, and an elevator services all floors. All rooms have private baths. There are no TVs or phones in rooms, but there is a TV in the main lobby.
Montreat offers more than a dozen maintained hiking trails. Also available are tennis courts and an outdoor swimming pool in the summer. On Lake Susan, Road Scholars can paddle-boat and canoe from 2-6 p.m. in the summer, and fishing with a permit is allowed year-round. The Montreat Store is a mix of boutique, gift shop and general store.
This is a Road Scholar Retreats program. Our Retreat programs offer a tranquil respite from daily life in locales that lend themselves to outdoor exploration, reflection, or study. The accommodations may be basic in nature, but the facilities offer communal spaces to gather and to relax. During the week, opportunities usually exist for some combination of light exercise, a locally sourced meal, or evening entertainment.