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We're hiring!

We're seeking friendly, service-minded people.

Come join our team and welcome guests to one of the most beautiful locations on the Blue Ridge Parkway.


Join our team

We are open for the season!

Our hours are 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Wednesday - Sunday.

Come dine with us and explore beautiful Doughton Park to enjoy the hiking trails, overlooks, wildflowers, campground, and historical sites, such as Brinegar Cabin.​

Tables are first come first serve. We do not take reservations.


Learn more


See our webcam view

Keep an eye on the weather and the changing colors of autumn on our Dougthon Park webcamera.

Parkway Detour

Hi, folks! The National Park Service is performing significant road work on the Parkway on a 75-mile section of the Parkway from milepost 229.6, just north of Doughton Park, to milepost 305.1, near Grandfather Mountain.


The $98 million project is a three-year repaving and rehabilitation project along the mainline motor road, that will also address drainage structures, curbs, walks, shoulders, guardrails, overlooks, and signage. The project will be phased with a staggered series of closures.


Remembering Ellen

We are so saddened to share the news that Ellen Woodruff Smith passed away on February 12. Ellen was adored by guests during her many years as a server at The Bluffs Coffee Shop at Doughton Park. Folks walked in the door asking for her before they even placed their order. She worked at the restaurant from the day it opened on May 31, 1949, to the day it closed on November 1, 2010. Many employees stayed at the Bluffs for decades, including Ellen’s dear friend and cousin, Kathryn Joines, who worked at the restaurant for 59 years. The people are truly at the heart of the Bluffs’ story.

So many who dined at the coffee shop hold on to wonderful memories of Ellen, including Julie Hettiger, who grew up visiting The Bluffs with her family and supported the restoration of the restaurant. She recalls Ellen running to bring a high chair to the table when she arrived as a child with her little yellow teddy bear Boo Boo. This lines up perfectly with Ellen’s confession that she “spoiled every youngin’ I could.”

Even after the restaurant closed, Ellen and her husband Paul received Christmas cards from friends and customers who frequented Bluffs Coffee Shop. We are thankful that Ellen and her husband Paul, who was a fixture at the restaurant, were able to see the completed restoration in recent years. Paul passed away on May 5, 2021.

We would love to hear your memories and see your photos of Ellen. To send us your Bluffs story and images, email

Bluffs gas station, restaraunt, and lodge Parkway sign

A Rich History

The coffee shop at Doughton Park on the Blue Ridge Parkway welcomed generations of locals and travelers during its original 61 years of operation. Thanks to the support of those devoted patrons and many others, The Bluffs has reopened to welcome diners once again for great home-style cooking.

Ellen Smith, waitress from 1949-2010
Doughton Park hiking
Bluffs guests in 1952
Park ranger and visitors in 1966
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There is more to Bluffs than just the good food!

Located on the beautiful Blue Ridge Parkway, The Bluffs experience continues on from the restaurant to the beautiful recreation area that surrounds it. Enjoy your food alongside mountain scenery just a short hike or a moment's drive away.

Working with the Best Partners

Come visit us!

45338 Blue Ridge Parkway, Laurel Springs, NC 28644

Our hours

9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Wednesday - Sunday


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