The Carolina Sandhills
A beautiful area, with it’s own unique ecosystem and style.
Sandy soil, moderate climate, and home to the famous
longleaf pine tree... halfway between the mountains and the
beaches. Our quality of life attracts people from all over
By way of background, this area was originally settled in
the 18th century by the Highland Scots. Pinehurst and
Southern Pines, adjacent towns, both began as resort
communities at the end of the 19th century.
The village of Pinehurst was developed by the Tufts family
of Massachusetts and was laid out by Frederick Law Olmsted,
whose many achievements include Central Park and Biltmore
House in Asheville, the largest private home in America.
The Holly Inn
Givens Memorial Library
Historic Old Town Pinehurst, with its clapboard or shingled
homes and picket fences, is New England in style, with the
feel of Nantucket in architecture and charm, and, like
Nantucket, much of the town is in the National Register of
Historic Places. The village features excellent restaurants,
upscale boutiques and, of course, the famous Pinehurst
The Theatre Building
The Village of Pinehurst
The lovely old Carolina Hotel, “The Queen of the South,” is
a National Historic Landmark, one of the oldest wooden
structures in existence in the United States. It is
the showpiece of Old Town Pinehurst, and can be compared to
its sister, The Homestead, in Virginia. Guests over the
century include Andrew Carnegie, Theodore Roosevelt, the
duPonts, Rockefellers and Morgans. Today, the hotel
embraces golf, tennis, croquet and water sports at the
200-acre lake and marina.
The Carolina Hotel
The $12 million Spa, designed
after the famous Spa at The Homestead, recently opened
adjacent to the Carolina. It offers 28 treatment rooms, a
three-lane lap pool, steam rooms, and a fitness center.
Treatments available are endless.
Pinehurst is fabled worldwide for it’s golf -- Course #2 is
one of the top ten in the world, and has seen more
championships than any other site in the country -- just
recently, two U. S. Opens, the PGA Championship, the Ryder
Cup and the U. S. Senior Open. There are two private
country clubs in the area, many other semiprivate and resort
courses, in total, over 42 courses in Moore County, more
than 700 holes. Golf is only one of many things available
in this area -- tennis, croquet, kayaking, cycling, hiking,
canoeing, and horse sports are enjoyed by many.
Southern Pines, four miles away, is absolutely charming,
with its tree lined streets, colorful shop awnings, and an
azalea studded boulevard. It originally started as a health
resort before Pinehurst developed, on the railroad line
between New York and Palm Beach. There is a great cross
section of people with interesting backgrounds, and it is an
outstanding place to bring up a family.
Cassie's homebred colt racing in Virginia
The year-round mild climate and sandy soil has
attracted horse people for 90 years. The
Southern Pines horse community is renowned, with the
Moore County Hounds, the Stoneybrook Steeplechase in
April, horse shows weekly, and several annual
national level eventing, dressage and driving
events. The 4,000 acre Walthour Moss Foundation is
open for riding and driving to all.
The Moore County Driving Club, with over 200 members, is the
oldest in America and high level competitions are staged
several times each year. According to the American Driving
Society, Moore County's 283 zip code indicates the largest
concentration of carriage drivers in the world.
The Carolina Horse Park has also hosted the American Eventing
Harness Track in Pinehurst, built in 1915, is listed in the
National Register of Historic Places. Prominent saddlebred
harness horses winter here from October through April in its
20 barns and exercise on its 2 tracks. Off season, the
infield hosts horse shows, antiques auto shows, dog shows,
This area’s cultural life is diverse. The North Carolina
Symphony performs here more often than in any other location
outside of Raleigh. We have 19 art galleries.
Center for the Arts and Humanities in Southern Pines, once
the home of the writer William Boyd, was purchased by the
community, saved from the wrecking ball. This lovely old
home hosts many community events -- lectures, music
programs from chamber to classical to jazz -- the Ragan
Writers-in-Residence program, the charming gardens open to
the public. Weymouth Center is beloved and protected by the
The volunteer “Dirt Gardeners” care for the glorious
English gardens -- a water garden, a witches garden, a
poet’s garden, writer’s retreat, herb garden, long beds,
butterfly nursery, etc. When the famed Japanese weeping
cherry trees bloom in the spring they will take your breath
Weymouth's Weeping Cherry Trees
Campbell House, just across from Weymouth Center, another
wonderful old home built in 1903, houses the Arts Council of
Moore County, which hosts art exhibits and lectures
throughout the year.
The vintage Sunrise Theater, like Weymouth Center, was also
saved from the wrecking ball through an enormous grassroots
effort by the townspeople, and regularly hosts wonderful
films, concerts and live performances, including the yearly
Blues Crawl and Raising the Roof.
Outdoors and Nature
The 898 acre Weymouth Woods Nature Preserve, a state park
right in Southern Pines, offers regular interpretive
programs ranging from astronomy to chimney swift counts,
from owl prowls to wildflower walks. Migratory birds are
banded here each spring and fall for research, and
volunteers are encouraged to come along.
Coastal Carolina Birding
Weymouth Woods is
the base for the Sandhills Natural History Society, which
meets monthly, and offers field trips such s hawk watches at
Raven Rocks State Park, a winter trip to Pungo National
Wildlife Preserve to visit the snow geese and tundra swans,
and weekend Carolina Coastal bird field trips. Weymouth
Woods has miles of hiking trails, and two other
nearby sections of the park just a few minutes drive away
expands the trail system.
There is much designated green space for walking.
The Reservoir Park in Southern Pines is a local
favorite, with it’s 2 mile walk around the
perimeter, and a web of other trails branching off.
Many come to kayak or canoe here. As
well, Southern Pines is a base for the Nature
Conservancy and the Sandhills Area Land Trust.
The range of housing prices and styles here is enormous.
There are five elite gated communities, charming vintage
village cottages and everything in between. One thing is
for sure -- the cost of living is far less than other
locations -- and the quality of life is far higher. Visit
my “Properties for Sale” section.
First Health Regional Medical Center in Pinehurst is a huge
385 - bed acute care hospital that is growing in size and
technology yearly. An active medical staff of 192
physicians is backed up with a professional staff of 2,700.
It is one of the Top 100 Hospitals in the nation, rated in
the top ten stroke hospitals in the country, and in the top
two in North Carolina (which includes Duke) in thoracic and
First Health Regional Medical Center
First Health also
owns a $55 million fitness and rehabilitation center adjacent
to the hospital. This facility offers memberships
to the community, and offers many rooms of training and
weight equipment, an Olympic size indoor pool, a basketball
court, track, racquetball courts, etc., and classes in everything
from yoga to kickboxing.
The Carolina Eye Associates Clinic here in Southern Pines is also renowned, with patients from all over America and 10 foreign countries. The clinic has some of the top lasix surgeons in America, and has 9 ophthalmologists on staff.
Schools and Churches
There are 22 schools, public and private, in Moore County
and one community college.
Details can be found on the Moore County website. There are
churches in 29 different denomination, and details about
services and locations are published in the local newspaper
weekly. The Sandhills Community College has courses,
lectures and concerts open to the community, it’s extensive
horticultural gardens open to the public.
There are at least a dozen chef-owned excellent restaurants in Pinehurst/Southern Pines, well supported by the community. We have an organic gourmet market in the style of Whole Foods, a large health food store, several farmer’s markets each week, Harris Teeter, wonderful bakeries, many coffee houses. The Wine Cellar is open as a casual wine bar. Many local pubs and restaurants offer live music on weekends.
Downtown Southern Pines
We enjoy easy access to the conveniences of national chain stores such as Staples,
TJ Maxx, Best Buy, Petsmart, Bed Bath and Beyond, Home Depot, Talbot’s, Panera Bread, Pier 1, Belk, Lowe’s Home Improvement Store, Ross, SteinMart, Waldenbooks.... These commercial areas are clustered just south of Pinehurst and Southern Pines. It is nice to be able to have easy access to shopping, without having the big-box stores in our midst.
Southern Pines Train Station
Raleigh International Airport is about an hour and 15 minutes away, and Moore Regional Airport regularly hosts hundreds of private planes flying in for golf, etc.
It is said that if you come to visit and stay two weeks,
you’ll never leave.
There is a very strong community spirit here -- probably
because many people move here by choice, rather than being
transferred. Some, like me, like it so much we decided to
move here and hang our various professional shingles. Many
are young retirees, who have enjoyed much success and not
only want to enjoy life, but to start to give back. There
are many programs for people who want to volunteer at this
point in their lives. Our Habitat for Humanity is one of
the strongest in the entire country. The Literacy Council,
Manna, the Coalition for Human Care, Service Corps of
Retired Executives, Animal Advocates and many other groups
are staffed with local volunteers and funded by the
Southern Pines Civic Center
This area has recently attracted Floridians, and folks from other
Southern coastal communities, who come to flee the traffic, home
insurance increases and hurricanes.
The people who come to live here are quality people of all ages
with great values and who are great fun. Kind, polite people --
who go out of their way to welcome newcomers, which most of them
once were not too long ago.