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Living a Mountain Lifestyle in Mount Airy, North_Carolina

This mountain town has just under 9,000 people, but almost 40,000 people live in the immediate area. Mount Airy has a vital downtown  that attracts tourists and new residents alike. Pilot Mountain is located nearby. Andy Griffith, who hails from here (Mount Airy was the inspiration for Mayberry), has a theatre named after him, the Andy Griffith Playhouse, which features regular community productions. The Downtown Cinema Theatre broadcasts a weekly bluegrass radio concert. Tourist attractions like the mountains and the Andy Griffith connection, combined with North Carolina’s moderate climate, have contributed to a strong economy.

There is plenty to do and see, as well as many parks and recreation opportunities. Mount Airy is located in Surry County. The cities of Winston-Salem and Greensboro are nearby.

Photo of downtown Mt. Airy courtesy of Wikipedia and KyleAndMelissa22.

Where to Retire in Mount Airy and Home Prices

Retirees to Mount Airy can live in town or in some of the developments on the outside of town. The city was approved as a certified retirement community.

Real Estate Values
The prices for real estate will strike some northeasterners as a bargain in Mount Airy.  According to Zillow, the median home value was $173,359 in early 2023.

What Is Special about Mount Airy

Friendly small town. The pork sandwich at the Snappy Lunch. Pilot Mountain State Park. Recreational facilities now include two major parks, three minor parks, two 2.2 mile fitness greenways along side waterways (with a third connecting the first two now under development), a first class fitness and recreation center with both indoor and outdoor Olympic sized swimming pools, multiple fitness facilities. The professionally staffed Mt. Airy Parks and Recreation Department offers year around recreation and fitness programs.

What Is Not Special about Mount Airy

If it would bother you to tell your friends you live in "Mayberry", you shouldn't move here! It is a more than a bit hokey, although the residents enjoy their heritage.

Climate and Physical Environment

Mount Airy is located in western North Carolina and is near both the Smokies and the Blue Ridge Mountains. Due to its elevation it is considerably cooler here than in the rest of North Carolina.

Restaurants & Cultural Scene

The Municipal Government Campus contains the Municipal Building (City Hall), Public Library, large contemporary amphitheater, Police Station, Recreation and Fitness Center, City Green and leased to the Surry Arts Council the Andy Griffith Playhouse and the new two story Andy Griffith Museum. The Campus anchors the south end of the Historic Downtown, acting as an attractive transition between the Downtown and adjacent residential areas. The Earle Theatre broadcasts a weekly bluegrass radio concert, the Merry-Go-Round, since 1948. The Blue Ridge Music Center has an amphitheater. Mount Airy, NC also has a regional history museum, the Old Time Music Heritage Hall (located in the Earle Theater, formally the Downtown Cinema) and a modern amphitheater, all which offer a wide variety of cultural activities during the year. A wide variety of festivals (music,wine,arts and crafts, Mayberry) also contribute to the culture of Mount Airy. The nearby (10 miles) Surry Community College is recognized nationally for the quality and breadth of its offering.


Surprisingly, crime is reported to be well above average in Mount Airy.

Medical Facilities

The Northern Hospital of Surry County, more a medical center provides an extremely wide variety of medical care in conjunction with the medical and dental community in very modern facilities.


Smith Reynolds Airport is 38 miles away in Winston-Salem. Piedmont Triad International is 55 miles in Greensboro. Charlotte Douglas International airport is 104 miles away.The Surry County Scenic Bikeway and Mount Airy Loop address the needs of bicyclists.

Valuable Links

Visit Mayberry

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