Top 20 Family Things to Do in Asheville

Asheville for Kids: Top 20 Family Vacation Ideas

While Asheville is a romantic getaway for many, it's also a fun family getaway to create lifetime memories. Here are some of the favorite things to do with children and kids of all ages in the North Carolina mountains - including waterfalls, hiking, Biltmore, lodging, summer camps and much more. Since Asheville is surrounded by many national and state forests and parks, find many free activities outdoors while enjoying the Blue Ridge and Great Smoky Mountain scenery and fresh air. Nestled in the valleys, find friendly small towns that love to welcome families with many unique attractions and street festivals. (Photo: Adventure Center of Asheville) 

Guides & Top Attractions for Family Trips

Kid Friendly Hikes Asheville
Kid-Friendly Hikes
Find hiking trails ideal for children that aren't too long or strenuous with kid-friendly highlights like waterfalls, picnic areas, paved trails for strollers and more. Also find tips for hiking with kids in Western NC!
Kid Friendly Waterfalls in Asheville
Waterfalls for Kids
Find safe, kid-friendly waterfalls that are easy to access or only require a short hike to get to with perks like wading pools for splashing, areas for picnics and more.  
Biltmore for Kids
Biltmore for Kids
The estate is a wonderland for all ages, bringing out the curious and excited child in all of us. See our 30 Tips & Things to Do with plenty of kid-focused fun including the farmyard, playground, river rides, biking, special house tours & more.
Asheville Kid Friendly Restaurants
Kid-Friendly
Check out these kid-friendly restaurants in and around Asheville that offer extra “kid perks” like more casual settings with outdoor space, play areas, arcade games and more.
Children's Museums Asheville
Hands-On Learning & Children's Museums
Find children's museums and other hands-on learning centers in Asheville and Western NC including STEM-focused, interactive play, science museums, aquariums, and more. 
Kids in Parks
Kids in Parks: Educational Trails in the Blue Ridge
Kids in Parks is a growing network of trails with free activity guides for children and families. Together, you'll engage with the outdoors by identifying trees and birds, viewing the forest from the perspective of animals and searching for natural features. Children can record their adventures online and receive prizes.
Indoor Activities for Kids Asheville
Indoor Activities for Kids
Find a variety of indoor activities for kids including indoor playgrounds, swimming, STEM centers, hands-on learning and children museums. 
Family Places to Stay Asheville
Family-Friendly Places to Stay
Find family-friendly resorts, hotels, cabins and more places to stay in Asheville and the Blue Ridge, with special amenities, programs and itineraries for children.
Kids Birthday Parties Asheville
Top Places for Kid's Birthday Parties in Asheville
See our top picks in the Asheville area to have the best child's birthday party - with plenty of unique party ideas along with traditional places like skating rinks, trampoline parks, hands-on outdoor activities, animal habitats, and even kid ziplines.
Summer Day Camps Asheville WNC
WNC Summer Camps: Half & Full Day
See our top summer day camps for both little kids and teens in Asheville and the western North Carolina mountains with learning and exploring in a variety of topics including sports, STEAM, outdoors adventures and more.
Asheville Summer Camps
WNC Overnight Summer Camps Guide
Discover the best residential camps for older kids and teens near Asheville in Western North Carolina, with sessions ranging from 3 days up to 8 weeks that include a wide variety of activities including whitewater rafting, zipline tours, creative writing, painting or science and technology workshops.
Chimney Rock for Kids
Chimney Rock Park for Kids
Children of all ages love the spectacular views from the famous rock formation - plus the elevator ride up. In addition to several easy hiking trails, find discovery stations on the half-mile Great Woodland Adventure, visit live animals at Grady's Discovery Den and climb a rock tower.
Great Smoky Mountains Railroad
Great Smoky Mountains Railroad
Take a scenic train ride on excursions along the Nantahala and Tuckasegee Rivers, over the mountains, across valleys and through tunnels. Choose from a variety of train adventures departing from Bryson City. Many special event train rides including beer, wine and Polar Express.
WNC Nature Center
Western NC Nature Center
Learn about the area's natural resources, see 60+ animals in their native habitats including red pandas and red wolves. Explore many exhibits on this 42-acre wildlife park in the city of Asheville. Open daily.
NC Mountain Beaches
6 Mountain Beaches near Asheville
Hit the beach on pristine, cool mountain lakes in the NC mountains near Asheville, complete with sandy shores, lifeguards and plenty of summer fun in the water.
Sliding Rock
Sliding Rock
The most popular natural waterslide in North Carolina for generations is in Pisgah National Forest near Brevard. Slide down a 60-ft. smooth rock waterfall into a pool of chilly water. Bathrooms and showers are open and lifeguards on duty during warmer months.
Tubing near Asheville
River Tubing
Find the best places to tube down a river on a hot summer day, including the French Broad River through Asheville, Deep Creek in the Smoky Mountains and Green River Gorge - with rentals and shuttle services. 
Nantahala Outdoor Center
Nantahala Outdoor Center
NOC's big Nantahala River campus offers rafting, zip lines, treetop adventures, paddleboards, kayaking, hiking, biking, fishing and more for the entire family. It's like Disneyland for lovers of the outdoors! Dine riverside at two restaurants. Near Bryson City.
Farm Visits Asheville
Farm Visits & Tours
Visit farms and learn about their local food. See buffalo and alpacas, sample local cheeses, watch bees make honey, visit wineries, pick apples and more. Plus, tour historic farms at Biltmore and in the Great Smoky Mountains.

Earth Day Kid's Festival Asheville
Earth Day Kid's Festival
Saturday, April 18, 2020
This kid-centered festival celebrates Earth Day with a variety of fun, environmentally-focused activities for kids in grades K-12 including arts, crafts, music performances, hands-on learning, interactive booths, and more. 10 AM-2 PM at Salvage Station.
Here are our favorite natural swimming holes in the Blue Ridge Mountains near Asheville to cool off in on a hot summer day. Only Sliding Rock and the... read more
Discover and explore some absolutely gorgeous lakes near Asheville in the North Carolina mountains. Soak in the views all year round, and enjoy many water activities in the summer.... read more
Summer brings so many great festivals and events to Asheville and the western North Carolina mountains, including our many small towns. Here are our favorites! Also see special features for ... read more