Plan a Trip To Asheville

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I-26 Scenic Highway
I-26 Scenic Highway
This is the only interstate section in the state to be selected as a scenic byway. Begins on I-26 at Exit 9 at Mars Hill. As you travel north, there is a scenic overlook offering views of the Blue Ridge Parkway. A second scenic overlook will be on the return route, where the NC Welcome Center is located. The highest point is Sam’s Gap (3,760 feet), where the Appalachian Trail crosses under the highway. Exit at Flag Pond in Tennessee and make a u-turn to return.
Compassionate Expressions Mountain Inn & Healing Sanctuary
Compassionate Expressions Mountain Inn & Healing Sanctuary
A 40-acre private Certified Wildlife Retreat near Asheville where a world of magic, serenity, natural beauty, and unlimited healing possibilities await you. Renew your body and spirit with exceptional spa services: Energy Healing, Massage, Sound Healing, Cranio-sacral, Past Life Regression, hot tubs by the creek, and infrared sauna. Choose a "Day" or "Stay Over" spa experience.
The Grey Rock Inn Asheville
Located in Asheville’s popular South Slope District, this historic, eco-friendly inn shines as a budget-savvy place to stay with walkability for downtown exploration. The inn welcomes... read more
300 Things to Do
300 Things to Do
See our master list of places to see and things to do in the western North Carolina mountains, including Asheville and our many small towns. 
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.
Bullington Gardens
Bullington Gardens
Stroll through this public garden in Hendersonville that includes an half-mile trail through the Native Woodland Garden, popular Fairy Garden, Dahlia Daze in September and much more. Free, but donations accepted. Near apple orchards & wineries. 95 Upper Red Oak Trail, Hendersonville
Flowering Bridge
Lake Lure Flowering Bridge
Walk across one of the most beautiful highway bridges that you'll ever find! It has been transformed into a gorgeous garden with impressive array of plants and flowers, whimsical planters, sculpture and plenty of butterflies.
Blue Ridge Parkway
Blue Ridge Parkway
One of the most scenics roads in America (and part of the National Park Service), the Blue Ridge Parkway offers unmatched, spectacular mountain scenery. Drive north or south on the Parkway from Asheville and quickly ascend in elevation. It's all about the journey, so go slow, stop frequently and enjoy. To return to your starting point, you can often exit the Parkway onto a highway that provides a faster trip back.
Carson House Museum, Marion
Carson House Museum, Marion
Tour one of the most interesting house museums in the state, dating back to 1793, with a big collection covering 200+ years on three floors. 
Beaverdam Studio Tour
Beaverdam Studio Tour
Take a self-guided tour of 30 artists’ studios in North Asheville’s scenic Beaverdam Valley. Buy art from ceramists, painters, sculptors, jewelers, and glass and textile artists. 10 AM-5 PM
The Residences at Biltmore Asheville
Located on Biltmore Avenue between Biltmore and downtown Asheville, this hotel offers one-, two-, and three-bedroom suites designed to create a true... read more
Blue Heron Whitewater
Blue Heron Whitewater, Hot Springs
Enjoy rafting trips (or inflatable kayaks) and calm water float trips on the French Broad River with a fantastic combination of whitewater rapids, swimming holes, beautiful scenery, history and wildlife near Asheville. Excellent, fun-loving guides and all the appropriate river equipment ensure a great time.
New Morning Gallery
New Morning Gallery
This 13,000-sq. ft. gallery represents 500 American artists with hand-crafted furniture, home accessories, pottery, glass, jewelry, garden sculpture and other imaginative gifts. Located in Biltmore Village at 7 Boston Way. 
Bittersweet Cottage
Tucked away on Elk Mountain, with views of Asheville and the Blue Ridge Mountains, you'll find a renovated Arts and Crafts style cottage or a new Asian-inspired suite. 6 miles north of... read more
Mingus Mill, Great Smoky Mountains
Mingus Mill & Smokemont Church
See two historic structures within a few miles of each other in the Great Smoky Mountains, both located near the North Carolina entrance on Newfound Gap Road / US 441 near Cherokee.
Columbus NC
Columbus
Located in the foothills in wine and horse country, this tiny town (population 999) has a quaint historic downtown with a park and mountain views, scenic drive, wineries and Tryon Equestrian Center. 
Mt. Pisgah
Mt. Pisgah
(3 miles round-trip, strenuous) Mt. Pisgah can be seen from downtown Asheville on a clear day. Hike up to the top of the 5,721-ft. summit on this popular hiking trail. Blue Ridge Parkway Milepost 407.6.
Top Downtown Asheville Restaurants
Downtown Asheville Restaurants
A food-lover’s paradise filled with some of the best restaurants in the region, downtown Asheville has a wealth of independent restaurants, serving up fresh, seasonal, scratch-made fare with top-notch hospitality.
Holmes State Park
Holmes Educational State Forest
(.5-3.5 miles, easy to strenuous) Hike a variety of trails and learn about the forest in this largely unknown gem near busy DuPont State Forest. Open mid March-mid November, find a tranquil and diverse forest along with picnic tables and exhibits. 10 miles from downtown Hendersonville.
Lover's Leap
Lover's Leap
(3.2-mile loop, moderate) Hike from downtown Hot Springs via the Appalachian Trail.  You will climb to a rock outcropping for beautiful views of the river and town. It's a romantic spot, but don't leap!
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.
Buffalo Creek Caboose Cabin
Stay in a real caboose or luxury log cabin on a working mountain farm with bison, llamas, goats, alpacas and more in Pisgah National Forest. Interior of the cabooses transformed to have all the... read more
Wild Food Foraging Tours
Wild Food Foraging Tours
Take a "forage to table" tour with No Taste Like Home and play with your food. Our area is a Garden of Eden with over 300 wild edibles. During a guided tour, gather wild mushrooms, plants and other “extreme cuisine.” Then a chef transforms your finds into a delicious meal. 
Mt Mitchell Crafts Fair
Mt. Mitchell Crafts Fair
The streets around Burnsville’s town square are filled with 200 juried crafters displaying nearly every kind of handmade craft imaginable. Located 35 miles northeast of Asheville.
Aloft Hotel Downtown Asheville
Celebrate your style at Aloft Asheville Downtown. Stroll out the door to find loads of enticing eateries, plus a vibrant arts scene - all minutes from the Biltmore Estate and mountain exploration.... read more
Snowbird Lodge
A unique and timeless all-inclusive retreat with majestic views, pampering accommodations, warm hospitality, endless adventure and delectable cuisine. Tucked deep in the Nantahala National Forest... read more
Marshall, NC
Marshall
This historic town in Madison County is nestled between rocky cliffs and French Broad River. This "one street wide and a mile long" town of 889 residents has a Main Street with artists’ studios, galleries, music venues,  restaurants, Zuma Coffee and shops. Walk across the river to Blannahassett Island and the Marshall High Studios with many events.
Linville Falls
Linville Falls Hikes
(1 to 4 miles roundtrip, moderate) This is probably the most photographed waterfall in North Carolina. Hike to one or all five viewpoints via two trails that leave the Visitors Center. Only one of the trails is strenuous, and you can hike to all five spots with a four mile hike. Blue Ridge Parkway Milepost 316. 
Plowing Days
Old-Time Plowing and Folkways
Take a time-warp at the Cradle of Forestry to the days of the Biltmore Forest School. Meet homesteaders and watch their draft horses plow the heritage garden. Then take a turn at it yourself. Living history guides bring traditional Blue Ridge culture to life. 9 AM-5 PM. 
Miltons Black Mountain
Milton's Cuisine & Cocktails, Black Mountain
Features contemporary southern cuisine utilizing fresh, local ingredients to create inspired comfort food with bold flavors. These handcrafted meals are served Wed - Sat for dinner and Sunday for brunch. Enjoy both indoor and outdoor seating, as well as a cocktail at the bar.
Schoolhouse Falls, NC
Schoolhouse Falls
(2.5-mile round-trip hike, moderate) This waterfall in Panthertown Valley in Nantahala National Forest is small, but really big on beauty with a great pool for a splash. Extend your hike to a 5-mile loop for mountaintop views and another waterfall. Popular camping area.
Hidden Falls, NC
Hidden Falls
This serene swimming spot in Pisgah National Forest is near popular Rainbow Falls and the natural water slide Turtleback Falls. It's family-friendy but a 2.5-mile roundtrip hike to reach. 
Memorial Day Weekend NC
Memorial Day Weekend
Find many events, festivals and our top things to do to kick off summer during the holiday weekend in Asheville and the NC mountains.  
The Omni Grove Park Inn
The Omni Grove Park Inn Golf
Discover the course that Golfweek magazine included in its “America’s Best” listings and Golf Digest named as “one of the ten best courses in the United States that is 100 years old or more.” Designed by the legendary Donald Ross, this is a shot-maker’s course, emphasizing accuracy over power in its 6,720 yard, par 70 layout. The ascent from the somewhat flat, yet undulating front nine to the gentle slopes and sometime steep inclines and descents of the back nine brings with it spectacular views of the Blue Ridge Mountains. 
Drumming Circle Asheville
Drum Circle
Hear and feel the beat at the weekly drum circle every Friday night in Pritchard Park in downtown Asheville. Dance the night away!
Asheville Fall Festivals
Best 40 Fall Festivals & Events
September & October: Enjoy the cooler days of autumn with a big variety of events and outdoor festivals in Asheville and western NC towns. See our fall color foliage forecast for the best places to see the changing leaves.
Grove Park Inn
Arts & Crafts Conference @ Grove Park Inn
Perfect for the passionate collector or those just interested in the Arts and Crafts design. The long-running weekend at Grove Park Inn includes lectures, small group discussions, exhibitions, books, a contemporary crafts show and the finest of the antiques shows.
KidsZip Asheville Adventure
Adventure Center of Asheville for Small Kids
Kids love this giant outdoor playground, just five minutes from downtown Asheville, with three areas for ages 4-10: KidZip with nine ziplines, Treetops Adventure Park with 70 safe climbing, jumping, swinging and rappelling challenges, and TreeQuest tree climbing with safety of a harness. Canopy tours and mountain biking for older kids too.
Mountain Springs Cabins
These charming country cabins make for a perfect romantic getaway! Cabins include fireplaces and porch swings overlooking a mountain stream. Nestled on 46 tranquil acres just off the... read more
Addison Farms Vineyard
Addison Farms Vineyard
This family-owned vineyard and winery is 17 miles northwest of Asheville. Sample wines from their six grape varieties at their Tasting Room with mountain views: Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Sangiovese, Montepulciano, Petit Verdot and Petit Manseng. Open Friday-Sunday afternoon. Also open Thursdays May-Oct. 4005 New Leicester Hwy, Leicester.
Henry River Mill Fest
Mill Vill Fest
First ever festival is this abandoned Henry River mill village near Morganton, film location for The Hunger Games. Fundraiser to save the village. Music, food trucks, beer/wine and behind the scenes tours. Free admission. 12-4 PM. GPS Address: 4255 Henry River Road, Hickory
Dillsboro Colorfest
ColorFest
The artsy village of Dillsboro welcomes 40 demonstrating artists along Front Street with their colorful creations. Browse many nearby galleries too. Free admission. 10 AM-5 PM.
Wilderness Run Alpine Coaster
Wilderness Run Alpine Coaster
Take the exhilarating ride on the only Alpine coaster in the North Carolina Blue Ridge Mountains, located in Banner Elk.
Banner Elk Art
Art on the Greene
Find a big variety of 40 artists working with metal, glass, pottery, wood, jewelry and more in downtown Banner Elk. Many restaurants, shops and things to do nearby. Benefits their historic school renovation. 10 AM-5 PM. Free admission.
Brew Ed Beer Tour Asheville
BREW-ed Brewery & History Walking Tours
Take the only brewery tour in Asheville led by a certified beer expert! Learn how beer is made and how to taste it. Get special access to Asheville's breweries and learn the stories behind the pints. On the short walks between breweries, your guide will share stories of the early days of Asheville.
Sourwood Inn
Experience the true essence of the western NC mountains with 100 acres of mountaintop solitude, only 10 miles from downtown Asheville and two miles off the Blue Ridge Parkway. Dinner is... read more
KidZip
KidZip
Children ages 4-10 can now enjoy zip lines at this first-of-a-kind park built for kids. Ride nine zips from 50 to 250 ft. long and explore four climbing elements. It's a self-guided tour with an adult escort for children 4-6. Kids ages 7-10 may zip alone or with an adult. Located just five minutes from downtown at the Adventure Center of Asheville.
SmallCakes Asheville
SmallCakes Asheville
Located in Biltmore Park in South Asheville, this cupcakery and creamery offer freshly baked gourmet cupcakes, along with housemade ice cream. The cupcakes come in a variety of sizes and you can add ice cream to create a “SmallCake Smash.” Enjoy 12 signature flavors with regular rotating specialty flavors. Order by the dozen or create a custom cake for special occasions.
Pots on the Green
Pots On the Green
See works from 15 invitational potters in Cashiers; includes a big pottery sale, demonstrations, and more on the Village Green, gazebo, and park. 10 AM-5 PM. Free admission.
NC Arboretum Hikes
NC Arboretum Hikes
(Many options, easy to moderate) Located just 10 miles south of downtown, the Arboretum has 10 miles of easy to moderate walking and biking trails. Our pick is the Natural Garden Trail, a one-mile loop starting from the Plants of Promise Garden to the Core Area Gardens. 
Hendersonville Visitors Guide
Hendersonville Guide
Order the free, 48-page Hendersonville Visitor Guide for plenty of detailed information about things to do in Henderson County, just south of Asheville. Home of DuPont State Forest & Sierra Nevada Brewing.
Social Lounge
Social Lounge
This premiere craft cocktail bar is a great place eat, drink and be social. Find original cocktails, fine wines, local brews and creative food with local ingredients in a contemporary space that is stylish and intimate. The rooftop patio is just the spot to unwind and elevate your spirit. 29 Broadway. 
Harrah's Casino Hotel Cherokee NC
Enjoy a luxurious experience in a spacious room that includes plenty of amenities including the new outdoor pool with cabanas and bar area. The 21-story hotel includes a covered parking deck... read more
Jackson County Winter Trips
Winter Getaways to Jackson County
Find the perfect winter romantic getaway in Jackson County in January-March, during the quieter winter months. This "Secret Season" is a great time to enjoy the clear and crisp mountain air with fewer crowds, affordable accommodations, and scenic trails all to yourself! 
Hillbilly Jam, Maggie Valley
Hillbilly Jam
Head to Maggie Valley to celebrate mountain country living with music, crafts, big car show, moonshine and TV celebrities. 
Pioneer Festival
Pioneer Day
Experience traditional Appalachian crafts, food, games, music and storytelling (10-4) at the Mountain Gateway Museum in Old Fort with historic log cabins. Free admission.
Asheville Picnic Company
Asheville Picnic Company
Asheville Picnic Company caters to your adventurous spirit! Order one of their specialty picnics while out enjoying the area’s beautiful offerings and they’ll deliver right to you. The souvenir food baskets are curated with you in mind and filled with local favorites, allowing you to truly experience the taste of Asheville while on the go! Explore more with Asheville Picnic in hand! 
Banner Elk Restaurants
Banner Elk Restaurants
This small town high in the mountains has become a culinary hot spot. Whether you’re looking for an upscale meal for a special occasion, a hearty sandwich after a day outdoors or a casual steak dinner, check out their locally-owned and innovative restaurants.
Bender Gallery Asheville
Bender Gallery
This fine art gallery in the center of downtown Asheville specializes in contemporary figurative and abstract works of United States and international artists creating exceptional paintings and sculptures at all stages of their careers. The gallery focuses on a modern aesthetic in a sophisticated white cube format and enjoys a sterling reputation as the area’s top fine art gallery. 29 Biltmore Ave, downtown Asheville
Banner Elk, NC
Banner Elk Things to Do
See the latest on seasonal things to do and events in this High Country town with Grandfather Mountain, ski resorts, restaurants, Wildcat Lake, hiking, wineries, places to stay and more.
Chimney Rock
Chimney Rock Village
The tiny village (population 109) has a busy downtown at the entrance to popular Chimney Rock Park. Behind the shops and restuarants, the Rocky Broad Riverwalk takes you along the cascading river with places for a picnic. Take a step back in time in this authentic tourist town that has kept the charm of the 60s and 70s.
Blaze Dance Studio Asheville
Blaze Dance Studio
This South Asheville dance studio offers a fun and supportive environment for Aerial yoga (flying yoga), flexibility training, pole dancing, open studio sessions, and more. Private sessions and parties are also available. Try the fun Friday night workout for just $5.
Mardi Gras Asheville
Mardi Gras Parade
Everyone is invited to participate in, or simply spectate this family-friendly spectacle. This fun parade in downtown Asheville is led by this year's King and Queen, with dancers, roller skaters, drummers and krewes of colorful characters. 3 PM
Great Smoky Mountains Small Towns
Great Smoky Mountains Small Towns in NC
Visit and vacation in these great small towns in the Great Smoky Mountains on the North Carolina side - basecamps for attractions and outdoor adventures.
Great Smoky Mountains Scenic Drives
5 Scenic Drives, Great Smoky Mountains National Park
The Blue Ridge Parkway is not the only scenic drive in the Smokies! Drive these top scenic roads in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park on the North Carolina side, including Newfound Gap Road, for the best views and places to stop along the way.
Whiteside Mountain
Whiteside Mountain
(2-mile loop hike, moderate) A landmark in the Nantahala National Forest, located between Cashiers and Highlands, Whiteside rises to an elevation of 4,930 ft.. A loop trail takes you to the top of sheer 750-ft. high cliffs (plenty of railings for safety) with outstanding views.
Bare Dark Sky Observatory Burnsville
Bare Dark Sky Observatory, Burnsville
Located at the Mayland Earth to Sky Park in Yancey County, this nationally recognized observatory is open to the public for 360-degree views of the moon, planets, and stars through custom-built telescopes. Each 2-hour stargazing session offers a chance for visitors to learn more about the night sky. Adult tickets at $20.
Benne On Eagle Asheville
Benne on Eagle, Downtown Asheville
Located in downtown Asheville, this eatery serves modern soul food inspired by Appalachian ingredients. Open daily for breakfast & dinner. Brunch on Sundays.
Haywood Park Hotel Asheville
Stay right in the heart of downtown Asheville at this historic, boutique hotel. Be pampered in elegantly-appointed, oversized suites. Enjoy champagne at check-in and immerse yourself in Southern... read more
Indian Creek Falls
Tom Branch Falls, Indian Creek Falls and Juney Whank Falls
See three waterfalls in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park in the Deep Creek area with a two-mile hike. It is also a popular tubing and camping spot each summer. Near Bryson City.
Maggie Valley Labor Day Arts and Craft
Maggie Valley Arts & Crafts Show
Meet 100 artisans and crafters from the Southeast on Labor Day Weekend with a big variety of art, outdoors at the Festival Grounds (3374 Soco Road) in Maggie Valley. 9 AM-4 PM each day. Free admission and parking.
Adelaide
Adelaide Spa & Salon
Facials, body treatments, and massages, including cupping therapy are offered in their tranquil and meditative environment.  The spa is conveniently located near downtown with free parking.  Spa guests have use of the fitness room, multiple pools, sauna and steam room on the day of their visit, plus access to free childcare during their service.  A perfect spa retreat for individuals, couples, and groups. 
Tryon Equestrian Center Restaurants
Tryon International Equestrian Center
World-class complex for horse sport competitions has a variety of restaurants open to the public, including Roger's 50s Diner, Legends Grille above the arena, Blue Ginger Sushi, Campagna Italian and more! Visit Wed-Sun in April-November to watch horses. Top Sunday brunch spot. See our TIEC Guide.
Hickory Nut Falls
Hickory Nut Falls
(1.5 miles roundtrip, easy) This 404-foot waterfall at Chimney Rock Park is one of the highest waterfalls east of the Mississippi River. The trail takes you to a platform at the bottom of the cascade featured in the movie, The Last of the Mohicans. Especially impressive after a good rain.
Barkwells Cabins for Dogs
With two locations near Asheville & Brevard, these dog-centric vacation rentals are close to all the fun and far away from every day. Dogs run, swim and play on acres of fenced meadows with a... read more
Strada Italian
Strada Italiano
This favorite downtown Italian restaurant is filled with the aromas of house baked artisan bread and mouth watering cuisine. Focuses on fresh ingredients, biodynamic and organically-produced wine selections. Offers traditional recipes from Italy, featuring hand-tossed pizzas, savory pastas, housemade desserts, gluten-free and vegetarian options. 27 Broadway. 
Asheville Hiking Tours
Asheville Hiking Tours
Hike gorgeous mountaintops and visit 5-star waterfalls! TripAdvisor ranks Asheville Hiking Tours as one of Asheville's top tour companies! Your guides are expert naturalists and locals, showing you the hidden gems of Pisgah National Forest and the Blue Ridge Parkway. Tour Options: 2-hr, 1/2-day, Full Day, and Private Tours.
Cathedral Falls NC
Cathedral Falls
This modest waterfall is dwarfed by the towering cliffs above, creating a majestic setting. And it's an easy walk with other waterfalls nearby (French Broad Falls & Mill Shoals). 
Upper Creek Falls
Upper Creek Falls
This beautiful waterfall setting has multiple cascades and a swimming hole with a rope swing for diving! Located in Pisgah National Forest along NC Highway 181, about 13.5 miles north of Morganton. It's about a half mile hike from the parking area.
Cold Mountain Music Festival
Cold Mountain Music Festival
Outdoor festival with plenty of live music, food trucks, beer & wine, and more at Lake Logan in Pisgah National Forest south of Waynesville, about 30 miles from Asheville. Day passes from $45/person. Camping and accommodations available - reserve early.

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