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Henderson County Heritage Museum, Hendersonville
Downtown Hendersonville’s most iconic building, the historic 1905 courthouse, is now home to the county museum. Learn how Hendersonville was founded and has evolved over the decades with interactive exhibits that depict what life was like for early residents. Open Wednesday-Saturday 10 AM-5 PM and Sunday 1-5 PM. (100 N Main St)
Asheville Art Classes & Lessons
Take an afternoon- or week-long painting or pottery class/workshop in Asheville at studios in the River Arts District. Group or private lessons are designed for beginners and experienced. Take home a souvenir of art that your create!
Basilica of St. Lawrence
See one of Asheville's architectural treasures and spiritual anchors with the largest freestanding elliptical dome in the country.
This pristine reservoir near Cashiers has the highest elevation of any lake east of the Mississippi. Signal Ridge Marina rents a variety of Bennington pontoons and tritoons, as well as tubes, paddleboards, skis, wakeboards and kneeboards. There's even a beach!
Fed by Greenland Creek, this falls features multiple sections of sliding cascades, totaling 45 feet in height. The waterfall’s namesake, Carlton McNeill died at age 86 in 2007 after years of living in and caring for the hiking trails and scenery of Panthertown Valley. It’s hard to find a veteran hiker of the area who doesn’t have a memory of McNeill stumbling out of the woods to give them a hand with their expedition.
River Arts District
Some 185 working artists have set up shop in the River Arts District. Drive a little, walk a little to visit studios and galleries. Find an amazing variety of art and see how the artists create it. It's just a few miles from downtown Asheville and Biltmore Estate.
Find one of the biggest varieties of wildflowers in the country. The Great Smoky Mountains alone is a world-renowned preserve of wildflower diversity with more than 1,660 kinds of flowering plants. Take a hike deep into Pisgah National Forest or enjoy wildflowers from your car as you drive the Blue Ridge Parkway.
Virtual Experiences in Asheville & Western NC
Enjoy some virtual experiences in Western NC including outdoor video tours, fitness, meditation, museum tours, kid resources and more.
Winter Wonder Walk, Adventure Center of Asheville
Join this live-action immersive story-walk on an outdoor trail with live characters, lights, and a blustery guest, Jack Frost. Guests will set out on a quest through Winterland to find Jack Frost and the Dugar Plum Fairy and stop a terrible blizzard while meeting many wonderful characters along the way.
Social Distancing Things to Do in Asheville and Western NC
Many are craving fresh air as cabin fever sets in and a break from coronavirus news becomes necessary. Find hikes, waterfalls, scenic drives and more that allow you to safely enjoy the outdoors while maintaining a safe, social distance.
Dog City USA
See our top spots to visit in downtown Asheville on the Dog City USA trail, which includes the Doggie Welcome Center, a restaurant with a dog menu, a bakery and a hotel with rescue pooches.
Earth Day Kid's Festival
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. 12 AM-4 PM at Rabbit Rabbit in Downtown Asheville.
Great Smoky & Tsali Mountain Biking, NC
Find mountain biking heaven in the Nantahala National Forest with 40 miles of trails overlooking Fontana Lake in the Great Smoky Mountains. Located near Bryson City, where you can find bike rentals and supplies.
Pack Square Park
Downtown Asheville's historic public square has been a central focal point since the city's creation in 1797. Spanning from the Vance Monument to the Roger McGuire Green in front of City Hall and the County Building, it's home to many festivals and free events.
50 Late Fall & Holiday Events
November & December: Find many events during our long holiday season, including Christmas at Biltmore, giant light displays and the Gingerbread House competition.
Shop 75 national and local outlets in this beautiful, new outdoor shopping village. It's located on I-26, just six miles from Biltmore and seven miles from downtown Asheville. It's pet-friendly, and there are many events and sales throughout the year.
Elk in Cataloochee, Great Smoky Mountains
Watch the elk in beautiful Cataloochee Valley in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The best time is just before sunset. Take a picnic and tailgate. Also, tour historic buildings or hike.
Independent & Continuing Care Retirement Communities
Find the top senior housing options near Asheville and the Blue Ridge Mountains for older adults who need extra support. These communities include residential and personal care homes, memory care communities, rehabilitation, skilled nursing, hospice care, and respite care.
Annual Membership, NC Arboretum
Receive many wonderful benefits and save with an annual membership to the North Carolina Arboretum Society. Attend special events and educational programs and receive benefits such as free parking, discounts, special mailings, e-newsletter and reciprocal privileges with 200 American Horticultural Society gardens nationwide.
Rate: From $70/couple
Rate: From $70/couple
Find Foodie Favorites
Check out our very diverse and passionate food and drink scene. Be a little adventurous and try something new. Or, enjoy time-honored classics. In downtown, walk to 60+ locally-owned innovative restaurants, many with outdoor dining. From crafted cocktails to local brews, there's plenty to drink. Forage for food, visit a farm or tour a vineyard.
Bryson City, Smoky Mountains
Find much to do! Ride the train on the Great Smoky Mountains Railroad before you explore their downtown shops and galleries, or paddleboard down the river. Nearby Deep Creek in the Smokies features camping, hiking, trout fishing, and the ever-popular tubing. Raft the Nantahala River. And that's just the beginning!
Family-Friendly Activities in and around Asheville
Looking for some family fun in or around Asheville, North Carolina? Check out our list of the top family-friendly outings for exploring Asheville with kids! Western North Carolina is a virtual outdoor playground with parks and gardens, kid-friendly hikes, whitewater rafting, ziplining, biking, and more.
Live Music & Dancing, Downtown Asheville
Asheville offers a multitude of places to go for live music and dancing any day of the week.
Mast General Store, Hendersonville
This WNC institution stocks clothing, gear, toys, and souvenirs for all ages, but kids particularly enjoy the barrels full of all kinds of candy. (527 N Main St)
This small town offers not one but two main streets, Upper Street (Oak Avenue) and Lower Street (Locust Avenue). A must-stop is the Toe River Arts Council Gallery. Visit for many festivals and gem mining.
Oklawaha Brewing Company, Hendersonville
This brewery around the corner from Main Street takes pride in being kid-friendly with board games, coloring supplies, chalk, and nonalcoholic options. (147 1st Ave E)
From the innovative to the traditional, Asheville has a plethora of Indian restaurants for every taste. See the best places for a lunch buffet to sample everything or to satisfy a specific craving for curries, thalis, or tandoori dishes served piping hot and spiced to your preference.
Holiday Sip & Shop at Grovewood Gallery
Head to Grovewood Gallery for a variety of unique holiday gifts including ceramic tableware, wooden bowls and utensils, blown glass, fine jewelry, handwoven scarves, letterpress greeting cards, and much more. Wine and non-alcoholic cider will be available for sipping!10 AM-5 PM.
Swimming Near Bryson City
Swim, kayak, canoe at this small park at Fingerlake Day Use Area of Fontana Lake. You’ll find a small park with picnic tables, public restrooms and a swimming area.
Enjoy scenic horseback trail rides in the Asheville area with miles of trails, experienced guides and gentle horses. For the more experience riders, there are hundreds of miles to explore.
Acupuncture & Healing Arts in and around Asheville
Find a big variety of healing modalities around Asheville for the ultimate holistic health options including reiki, sound healing, coaching, Ayurveda, reflexology, acupuncture, and more.
Seclusion Package, Pinecrest B&B
Book a 2-night couple’s getaway at the beautiful Pinecrest Bed & Breakfast in Asheville. Package includes self-check-in, charcuterie tray and a bottle of wine upon arrival, daily hot breakfast delivered to your room, in-room couple’s massage, 1 picnic lunch with hike itinerary, and unbeatable hospitality! Click for rates.
Japanese, Sushi & Poke
Whether you’re gathering around the grill at a hibachi steakhouse, have a hankering for sushi take-out, or want a colorful poke bowl, find our top picks for Japanese restaurants in Asheville.
This quaint mountain village at 3,700 feet elevation has great restaurants, breweries, shops, Wildcat Lake beach, and many events including the Woolly Worm Festival in October. Near Beech Mountain skiing and Grandfather Mountain hiking.
Fishing Guide for Great Smoky Mountains NC
See our fishing tips and best creeks, rivers and lakes to fish in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park on the North Carolina side and nearby towns including Cherokee, Sylva and Bryson City.
This is the coolest town on our list for temperature (highest town in the eastern USA at 5,506 feet elevation). While it's very popular for skiing and snowboarding each winter, they have an impressive trail system for hiking and mountain biking in the summer. Summer golf and scenic chairlift rides too. Each fall, follow the yellow brick road at Autumn at Oz.
Labor Day Weekend Events & Things to Do
See our special list of top events, festivals and things to do during Labor Day Weekend in Asheville and the surrounding towns and mountains.
Hike the Highest Trails in the East
With more than 100 miles of public hiking trails, including the highest trails in the eastern United States, Burnsville has been called the Hiking Capital of Western North Carolina.
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 largest downtown in western North Carolina outside of Asheville is filled with historic buildings and updated streetscapes with flowers and art. Find many spots for outdoor dining and a big variety of quality shops and galleries along a six-block stretch of Main Street. Don't miss two street festivals, the Garden Jubilee and the huge NC Apple Festival.
This team picks the perfect outdoor location for couples that love nature, including waterfalls and mountaintops. A variety of packages include professional photography session with gorgeous scenery, videography and custom ceremony with an officiant. Book weekdays (Mon-Thurs) for more private settings at some of the most iconic mountain locations.
Rate: From $1250
Rate: From $1250
Unique Wellness Experiences
Find the perfect places for holistic wellness and self-care, whether it’s a week-long wellness retreat or a one-day experience. From the high concentration of experienced, certified, world-class yoga teachers and licensed and insured massage therapists and bodyworkers, Asheville is home to some of the most gifted holistic practitioners in the nation.
Places to Stay in and around Dillsboro
Find places to stay in Dillsboro including historic Inns, cabins, vacation rentals, and hotels that offer riverfront lodging, walkability to town, scenic balcony views, pet-friendly accommodations, hot tubs, and access to plenty of outdoor activities.
Pisgah National Forest
This 500,000+ natonal forest surrounds Asheville and features some of the most beautiful and rugged mountain scenery. Not to mention, the best recreational opportunities in eastern North America with whitewater rivers, waterfalls and hundreds of miles of trails.
Top 8 Zip Line Canopy Tours
Fly above the trees and experience the mountains' natural beauty from a bird's perspective. See our favorite zip line canopy courses to enjoy in the Asheville area of the North Carolina Blue Ridge Mountains. No experience is needed. Canopy guides provide all instruction and assistance. It's fun for all fitness levels!
Weaverville BBQ Festival
New for 2021, this delicious festival will include a judged BBQ competition with prizes, live music, kid activities, artisans and crafters, entertainment, and more! $2 for adults, kids 10 and under are free. 4-8 PM.
Touring America’s Largest Home is easily the number one indoor attraction in Western North Carolina. Experience the beauty of Biltmore House and its century-old gardens where the Vanderbilt family once strolled. Come see why George Vanderbilt chose Asheville as the site for his famous estate. Explore Biltmore's 8,000-acre Blue Ridge Mountain backyard, taste award-winning wines, dine and shop. See our extensive guide with many photos and tips.
Bhramari Brewing Company
(101 S Lexington Ave) Presenting a selection of flagship brews, as well as fun and unique small-batch brews, this brewery and restaurant offers a friendly atmosphere and is rumored to have the best burger in Asheville. Don’t miss brunch from 11 AM-3 PM on Sundays. Open daily.
This bird sanctuary is a wonderful wildlife oasis in the very busy north Asheville area. Walk a 3/8-mile boardwalk through a wetland area and by the lake, complete with sitting areas along the way to soak up the views and watch birds.
A Space Pawdyssey Halloween Dog Parade, NC Arboretum
Watch the costume parade and visit with local dog-themed vendors at the NC Arboretum's first annual Halloween Dog Parade in the fall gardens. 1-4 PM.
Fontana Lake & Dam
Located in the Great Smoky Mountains, enjoy fishing, boating, camping and swimming in this beautiful lake. Drive or walk across the highest dam east of the Rockies and stop by the Visitor Center to learn more about it.
Restaurants in Dillsboro
Find plenty of dining options, including family-friendly, pet-friendly, fast-casual, riverside dining, and a brewery offering 32 taps!
Top Asheville Wedding Officiants
Whether you want a destination wedding, elopement, commitment ceremony, or vow renewal, these top Asheville wedding officiants can help you plan your vows with ease. With years of experience helping couples celebrate their love, officiants help create a meaningful wedding ceremony in the mountains that you'll cherish.
Honeymoon Package, Hot Springs Log Cabins
Arrive on Sunday to your romantic honeymoon cabin. Enjoy 5 nights of romantic seclusion, before checking out on Friday. A bottle Biltmore wine and chocolates truffles are included to help you celebrate. No wedding required! Outdoor hot tub on porch. (Sun-Thurs nights only.)
Rate: From $500
Rate: From $500
(507 Haywood Rd) This craft beer collective in West Asheville is the perfect spot for beer snobs, offering a variety of hard-to-find craft, world-class craft beer. Choose from their 20 rotating taps and extensive bottle selection of craft beers, wines, meads, sakes, and ciders. Open daily 12-11 PM.
This beautiful waterfall setting is an easy hike in Pisgah National Forest. It's located in a lush cove off NC Highway 215, about 10 miles north of Highway 64 and 6.7 miles south of the Blue Ridge Parkway.
Bryson City Gem Mining
Miners and gem enthusiasts have been panning the Smoky Mountains for gems as far back as the 1800s. Find a variety of spots to gem mine throughout Bryson City!
OM Sanctuary Retreats
This center for self-renewal in Asheville has inspiring outdoor spaces like labyrinth gardens, stone paths, patios, waterfall fountains, green space, and woodland trails. They offer aromatherapy, massage, energy work, guided meditation, yoga, tai chi, guided hikes, belly dancing, tarot readings, and more. Choose from a variety of retreat options ranging from large groups to individual packages that include one overnight stay, light breakfast, Holistic Class, and contemplative destinations.
Mikes on Main, Hendersonville
Step inside this retro soda shop and travel back a few decades to the era of soda jerks in paper hats and big band music. (303 N Main St)
Kid-Friendly Restaurants in and around Asheville
Find plenty of kid-friendly restaurants in Asheville with extra “kid perks” like casual settings with outdoor space, play areas, arcade games, and more.
Restaurants in Sylva
Find places to eat in Sylva including breakfast, pizza, southern comfort food, take-out, barbecue, or Main Street diner staples, Sylva has a lot of options! Find a variety of ethnic cuisine to choose from including Greek, Italian, Caribbean, Mexican, Chinese, Latin, and more! Also find coffee shops and cafes with delicious pastries and baked goods.
Sleep under the stars in our national parks, forests or a campground. Or stay in a hostel.
Golf in the Blue Ridge Mountains
Scenic mountain beauty and a pleasant climate provide a magnificent setting for a day of golf in Asheville and nearby towns and resorts. Lush fairways, sprawling bent grass greens, cool breezes and a gently undulating terrain.
Asheville Community Acupuncture
This community-supported acupuncture clinic provides Traditional Chinese Medicine, including acupuncture, herbal medicine, lifestyle counseling, and integrative healing techniques. Treatments are provided in a community room setting on a sliding scale and they are open almost every day, with evening and weekend hours. Acupuncture treatments last approximately 30-60 minutes
Carolina Living Choices
Carolina Living Choices is a guide for active, senior living retirement in Western NorthCarolina. They offer a wealth of information and expertise on real estate, 55+, and retirement communities near Asheville, including lifestyle resources for education, enrichment, recreation, and travel. See helpful articles and request a free print and digital retirement guide on their website.
Places to Stay in and around Sylva
Sylva offers a picturesque, small-town escape with plenty of unique places to stay including rustic cabins, large vacation rentals with back porch mountain views, charming B&B’s, historic inns, and more.
Best 40 Museums & Historic Sites
Explore a big variety of very interesting museums and historic places in Asheville and the surrounding mountain small towns, filled with the fascinating history and culture of the Appalachian Mountains. Many are free to visit.
Skyterra Wellness Retreats
Retreat to the Blue Ridge Mountains for a week of self-care! Stress management, fitness, spa, and culinary experts help you relax and break old habits that no longer serve you. Whether it's weight loss, yoga, hiking, or healthy, chef-prepared food that interests you, Skyterra guides you towards sustainable lifestyle changes at a 300-acre wooded campus of pristine trails and waterfalls. All-inclusive with programming, lodging, three delicious chef-prepared meals daily catered to your dietary needs and preferences, snacks, and refreshments. See their website for rates.
Savor & Stay Package, Highland Lake Inn & Resort
Enjoy warm days and cool evenings at this gorgeous Inn & Resort in Flat Rock, just 20 mins to Asheville. Lots to do including kayaking, fishing, walking trails, outdoor games, and dining. Receive a $50 dining voucher when you stay 2 or more nights at onsite restaurant, Season’s at Highland Lake.
So many options for mountain bike riders of all skill levels. Plus, bike the Blue Ridge Parkway or a greenway.
Mountain Discovery Pass, Carolina Mornings
Choose from a large variety of cabins, cottages, and vacation rentals in the Blue Ridge Mountains (that sleep 2-25 guests). Eligible properties offering our Mountain Discovery Pass will receive a Biltmore Estate pass as well as access to activities including zip-lining, a trampoline park, rafting, snow tubing, and a ski lift pass!
Rates: From $100/night studio, $134/night 1BR, $185/night 2BR
Rates: From $100/night studio, $134/night 1BR, $185/night 2BR
Waterfalls Top 60
Of hundreds of waterfalls near Asheville, we picked the most spectacular falls that are easy to find. Some can be enjoyed with a short walk or even roadside. Others require a scenic hike. See full descriptions for each, with plenty of photos! Also see Waterfall Drives & Maps.
7th Night Free, Yellow Rose Rentals
Stay 6 nights and get the 7th free in a cabin in the Great Smoky Mountains, including Bryson City, Cherokee, Nantahala River and Fontana Lake. Choose 1-5 bedrooms, variety of amenities. Pet-friendly options too.
Rates: From $125/night
Rates: From $125/night
Inspired Change Yoga
Inspired Change Yoga is a safe supportive community for all to practice, explore, and connect with self and others. Their goal is to make yoga accessible to everyone; and they offer classes for kids, teens, beginners, and advanced practitioners. Cost: They offer a visitor’s pass for $29, which includes unlimited yoga for seven days.
Connemara Hiking Trails, Hendersonville
Hike to the top of Glassy Mountain via a five-plus-mile trail system located on the grounds of the Carl Sandburg Home National Historic Site in Flat Rock.
Green & Eco-Friendly Real Estate
Find your green home in Western North Carolina with focuses on sustainability, community living, and energy-efficient green built homes.
Top Spas in and around Asheville
Relax and rejuvenate as you get pampered at a spa. From natural hot springs to world-class destination spas, there are plenty of choices. We have been a destination for wellness for centuries. Also, find a mecca for holistic and alternative wellness. In recent years, Asheville has become a well-known destination for travelers seeking holistic and alternative wellness.