Asheville, North Carolina is a vibrant city nestled in the heart of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Known for its eclectic arts scene, farm-to-table cuisine, and stunning natural surroundings, Asheville is a must-visit destination for travelers looking for a unique and authentic experience. As a born and raised native to the area I have rounded up some of the best things to do in Asheville. Whether you are here with your family or to have a weekend getaway with friends or a loved one you will find something on this list!
I love to visit the Biltmore Estate. It is a magnificent 8,000-acre property that features a grand mansion, beautiful gardens, and a winery. Built by George Vanderbilt in the late 19th century, the Biltmore is the largest private home in the United States. Biltmore is a stunning example of the Gilded Age. The Biltmore Estate offers hiking, shopping, dining, ice cream, a petting barn and playground as well as exploring the house and gardens. It is a fun day for the entire family!
Asheville is surrounded by the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains, and there are many hiking trails to explore in the area. One of the most popular is the Blue Ridge Parkway, a scenic drive that offers stunning views of the mountains and the surrounding countryside. A few of my favorite hiking trails are: Black Balsalm Knob, Bearwallow Mountain, Max Patch, Dupont State Forest
One of the most unique things to do in Asheville is visit the River Arts District. Asheville is known for its vibrant arts scene, and the River Arts District is the perfect place to explore it. This historic neighborhood is home to a community of artists and craftsmen who create everything from pottery to jewelry to paintings. The River Arts District also overs unique coffee shops, bars, and places to eat. It truly has a little something for everyone!
Asheville has a thriving farm-to-table food scene, and there are many excellent restaurants to try in the city. Be sure to check out the Asheville Food Tours to get a taste of the best food Asheville has to offer. Some of my favorite places to eat are Curaté, Avenue M, Limones, Bull and Beggar and Andaaz. Some of the best kid-friendly places are Tupelo Honey, Farm Burger, Packs Tavern, White Duck Taco and Vinnie’s Italian.
Asheville is also known for its craft beer scene, and there are many breweries to visit in the city. Some of the most popular include Sierra Nevada Brewing Company, Highland Brewing Company, and Wicked Weed Brewing. My most favorite and a local secret out of the main tourist areas is the Whistle Hop! It is super kid friendly with activities including Putt Putt, a slide and climbing wall, yard games and more. If wine is more your thing make sure you check out Metro Wines! Just outside of downtown on Charlotte St. Metro Wines is the best wine shop with a bottle for every occasion! Their staff is super friendly and knowledgable!
Okay, I had to throw this in here, but a portrait session is an amazing way to commemorate a special trip or to document your lives in the Asheville area. Portrait sessions are great for families, children, couples or really anyone celebrating a milestone or special occasion. Asheville makes a beautiful backdrop for portraits whether you are wanting an urban vibe downtown, a mountain top session on the parkway, a session at the Biltmore Estate or the gardens at the Arboretum. Each portrait session ends with the opportunity to purchase beautiful, heirloom prints of your images so you will have something tangible to display in your home or pass down through generations.
In conclusion, Asheville, North Carolina is a unique and exciting destination with plenty to see and do. Whether you’re interested in exploring the outdoors or sampling the local cuisineAsheville has something for everyone. It does not matter if you live here or are visiting there are some many fun and unique, family friendly things to do in Asheville.