Monday, November 28, 2022

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50 Things To Do In Asheville

Drink Some Craft Beer

10 Best Things To Do In Asheville, North Carolina – Full Travel Guide

Asheville is known as Beer City USA. Because with 26 different craft breweries in the city, and another 60 nearby, beer lovers wont want to leave.

Some of the most popular in town are Green Man, Catawba, Wicked Weed, and Lexington Avenue Brewery.

About 100 local beers can be enjoyed in Asheville, and each brewery has its own unique character. From strong hoppy IPAs to dark stouts, to fruity raspberry ales, youre bound to find something youll love.

On top of the incredible beer scene, the city is also steeped in tea culture.

Check out Dobra Tea, afternoon tea at Biltmore, and The Herbiary.

Apple Pick And Get Lost In A Corn Maze

At the end of August, the best apple orchards around Asheville start opening. They wont close again until late October or early November.

Hendersonville about 40 minutes away from Asheville is known as Apple Alley.

This is the place to be for apple and pumpkin picking, corn mazes, hot cinnamon cider donuts, farm animals, and even a bamboo forest.

Shoot apples from a cannon, and take a hayride. Enjoy cider hot, cold, and boozy.

Sky Top Orchard , Stepps Hillcrest, and Jeter Mountain Farm are the top three orchards we recommend for the most fun Asheville things to do.

Grab A Quirky Souvenir At The Antique Tobacco Barn

For a true slice of Americana, head to the Antique Tobacco Barn by the Swannanoa River, just a few minutes drive south of Downtown.

A true treasure hunters paradise, this barn is brimming with over 20,000 different items that have been collected and recycled by over 75 different vendors everything from furniture and tools to glassware and sports equipment.

With the place sprawling across some 77,000 square feet, seldom do people walk away empty-handed.

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Thomas Wolfe Memorial State Historic Site

Famed author Thomas Wolfe grew up in Asheville and his book Look Homeward, Angel was based on the 10 years that he spent living in his mothers boarding house there. The house has been turned into a memorial and museum and while you are there, you can join a 50-minute long guided tour to learn more about Thomas Wolfe as an author and the eclectic group of people that he used as inspiration for the book. It also gives you a glimpse into Ashevilles rise as a tourist destination. If you have time before you go, we highly recommend reading Look Homeward, Angel, and visiting the museum. You can also walk in his footsteps as part of the Asheville Urban Walking Trail.

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The 50 Best Things to Do in Asheville

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5 Must-Do Tours in Asheville, NC Guided & self-led tours in the Paris of the South

Find a Plethora of Activities in Western North Carolina

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See Blue Ridge Parkway Fall Colors

Seeing the Blue Ridge Parkway fall colors is easily one of the most popular things to do in Asheville, NC, each fall. The vibrant city of Asheville intersects this 469-mile drive from Shenandoah National Park in Virginia to the Great Smoky Mountains of North Carolina.

On this drive, youll encounter some of the highest peaks east of the Mississippi and some of the most impressive natural scenery. It wont take long to realize why the Blue Ridge Parkway is called Americans Favorite Drive.

You could do nothing but drive for miles, absorbing the vibrant nature of the Blue Ridge Parkway fall colors but youd be doing this incredible area a disservice. The area is rich in biodiversity and culturally rich which means its an exciting place to get out and explore as you drive. From hiking and biking to learning more about this regions history and culture, you wont run out of things to do while you enjoy the Blue Ridge Parkway fall colors.

The Blue Ridge Parkway can be divided into four sections: The Ridge, The Plateau, The Highlands, and The Pisgah. Asheville is located on the southern end of the Blue Ridge Parkway in the Pisgah Region. Below, weve highlighted the ten best things to do on the Blue Ridge Parkway near Asheville, NC.

  • If youre looking for those iconic photos from the Blue Ridge Parkway, dont miss the Linn Cove Viaduct at Milepost 304. Its easily one of the most famous spots to photograph the Blue Ridge Parkway fall colors.
  • Celebrate The Weekend With Brunch

    Whats one of Asheville, NCs best things to do on the weekend, especially after a long night out at the breweries and bars?

    Brunch! Dine at a rooftop restaurant while live guitar music gently strums in the background. Think breakfast bowls, lox, handhelds, and pancakes.

    A few brunch spots to get you started include The Social Lounge, La Bodega, Early Girl Eatery, Isas French Bistro, The Market Place, and ELDR.

    One of our personal weekend brunch favorites includes Jerusalem Garden Cafe for Middle Eastern and Mediterranean cuisine in Downtown Asheville.

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    Catch A Minor League Baseball Game

    During the summer months the NC Arboretum hosts ArborEvenings, giving visitors a chance to unwind in the beauty of the NC Arboretum. Local and regional musicians perform and beer, wine and soft drinks are available for purchase.

    ArborEvenings is held on Thursdays and most Fridays from mid-June to the end of September. There is no additional admission fee apart from the vehicle parking fee. Admission to ArborEvenings included with Arboretum memberships.

    Admire Some Street Art

    BEST Things To Do In Asheville, NC

    Asheville is known for many things. One of those is its art scene. That art scene is so vibrant and healthy that it is overflowing onto the streets of Asheville. As you walk through the city youll find larger-than-life murals on many of the buildings. Asheville boasts more than 15 murals of all shapes and sizes.

    You can find a large portrait of Dolly Parton, Sloth from The Goonies, or a giant sneaking fox. There are also murals with a spiritual or political message. Some are collages of different images or quotes and others are made for photo ops.

    Walking around and trying to spot the various murals is one of the fun free things to do in Asheville.

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    Wheel Around Town With A Bike Tour

    For when walking tours become a little too slow and outdated, a locally-led bike adventure that heads off the beaten track into the lesser-known alleys and vibrant Asheville suburbs is a wonderfully underrated alternative.

    Whether you roll around historic downtown on a hassle-free e-bike, head out on a sunset tour that explores the cultural city of the city or head into the nearby mountains for a high-paced downhill adventure. Biking is a great way to learn more about the city and its surroundings.

    Ride Coasters At Dollywood

    One of the best Asheville things to do for rollercoaster lovers is to head to Tennessee.

    Our friend Justin introduced us to Dollywood in Pigeon Forge, TN. A little over 1.5 hours from Asheville, if you are Dolly-obsessed, this theme park is for you.

    Find rides, southern cuisine, live shows, and everything Dolly Parton.

    Plus, Pigeon Forge itself makes for a great day trip with its waterparks, Parrot Mountain and Gardens, the Titanic Museum, breweries, wineries, and zip-lining.

    Where To Stay In Asheville

    Explore the best places to stay in Asheville. A few of our top suggestions:

    Dont miss out on these Asheville properties on, too.

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    What are your favorite things to do in Asheville, NC?

    We know. We know. Our best things to do in Asheville, NC list is massive, and every year, it keeps growing as we update our guides.

    If you only have 36 hours to spend in Asheville and want to see the blockbusters, we suggest visiting Biltmore Estate, hiking the Craggies or Black Balsam on the Blue Ridge Parkway, heading to a Downtown AVL brewery and restaurant, and waterfall chasing at DuPont.

    If you have more time, visit Hendersonville, Lake Junaluska, and Black Mountain. Attend a local event, like a concert, theater show, or festival.

    What are your favorite things to do in Asheville? Do you have any questions? Let us know in the comments.

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    Monday 3rd of May 2021

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    Find Your Own Dinner On A Foraging Tour

    A unique way to find a meal in the Asheville area, foraging tours can guests on expeditions into fields and meadows, forests and woodlands, to discover wild edible plants.

    The activity is led by an in-the-know local group who will show you how some of the foliage can be prepared and cooked back at home. Its an easy-going experience that will teach you all about identifying edible greens, berries, mushrooms, flowers, roots and nuts, as well as which native species are and are not safe to eat.

    Tour The Biltmore Estate

    Scenic Drives

    Named after former North Carolina governor Samuel Ashe, Asheville was born in 1797. But it wasnt until George Washington Vanderbilt II finished building his Biltmore Estate in 1895 that the city began to attract national attention.

    The familys 125,000-acre estate became a popular retreat among early 20th century icons such as automaker Henry Ford, inventor Thomas Edison, and Presidents William McKinley, Teddy Roosevelt, and Woodrow Wilson.

    With 250 rooms encompassing over 135,000 square feet, the historic landmarks Châteauesque-style architecture, lushly landscaped gardens, and forestry initiatives have made it the most popular Asheville attraction.

    There are numerous Biltmore tour options, included self-guided and audio tours of the house, gardens, winery, and rooftop, as well as tours just for kids.

    There are also endless outdoor activities on the 8,000-acre estate, ranging from biking, hiking, and kayaking to falconry, fly-fishing, horseback riding, and sporting clays.

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    Spend An Afternoon In The Park

    For outdoor kids activities in Asheville, why not head to one of Ashevilles parks?

    French Broad River Park provides shaded picnic tables, easy walking trails, and a dog park with little and big dog sides.

    Carrier Park promises a playground, easy and paved trails perfect for biking, picnic areas, and even a hockey rink.

    Plus, you can bike, walk, and skate on that unique velodrome.

    Our favorite area, the new RAD Riverwalk in Ashevilles River Arts District, has bike lanes, picnic tables along the French Broad River, and a wide walking path.

    Enjoy swinging benches or launch a float down the river.

    Of course, just be mindful of the littles around the river. There are no lifeguards, and the water can be dangerous.

    And, if you are touring WNCs towns and cities, the Park at Flat Rock has a huge wooden playground, picnic areas, and flat walking trails.

    Plus, Flat Rock is full of family-friendly things to do, including more hiking, seeing farm animals at the Carl Sandburg home, and nearby museums.

    Burton Street Community Peace Gardens

    Burton Street Community Peace Gardens

    The Burton Street Community Peace Gardens were established in 2003 by volunteers from the community of West Ashevilles Burton Street.

    The community had been fighting against development in order to preserve their neighborhood for years, and this garden was meant to be a peaceful response to the troubles they and other neighborhoods near to them faced.

    At first, this wasnt one of Ashevilles prettier sites a lot overgrown with weeds and covered in trash.

    Now, though, it has two flower gardens, two vegetable gardens, a fire pit, and pizza oven, a stage, a pavilion, a greenhouse, and lots of sculptures and art have turned it into quite a stunning location.

    It also functions as a museum, with found objects, art, and works featuring black historical figures educating guests.

    The Burton Street Community Peace Gardens prides itself on the value of community.

    Volunteers grow as much as they can in order to dole out seed starts and fresh produce to their neighborhood.

    Its a beautiful place with a beautiful mission!

    Address: 47 Bryant St, Asheville, NC 28806, United States

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    Visit Thomas Wolfes Childhood Home

    American novelist Thomas Wolfe grew up in downtown Asheville. Today, his childhood home is a historic site and museum dedicated to his life and work. The museum itself, along with a 20 minute film on Wolfes life, is free. You can opt for a guided tour of the house for $5.

    Theres also a small gift shop located in the museum.

    Tour The Hunger Games Filming Locations

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    If youre a fan of books or films, this is one attraction you dont want to miss.

    Located in and around Asheville, these sites have been turned into pivotal points within Katnisss world its easy for locals to spot familiar spots, such as the Henry River Mill Village, they may not even realize were used as backdrops!

    Learn all about what went on behind the scenes, get the inside scoop from film-savvy locals, and dont forget your Mockingjay pin!

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    Have A Memorable Meal At Rhubarb

    Five-time James Beard nominee chef John Fleer pretty much runs Asheville with three restaurants, but his crown jewel is Rhubarb. With a laid-back vibe and a menu centered around Ashevilles bountiful produce, local cheeses, and Appalachian heritage, youll want to allocate a few solid hours herealong with your entire appetite.

    Explore Downtown Ashevilles Restaurant Scene

    Downtown Asheville has an astounding array of critically acclaimed restaurants for a 45-square-mile mountain town with a population of less than 100,000 people.

    Those seeking vegetarian, vegan, or just plain healthy food will have a wealth of options to choose from, from the Green Sage and Laughing Tree Cafes to Plant and Rosettas Kitchen & The Buchi Bar.

    Looking for more exotic fare? Check out the award-winning Indian food at Chai Pani, the French fare of Bouchon, Korean restaurant Stone Bowl, and new-ish Ramen joint Futo Buta.

    If youre looking for chef-driven dining, foodies fawn over hotspots such as Katie Buttons Cúrate , Peter Pollays Posana , Linton Hopkins H& F Burger, John Fleers Rhubarb, and Elliott Moss Buxton Hall.

    But for good old-fashioned Appalachian food, check out rising star Ashleigh Shantis Benne on Eagle, 12 Bones Smokehouse , and the Tupelo Honey Cafe, one of the oldest restaurants in Asheville.

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    Play Vintage Arcade Games

    Playing vintage arcade games is by far one of the most fun things to do in Asheville, especially on a rainy day.

    Located behind the Grove Arcade , if you are a gamer, head to the Asheville Pinball Museum.

    Spend $15 for a wristband to play old arcade games as long as you like. Of course, kids are welcome too.

    Find older games like Donkey Kong and Frogger, video consoles for Nintendo and Super Nintendo, and of course, pinball machines.

    There is also the Appalachian Pinball Museum in Hendersonville.

    Meander At The Botanical Gardens

    Blue Ridge Parkway Guide with Top 50 things to do near Asheville, North ...

    Located within the UNC-Asheville campus of North Asheville, one of our favorite Asheville things to do is hang out at the Botanical Gardens. Plus, its free!

    With 10 acres of streams, nature trails, bridges, and spots perfect for picnicking, this lesser-known gem is also a refuge for endangered wildflowers.

    Pack a blanket and bring a book.

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    Watch Sharks & Stingrays Feed

    Vacations with kids can add up, so if you are curious about inexpensive things to do with kids in Asheville and the surrounding areas, consider taking a day trip to Hendersonville to check out the Aquarium and Shark Lab.

    This is the first inland aquarium in WNC. Children under 2 are free, kids 2-4 are $4.75+, and visitors 5-65 are only $6.75+.

    Meander through the majestic ocean life exhibits. Let the little ones get up close with the touch tank.

    Witness a shark and stingray feed, or catch the reptiles when theyre brought out for personal encounters.

    Aquarium and Shark Lab | 11 N Main St, Hendersonville, NC 28792

    Do Some Vintage Shopping In West Asheville

    There are several vintage stores in West Asheville that are a ton of fun to browse through. Reciprocity has a great selection of denim and everyone is always very friendly! They carry both used and new items. Twice Round is also a great stop if you are looking for some fun finds

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    Asheville Things To Do Map

    A map of Asheville. Use the map to explore all the things to do.

    Located only 5 minutes from downtown Asheville, the Adventure Center of Asheville is the perfect activity for families and children.

    Filled with exciting activities like the Asheville Zipline Canopy Adventure or the onsite mountain bike trail system, there is so much to do here!

    The Adventure Center also features KidZip, which is an adventure designed for kids under 10.

    The perfect stop for Asheville activities for kids, the Asheville Museum of Science features fully interactive exhibits and educational programs for the whole family. Exhibits include minerals, terra boxes, fossils, dinosaur skeletons, and more.

    This is one of the best science learning museums in the area, dont miss out on the opportunity to spark your imagination here.

    Are you a pinball fan? If so, stop by the Asheville Pinball Museum in downtown Asheville where you can play 35 pinball machines and 35 classic video games for one set price.

    Kids and parents alike will have a blast playing games here, so make sure to make an afternoon of it!

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