Asheville, NC – a smallish town with a lot to do! When you only have a few days to explore our wonderful Western North Carolina mountain town, it can get overwhelming trying to plan out your visit. To help you out, we’ve put together a list of some of our favorite places to visit in the Asheville area. Is this a comprehensive list? No! (Remember, we don’t want to frustrate you!) If you’re a planner, this list will be an excellent place for you to start. If you like to show up in a new place and see what happens, the following can be a great link to save on your phone. So, let’s dive in!
Only in Asheville
There are two attractions in Asheville that are truly like no other: The Biltmore Estate and The Grove Park Inn. Both are beautiful historical buildings that attract thousands of visitors each year – and both have grown and adjusted with the times. Want to visit a spa, or eat a delicious meal after touring the buildings? Done! Both the Biltmore and Grove Park Inn offer additional things for you and your family to enjoy.
Asheville Food and Drink
Asheville is truly a food and beer-lovers paradise! The farm-to-table movement is strong here, which means that fresh food is always on the menu. As you will see from the list below, you can eat well on a budget in Asheville, or, you can go all-out and have a fine dining experience. Regardless of the money you spend, you’ll have a great meal.
*Note: Many Asheville restaurants in the list below are popular. If the restaurant accepts reservations, then reserve your spot! Otherwise, be prepared for a wait.
We hesitate to put the number of breweries in the Asheville area in an article, because the minute we do, that number will grow! Asheville, NC is called Beer City USA because we love to make and drink beer. Not keen on brews? Never fear, we’ve also included some great places to drink wine and cocktails on our list.
Some of our favorite local restaurants:
- 12 Bones Smokehouse
- Biscuit Head
- Chai Pani
- Cucina 24
- French Broad Chocolate Lounge
- The Hop Ice Cream Café
- Laughing Seed Café
- Nine Mile
- Sunny Point Café
- Tupelo Honey Café
- Archetype Brewing
- Asheville Brewing Company
- Bhramari Brewing Company
- Ginger’s Revenge
- Green Man Brewery
- Highland Brewing Company
- Hi-Wire Brewing
- New Belgium Brewing Company
- Pisgah Brewing
- The Thirsty Monk
- Wedge Brewing Company
- Wicked Weed
Wine and Fancy Cocktails
The Great Outdoors
Get outside! We spend so much time on computers and phones that it’s such a relief to breathe fresh air and enjoy mountain views. We encourage you to dip your feet into our cool streams, take binoculars to find the bird singing so beautifully and to embrace going somewhere where the wi-fi is weak.
Biking in Asheville
We love cycling so much that we’ve dedicated an entire page to it on our website! If you want to know more about all-things biking in Asheville, click here.
Hiking in and around Asheville, NC
- Hikes along the Blue Ridge Parkway
- Laurel River Trail
- Pisgah National Forest
- Summit Hikes with Views
Waterfall Hikes Near Asheville
- Whitewater Rafting, Ziplining, and Canyoneering
- Horseback Riding and Trails
- Hot Air Balloon Rides
- Blue Ridge Parkway
- The Dragon
- Forest Heritage National Scenic Byway
- Black Mountain Rag to Chimney Rock
Sometimes while on vacation, it can be great to let someone else make the decisions for you; that’s where these great Asheville tours come in. Not sure what brewery or restaurant to visit? Take a tour and experience lots of places in a few hours. Then, when you’ve decided on your favorite, you can return later for a more in-depth experience.
- Asheville Food Tours
- Eating Asheville Walking Food Tours
- Taste Carolina Gourmet Food Tours
- Wild Food Foraging Tour
Do I hear banjo music? Yes, bluegrass is popular in Western North Carolina, and we are proud of our musical heritage! But we’ve got more to offer than just bluegrass, and plenty of great music venues to take it in. Many great musicians make their home here in Asheville, while some travel through and play a few nights at one of the following places to take in some tunes:
- Grey Eagle Tavern & Music Hall
- Isis Music Hall
- Jack of the Wood
- The Mothlight
- The Orange Peel
- Tressa’s Jazz and Blues
Art Galleries and Museums
When you’ve finished feasting your eyes on the beautiful outdoor scenery, venture inside one of our many art galleries and museums. We have a vibrant visual arts scene in Western North Carolina, and we’re proud that our town is so supportive of the arts.
- Appalachian Craft Center
- Ariel Gallery
- Asheville Art Museum
- Asheville Pinball Museum (ok, not strictly an art museum, but so much fun!)
- Black Mountain Center for the Arts
- Blue Spiral 1
- Folk Art Center
- The River Arts District
- Southern Highland Craft Guild Folk Art Center
Whew! We set out to give you a shortlist of our favorite things, but there are so many places we love that the list grew before we knew it. That’s ok! We are here for you anytime you have a question about the places on the list above, or any Asheville, NC attraction. We love helping our guests choose their next best place to visit – and we especially love it when they come back to Asheville for more!