For decades, Asheville has been a destination known for its clean, mountain air and therapeutic environment. Once a part of the Cherokee nation, Asheville is still an area where the outdoors is the main attraction. The Blue Ridge Mountains are home to the spectacular Blue Ridge Parkway, a scenic drive that extends for 469 miles and showcases some of the most beautiful panoramic views and native flora of the Appalachian region.
There are also tons of things to do for the daring adventurer. There are miles and miles of hiking and mountain biking trails, nature preserves, lakes, and rivers. Mountain bikers enjoy the Bent Creek Experimental Forest with over 6,000 acres of single track riding. Hikers have the entire expanse of the Pisgah National Forest to explore. And if you are a whitewater adventurer, there are multiple opportunities to kayak, raft, or tube down one of the local rivers.
For a bit of R and R, visitors take a rest at the Asheville Salt Caves where the rooms made entirely of Himalayan salt proclaim to release tension and restore vital energy. You can also take a free yoga class at Asheville Community Yoga where practitioners from all over the city volunteer their time on a donation only basis. Or visit The Grove Park Inn and Spa with its underground caves, waterfalls, and private treatment rooms.
Asheville has also made the concept of farm to table dining a real experience with famous chefs like Katie Button creating tasty culinary dishes for every appetite. You won’t want to miss restaurants like Curate with its tapas style Spanish delights or Posana with its organic, fresh menu that changes daily.
Go back in time and immerse yourself in Victorian splendor! Asheville was the chosen summer destination of one of America’s most influential families, the Vanderbilts. Biltmore Estate and Winery is located in the heart of Biltmore Village, a short drive from Downtown Asheville. Visitors can tour this majestic chateau set among the backdrop of our Blue Ridge Mountains and feel the Victorian era come to life. The Estate hosts many events throughout the year including exhibits from famous artists, musicians, and period artifact displays. The Estate also encompasses a working farm where guests can visit with the animals, a vineyard for wine tasting, extensive botanical gardens, charming restaurants, and Victorian inspired gifts.
This magnificent hotel was built by Edwin Wiley Grove in 1905. It is an architectural wonder built entirely of native granite quarried from the mountain it rests upon, Sunset Mountain. The hotel is home to magnificent restaurants, a world-class spa, an antique car museum, and stunning views. Golf enthusiasts will enjoy its Donald Ross designed course completed in 1924. Take a horse-drawn carriage ride throughout the grounds and watch the sunset from the rocking chairs on the Sunset Terrace. It is truly a day to remember!
The North Carolina Arboretum is 65 acres of cultivated gardens showcasing native plants of the Appalachian region. Displays pay homage to our local heritage with highlights being the Bonsai Garden, Wildflower exhibit, and the Butterfly Garden. Guests are welcome to bike as well through the nature trails that also link to the Bent Creek Experimental Forest.