There are Tons of Vacation Ideas & Activities in Asheville!

Asheville-Postcard-shot Photo courtesy of Asheville Area Chamber of Commerce

No matter what your interests, you'll find great things to do in Asheville. We've made a handy list of our favorites and best-known attractions just for you!


Asheville Weather and Climate

weather Western North Carolina is a great place to visit any time of the year. Asheville is well-known for having 4 distinct seasons without ever reaching extremes. Escape the summer heat, go skiing on nearby slopes in the winter, or visit us for fantastic displays of spring wildflowers and autumn foliage.Current Weather for Asheville Climate Averages for Asheville

Shopping in Asheville

shopping No matter what you’re looking for, Asheville’s shopping offers a diverse mix sure to please everyone. You can find it all, from local Appalachian traditional arts & crafts to modern art in every medium. Downtown Asheville is known for its eclectic mix of locally-owned shops. You’ll discover hidden treasures, unique gifts and souvenirs in our many specialty stores, antique shops, custom jewelry and art galleries. For great deals on clothing and sporting goods, there are several shopping malls within minutes of downtown.
GroveArcadeEnterance Photo courtesy of Asheville Area Chamber of Commerce The Grove Arcade Located in downtown Asheville, this historic building of fascinating architecture was built in 1929 as a public marketplace. During World War II it was taken over as a government building. In 2002 it was renovated and restored as an indoor/outdoor marketplace, and has quickly become one of the outstanding places to eat, shop and stroll around in Asheville.
Shoppers-in-Biltmore-Village Photo courtesy of Asheville Area Chamber of Commerce Historic Biltmore Village Located at the entrance to Biltmore Estate and 1.5 miles from Brookstone Lodge features more than 40 shops, galleries and restaurants most of which reside in historic homes and buildings. Enjoy a stroll down brick sidewalks and tree lined streets while you experience some of the best food and shopping in Asheville.
shopdowntown Photo courtesy of Asheville Area Chamber of Commerce Downtown Asheville Shopping Downtown is a place where locals and tourists are bound to find something. Asheville’s downtown hosts almost 200 retail shops, museums and theaters, and art galleries. Whether you are a window shopper or looking for that rare find; downtown will fulfill your need.
mast Mast General Store A favorite for locals and tourists alike. They offer old-fashioned candy, hand-made toys and gifts, clothing, outdoor gear, and regional items.
Asheville Mall Western North Carolina’s largest shopping center featuring 5 department stores and over 100 specialty stores to help you enjoy a fun filled day of shopping.

Art Galleries

art Asheville is one of the top arts destinations in the Southeast representing hundreds of art galleries and working art studios. Local artisans have made their mark on the Asheville area. Asheville was ranked in the top five for two consecutive years (2007 and 2008) in the AmericanStyle magazine small cities category in the annual "Top 25 Arts Destinations" reader's poll.
AshDownGalleryAssoc Asheville Downtown Galleries Association ADGA represents over 20 downtown galleries which encompasses the diversity of art found in downtown Asheville. They will keep you abreast of the ever changing exhibitions in the galleries and give you information on the City Center Art Walks held annually.
RiverArts-District River Arts District The rapidly growing River Arts District is located along the French Broad River. They host studio strolls where local and visitors can visit and find all ranges of art from contemporary to traditional to eclectic.
FolkArtCenter Folk Art Center on the Blue Ridge Parkway at milepost 382 is located minutes away from Brookstone Lodge. It houses a craft shop, three galleries, a library, and an auditorium. They showcase the finest in traditional and contemporary craft of the Southern Appalachians with ongoing exhibits and demonstrations. Open daily and admission is free.
WoolworthWalk Woolworth Walk Showcasing the works of more than 150 artists in Asheville's largest local artist gallery. It is an eclectic mix of jewelry, fine art, crafts, paintings, and so much more. Located in downtown Asheville it is a great location and continues to attract new artists and visitors. Be sure to also stop by their fully operational Soda Fountain which was built to resemble the original Woolworth Luncheonette.
Biltmore Village Galleries Historic Biltmore Village is located at the entrance to Biltmore Estate and 1.5 miles from Brookstone Lodge. and features more than 40 shops, galleries and restaurants most of which reside in historic homes and buildings. Enjoy a stroll down the brick sidewalks and tree lined streets while you experience some of the best food and shopping in Asheville.


food Asheville has some of the best restaurants to suite just about everyone. Whether you like fine dining in a glamorous setting or would prefer to relax at a sidewalk café to experience the local charm, Asheville has it all.
Asheville Independent Restaurant Association (AIR) This non-profit organization is dedicated to Asheville’s locally owned and operated restaurants. Over 60 independent restaurants are listed by cuisine or location for your convenience.
Biltmore Village Restaurants Located 1.5 miles from Brookstone Lodge are an array of restaurants for you to choose from. From the relaxed atmosphere to a more formal setting, you will find some of the best food this area has to offer just moments away.
Downtown Asheville Restaurants Downtown Asheville is located just minutes away from Brookstone Lodge where you will find so many wonderful restaurant choices.
Grove Arcade Restaurants The Grove Arcade is located in downtown Asheville, just minutes away from Brookstone Lodge, and is a unique shopping and dining experience. This historic building was built in 1929 and used to be a public marketplace until World War II. It was renovated in 2002 and has quickly become one of the places to visit while in Asheville.


skiing Whether you're just learning or an old pro, you'll find that the Asheville area offers a number of exciting skiing and snow boarding destinations. Both locals and visitors to the Asheville area love taking advantage of the close proximity and beautiful backdrop that the Blue Ridge Mountain’s provide.
Wolf Ridge Ski Resort Just 30 minutes from Asheville, this family oriented resort has some great slopes for everyone to enjoy.
Cataloochee Ski Area Cataloochee Ski Area features 3 expert, 4 intermediate, and 5 novice slopes and is located 40 miles west of Asheville.
Beech Mountain Resort Featuring excellent skiing and a charming Alpine Village filled with shops, restaurants and more. Beech Mountain has 14 slopes and 9 lifts.
Sugar Mountain Resort Sugar Mountain Resort has 115 acres with 20 slopes and 5 lifts. You can ski or snowboard as well as go snow tubing and snowshoeing.
Hawks Nest Hawks Nest includes a range of slopes suited no matter what your skiing level. They also have the “biggest snow tubing operation on the East Coast.”


golf With Asheville’s beautiful mountains as a backdrop along with mild climates, why wouldn’t you plan Asheville as your next golf get-away? Western North Carolina has some of the finest public golf course where you can enjoy your next round of golf.
BlackMtnGolf-Logo Black Mountain Golf Course Located at the foot of the of WNC’s Black Mountain Range. This 6,215-yard par 71 18-hole facility is the home to the 747-yard, par 6 17th hole, which at one time was the longest hole in the world.
BroadmoorLogo Broadmoor Golf Links Broadmoor is the region's only links-style course. It is a natural environment with ponds and marshes and lies in the Mills River Valley, beside the French Broad River. You will enjoy a 6,921 yard, Par 72 championship course that is playable for every golfer.
HighVista High Vista Country Club The mountain course at High Vista offers a wonderful venue for challenging play. This 18-hole golf course offers water features on every hole and spectacular mountain views throughout the entire course.
ReemsCreekLogo Reems Creek Golf Club Located only minutes away from Asheville, in a beautiful valley completely surrounded by the scenic Blue Ridge Mountains. They offer a Scottish Highland look with its rolling terrain in this secluded setting.
Asheville Municipal Golf Course Asheville Municipal Golf Course was designed to be challenging as well as fun. The front nine is a flat, wide open layout and the back nine is wooded and has more elevation changes. Located just minutes from Brookstone Lodge.


rafting “For those who want to make a big splash on their vacation, come experience all that the Western North Carolina Mountains has to offer.” Outside Magazine Asheville area consists of four rivers (French Broad, Pigeon, Nantahala, and Nolichucky) ranging from Class I (easy) to Class IV (Advanced) where you can select the one that best suites the adventurer in you.
Adventurous Fast Rivers Rafting Huck Finn Rafting Adventures
Biltmore River Float Trips Mountain Adventure Guides
Blue Ridge Outing Company NOC_001

Nantahala Outdoor Center

Carolina Outfitters Rolling Thunder River Company
Endless River Adventures USA Raft
French Broad Rafting Expeditions WildWater

Wildwater Rafting


clip_image002_0000 Some of the most scenic hiking can be done here in the mountains of Asheville, NC. No matter what your itinerary may include, you can find a trail to enjoy. Whether you want to take the family or endure a more strenuous hike, the choices are plentiful.
chimneyrock Photo courtesy of Chimney Rock Park Chimney Rock Park You will enjoy hiking trails for all skill levels along with spectacular views. Its most notable feature is a 315-foot granite monolith accessible by elevator and providing views of the park and surrounding countryside. The Last of the Mohicans, the 1992 epic romantic adventure, filmed part of the movie along the Cliff Trail, including the climactic fight scene at the top of Hickory Nut Falls, a 404-foot waterfall located in the park.
hookerfalls Photo courtesy of JenniferBlake photography DuPont State Forest Located on a 10,000 acre tract located south of Asheville, it has nearly 100 miles of multi-use trails and roads throughout the forest. It is widely used for many recreational activities, including mountain biking, hiking, swimming, and kayaking. It has several magnificent waterfalls some of which include Bridal Veil Falls, High Falls, Hooker Falls, and Triple Falls.{D818B28C-2280-4139-B2B7-B07C8C04AA72}
flowerbee Photo courtesy of JenniferBlake photography Mount Mitchell Ascending more than a mile high, it is the highest peak in the Appalachian Mountains. During the summer months wildflowers are abundant and the forest is lush and green. It is located in Mount Mitchell State Park.
mtpisgah Mount Pisgah Trail Located at milepost 407 of the Blue Ridge Parkway, this trail is 1.6 miles long and is of moderate difficulty (sections near the summit can be rather steep). There is a small observation deck near the TV tower at the summit and the view at the top is spectacular.
clip_image002 HikeWNC “This site is your on-line hiking guidebook for the Mountain region of North Carolina, containing all of the information you need to make your next trip complete.” Find specific hikes or just browse around and look at photos and information.
linville Linville Caverns Located deep inside Humpback Mountain is North Carolina's only caverns. Linville caverns remain active as mineral deposits continue to form the stalactites and stalagmites. Guided Tours are offered daily and on weekends in the winter months.
fallpath Blue Ridge Parkway Trails Asheville is located around milepost 384 and is one of the most scenic parts of the country with its blue tinged mountains, and majestic gorges. The BRP trails encompass 496 miles and consist of trails for all skill levels. Be sure to stop by the Blue Ridge Parkway Visitor Destination Center at Parkway milepost 384.
urbanPhoto courtesy of Asheville Area Chamber of Commerce Urban Trail Walking Tour of Asheville The Asheville Urban Trail is a self guided tour that takes you around Asheville telling the history through sculptures around the city. The Asheville Area Chamber of Commerce has free brochures on this unique 1.7 mile trail.


GetAway_001 Asheville is one of the best places to visit. With such accolades as Southern Living naming Asheville the “Best Mountain Destination” and Frommer's naming “Asheville one of just a dozen global must-see destinations in 2007” and Outside magazine naming Asheville the “Best Southern Town” it is no wonder we are a must see city. Fill your days with as much or as little as you desire…you can’t go wrong. Listed below are some attractions that are popular in our area.
GoCarts Asheville’s Fun Depot Awarded Top Family Entertainment Center in the World two years in a row; they are the area's only facility featuring: multi-level laser tag, 18 hole indoor mini-golf, a 24-foot climbing wall, soft play area, batting cages, multi-level outdoor go-cart track, indoor go-kart track, bumper cars, and mini-bowling! Young or old there is something for the kid in all of us. Front Desk for ticket and/or package information
BlueRidgeDestCtr-By-Vicki-Dameron Photo by Vicki Dameron Blue Ridge Visitor Destination Center The Blue Ridge Parkway Visitor Destination Center is located at BR Parkway milepost 384 (minutes away from Brookstone Lodge). It features a variety of exhibits and houses a 70-seat theater, information and orientation services, and a retail shop. The LEED-certified (gold rating) structure incorporates active/passive heating and cooling, radiant floor heating, a "green" roof, and other energy efficient features.
Tourists Asheville Tourists Baseball Enjoy a baseball game at McCormick Field in Asheville. Come see where Crash Davis (Kevin Costner) in 1988’s blockbuster hit Bull Durham played baseball. Season begins in April and goes through September.
Biltmoeraerial Biltmore Estate When staying in Asheville it is a must to visit Biltmore Estate. It is America's largest home which has magnificent gardens and an award-winning winery. They have numerous outdoor activities, great shopping, and delicious dining as well.

See Front Desk for ticket and/or package information

chimneyrockPhoto courtesy of Chimney Rock Park Chimney Rock Park One of the best places to see scenic views, unique rock formations and enjoy some hiking. Its most notable feature is a 315-foot granite monolith accessible by elevator and providing views of the park and surrounding countryside. The Last of the Mohicans, the 1992 epic romantic adventure, filmed part of the movie along the Cliff Trail, including the climactic fight scene at the top of Hickory Nut Falls, a 404-foot waterfall located in the park.
GreatSmokyMtnRailroad-Logo Great Smoky Mountain Railroad Ride the rails with a variety of excursions to choose from and enjoy scenic train journeys across valleys and through river gorges in a beautiful part of the country.
Arboretum-Logo North Carolina Arboretum This 434-acre site is one of the most beautiful and natural settings in the US. You can benefit from a variety of classes and workshops. Enjoy their nature trails while taking in the landscape and special exhibits.
HealthAdventure-Logo The Health Adventure The Health Adventure is a health and science museum for children that opens up the wonders of the human body and the world around us. This is a great attraction to visit with your children while in Asheville. Front Desk for ticket and/or package information
naturecenter-logo Western North Carolina Nature Center “The WNC Nature Center is a living museum of plants and animals native to the Appalachian region.” You can enjoy seeing animals in their natural habitat. There is even a petting area for children to see animals up close.
FoodLionSkatePark-Logo Food Lion SkatePark The Food Lion SkatePark offers a safe, challenging, and attractive skate park facility for skateboarders of all ages.
AshevilleArtMuseum-Logo Asheville Art Museum The Asheville Art Museum annually presents a schedule of exhibitions and public programs based to include experiences with works of significance to Western North Carolina’s cultural heritage.
tweetsie Tweetsie Railroad Tweetsie Railroad is a unique attraction that allows children and families to explore their imaginations. You can be a cowboy, Indian or an engineer and you can take a ride on their historic steam locomotive which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Local Breweries

brewery Asheville is making a name for itself when it comes to breweries. Asheville has the most breweries per capita in the country and is rapidly becoming a must see (and must taste) while visiting Asheville. There are several award winning breweries with more on the way, plus numerous pubs and taprooms that serve their fine beer. Click here for article for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution December 7, 2008 - Asheville breweries whet visitors’ appetites in a new way Asheville, NC was recently named Top Beer City for the FOURTH year in a row! In a recent poll on, over 16,000 people from 46 countries cast votes for their favorite Beer City USA. Asheville, North Carolina won this honor for the 2nd year in a row.
Highland-Brewery-Logo Highland Brewing Company Highland Brewing Company brews an impressive array of ales. Some of their best-selling ales include their Gaelic Ale and their popular winter seasonal, Cold Mountain Ale. Highland beers can be found throughout Asheville in bars and grocery stores. Brewery tours are available.
PisgahBrew-Logo Pisgah Brewing Company Located in Black Mountain which is approximately 10 miles east of Asheville, they specialize in hand crafted certified organic beers. They are open to the public every Tuesday through Friday starting at 2pm where you can stop in and have a taste.
Lexington Avenue Brewery Located in downtown Asheville on Lexington Avenue, this contemporary brewery offers fine brews and restaurant too.
FrenchBroad-Logo French Broad Brewery Located 1.5 miles from Brookstone Lodge, they specialize in European style beers while maintaining a unique flavor that is Asheville. You can stop by and have a beer in the brewery where they also have some bands that will perform for you. Brewery tours are available upon request.
GreenManBrew Logo Green Man Brewing Located in downtown Asheville, they specialize in English style ales. These ales are served in the Jack of the Wood Celtic style pub also located in downtown. You can enjoy these brews at this pub or at their nearby brewing facility. The Green Man Brewing and Tasting room is open daily.
WedgeBrewery-Logo Wedge Brewery Wedge Brewery is located in the River Arts District in the lower level of the Wedge Studios. The building is a classic brick warehouse adjacent to the railroad tracks. Their tasting room is open daily and has a cozy room inside for tastings or outside on their “funky” patio-porch.
Appalachian-Craft-logo Appalachian Craft Brewery Appalachian Craft Brewery is located south of Asheville in Fletcher and currently does not have a tasting room. Their handcrafted beers are distributed in several establishments throughout WNC for your enjoyment. .
CraggieBrew Logo Craggie Brewing Company Opening soon in downtown Asheville, Craggie has some brews with interesting spins on their flavor, such as a strawberry porter, a maple blueberry porter, an India pumpkin ale and a civil war era recipe beer with molasses and pine needles.
AshPizzaBrew Logo Asheville Pizza & Brewing Company Asheville Pizza & Brewing Company has two locations. North of downtown Asheville the original location has a movie theater. They also have a downtown location and both of which offer a restaurant menu featuring pizza, pasta, sandwiches and wings and of course their own beers.
Oyster House Brewing Company Oyster House Brewing Company is located in downtown Asheville inside The Lobster Trap restaurant. So if you like seafood and brews this is a good choice.
Asheville Brews Cruise The Brews Cruise is a great way to experience some of the local breweries and leave the driving to someone else. Each stop includes a sampling of the company’s unique brews while gaining a better understanding of the creative process behind the beer making.

Free Beer Tasting Each week Hops and Vines (located in West Asheville) offers FREE beer tastings every Friday from 4pm-7pm.


Asheville is rich in history and has over 40 places listed in the National Register of Historic Places You could spend weeks learning about Asheville’s culture and soon realize why Asheville has always drawn writers, explorers, and visionaries.
biltmore-house Biltmore Estate Visit America's largest home built by George Vanderbilt in 1895. This historic home is a must see when in Asheville. Be sure to visit their magnificent gardens and an award-winning winery. They have numerous outdoor activities, great shopping, and delicious dining as well. There is so much to do at Biltmore Estate. Front Desk for ticket and/or package information
allsouls Photo courtesy of Mike Proctor All Souls Church and Parish Hall All Souls Church and Parish Hall is located in Biltmore Village and is on the National Register of Historic Places. Built by George Vanderbilt as the parish church for the village adjacent to the Biltmore House, it was seen by Vanderbilt as the connecting piece for the daily life of all persons. The church is situated in the hub of a fan shaped group of streets that is Biltmore Village.
Smith-McDowell Photo courtesy of Asheville Area Chamber of Commerce The Smith-McDowell House is the city's first mansion and oldest surviving house, and the oldest brick structure in Buncombe County. It is a Local Historic Landmark and is included in the National Register of Historic Places.
thomaswolfe Photo courtesy of Chris Morton Thomas Wolfe Memorial This memorial is a National Historic Landmark. Thomas Clayton Wolfe, the youngest of eight children, was born October 3, 1900, at 92 Woodfin Street in Asheville. He was best known for his American literature classic, Look Homeward, Angel which has never gone out of print since its 1929 publication. Visitors are attracted to the setting for this great novel.
Vance-Birthplace-House-&-Buildings-1 Photo courtesy of Asheville Area Chamber of Commerce Vance Birthplace Zebulon Baird Vance was born on May 13, 1830 in Buncombe County, North Carolina near present-day Weaverville and was the third of eight children. He was best known as North Carolina's Civil War Governor. He was a Confederate military officer in the American Civil War, twice Governor of North Carolina, and U.S. Senator. A prodigious writer, Vance became one of the most influential southern leaders of the Civil War and postbellum periods. This North Carolina Historic site hosts special events throughout the year which highlight seasonal activities of the Vance family's life.
Grove Park Inn Grove Park Inn was built in 1913 on 140 acres which provides breathtaking views from their numerous balconies of Asheville's city skyline and the Blue Ridge mountains. It is one of the south’s oldest and most famous resorts.


compass Taking a tour of Asheville is a great way to learn more about our city and all it offers. Whether you are interested in the history of the area or you want to be scared while learning about our famous ghosts, there are several options for you. Not only are there a variety of choices, there are a variety of ways you can tour -- helicopter, trolley, bus, or segway. Make your visit to Asheville a unique and memorable experience.
trolley Photo courtesy of Asheville Historic Trolley Asheville Historic Trolley Tours & Ghost Tour Trolley Professionally trained tour guides will take you through Asheville and point out historical information, humorous stories, and give you a tour of the town. You have the option to sit back and relax through this 80 minute tour or get off at several stops to shop or walk around. http://www.ashevilletrolleytours.comSee Front Desk for ticket information
Travels in Wine Tours Experience a guided wine tour come rain or shine. This excursion will allow you to travel with a Certified Sommelier, who is a trained and knowledgeable professional, that will explain to you the techniques of wine tastings as well as the history of North Carolina’s wine industry, all while being chauffeured from Brookstone Lodge to 3 different wineries. During your visit you will be able to enjoy behind the scene extras such as barrel tasting and winery tours that you would be unable to get on your own, as well as enjoying a delicious picnic lunch overlooking the vineyard. Make the most of your visit to beautiful Asheville with an experience that will last a lifetime.
Lazoom Comedy Tour Lazoom provides a 90 minute city tour of Asheville's favorite neighborhoods and landmarks brought to you by a costumed tour guide. They provide skits and pop-up characters all along the way.
Gray Line Trolley Tours Gray Line provides historic trolley tours throughout Asheville with stops at historic sites throughout the city. Stay on or hop off and shop or walk around,
Falcon Link Take an aerial tour of Asheville and surrounding areas.
Haunted Ghost Tours Experience Asheville's only interactive ghost tour. Hear real ghost stories from experienced guides. These walking tours of Asheville feature authenticated stories of the spirits that wander this city. These tours are approximately 90 minutes.
Moving Sidewalk Tours Tour downtown Asheville on a Segway. This 2-3 hour tour is narrated by your guide and can accommodate up to 4 people each with their own personal Segway. It is a different way to experience Asheville and all it has to offer.
Asheville Brews Cruise The Brews Cruise is a great way to experience some of the local breweries and leave the driving to someone else. Each stop includes a sampling of the company’s unique brews while gaining a better understanding of the creative process behind the beer making.