This 1.7 mile walking tour of Asheville tells the story of the city's past. There are 30 "stations" highlighted on the trail, each with its own story and many with original artwork. Walkers can start anywhere they see an Urban Trail marker or an engraved pink granite marker, but Station #1 is at Pack Square. Audio cassettes are available for rent from the Asheville Art Museum shop. Guided tours are offered, usually at 4pm on the second Friday & 3pm on the third Sunday of each month. Allow 2 1/2 hours for the entire tour. (828) 259-5498 ext. 4000
The most popular single attraction in the region, the 250-room French Renaissance chateau built in 1895 by George W. Vanderbilt is the largest private home in the United States. It houses priceless collections of antiques, paintings, books, tapestries, & furnishings. Self-guided tours include upstairs & downstairs of the house, the servants' quarters, the Winery, the gardens & grounds. U.S. 25, three blocks north of Exit 50 or 50B on I-40.
Biltmore Village is a classic planned community, constructed in the late 1890's at the entrance to the Biltmore Estate. Today the Village consists of restored English-style houses that now contain shops, galleries, & restaurants. The museum provides information about the Village from its founding.
Located a mile from the Eastern Continental Divide, Black Mountain is situated amidst the majestic Blue Ridge Mountains, the oldest mountain range on earth. Black Mountain overflows with art and craft galleries, artist studios, antique stores, bookstores, furniture stores and specialty shops. Come see why Black Mountain was voted Best Small Town in Western North Carolina. Black Mountain Chamber (800) 669-2301 www.visitblackmountain.com
Connemara was the name of this 264-acre farm where poet & biographer Carl Sandburg spent his later life with his wife. The site, established in 1968, is a unit of the National Park Service. In addition to the main house, there are a number of other historic structures & more than five miles of trails. Open daily, 9-5pm. (828)693-4178
Downtown Asheville offers an outstanding collection of early 20th century architecture including structures of national significance. Asheville's downtown boasts more art deco architecture than any southeastern city other than Miami Beach. Guided walking tours are available. There are more than 150 retail shops & 50 restaurants.
(828) 251-9983 or (828) 258-6100
This museum, located in what was once the weaving shed for Biltmore Industries, features classic & antique cars, such as a 1926 Cadillac & a 1927 La Salle.
Open April - December: Monday - Saturday 10am-5pm, Sunday 1-5pm
111 Grovewood Rd. Asheville (828) 253-7651
The Folk Art Center, home of the Southern Highland Craft Guild, exhibits traditional and contemporary crafts of the Southern Appalachian region and sponsors educational demonstrations and programs.
Milepost 382 Blue Ridge Parkway (828) 298-7928
The Flat Rock community is famous for its many beautiful estates & historic landmarks dating back to the early 1800s, including the Carl Sandburg national Historic Site. Flat Rock was first settled in1827 when a rice planter from South Carolina built a home here. The Flat Rock Playhouse is the State Theatre of North Carolina.
Flat Rock is located 30 minutes east of Asheville
The Grove Park Inn Resort, an Asheville landmark & one of the premier resorts in the country, was built in 1913 from boulders cut from Sunset Mountain. On the National Register of Historic Places, the resort features a 40,000-square-foot spa. 290 Macon Ave.(off Charlotte St.) Asheville (828) 252-2711
Listed in the National Register of Historic Places, the Montford area, just north of downtown Asheville, features more than a half-dozen different types of architecture, including Victoriam, Greek Revival, Italianate, Queen Anne, Colonial Revival, & Neo-Classical. Originally its own village founded in 1889, Montford was annexed into Asheville in 1905. The area boasts a number of historic sites of interest. Here, in 1948, F. Scott Fitzgerald's wife Zelda died in a fire at the old Highland Hospital. Several residents found immortality in Thomas Wolfe's "Look Homeward Angel," & Riverside Cemetery is the final resting spot for some of Asheville's most prominent citizens such as Thomas Wolfe, O.Henry & Nebulon Vance. The Montford District is located between Highways 19/23, Interstate 240 & Broadway. (828)258-5100
With the highest peak east of the Mississippi River, Mount Mitchell State Park also has nature trails, a lookout tower, restaurant, picnic area & museum. Blue Ridge Parkway is located at milepost 355. (828) 675-4611
This is a National Park Service reconstruction of early pioneer buildings to show a past lifestyle. The Museum is located in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, on U.S. 441 north. (828) 497-1900
The beauty of the region is expressed through a series of magnificent gardens reflecting the heritage & culture of the mountains at the North Carolina Arboretum. Miles of woodland trails highlight the natural world. Trails open daily, 8am-9pm. Visitor Center, Monday - Saturday 9-5pm: Sunday 12-5pm. (828)665-2492
100 Frederick Law Olmsted Way, south of Asheville
This museum tells the history of Biltmore Industries & the people involved through photographs & artifacts. Items on display include bolts of woolen homespun cloth, an original loom & furniture. Open April - December: Monday - Saturday, 10 - 5pm., & Sunday, 1-5pm. 111 Grovewood Rd. Asheville (828) 253-7651
The 92,000 square-foot Pack Place Education, Arts & Science Center includes the Asheville Art Museum, the Colburn Gem & Mineral Museum, The Health Adventure, and interactive museum: & the 520-seat Diana Wortham Theatre. The YMI Cultural Center is located nearby. Open Tuesday-Saturday, 10-5pm & (June - October) Sunday 1-5pm. 2 South Pack Square, Asheville (828) 257-4500
Asheville's oldest brick residence (circa 1840) houses exhibits on Western North Carolina history, including information on life on a Western North Carolina plantation & Asheville's role in the Civil War. The house is listed on the National Register of Historic Places & features gardens designed by the renowned Olmsted brothers.
Open March-December; Tuesday-Saturday, 10-4, & Sunday, 1-4pm.
January-February: Tuesday-Friday, 10-4pm.
283 Victoria Rd, Asheville (828)253-9231
This museum's displays tell the story of the area from the Stone Age to the present. It is located in the former Black Mountain Fire Department, established in 1919. Open April - October, Tuesday- Saturday 10-5pm., and Sunday, 2-5pm.
2223 West State St., Black Mountain
This is the boyhood home of the Asheville native, whose famous novel, "Look Homeward Angel," was inspired by his experience here. The home is currently closed as repairs are made due to fire damage, but the Visitor Center offers an audiovisual program & an exhibit hall featuring Wolfe's personal memorabilia. Outdoor tours are offered hourly. The Center is open April- October Monday-Saturday 9-5pm, and November-March Tuesday-Saturday, 10-4pm. 52 N. Market Street, Asheville (828)253-8304
This 36-acre facility, operated by the North Carolina Department of Agriculture, features fresh fruits, farm fresh vegetables, Mountain crafts and much more. Open daily 8-6pm (8-5pm winter months). (828)253-1691
Exit 47 Off I-40
The Nature Center includes 42 acres of wildlife, and was voted best place to take kids in WNC. See wolves, cougars, deer and black bear just to name a few. The kids will love the petting zoo. This attractions is open from 10-5
75 Gashes Creek Rd
We offer a variety of activities to keep kids entertained without ever leaving the campground. Choices include the playground, pool, mini-golf, basketball, game room, fishing, paddle boats and playing in the river.
With seasonal planned activities and/or entertainment there is something for everyone to enjoy. Bingo, hand dipped ice cream sundaes, karaoke and flashlight candy hunts top the list.
The parkway follows the Appalachian Mountain chain and provides seemingly endless views of parallel ranges connected by cross ranges and scattered hills. From Shenandoah National Park the parkway follows the Blue Ridge, eastern rampart of the Appalachians, for 355 miles. Then, for the remaining 114 miles, it skirts the southern end of the massive Black Mountains, named for the dark green spruce and fir that cover them, weaves through the Craggies, the Pisgahs, the Balsams, and ends in the Great Smokies. (828) 298-0358
A 26-story elevator ride or a network of trails takes you through solid granite for a breathtaking 75-mile view of the Blue Ridge. The Park's five different nature trails, ranging in difficulty from easy to strenuous, make the ideal outing. Scenic nature trails lead to Hickory Nut Falls. 1 (800) 277-9611
This is the location of the first forestry school (1898) in America. It hosts a visitor's center, film walking tours, restored historic buildings, forestry exhibits, restored steam locomotive and gift shop. A variety of special events are held throughout the year. Open daily mid-April to early November, 9am-5pm (828) 877-3130
On the highest swinging footbridge in America, you will be surrounded by the great peaks of the southern Appalachians. Crossing this famous bridge suspends visitors actually more than a mile above sea level.
Grandfather Mountain features views from the highest peak in the Blue Ridge Mountains. Environmental habitats display native wildlife in a natural setting. Enjoy hiking trails, picnic areas, a nature museum & theatre. Open daily 8am-7pm. U.S. 221 between the Blue Ridge Parkway & Linville. 1 (800) 468-7325
The Great Smoky Mountains National Park is America's most popular national park, attracting more than 10 million visitors each year. It extends some 70-miles along the North Carolina-Tennessee border & contains more than a half million of unspoiled forest. The Park is located 50 miles southwest of Asheville. (865) 436-1200
The Great Smoky Mountain Railway offers scenic excursions through mountain gorges on trains pulled by diesel-electric and steam locomotives. There are daily departures from Bryson City & Dillsboro year round. Call for schedule and reservations. (800) 872-4681
See inside a mountain. This limestone cavern extends deep into the mountainside, offering a variety of interesting formations. There is an underground stream that is home to blind rainbow trout. The cavern has a year-round temperature of 52 degrees. Open daily March-November. Weekends only December-February
(800) 756-4171, U.S. 221, Marion
This 500,000 plus-acre forest features waterfalls, swimming holes, fishing & picnic areas. Part of the forest was originally a part of the Biltmore Estate, purchased in 1916. Access to the Forest if available from Asheville on the Blue Ridge Parkway, U.S. 25/70 & U.S. 280 West. (828) 257-4200
Float trips Tuckaseegee Outfitters, Dillsboro 1 (800) 539-5683; www.tuckfloat.com
Quietwater trips - Southern Waterways - Asheville (800) 849-1970; (828) 232-1970; www.paddlewithus.com
Whitewater trips USA Raft 1(800) USA-Raft; www.usaraft.com/
Nantahala Outdoor Center; (888)662-2199; www.noc.com
The King of Swimming Holes! This 60 foot natural water slide down a well-worn slab of rock was providing summertime fun long before water parks were available. Sliding Rock is located in the Pisgah National Forest.