Things to do in Asheville

Things to do in  Asheville

Unleash your inner hipster

Asheville, on paper, is a little hard to believe: a trendsetting craft beer scene, global cuisine offerings, scores of art deco architecture, incredible museums, art galleries, and music venues—all in a town of some 90,000. There's even a castle. For the outdoorsy, Asheville sits in the heart of the scenic Blue Ridge Mountains, where hiking, kayaking, and paddling are year-round adventures. Few small towns offer as much in the realm of things to do, so come curious, come hungry, and come with your hipster side at the ready.

Top 4 attractions in Asheville

Blue Ridge Parkway

The Blue Ridge Parkway is one of America’s most scenic road trips—a slow-paced drive through the connecting Great Smoky Mountains National Park in the south to Shenandoah National Park in the north. Along the way, find stunning long-range vistas and close-up views of the parkway’s namesake: the rugged Blue Ridge Mountains.More

Biltmore Estate

Built by American magnate George Washington Vanderbilt II, the Biltmore Estate was modeled after the mansions of Europe when it was constructed in the late 19th century. The Biltmore House is the largest home in the United States—a staggering 178,926 square feet (16,623 square meters) sitting on more than 8,000 acres (3,237 hectares)—and a prominent symbol of America’s Gilded Age.More

River Arts District

Once an abandoned track of warehouses along a destitute stretch of Asheville’s French Broad River, the River Arts District (RAD) has transformed into a hotbed for artists and budding businesses. There is a vast array of studios where you can see artists working on creative projects ranging from photography and painting to basketry and pottery.More
Wheels Through Time Museum

Wheels Through Time Museum

Home to hundreds of vintage motorcycles and cars, the Wheels Through Time Museum takes visitors on a journey through 80 years of American transport history. Aptly located off the popular motorcycle route Blue Ridge Parkway, the rare collection is arranged to replicate a traditional garage for an immersive experience.More

Trip ideas

Top activities in Asheville

Waterfalls and Blue Ridge Parkway Hiking Tour with Expert Naturalist
Likely to Sell OutLikely to Sell Out
2.5-Hour Blue Ridge Parkway Guided Jeep Tour
Likely to Sell OutLikely to Sell Out
Asheville Insider Guided Walking Tour
Likely to Sell OutLikely to Sell Out
Sunset E-Bike Ride

Sunset E-Bike Ride

French Broad River Kayak Tour in Asheville
Likely to Sell OutLikely to Sell Out
Half-Day Hike with Long Range Views from Asheville
Likely to Sell OutLikely to Sell Out
Operators have paid Viator more to have their experiences featured here

All about Asheville

When to visit

Few destinations are as four-season friendly as Asheville, but many consider fall—specifically late September into early November—the best time to visit the Paris of the South. As it's deep in the Blue Ridge Mountains, the leaf-peeping here is some of the country’s best, and a scenic drive along the Blue Ridge Parkway in this season is a must. Spring is also a great time to visit, with the waterfalls running high and the mountains exploding in wildflowers.

Getting around

For the best Asheville experience, you’ll probably want a car—that way you can head out on your own to the city’s numerous neighborhoods, explore the surrounding natural areas, and take a leisurely scenic drive on the Blue Ridge Parkway. If you have centrally located accommodations in downtown or the River Arts District, for example, you can probably get by with some mix of walking, taxis and rideshares, and tours.

Traveler tips

Don’t overlook a winter visit—temps regularly climb into the 50s, the crowds have all but left, and the locals are thrilled the easy-parking season has finally arrived. You can spend your days testing out breweries (Asheville has the most per capita in the US), scoping out the world-class dining and music scene, and going on hikes, like the trail from Carvers Gap to Roan Mountain, which is a local favorite.

Local Currency
US Dollar ($)
Time Zone
EST (UTC -5)
Country Code

People Also Ask

What is Asheville, NC, known for?

Asheville is known for many things. To history buffs, it’s known for the grand Biltmore Estate. To beer lovers, it’s known for having among the most breweries per capita in the US. To outdoor lovers, it’s known for its access to the Pisgah National Forest and Blue Ridge Parkway.

What is the vibe in Asheville?

It depends on where you go. For being a town of under 100,000, Asheville has a surprising variety of vibes. You’ll find a definitively artsy vibe in neighborhoods like the River Arts District and West Asheville, Victorian elegance and homey B&Bs in the Montford Area Historic District, and big-city buzz downtown.

How do I spend a day in Asheville, NC?

Explore the Biltmore Estate or historic homes of the Montford neighborhood, get your nature fix at the Western North Carolina Nature Center, and check out foodie hot spots like the White Duck Taco Shop or Ginger’s Revenge. If you have time, throw in an eclectic spot like the Pinball Museum.

What is the best time of year to visit Asheville, NC?

In a word, autumn. The air is crisp but sunny, the summer crowds have departed, and the fall foliage can’t be beat. Asheville sits between three national forests deep in the mountains, which you can easily explore via the Blue Ridge Parkway. In fall, of course, expect fewer Blue Ridge blues and more reds, oranges, and golds.

What is there to do in downtown Asheville?

Downtown Asheville has some spectacular hotels, museums, and restaurants. The Asheville Museum of Science is a standout, as are the Asheville Art Museum and the Pinball Museum. Visiting the entire list of worthwhile restaurants and breweries would take weeks, from White Duck Taco Shop to Tupelo Honey to Rhubarb and beyond.

Is Asheville worth visiting?

Absolutely. The “Paris of the South” hit the jackpot when it comes to nature, cuisine, culture, history, and things to do. From touring a Vanderbilt castle to kayaking the French Broad River, from driving the Blue Ridge Parkway to sipping suds at one of the city’s many, many breweries, just about anyone can find something to enjoy in Asheville.

Frequently Asked Questions
The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.
What are the top things to do in Asheville?
What are the top activities in Asheville?
What are the top things to do near Asheville?
Check out things to do near Asheville:
What do I need to know before visiting Asheville?