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They have half-day tours that are aimed at beginners ages 8 and up. There are also full-day, 8-mile, intermediate tours that tackle more challenging Class IV rapids. This is a great river for kayaking in the off-season, when the water is high and tourist traffic on the French Broad River is relatively low.

Now the area is the creative home to more than artists working in a broad variety of mediums. Visitors looking for a weekend getaway immersed in culture will find excellent shopping opportunities in countless galleries occupying 22 former industrial buildings along a one-mile stretch of the tranquil French Broad River. Located just southeast of Asheville, the area surrounding the Green River Gorge boasts some of the most biodiverse forest in the eastern United States.

But for a change of pace, try canyoneering, one of the most adrenaline-pumping things to do in Asheville. Green River Adventures offers two options for rappelling. At 70 feet tall, the Little Bradley Waterfall is perfect for youngsters aged 12 and up and first-timers. Big Bradley Falls, at feet, is more challenging, and recommended for thrill-seekers ages 15 and up. Both tours include expert instruction and plenty of practice time. It may be a mountain town, but Asheville can still get extremely hot during the dog days of summer.

But the very first Asheville brewery, Highland Brewing Company, was founded back in and remains one of the best breweries in Asheville. Guided walking tours of the facilities— one of the best free things to do in Asheville— are available every day of the week. The original Asheville beer tour is offered 3 times a day on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. Each lasts around 45 minutes, and include a beer tasting to celebrate the occasion.

They also offer private tours. Email [email protected] for more information. Elk once roamed these North Carolina hills by the thousands, but they were all killed off by hunters in the s. Thanks to a reintroduction program, there are now over Cataloochee Elk in the park. The Cataloochee Valley which is surrounded by picturesque foot peaks is easily the best place to see them. These massive megafauna can often be found grazing along the road into the park.

But park volunteers can typically tell you where the herd was spotted last. Putting an eco-friendly spin on typical zipline tours , Navitat Canopy Adventures speaks for the trees and encourages their guests to respect the beauty of nature. Treetop Tour participants must weigh between 90 and pounds.

The Mountaintop Tour is bigger, higher and faster. It boasts one zip measuring 3, feet long and feet high, going at speeds up to 65 mph. Mountaintop Tour participants must weight between 70 and pounds. Adrenaline junkies will love The Ultimate Adventure Tour, which combines both packages for six hours of invigorating action and incredible Blue Ridge mountain views.

When it comes to free things to do in Asheville, NC, just sitting and watching the wonderfully eclectic array of people milling about in Pack Square Park was easily our favorite. Located in the heart of downtown Asheville, the park was created in and named for lumber tycoon George Willis Pack who died just six years later.

You can see everything from indie book and record stores to trendy clothing boutiques, an old-timey general store, lively brewpubs and more in a span of just a few blocks.

The Linville River is situated approximately 1, feet below the ridge, so hiking Linville Gorge is most enjoyable for those who like a somewhat strenuous challenge. In addition to bears, foxes, raccoons, hawks, and other wildlife , the area is also a haven for fly fishing in North Carolina. Anglers come here from all over the US, hoping to hook their limit of well-stocked brown, brook, and rainbow trout. Hiking down into Linville Gorge is an intense, all-day affair.

One of the first national forests in the eastern United States, Pisgah National Forest encompasses more than , acres of the southern Appalachian Mountains. This gorgeous haven offers lots of things to do near Asheville NC for hiking, camping and mountain biking enthusiasts. Pisgah Mountain Bike Adventures offers half-day, full-day, multi-day, and even nighttime tours guided by locals who know the area like the back of their hand.

Best of all, they can customize your Pisgah mountain bike adventure to match your style and ability, whether you prefer climbing, downhill, or single-track riding! Check out Rumbling Bald Mountain, which features 1, acres of world class technical rock climbing and around 1, boulders to conquer. All are easily accessible by car. Stretching miles, the Blue Ridge Parkway attracts more than 15 million annual visitors a year.

The world-renowned scenic route passes through Asheville, making it easy to explore the remarkable array of majestic mountains , lush valleys, and fertile forests that surround the city. But there are loads of breathtaking Blue Ridge Parkway overlooks , not to mention many noteworthy landmarks. There are also plenty of Blue Ridge Parkway hiking trails to explore, many of which lead to wondrous waterfalls.

The shortest is of them all is also the most rewarding. The trek to the summit from the parking lot is moderately strenuous due to the sharp incline. The park also offers loads of camping options, a restaurant and concession stand, and an exceptional picnic area that includes 40 tables and two shelters with fireplaces. Located less than 40 miles from Asheville near Brevard NC , Blue Ridge Parkway milepost offers a chance to see two excellent attractions in one stop. Looking Glass Rock is named for the fact that it often ices over in winter, reflecting sunlight from its stony summit.

The Looking Glass Rock Trail gains 1, feet of elevation in 3. So you could reach the summit and be back to your car in hours. Devoted to education, research, conservation, and garden demonstrations, the Arboretum offers an array of activities, including various educational programs, tours, and events. There are 7 main garden areas. The Heritage Garden features plants used in medicinal herbs and crafts; the Quilt Garden features Appalachian-style floral designs; and the Plants of Promise Garden demonstrates landscaping design with flora and stone.

The town of 14, people is beloved for its climate, gorgeous scenery, rich history, and many parks. In an effort to help Appalachian women who wove traditional quilts, she founded the Allanstand Craft Shop around They opened the Folk Art Center in , with three galleries, a library, an auditorium, and the historic Allanstand Craft Shop. Properly known as the Botanical Gardens at Asheville , the tranquil nature sanctuary is located on the grounds of the University of North Carolina at Asheville, but operates as an independent non-profit.

It was established in on abandoned timberland that had been badly eroded. Explore Asheville’s darker side with a nighttime Haunted Ashevill e tour, or immerse yourself in the theatrical solve-a-puzzle-to-escape challenge, Conundrum. Head outside to explore the century-old gardens, go horseback riding , or biking across the many trails. Visit Biltmore Village , located outside the entrance of Biltmore. This former neighborhood for estate workers is now filled with great shopping, amazing arts and craft galleries, and delicious restaurants.

Drive along the Blue Ridge Parkway. Be sure to pack your hiking shoes to explore the timeworn trails dotting the mountain landscape. Trails range anywhere from easy-as-pie to whoa Nellie! Find your perfect Asheville hiking trail and get ready for some incredible views! Use our Asheville Hike Finder to easily filter by distance from downtown, trail length and difficulty level.

Bike the Blue Ridge! Road or trails, there are plenty of way to challenge yourself with a bike ride in the mountains. Asheville is home to hundreds of native and migratory species of birds. Grab your binoculars and practice your birding skills. Bonus points if you see a peregrine falcon! Venturing outdoors is like taking a mountain safari. Native wildlife includes everything from foraging bears to herds of elk.

Be sure to appreciate from a distance. Go waterfall hunting. There are hundreds of beautiful waterfalls scattered throughout the region, and many are easy to access within a short walk from the car.

Dip your toes into the cool waters at the base or on a really hot day go for a swim. Just mind the slippery rocks, and never wade into the water from the top. Stand atop the highest peaks east of the Mississippi. Mitchell is king of the Blue Ridge standing at over 6, feet in elevation. Visit a state park. Catch a mountain trout or small mouth bass by taking part in a guided fly-fishing expedition. Already a pro? Local outfitters are a great resource to find the secret spots teeming with fish.

Practice your Tarzan yell as you zip line hundreds of feet above the forest canopy. If you want to keep your outdoor adventures closer to Asheville, then try your hand at stand-up paddleboarding SUP , tubing , or boating down the French Broad River.

Explore the nature trails at the North Carolina Arboretum and the Botanical Gardens of Asheville , both of which are home to numerous indigenous species of mountain flora. Go golfing at some of the most beautiful and challenging courses in the country. Our culinary mecca serves as a magnet for innovative chefs and food artisans, most of which source their ingredients from the hundreds of farms surrounding the city. Get a little taste of everything by signing up for a food tour.

Learn how to find your own food with a guided foraging expedition through the mountains. Visit local farms to buy the freshest meats, veggies, and cheese available in the mountains. This is a perfect way to take a little Foodtopia back home. Stock up on fresh local ingredients by shopping at one of the multiple farmers markets around town, or simply stop in for a bite to eat from one of the many vendors.

They left an enduring mark on this town and many of their legacies are still present as you walk through town. Get a closer look into Asheville’s rich heritage , and tap into the bohemian spirit, which still influences Asheville today.

See amazing performances by Asheville’s numerous theater troupes including the Wortham Center for the Performing Arts , which hosts some of the best in local and national productions, NC Stage , the Asheville Community Theatre , Magnetic Theatre , and in the warmer months, take in a free outdoor Shakespeare production performed by the Montford Park Players. Lawrence , which boasts the largest free-standing dome in North America. Visit the childhood home of literary legend Thomas Wolfe , which he immortalized in his autobiographical novel, Look Homeward Angel.

Along the riverbank of the French Broad, spend an afternoon strolling through former industrial warehouses now filled with hundreds of working artist studios. Watch a live exhibit, peruse numerous galleries to find that perfectly handcrafted piece of art for your collection, or get hands on with one of the many immersive programs available.

You’ll also find this neighborhood is home to some of Asheville’s most popular restaurants and a brewery, perfect for a pit stop in between galleries. Asheville is home to some classic, and in some cases, quirky museums. Check out the fine art exhibits at the Asheville Art Museum , find vintage games at the Pinball Museum yes, you can play!

Intimate music halls, unassuming neighborhood bars, and even the streets of downtown play host to some of the best in local and national touring musicians. Immerse yourself in one of Asheville’s many music festivals taking place throughout the year. Get up close and personal with your favorite artist at one of Asheville’s many iconic music venues.

Tour the Moog Music Factory and visit the new Moogseum! Bob Moog was a pioneer of electronic music and a resident of Asheville. He gave the world its first synthesizer, an innovation that is still hand-crafted in downtown Asheville to this day.

Watch these incredible instruments being made and take one home for yourself. Each season they perform a blend of timeless compositions along with more contemporary arrangements.


THE 15 BEST Things to Do in Asheville – (with Photos) – Tripadvisor.


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.50 Things to Do in Asheville, N.C. | Asheville, NC’s Official Travel Site