What to Do
in the Asheville Area
This section provides our recommendations on what to see and do in Downtown Asheville and in other Asheville neighborhoods.
No matter what your interests, you have a lot of choices in Asheville. Scores of art and crafts galleries are open Downtown, in the River Arts District, Biltmore Village and elsewhere, more in fact than in many much larger cities. Museums? There are more than 100 in Asheville and Western North Carolina. If architecture is your thing, Asheville has more Art Deco buildings than any other city in the Southeast except Miami, along with a large collection of 19th and 20th century commercial buildings in other styles. It also has a stunning collection of late 19th and early 20th century residential homes in Montford, North Asheville and other neighborhoods.
If you're into literature, the Asheville area has been home to some of the greats of 20th century writing, including Thomas Wolfe, F. Scott Fitzgerald, O. Henry and Carl Sandburg, along with poets and novelists of the Black Mountain School. You can visit the homes of Wolfe and Sandburg, see or even stay in the rooms at the Grove Park Inn where Fitzgerald spent summers and see the graves of O.Henry and Wolfe. Many noted contemporary writers maintain homes in the area, or have set of their works here.
Nearly every weekend, there's a street festival or other event going on in the area. Entrepreneurs offer tours for every taste, from comedy bus tours to foodie walks to brews cruises by pedicab to ghost spotting tours.
Although there are several malls with the usual chain stores, the great thing about shopping in Asheville, especially Downtown, is that you'll find independent shops here that you won't find anywhere else. Go antiquing, look for designer bargains in thrift stores, find unusual local food items and spend hours in galleries and boutiques.
In the state and national parks and forests in Western North Carolina you can enjoy nearly unlimited opportunities for outdoor sports: hiking, backpacking, camping, fishing, hunting, boating, river rafting, canoeing, kayaking, swimming That waterfalls and in lakes and streams, rock climbing, birding, wildlife and wildflower spotting, road and mountain biking, gem mining, golfing, snow skiing, snow boarding and snow tubing, skateboarding, horseback riding, hot air ballooning, ziplining and many other activities.
All content copyright © Lan Sluder except selected photographs used by permission and brief quotations or other fair use text, which are owned by the copyright holder.
We have made every effort to confirm the accuracy of information on this website, and in the Amazing Asheville book and ebooks, but travel information is subject to frequent change, and no warranty is made, express or implied. Please notify us of any errors or omissions, and we will attempt to correct them as soon as possible. All opinions expressed are those of the author, Lan Sluder, unless otherwise noted.