When it comes to planning a household vacation itinerary, Asheville, North Carolina, is often a prime destination for those with children. With its combination of beautiful mountain scenery, charming small-town really feel, and an endless array of things to do, it’s no marvel why! This historical metropolis in the Blue Ridge Mountains provides every thing from kid-friendly museums and eating places to out of doors adventures. It’s also a fantastic place to chill out and enjoy southern hospitality. There’s no need to rush round right here – you’ll find a way to take your time and recognize being together with your family! If you need to plan your personal family trip to Asheville, we put collectively this pattern 4-day itinerary with an inventory of things to do. We’ve additionally included where to remain in Asheville with youngsters and other ideas that will help you start planning. Keep reading for our 4-Day Asheville Family Vacation Itinerary!
Take a visit to the Biltmore Estate on the first day of your Asheville household vacation itinerary. This stately home, inbuilt 1895, was the summer season retreat of George Vanderbilt, who came from a household of rich entrepreneurs. Today, this Château-style residence is certainly one of Asheville’s hottest tourist sights and may definitely be on the top of your list of issues to do in Asheville with kids! The historic house and surrounding grounds are beautiful, and there’s so much to explore.
Your visit begins with a self-guided tour of the home. It takes you through a few of the most lavish rooms you’ve ever seen with an audio tour. There is a separate audio guide for kids that will make the expertise extra interesting for them. As you stroll through, you’ll learn about the Vanderbilt family and their unimaginable wealth, including various rooms, bowling alleys, pools, gyms, and kitchens. After the home tour, discover the grounds. The gardens are immaculate, with gorgeous flowers and varied plant species worldwide. There are additionally plenty of hiking trails to find. And, if the children are still full of power, they can burn off some steam at the playground or hire a motorcycle to discover the trails.
For a extra intimate and detailed expertise, households also can take a guided tour in small teams. You’ll study fascinating tales in regards to the people who once lived here and also visit some “behind the scenes” areas where different guests aren’t allowed. Make certain to reserve your tour upfront, since they sell out quickly, particularly through the vacation season.
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Lunch at the Stable Cafe
Photo Courtesy: The Biltmore CompanyIf you’re in search of an excellent place to have lunch while exploring the Biltmore Estate, check out the Stable Cafe. It’s located within the former horse stables of the property and has an off-the-cuff atmosphere perfect for families. The menu options quite so much of sandwiches, salads, and soups. Plus, there’s a kids’ menu with favorite items like rooster fingers and macaroni and cheese. There’s also beer, wine, and cider out there for adults.
For a candy treat, grab ice cream on the Creamery after lunch. The ice cream here comes from the estate’s farm cows. There are also loads of adorable shops around Stable Cafe to buy souvenirs and browse an enormous number of Christmas decorations, native finds, and so on. If you’ve additional time, you may also go to the vineyard or Antler Hill Village. The vineyard presents complimentary tastings, and Antler Hill Village is a great spot for lunch or purchasing.
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Families who want to spend extra time on the Biltmore Estate can choose from numerous issues to do, including biking, hiking, horseback using, and visiting a petting zoo! To benefit from the view and get some fresh air. At the Inn on Biltmore Estate, families will discover the 1.7-mile Green Trail, which is perfect for a household hike. It’s a leisurely stroll by way of the woods and features a cease at the Biltmore House, which children will love.
Photo Courtesy: The Biltmore CompanyIf you’re in search of a fun and educational activity for your family while visiting Asheville, try the Biltmore Estate petting farm. This unique farm permits children of all ages to interact with various animals, from sheep and goats to llamas and pigs. In addition to having the ability to pet and feed the animals, there are also plenty of alternatives for hands-on learning. You could even get to assist milk a goat! The knowledgeable workers is all the time available to reply any questions and assist youngsters be taught extra in regards to the animals.
There’s no higher approach to discover the Biltmore Estate than by renting a motorcycle and driving across the property! This is an excellent exercise for the whole family, as it is a relatively simple method to get round and see all the sights. Families will love exploring the in depth grounds, together with the gardens and forest, or taking a leisurely journey across the lake. (This is a wonderful spot for a picnic lunch, so pack some snacks!) Looking for someplace to hire bikes when on an Asheville family trip itinerary? Next to the petting zoo, you’ll discover a bike rental shop to get bikes and equipment for you and your kids. Though it’s a bit costly, it’s a wonderful method to get round and definitely worth it!
Photo Courtesy: The Biltmore CompanyAnother fantastic approach to see the Biltmore Estate is on horseback! Families can see the property from a special perspective whereas appreciating the majestic great thing about Asheville. Visit the Biltmore Equestrian Center to take a non-public one-hour or two-hour tour. With the Pisgah National Forest as your backdrop, the rides are led by skilled guides and are a ton of fun, whether you’re an skilled rider or a whole novice. Families can also take a half-hour carriage ride to see the property from a wagonette carriage! These are the one horseback riding excursions available to explore the historic Biltmore Estate. Since spots refill shortly, we suggest reserving early to make sure availability.
If you’re in search of an Asheville family trip that includes a little bit of everything, you’ll want to add Biltmore Village to your itinerary. This quaint, historic village is considered one of Asheville’s hottest attractions, and it’s easy to see why! It’s a charming space that’s home to various outlets, restaurants, and businesses, all nestled inside a picturesque setting. Families can stroll by way of the streets, discover the numerous boutiques and shops, and seize a bite to eat at one of the many delicious eateries. You’ll find every thing from local artwork and handmade gifts to classic clothes and locally-made food merchandise.
There’s also plenty of green house to get pleasure from, making Biltmore Village the proper place to spend a day with your kids. Make certain to visit the Biltmore Ice Cream Parlor, which serves up homemade ice cream and sorbet in numerous flavors. The store also has a choice of milkshakes, floats, and sundaes.
Where to Stay at the Biltmore Estate
If you’re looking for a luxurious and historic place to stay during your trip to Asheville with children, look no additional than the Inn at Biltmore Estate. It’s situated on the grounds of the long-lasting Biltmore Estate, and features gorgeous views of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Guests can select from numerous room varieties, including suites with fireplaces and private balconies. The Inn additionally has an on-site restaurant, spa, and health heart. The restaurant is ideal for a date night. Some facilities and activities are only obtainable for visitors who keep here. Families additionally like The Village Hotel.
Asheville is house to a few of the most lovely hikes within the country, and Pisgah National Forest is probably considered one of the finest locations to experience this pure beauty with kids! There are tons of trails to explore, and plenty of waterfalls to see alongside the way, so everyone can find one that’s the best degree of issue for them. Here are some of the finest issues to see in Pisgah National Forest with kids!
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If you’re in search of a fun activity with your youngsters in Asheville, NC, make certain to check out Sliding Rock! It’s an attractive, 60-foot natural rock formation that has a easy, slippery floor excellent for sliding down into a refreshing pool of 8-foot deep water beneath. Getting right here only requires a quick, zero.3-mile hike from the parking space, so it’s additionally suitable for all skill ranges. Lifeguards are on responsibility, so you can chill out and enjoy the day. Make sure to convey your swimsuits and towels and to go to on a hot day – sliding down the rock and the water could be really cold!
Looking Glass Falls
Looking Glass Falls is amongst the most popular sights in Pisgah National Forest and a very good place to take children of all ages. The 60-foot waterfall is well accessible from the parking area through a zero.3-mile trail, and a short, paved trail leads to an overlook. This is a superb spot for a picnic lunch or snacks, and there are many rocks to take a seat on and benefit from the view. Be positive to bring your digicam, as it is a very picturesque spot – particularly when you catch a rainbow amidst the waterfall!
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Moore Cove Falls
A go to to Pisgah National Forest with kids ought to embody a stop at Moore Cove Falls. Located just off the Blue Ridge Parkway near the Looking Glass Falls but a bit extra low-key, this hidden gem features a 50-foot waterfall accessible by way of a zero.6-mile hike a technique. This waterfall is gorgeous and distinctive as a end result of it’s the one one you’ll have the ability to walk round and behind! It’s also a perfect spot for a picnic lunch or a day snack. Plenty of rocks to take a seat on and enjoy the view, and the children will love taking part in in the water on the base of the falls.
Slick Rock Falls
One of the most popular trails in Pisgah is the Slick Rock Falls Trail. This simple, out-and-back hike is just a brief walk from the parking space (around 1.5 miles long altogether), but features some beautiful scenery. The falls are located just outside of town and are simply accessible by automobile. There is a small parking payment, but it is well value it. Kids will love taking a dip in the refreshing and clear waters to cool off on a hot summer day. There are plenty of rocks to sit down on and benefit from the view as well. Just ensure to be careful for slippery rocks!
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Photo Courtesy: Amy L NeyAfter a day of hiking and exploring waterfalls, take a drive on the Blue Ridge Parkway. The Blue Ridge Parkway is likely certainly one of the most scenic drives within the nation, and it’s a great place to take the kids. This scenic route stretches 469 miles along the Appalachian Mountains, providing stunning views of the mountains and valleys under, notably near Asheville. There are plenty of pull-offs and overlooks where you probably can stop and benefit from the views, and there are additionally several hiking trails which are good for households. If you’re in search of a place to picnic, plenty of spots alongside the parkway offer stunning views too.
If you wish to learn more in regards to the area’s historical past, The Blue Ridge Parkway Visitor Center is amongst the finest locations to go in Asheville with youngsters of all ages. The middle presents so much, including a present shop, interactive exhibits, and a movie show. Ranging from topics like Cherokee history to wildlife, the tutorial displays present a superb opportunity for kids to learn about the history and culture of the area. Plus, there’s an interactive map of the parkway! The movie theater can additionally be a great place to take a break from exploring the city and relax with a great film.
Near the Visitors Center, there’s additionally a 1.4-mile loop, which ultimately connects to the Mountains-To-Sea Trail. Be positive to ask the rangers in case you have any questions or for customized road trip tips!
Photo Courtesy: National Park ServiceAsheville is house to a variety of the most breathtaking sunsets within the nation. And there’s nothing extra magical than watching the sundown over the mountains! On the second day of your Asheville household trip itinerary, make your method as a lot as Craggy Gardens for an unforgettable experience. This gorgeous overlook is located just exterior Asheville and offers gorgeous views over the landscape. Accessible by way of a straightforward, 1-mile hike, it’s excellent for teenagers of all ages. The 360-degree panoramas are actually a sight to behold, so bear in mind to deliver your digicam to seize the gorgeous colors! Families can also cease on the Craggy Gardens Visitor Center to study about the native vegetation and animals. Also, pack some sweaters or layers to beat the cold – it could get windy and chilly up there.
After a busy day exploring all that Asheville presents, you and your family are most likely prepared for a scrumptious dinner. Downtown Asheville is home to many nice eating places that may fulfill everyone’s appetites! So, once the solar units, head back into city to discover all the choices, from informal to nice dining. There are many choices, whether you’re on the lookout for a fast bite or a leisurely meal. For upscale or nice eating, foodies love scorching spots like Cúrate (tapas), Posana (farm-to-table), H&F Burger, Rhubarb (farm-to-table), and Buxton Hall (BBQ). Or, for something a bit unique, households can dine on French meals at Bouchon, Korean at Stone Bowl, Indian at Chai Pani, and Ramen at Futo Buta.
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On the third day of your Asheville household trip itinerary, head to the French Broad River for a guided rafting trip with one of many many skilled corporations in the space. A few in style choices embrace Hot Springs Rafting Company, Asheville Adventure Company, and French Broad Adventures, which has various check-in factors and outposts near Asheville, including one in close by Marshall. From beginner-friendly float journeys to more difficult whitewater adventures, this river is right for beginner and intermediate rafters. It provides Class II and III or IV rapids which may be sure to get your heart pumping! You’ll float through gorgeous mountain surroundings as you make your method down, and kids may have an especially fantastic time – it virtually seems like a roller coaster!
There are varied options to choose from, including half-day to full-day choices, with a quantity of ranges of issue. Beginners can start with a float journey for a half-day (ideal for ages 4+), a great way to get comfy on the river. For those on the lookout for more of a problem, Class III and IV rapids are available on longer full-day journeys. Most reasonable rafting ideas for both half or full days are good for children ages eight and up. Or, there are tougher routes for ages 11 and up. Be certain to look into your particular adventure for more information and the situation of every journey.
During the second portion of your day, you can also benefit from different outdoor adventures in Asheville. From zip-lining to rappelling, there’s no higher method to get your blood pumping and study something new concurrently. Here are some suggestions!
The Adventure Center of Asheville
Photo Courtesy: The Adventure Center of AshevilleThe Adventure Center of Asheville is the perfect place to take your family for a day of fun and adventure. This family-friendly attraction presents something for everybody, from zip-lining and climbing to hiking and biking. There are dozens of different zip-lines on the Adventure Center of Asheville, ranging from newbie to skilled. If you’re feeling courageous, attempt the Big Zip, which starts at 70 feet off the bottom and reaches speeds of as much as 50 miles per hour! There’s a tree-based impediment course and a handful of various climbing walls for one thing slightly extra low-key. If you favor to remain closer to the bottom, there are many hiking and biking trails close by too. Plus, in addition they supply yoga and meditation classes.
French Broad Adventures additionally offers zip lining. Or, you can e-book a tour via Navitat Canopy Adventures. A Treetop Tour is ideal for novices because it combines six zip lines, two bridges, two rappels, and two hikes. Participants should weigh between 90 and 250 kilos. Intermediate-level zip-liners can try The Mountaintop Tour, which boasts a zip-line measuring 3,600 toes long! Adrenaline seekers can’t get sufficient of The Ultimate Adventure Tour, which features six epic hours of activity and unforgettable views of the Blue Ridge Mountains!
Big Bradley Falls Rappel
Photo Courtesy: Green River AdventuresIf you’re in search of an exhilarating exercise together with your teens in Asheville, look no additional than Big Bradley Falls! Located southeast of Asheville, the Green River Gorge, and its surrounding areas showcase some of the most numerous landscapes in the United States. One of the preferred activities among guests here is rappelling. Companies similar to Green River Adventures or Pura Vida Adventures provide tours to take you through certainly one of Asheville’s most lovely pure areas. Keep in mind most tours are for ages 15 and up.
Tours usually last around 4 hours, with a short hike to the highest of the falls, where you’ll see the gorgeous views of the valley beneath. Then, you’ll rappel down the aspect of the 200-foot falls, getting up close and personal with the speeding water. This is an adrenaline-pumping exercise that the whole household will enjoy, and it’s an effective way to spend a day in Asheville! River tubing and canyoneering are additionally well-liked activities right here.
Chimney Rock State Park
Photo Courtesy: Domenico ConvertiniIf you wish to get your adrenaline pumping, save a while on day three of your Asheville household vacation itinerary to visit Chimney Rock State Park. Located simply 30 minutes from Asheville, Chimney Rock is certainly one of the most popular mountain climbing locations in North Carolina. It’s additionally a preferred vacation spot for households of all ages, and for a good reason! The views from the top of the rock are unimaginable, and there are many hiking trails to explore. While the trail to Chimney Rock within reason strenuous for teenagers (around 3.9 miles), you’ll be rewarded with a fantastic expertise. (Be certain to cease by the Visitors Center to choose up a map before you begin exploring.) If you’re not up for the hike, you can take an elevator to the top!
Or, for an actual adventure, go rock climbing. Several firms provide guided tours and classes, similar to Fox Mountain Guides and Climbing School.
Additional/Evening Activity: Stroll Downtown Asheville
Photo Courtesy: Explore AshevilleAsheville is a vibrant and bustling metropolis with a lot to see and do, including activities the entire family can get pleasure from. On your third day, take a leisurely stroll downtown to explore all that town has to offer! There are loads of retailers and restaurants to attract kids of all ages, plus road performers and different entertainers. Explore the distinctive outlets and boutiques, stop for a coffee or chunk to eat at one of many many cafes, and take in the sights and sounds of this incredible city. Afterward, walk off your meal with a stroll via the historic Pack Square Park. And if you need to relaxation your feet, there are plenty of locations to sit and people-watch. Adults will love trying a particular beer at considered one of Asheville’s many breweries!
Tired of walking round downtown Asheville together with your kids? Take a Gray Line Trolley Tour! Spanning around an hour and a half, this fun tour will take you around the downtown space, stating historic landmarks and interesting information alongside the way. It’s a nice way to study Asheville’s past whereas staying warm and dry inside. Plus, since it’s hop-on, hop-off, you can discover at your own leisure and stop to enjoy whatever you want.
Additional/Evening Activity: Roam the River Arts District
The River Arts District is one of Asheville’s most popular vacationer locations. Located along the French Broad River, the district is residence to varied businesses, including art galleries, restaurants, studios, breweries, and stay music venues. Families can explore the district on foot to browse the galleries and shops for unique local artwork. Some of our favorites embody Curve Studios, the place you’ll have the ability to watch artists at work, and the Odyssey Center for Ceramic Arts, which features modern and traditional artwork works. After you’ve had your fill of artwork, head over to one of many district’s many eating places or cafes, and grab lunch at 12 Bones Smokehouse or the White Duck Taco Shop. For dinner, strive one of the many restaurants within the area, such as the fan-favorite nightlife spot, The Foundry.
After exploring the River Arts District, take a scenic stroll or bike journey alongside the French Broad River. You also can chill out at one of the many parks in the area, similar to Carrier Park.
On the fourth day of your Asheville household trip itinerary, explore the nice outdoors at the WNC Nature Center. Located simply 10 minutes from downtown Asheville, this 42-acre zoological park is amongst the city’s best-hidden gems. It has a wide selection of interactive reveals that will teach your youngsters concerning the native wildlife and their habitats! Families can discover the attractive property, hike, or get pleasure from a picnic lunch. Several miles of trails wind via the forest and supply beautiful views of the Blue Ridge Mountains. It’s additionally residence to over 60 species of animals, including pink wolves, bobcats, cougars, and elk, so make sure to look out for some! They also supply quite lots of educational applications which may be perfect for kids of all ages.
The Botanical Gardens at Asheville
Photo Courtesy: Botanical Gardens at AshevilleFor extra time appreciating the outdoors, The Botanical Gardens at Asheville are a must-see for any nature lover. It’s undoubtedly top-of-the-line issues to do in Asheville with youngsters of all ages! Situated on 10 acres of gorgeous land on the edge of the University of North Carolina, the gardens function over 600 species of vegetation, a butterfly backyard, a children’s garden, and rather more. Trails wind via the completely different gardens and supply stunning views of the encircling mountains.
Then, kids will love exploring the Children’s Gardens, the place they’ll find out about completely different vegetation and animals. The Butterfly House is another in style attraction where households can see butterflies up shut and study their life cycles. The gardens are additionally home to numerous events all yr long, including live shows, festivals, and educational applications.
Asheville is a haven for out of doors journey, but there are nonetheless loads of issues to do with youngsters indoors! If the weather is wet, hot, or simply generally unpleasant, we’ve rounded up a few of the greatest museums in Asheville for kids to begin planning their family trip itinerary. Keep reading to be taught more!
Asheville Pinball Museum
Photo Courtesy: Asheville Pinball MuseumThe Asheville Pinball Museum is a must-visit for any online game fanatic or pinball lover! Dedicated to celebrating the history and artwork of pinball, this quirky museum features over 50 traditional and fashionable pinball machines dating again to the 50s, 60s, and 70s, in addition to a group of historic arcade games. This consists of some from the “Golden Age Of Video Games” in the 80s and 90s. With the value of admission, families can enjoy unlimited play on the entire machines. You can even purchase pinball elements and equipment from the on-site shop. Even if you’re not a pinball wizard, it’s still enjoyable to observe kids play and learn in regards to the history of those traditional machines.
Asheville Museum of Science
Photo Courtesy: Asheville Museum of ScienceThe Asheville Museum of Science is among the many nice attractions that make Asheville an excellent family vacation destination. Located in the coronary heart of downtown Asheville, this hands-on museum options something for everyone, with displays on house exploration, the human physique, and the pure world. There’s even a STEM room with interactive actions for budding scientists to stimulate curious minds. Don’t forget to check out the planetarium present to see the night sky in all its glory! The Asheville Museum of Science additionally offers academic programs, corresponding to camps, workshops, and lessons. This is a must-add attraction to your Asheville household trip itinerary.
Hands-On! Children’s Museum
Photo Courtesy: Hands-On! Children’s MuseumIf you’re looking for a enjoyable and educational activity for your family in Asheville, try the Hands-On Children Museum. This family-friendly museum is located in nearby Hendersonville and features interactive reveals on numerous subjects, together with science, art, and historical past. Plus, there’s all the time something new to see and do, due to the museum’s ever-changing special exhibitions. One of the highlights is the Science Zone, the place youngsters can experiment with totally different physical properties like friction and gravity. There’s additionally a water play area the place youngsters can construct block towers and dams. And a development zone where they’ll use real tools to build initiatives. The museum additionally has a cute cafe and present shop to have the ability to make a day of it.
Where to Stay Asheville with Kids
Wondering where to remain in Asheville with kids? As we talked about, households who want to stay at The Biltmore Estate will love the Inn on Biltmore Estate or The Village Hotel. However, contemplate The Omni Grove Park Inn if you’re in search of another choice. This historic resort is positioned in the heart of downtown Asheville, inside walking distance of all the most effective shops, eating places, and sights. The Omni Grove Park Inn also provides a variety of family-friendly facilities, including an indoor pool, kids’ club, and babysitting companies.
Other unbelievable motels in Asheville in your next household trip itinerary include the Country Inn & Suites Asheville River Arts District, Elevation Lofts Hotel, and Highland Lake Inn & Resort, around half-hour from Asheville in Flat Rock.
This 4-day itinerary should give households a perfect combination of outdoor actions, cultural points of interest, and stress-free opportunities! Whether you’re the kind of family who wants to have a precise plan or simply schedule your actions loosely depending on your kids’ needs, you have to use this as a versatile guide to exploring the wonderful city of Asheville. Here’s a brief overview of what we’ve just coated above.
* Day 1: Depending on which day you arrive in Asheville, you may wish to relaxation. Spend your subsequent full day at The Biltmore Estate. Since there’s a lot to do here, from the petting zoo to hiking, biking, and exploring the historical architecture, it could maintain you busy for an extended time! For dinner, explore The Biltmore Village and think about staying in a single day.
* Day 2: Asheville is incredible for hiking, so you need to attempt to dedicate a minimal of a half of your day to having fun with the views. We suggest Pisgah National Forest with its numerous waterfalls, and in case you have time, add a drive alongside the Blue Ridge Parkway. Catch the sunset at Craggy Gardens, then discover the restaurant scene in downtown Asheville.
* Day 3: If your family is up for it, day three is another one that must be packed with journey. We suggest taking a whitewater rafting journey with varied firms on the French Broad River since it’ll be a success with youngsters and adults. You may also strive different adventurous activities like rappelling, zip-lining, and extra. Chimney Rock State Park is a must for any nature-loving family! Then, discover downtown Asheville or go to the River Arts District to browse galleries and cute boutiques.
* Day 4: Animal lovers will need to stick round for day 4, which includes a go to to the WNC Nature Center. It’s house to a number of hikes, plus creatures like bears, elk, and cougars. Families can even take a peaceful stroll via the Botanical Gardens At Asheville. If it’s raining, think about an indoor visit to a museum just like the Hands-On Children’s Museum or the Asheville Pinball Museum.
Have a Fun Family Adventure in Asheville!
We hope you liked this guide to taking an Asheville Family Vacation: A 4-Day Itinerary With Things To Do! From outdoor adventures to exploring the city’s wealthy history and culture, you’re guaranteed to have a blast on this unbelievable North Caroline metropolis. Enjoy visiting Asheville together with your kids!
*Unless in any other case famous, all photographs within this text belong to and are courtesy of Gunjan Prakash.
*Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, some of this list’s points of interest, accommodations, or issues to do could also be closed. Please ensure availability earlier than making your determination.
*This submit might include affiliate hyperlinks that will earn us a small fee at no extra cost to you. Affiliate hyperlinks on no account inform the hotels, sights, products, or different suggestions included in our articles. All opinions and recommendations are compiled from submissions submitted by the beneficiant members of our Families Who Love To Travel community.