Asheville is located in Western NC's Blue Ridge Mountains and the town has a distinct mountain vibe. City streets are lined with delicious restaurants, thirst-quenching breweries, and quaint local shops. Venture outside the metropolitan area for great hiking and stunning views. If you enjoy organic hippie-living nestled in beautiful mountain landscapes than Asheville is the place to go!
Emily from @simplylivingmore has shared all of her favorite family-friendly things to do (and eat) in Asheville, NC. This family of 4 travels the country in an airstream - but when they are not living on the road they call Asheville home. We hope you enjoy all these wonderful suggestions!
Things to Do
The Biltmore Estate - This house is absolutely gorgeous, but if the kids are antsy, do the tour quickly and head outside. There are acres and acres of trails, gardens, and even a small petting zoo for the kids. The shops, restaurants, and winery on Antler Hill are all top quality. Kids can stop at the playground, the hands on activities, or the ice cream shop.
Asheville Treetops Adventure Park - Ages 4+ can climb and swing through an elevated obstacle course. There is also an adventure zipline called KidZip for kids under 10.
WNC Nature Center - The nature center is full of animals native to the area. The walk is relaxing and shaded, with nature play areas along the way. It is very interactive and a great way to spend a couple of hours.
Asheville Pinball Museum - Older kids? Check this place out.
ZenTubing - In the summertime, take a float down the French Broad River.
North Carolina Arboretum - Hiking trails, biking trails, Discovery backpacks, Geocaching, and an Eco Lab for kids.
Friday nights check out the Drum Circle in Pritchard Park.
Take a Hike!
Asheville lies within the Blue Ridge Mountains, so there are countless opportunities just outside of the city for a hike. Here are some favorite easy/moderate hikes.
Asheville Botanical Gardens Trails - Need a quick hike around town? This one is perfect. It’s located on the campus of UNC Asheville and only takes a half hour to complete the 0.5 mile loop.
Bridal Veil Falls at Dupont State Forest - Although it is an hour drive from the city, these falls are worth the trip. You may recognize the scenery from The Hunger Games or Last of the Mohicans. It is a great trail for the family and a little over an hour round trip. Take snacks and water!
Sliding Rock - Where water shoes and slide down the rock! Great summer time fun for the whole family!
Hooker Falls, Triple Falls, and High Falls Hike - This hike is also about an hour outside of the city, but so worth it! The hike is a little longer, 2.2 miles to see all three falls. Make sure to stop at Oskar Blues Brewery in Brevard on your way home - you deserve a cold one!
If you feeling adventurous, take a drive on the Blue Ridge Parkway and stop to explore the trails along the road - stunning views around every bend!
Time to Eat!
It is very unlikely to walk into a restaurant downtown and leave disappointed. Most places serve local food and organic produce and meat. Here are some of our family favorites we frequently visit.
Biscuit Head in West Asheville - It’s a must for breakfast! The Mimosa Fried Chicken biscuit. I can’t even. If you want something lighter, try one of their cat head biscuits with the homemade butter and jam bar. You will not leave hungry.
Ice Cream! Check out The Hop.
Mamacitas Taco Temple - This place is delicious... The chorizo queso, avocado, panela, and borracha are personal favorites - oh and don’t forget the Paloma to drink! If you like tacos and tequila, this is your place!
Farm Burger - Make your own burger or choose one of their specialty burgers. Whichever you choose, it will be delish. Get the root beer from tap or indulge in an adult milkshake.
Copper Crown - The brussel sprouts are life changing and my favorite is the buffalo chicken.
White Duck Taco Shop - SO good and there is a great outdoor space for the kids to sit. The kid's Chicken BLT taco is an all time favorite.
All Souls Pizza - The menu speaks for itself, but there is a great outdoor space for children as well.
Asheville is also known for it’s beer scene. There are microbreweries popping up everywhere and New Belgium and Sierra Nevada are now brewing in town! Both NB and SN have excellent lawns for kiddos to play on. SN even has a fenced in area with sand boxes and toys! Umm, yes please!
Smaller breweries that are great for kids:
Twin Leaf Brewery - board games, kids toys, large jenga blocks