Asheville, NC: Natural, Charming, Weird

In North Carolina’s Blue Ridge Mountains, Asheville stands out, known for its scenic beauty, rich history, and a culture that the residents proudly proclaim as weird. Artists, musicians, brewmasters nature enthusiasts and everyday folk make Asheville the unique destination it is.

Asheville’s population is diverse, with a community that embraces creativity, individuality, and a laid-back lifestyle. The city is known for its progressive mindset and liberal nature, attracting a wide array of individuals from artists and musicians to entrepreneurs and environmentalists.

The slogan “Keep Asheville Weird” is  more than a catchy phrase on many local bumper stickers, it’s a lifestyle representing its commitment to preserving its unique character and supporting local businesses, artists, and musicians. From colorful street art and quirky boutiques to unconventional performances and festivals, Asheville’s eccentricity is almost always on full display.

Blue Ridge Parkway Tunnel near Asheville North Carolina during Fall Autumn

Asheville’s backdrop is the Blue Ridge Mountains, hiking, mountain biking, and rock climbing for all skill levels. The mountains are not just a playground for adventurers; they also provide a serene escape for those seeking a connection with nature. The autumn months are of particular interest when the cool temperature and altitude bring out the brightly colored foliage along the mountainsides.

The town is also home to the Biltmore, a sprawling estate, constructed between 1889 and 1895, which is the largest privately-owned home in the United States, boasting an impressive 250 rooms. The brainchild of George Washington Vanderbilt II, the Biltmore was designed by renowned architect Richard Morris Hunt, drawing inspiration from French Renaissance chateaus, which is evident in its grand façade and intricate interiors. The estate’s grounds, were designed by the famous landscape architect Frederick Law Olmsted, creator of New York’s Central Park. The Biltmore Estate is now open to the public.

The BiltmoreEstate

Asheville has also earned the title of “Beer City USA” with its impressive array of breweries. The city boasts more breweries per capita than any other U.S. city, offering a diverse range of craft beers. From hoppy IPAs and smooth stouts to innovative brews infused with local flavors, the beer scene in Asheville a healthy one.

Asheville is home to numerous waterfalls along its mountainous trails. From the majestic Whitewater Falls, the highest waterfall east of the Rockies, to the serene beauty of Looking Glass Falls,  they are popular spots for outdoor activities like swimming, picnicking, and photography. The region’s lakes, such as Lake Lure and Lake James, provide a playground for locals and visitors alike.  Nearby Black Mountain, often referred to as the “front porch of Western North Carolina,” is also worth exploring. With its charming downtown, artistic community, and access to outdoor adventures, Black Mountain complements the Asheville experience.

 Asheville offers a plethora of experiences that cater to a great many types of traveler. Explore this unique city at your first opportunity, you won’t be disappointed.