Asheville has become one of the United States’ top destination cities for food, outdoor activities, and great weather. So, planning an Inspired Getaway weekend can certainly be overwhelming. That’s where Inspired Getaway can help! Not only can we provide you with a perfectly located place to stay but, we can help guide you to a well-planned itinerary.
There are plenty of ‘points of interest’ when visiting Western North Carolina so, we’re are going to focus on our recommended top five sights to see around Asheville.
- Grove Park Inn
- Lake Lure
- Outdoor Activities
When you first arrive in Asheville, we highly recommend soaking up downtown right off the bat. There’s so much to see, taste and experience downtown that you literally could spend days exploring the wide variety of shops and eateries. But, we’re here to make your life easier. First off, make a reservation for one of these top-rated Asheville restaurants: Curate, Cucina 24, Bouchon, Tupelo Honey, Noble Cider – The Greenhouse or Zambra Tapas Wine Bar. Anywhere you eat in downtown Asheville, you will have amazing food but, these are a few nationally recognized restaurants and we feel they should be highlighted.
After you’ve booked your dinner reservation, head out to one of the roof-top bars situated atop one of the downtown hotels. Our most recommended rooftop bar is The Montford Rooftop because it’s a local’s favorite, has carefully craft cocktails, views for miles and the snack menu is just right. Or, stroll through the historic Grove Arcade before heading up to the fabulous Hemingway’s Cuba Rooftop where the views are epic and the decor is roomy yet cozy with a Miami bohemian vibe.
If you want to skip the pre-dinner cocktail, stroll through some of the unique boutique shops located up and down Lexington Avenue and Biltmore Avenue. You’ll find that the Asheville Bee Charmer will probably be the highlight of your shopping experience. Asheville is known as an artist’s city, so there are plenty of locally made goods, art pieces, crafts and pottery to discover and browse through.
If Art museums are your thing, then go check out the newly renovated Asheville Art Museum located in the heart of downtown across from the historic Pack Square. This state of the art, highly designed museum is awe-inspiring where anyone can spend days walking and observing the art displays.
After the Art Museum, head next door to the nationally recognized French Broad Chocolate Lounge for a divine chocolatey experience. Be sure to order (to-go) the must-have delicate truffles in a variety of unique flavors. We greatly recommend sipping a mug of warm, silky liquid chocolate. It’s not like anything you’ve ever experienced before.
If you find yourself immersed in downtown, that’s fine but, we also highly recommend spending an entire day at the Biltmore Estate. This historic, largest home in America and properly groomed landscape are spectacular and not to be missed! You could spend days visiting the property but, if you only have one full day, then head straight to the house to explore inside with a self-guided tour followed by an amazing stroll through the astonishing botanical gardens.
Once you’ve wrapped up touring the house and the gardens, hop back in your car and drive on through to the Biltmore Estate Winery. Here, at the winery, Biltmore guests receive complimentary wine tastings, and the opportunity to shop till you drop. Find “all things” Biltmore at Antler Hill Village where you can dine, shop, splurge on ice cream or lounge for a sunset. Webbing the entire property are well-groomed trails perfect for biking, hiking or for a long evening stroll after dinner. Before you set out for a hike from Antler Hill Village, be sure to swoon over the adorable farm animals with a stop at the petting pin.
If you find that you don’t want to explore the hugeness of the Biltmore Estate but are wanting to experience a historic piece of Asheville, then head to the always amazing Grove Park Inn, Asheville’s over-the-top famous hotel where dozens of celebrities, President’s and world leaders have stayed to roam the halls of this special hotel. If your visit to the Grove Park Inn falls on a day where there is a gorgeous sunset, you’re in luck! The back terrace of the Grove Park Inn is ideal for relaxing with a cocktail in hand where the views are stunning and the memories last a lifetime. Hoping for that Instagram worthy shot? The backdrop of the Grove Park Inn is perfect.
When the weather is warm and the sun is high in the sky, one of the area’s premier spots is Lake Lure. Famous and well-known for the location and filming of the movie Dirty Dancing, Lake Lure is still one of the area’s best attractions. The top ‘thing to do’ at Lake Lure is to rent a pontoon boat for the day from one of the lake marina’s or enjoy the white, sandy lake beach with the entire family. Both the beach and the pontoon boat are family-friendly activities and worthy of an entire day. If water isn’t your thing, then make your way to the top of Chimney Rock where the striking views will knock your flip flops off. Lake Lure is also dotted with plenty of delicious restaurants, we recommend the family-owned Burntshirt Vineyards Tasting Room and Bistro located at the base of Chimney Rock.
Well, that leads us right into the endless list of outdoor activities you can find in our area. First off, make a bucket list of what it is you’d like to explore. Is it hiking, ziplining, kayaking, tubing, or just summit seeking views? The list goes on and on so, narrowing it done will be very helpful. If hiking is on your mind, then head out to the NC Arboretum, an arboretum and botanical garden located within the Bent Creek Experimental Forest of the Pisgah National Forest. The trails are considered for easiest to difficult hiking and everything in between. Or, if you want, you can decide to skip hiking altogether and remain at the Arboretum’s main campus to explore the wide variety of plants, flowers and bonsai exhibit. There is much to see and explore at the NC Arboretum!
If ziplining is on your bucket list, then you have several options – be sure to do your zip company homework before deciding where to go. We can suggest Navitat Canopy Adventures and The Gorge Ziplining, the area’s premier zip companies but take note they have very different approaches to the zipline experience. Learn more about the different ziplining companies in our area, go to https://ashevilledatenight.com/6-ways-to-go-zip-lining-in-asheville-this-fall/.
The same goes for river activities, climbing or biking activities. Romantic Asheville is a wonderful resource for discovering a plethora of outdoor hiking trails, locations and ideas for where to go. For summit seekers and 360-degree views, we recommend driving the Blue Ridge Parkway in either direction or heading west on I-40 to the popular Max Patch hike.
So, what are you waiting for? Surround yourself with an Inspired Getaway! We are a top choice for anyone who dreams of visiting Asheville, NC. There’s no better way to immerse yourself into the local experience of Western North Carolina.