Asheville & The Central Mountains
Asheville, NC: One Of A Kind
Asheville has always been one of those places that visitors are naturally drawn to. It is sophisticated yet bohemian, upscale yet earthy, artsy yet natural. Set on a plateau in the midst of the Blue Ridge Mountains, Asheville offers sights, sounds, and tastes that aren’t easily found elsewhere.
The Asheville art scene offers an eclectic feast for the senses. Downtown alone boasts 30-plus galleries, with nearly 100 total throughout the mountain city. There is even a River Arts District which is filled with funky art studios in renovated warehouses. Music is also a major part of Asheville's art culture. From up-and-coming bands at the Orange Peel to nightly jam sessions in local pubs, there is no shortage of musical talent. Performing arts venues also host ballet, opera, comedy shows and theater performances.
The streets of this mountain city provide endless entertainment opportunities. Dine in the outstanding restaurants of this culinary paradise, or sample the wares of Asheville’s burgeoning microbrew scene via the Asheville Brews Cruise. Play golf on one of the area’s 14 challenging courses, or catch a minor league baseball game and support the Asheville Tourists. There's also 100 antique shops to peruse in Asheville, Biltmore Village, and Black Mountain.
Then, of course, there is Asheville’s crown jewel, the Biltmore. An estate that showcases the world’s largest private residence, America’s most visited winery, and intricately managed forest grounds and gardens, Biltmore is the epitome of elegance, taste, and beauty. The estate is the brainchild of 19th century industrial heir George W. Vanderbilt, who fell in love with Asheville on his first visit in 1888 and immediately purchased 125,000 acres to build his dream home.
In addition to its man-made wonders, Asheville is blessed with a wealth of ‘natural’ attractions. The city sits at the intersection of two major interstates and the Blue Ridge Parkway, making it the perfect gateway for outdoor enthusiasts to explore everything Western North Carolina has to offer. Zip lining, hiking, mountain biking, rock climbing, whitewater rafting, fishing, gem mining, or fall leaf peeping, are all within an easy drive from downtown Asheville.
Asheville oozes a confident, quirky charm. Whether it comes from the rhythmic pounding of bongo drums by young hipsters in downtown’s Pritchard Park, the cool summer breezes you feel as you dine on a restaurant patio, or the backdrop of the Blue Ridge Mountains against the city’s unique mix of architecture, Asheville has an aura all it’s own.
added: December 17, 2008
updated: May 1, 2012