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5 experiences not to miss in North Carolina’s Asheville

Asheville, North Carolina. Could this be the perfect city to vacation in? Come on – iconic music venues, famous craft breweries, heavenly restaurants, a thriving art scene? There’s even a book exchange Champagne bar! And we didn’t even mention the Blue Ridge Mountains. This is most certainly a hip, musical city, with restaurants and art to rival NYC, set amongst North Carolina’s beautiful mountains. Downtown Asheville Here are the 5 experiences you cannot miss during your stay in Asheville: 1. Sampling the legendary beer Did you know Asheville has been a regular winner of the “Beer City USA” award? Come and see what we’re now famous for by touring the many breweries (at least 17 at this count) and sampling locally brewed beer. A great way is the self guided walking tour of Asheville’s South Slope (the Brewery District). You can navigate around with your phone. But take care, the beer is very good – too much and no amount of technology can help you! Is this option of getting the locals to drive you more sensible?! Beer 2. The Biltmore Estate Biltmore is a must see while in Asheville! This is America’s castle and the largest home in the country with over 250 bedrooms on over 8000 acres. The estate boasts gardens, a luxurious Inn with fantastic dining, spa and views from every window. Plan a full day adventure with discount tickets by booking in advance via The Biltmore. A well kept local secret is to enjoy an appetizer and beverage on the terrace of the Library Lounge at the Inn. The views are spectacular and you will feel as if you were transported back to the magical Gilded Age. Biltmore Estate 3. The Asheville music scene With so many venues, it’s challenging to know where to start! Located in the River Arts District, The Grey Eagle has a great sound, and attracts singer / songwriter / acoustic acts. It also carries a range of the local beers for an authentic Asheville experience. An Asheville legend, The Orange Peel is a great smoke free venue featuring some larger acts. Isis, located in the hop West Side of Asheville, is an intimate venue with bar and restaurant – try a Sunday jazz and dinner for a lesser known fun night. Or how about Tressa’s, a multi-cultural music haven where “Old New Orleans” style meets a smooth, jazz ambiance. It’s the place to meet friends for cocktails and dance the night away! And, finally, please don’t forget Moog Fest! Asheville music scene 4. River Arts District Located less than a mile from downtown, this area is home to more than 165 artists’ studios that are open to the public. There are also a number of restaurants, shops, and cafés, as well as The Grey Eagle. Try lunch at the famous 12 Bones BBQ (Barack and Michelle Obama have eaten there and they’re often featured in foodie articles). It’s also fun to walk along the train track to the Wedge Brewery, where you’ll often see hundreds of people outside drinking beer, playing games and listening to music. River Arts District 5. Romantic date night Start at the Grove Park Inn with cocktails on the sunset patio (a drive from downtown so perhaps book a cab). Try Limones downtown for dinner in a fun atmosphere. Then head to the French Broad Chocolate Lounge for dessert. Still want more? Try The Nightbell for an after dinner drink (New York comes to Asheville), then walk it all off by going up the hill to Pack Square Park. Date night These experiences are a mere scratch on the surface of one cool city. There are so many other great options we could really have billed this “50 Experiences Not to Miss”! And it’s not all about the city; there are numerous options for the more active outside of town. How about a picnic on top of the world at Craggy Pinnacle, zip lining at Navitat, or tubing down the French Broad to the Bywater for beer? Go on, give this city a good scratch! Andy McNulty is the Co-Founder of Vacation Insiders. If you would like to be a guest blogger on A Luxury Travel Blog in order to raise your profile, please contact us.

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