How To Navigate A Weekend Stay In Asheville, North Carolina
By DeAnna Taylor
Asheville, NC has consistently held its spot on travel lists as one of the top destinations to visit in any given year. The charming city, located in the mountains of North Carolina, is a great getaway for couples, friends, or even a solo traveler looking for a place to disconnect and recharge.
If you’ve been wanting to visit Asheville, we’ve put together a few suggestions on how to navigate an amazing weekend getaway.
Where to stay
As you plan your weekend, you’ll want to select a hotel in a central location that is easy for walking or using a ride share service if needed. Asheville’s downtown is literally in the center of all things you’ll need during your stay.
For a modern stay at a reasonable price, the AC Hotel by Marriott- Asheville on Broadway Street is a great place to consider. It is steps away from the city’s most popular restaurants and local boutiques and there is also a rooftop bar and restaurant inside.
Capella on 9 is located on the ninth floor of the hotel and is great for your breakfast or dinner needs when you don’t want to venture outside. You can catch the DJ or live band playing on weekends after 10 pm while you sip on craft cocktails from the bar.
Where to eat and drink
Asheville is definitely a foodie’s paradise. Many of the South’s most popular restaurant chains originated there and it is one of the craft beer capitals of the U.S.
For breakfast, Biscuit Head is the city’s number one spot. There are currently three locations to choose from where you can indulge in massive biscuit creations and unique coffee drinks with an Asheville twist. The Mimosa fried chicken biscuit or catfish biscuit definitely needs to be on your radar.
When it’s time for lunch, we suggest giving White Duck Taco Shop a try. This unique spot makes some of the most interesting taco combinations you’ll find. Whether it’s the shrimp and grits taco or the steak and cheese, you definitely won’t be disappointed.
Now for dinner. Benne on Eagle is located in what was once one of Asheville’s most thriving Black neighborhoods known as ‘The Block.’ Today, relatives of those that once lived there, now cook up amazing elevated Southern cuisine. Chef de cuisine Ashleigh Shanti has won several awards for her cooking style under the mentorship of the legend, Chef Hanan Shabazz. If you’re lucky you’ll be able to have a chat with Chef Hanan about The Block’s history and culture.
Several of the country’s most popular craft beer brands got their start in this city. But, if you want something outside of just traditional beer, try Urban Orchard Cider Company. On any day, you can find over a dozen ciders on tap including flavors like Sunglasses at Night (infused with strawberries and fresh basil) or Breakfast Club (cinnamon, brown sugar, and green apples).
Things to do
Of course, you can’t go to Asheville without visiting the largest house in America. The Biltmore Estate is 125 years old with 250 rooms, and has been the backdrop for some of our favorite movies growing up. Yes, it’s enormous.
While you are on the grounds, head over to the winery for a complimentary tasting of some of the family’s private label wines. You can also opt for a behind-the-scenes tour to see how the wine is made and produced.
Have your camera ready for both because there are photo ops all over the estate.
For the art lovers, venture over to the Asheville Art Museum in the heart of downtown. Currently on exhibit is Appalachia Now, a collective survey of contemporary Southern Appalachian culture.
If you enjoy murals or glass blowing, The River Arts District is a great neighborhood to check out. This is one of the only areas in the city where street art is legal, so you’ll find plenty of photo-worthy places.
For those in need of a mini-wellness retreat, this is definitely the place to be in. The Asheville Salt Cave is the only authentic salt cave in the state. It is filled with over 32 tons of Himalayan Sea Salt which is known to have several healing properties including helping to balance our body’s pH, which in turn helps ward off sickness. You can choose from a 45-minute cave session, massage services, as well as healing teas and saltwater while there. It’s really a magical place.
DeAnna Taylor is a criminal defense Attorney turned travel blogger, author, and writer. While Charlotte, NC (her hometown) is her base, she's always somewhere on a plane. Catch her on IG: @brokeandabroadlife.