48 Hours in South Asheville: Where History Meets Today

Here's a quick itinerary for an excitement-filled weekend in South Asheville, NC.

South Asheville is a region of town with a long history but a newly minted and still developing identity. Spanning the south side of downtown, through Biltmore Village and down Highway 25 to Biltmore Park Town Square, the highly urbanized region covers a lot of ground. And that means there is a ton of stuff to see, explore, and experience while you’re there—from historic architecture to innovative dining options and nearby natural wonders. 

Whether you’re vacationing or stay-cationing, this urban corridor offers myriad ways to Live Abundantly in WNC. Here’s a quick itinerary for an excitement-filled weekend in South Asheville, NC.


Friday Evening in South Asheville, NC


Check in to Your Hotel

Located just off I-26, the strength of the Biltmore Park community lies in its vibrant commercial/urban core, known as Biltmore Park Town Square. This 42-acre mixed use space extends outward into neighborhoods as unique as the people who inhabit them. At the center of the town square are numerous restaurants, cafes, spas, health clubs, boutiques, and gathering spots. 

Room in style at the Hilton Asheville Biltmore Park. Located in the heart of the shopping and entertainment district, this hotel is the perfect place to kick off an exciting weekend in South Asheville. That is, assuming you don’t spend all weekend at the hotel spa.


Fill Your Belly

Welcome to the home of hand-pulled perfection! Established in 2007, Luella’s Bar-B-Que invites you to taste the love with their slow-smoked meats and homemade sides. Each of Luella’s two family-run locations serves masterpieces for your mouth that are made from scratch each day. If the food at Luella’s reminds you of what grandma used to make, that’s no coincidence. Grandma Lue has handed down many recipes, but they all have the same not-so-secret ingredient: Love. House-made sauces grace a tender selection of meats ranging from pork to chicken to beef. Even their sauces are homemade. Your tongue and your tummy will say thank you.


Wash it down with a Craft Brew

If you can resist the urge at Luella’s, leave some room for this next stop. Great pub food and a unique collection of craft brews await you around the corner at Thirsty Monk Brewery. Many of their draughts are inspired by Belgian and European recipes, but rooted in modern ales. And their food menu includes pub staples, as well as innovative options, like the Nashville hot trout sandwich and their signature serving of bacon in a pint glass. As they say, “Sometimes you just need a straight up Pint of Bacon.” Enjoy their open-air patio and their well-educated bar staff. It’s the perfect spot to eat, drink, and be merry—during the day or for last call.


Saturday in South Asheville, NC


Travel back in Time

In 1888, George Washington Vanderbilt II, grandson of the famous railroad magnate Cornelius Vanderbilt, visited the small mountain town of Asheville, North Carolina. Within a year, George decided to build a cozy winter estate in the area—and carved out 30,000 acres as his own. 

Truly, seeing everything the Biltmore Estate has to offer could take a lifetime! But passholders can enjoy the estate’s current 8,000 acres of rolling lands, woods, and waterways every day of the year. The signature Biltmore House, completed in 1895, itself takes 1.5–2 hours to tour. While you’re on the estate, don’t miss the historical conservatory, modern winery, and miles of trails for walking, biking, or horseback riding.


Discover a Treasure

Just outside the gate for the Estate is the iconic Biltmore Village district. The area was once its own town and can still be distinguished by its distinct architectural style. Its location and architecture are intimately woven together in the fabric of its history. In fact, 28 Biltmore Village buildings within a three-block radius are on the National Register of Historic Places.

But historic architecture isn’t the only reason to visit this district. From national brands like Chico’s, lululemon, and Jos. A. Banks to local favorites like The Gardener’s Cottage and Old World Christmas Shoppe, shopping abounds here! The curious and familiar alike are always in for a surprise at Village Antiques at Biltmore, in operation on Biltmore Avenue for more than 30 years. 


Grab a Burger at the Big Top

Hi-Wire Brewing is arguably one of the fastest growing breweries in the Southeast. Visit the circus-themed brewery at their “Big Top” location in Biltmore Village. (They have additional taprooms in Asheville in the River Arts District and downtown’s South Slope.) Their flagship and seasonal offerings are brewed to be balanced and approachable. But there are also always exciting barrel-aged sour and wild ales to try, as well. While you’re enjoying a seat in their tasting room, biergarten, or front patio, enjoy the best burger you’ve ever had. The Foothills Food Truck is permanently parked outside to serve the best in local, pasture-raised meats (with vegetarian options available, as well).


Take a Drive

South Asheville enjoys close proximity to the Asheville Regional Airport, making travel near and far a breeze. However, with so much to see nearby, there’s no need to go far! The South Asheville community is bisected by the Blue Ridge Parkway, a cyclist and sightseer’s haven. At 469 miles in length, the Blue Ridge Parkway offers plenty of opportunities to create memorable moments. But some of the best viewpoints the area has to offer can be seen close to town! Stop at milepost 393.6 to enjoy the NC Arboretum in Bent Creek. In addition to miles of walking trails and outdoor gardens, the arboretum offers regular exhibits, events, and educational opportunities for nature lovers of all ages. 


Go the Extra Mile for Dinner

As you make your way back to the hotel, take note of Nine Mile‘s South Asheville location. (The local restaurant also has locations in West Asheville and North Asheville’s historic Montford neighborhood.) This casual, eclectic, Caribbean-inspired menu is sure to please everyone in your party. Many of Nine Mile’s pasta and rice dishes are vegetarian friendly, and generous dinner portions are sure to satisfy. Try the self-titled Nine Mile (grilled jerk chicken or tofu, fresh ginger, and fire-roasted vegetables over linguine or basmati rice) and pair it with one of their custom Caribbean cocktails. But don’t forget to save room for locally made desserts!


Sunday in South Asheville, NC


Enjoy Brunch in Style

From the hotel, travel back up Highway 25 to Gerber Village (named after the baby food factory that used to be there) for the perfect Sunday brunch! Once a local staple among downtown Asheville eateries, Tupelo Honey has expanded their flock in recent years to 14 locations around the nation. The restaurant offers scratch-made Southern food that fills bellies at breakfast, brunch, lunch, and dinner throughout the week. Many people go just for their biscuits, but you can’t miss their buttermilk fried chicken with a creamy milk gravy. Don’t forget to save room for one of their delicious desserts!


Connect with Your Inner Child

You can’t spend a day in South Asheville without at least poking your nose into O.P. Taylor’s toy store. You can’t miss the storefront—there are two 20-foot toy soldiers guarding the front door! From dolls and marbles to board games, puzzles, and Lego kits, it’s no wonder it’s the number one toy store in the South. O.P. Taylor’s is a great place to shop for kids and kids at heart. Best of all, the staff is always ready to demonstrate a toy for you, and they’ll insist that you play with the many toys on offer, too. We double dog dare you to leave without blowing your budget.


Catch a Matinee

On chilly winter afternoons, the most exciting way to spend the afternoon is on a journey to Arrakis or Wakanda—on the big screen. Two movie theaters are convenient to South Asheville, and are among our favorites in the region. Regal Biltmore Grande Stadium 15 at Biltmore Park has RPX screens. They also offer great party rooms and movie packages. The Carolina Cinemark Asheville offers stadium seating and a couple sofa screening rooms. Plus, you can book a private watch party and enjoy a whole theater room to yourself. Enjoy the latest blockbuster in comfort and style!


Spend Every Weekend in South Asheville

With a population of 93,000, Asheville is the largest city in Western North Carolina and serves as the area’s economic and cultural center in many ways. The area of South Asheville is roughly delineated by the Biltmore Village neighborhood to the north and Biltmore Park Town Square to the south. The main arteries through the area are Highway 25/Hendersonville Road and the parallel Alt Highway 25A/Sweeten Creek Road. 

Diverse real estate options characterize the greater Asheville area, and homes in South Asheville are no exception. Within a short drive, it is entirely possible to consider a condo in Biltmore Park Town Square, rural farm toward Fairview, luxury home in a gated community, or an historical home in the nearby township of Biltmore Forest. 

Does that sound like the perfect lifestyle for you? Find your dream home in South Asheville now!

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