Whether you live in Asheville or are just visiting the area, sometimes you want to get outside the city to see what’s around you. And here in North Carolina, there is tons to explore. With National and State forests on every side, plenty of historical sites, and cute mountain towns just a few miles away, there are so many options if you’re looking for an Asheville day trip during your stay. Here are just four of our favorite Asheville day trip destinations, which can be reached and explored in a day or less:
Carl Sandburg Home National Historic Site and Flat Rock, NC
Just a short, 40-minute drive south of Asheville sits the quaint village of Flat Rock. Though it’s a cute town in its own right, if you’re making a day trip excursion, you’ll certainly want to check out the village’s claim to fame, the Carl Sandburg Home National Historic Site. A three-time Pulitzer Prize winner, Sandburg was one of America’s greatest poets, and his home has been designated a National Historic site complete with miles of trails, a beautiful goat farm, and of course the beautifully restored home.
Spend a few hours at the Carl Sandburg Home checking out the expansive grounds and barn, and take in a bit of history. Then, move onto the rest of Flat Rock for a bit of shopping and a delicious lunch or dinner. Downtown Flat Rock is home to some local shops, galleries, and restaurants, all of which are great to check out during your day trip.
If you’re into hiking, food, or both, Black Mountain is the ultimate Asheville day-trip destination for you. This tiny village is home to more than 40 shops, 30 restaurants, and three breweries. And if that’s not enough to keep you entertained for the day, head to the Swannanoa Museum to take in some history, or take a short hike around the lake for views of the Seven Sisters peaks and Graybeard Mountain. Still not enough exercise? Jump onto the Point Lookout Trail for a 7.2-mile hike that’s sure to work off the awesome breakfast or lunch you had in town. While the trail isn’t particularly long, it is considered a moderate challenge because of the first half, which gains 900 feet of elevation in less than 4 miles.
Another great Asheville day trip takes you into the town of Brevard. Also known as North Carolina’s Land of Waterfalls, Brevard is connected to both state and national forests offering miles and miles of hiking and biking trails, plus most of Asheville’s most famous waterfalls. If you’re visiting in the summer, be sure to head to Sliding Rock, where years of flowing water has created a natural slide out of a massive rock. Also home to Rainbow Falls, Whitewater Falls, and Looking Glass Falls, there’s a waterfall in Brevard for everyone.
If you’re not planning to spend your day hiking, grab tickets for a concert at the Brevard Music Center in downtown Brevard, or simply take your time exploring the town! With museums, theaters, galleries, and plenty of boutiques and restaurants, there’s plenty to keep you busy in Brevard.
About an hour from Asheville, in western NC’s High Country sits the Linville Caverns. The only caverns open for tours in North Carolina, this is certainly a day trip worth making if you’re into geology, or even if you just want to check out something a little different. Located inside Humpback Mountain, Linville Caverns are home to a subterranean stream, trout, bats, and all kinds of natural rock formations. The tours are well-rated, and offer visitors a look at the weird underground world within the caverns, plus a little bit of history about the area and about how the caverns came to be used by humans.
If you’re hoping to move to the Asheville area, Couch Mountain has lots and properties available. A sustainable living mountain community, at Couch Mountain we offer amenities like a community garden and miles of pristine trails, and we encourage sustainable practices like backyard farming. For more information about our community, or to learn more about our available lots and properties, contact us today.