Welcome to Hendersonville, located just south of Asheville, North Carolina, USA. You’ve stumbled upon a gem of a town, full of old-timey traditions and heritage trailing back to the country’s founding. Let’s explore, shall we? Here are the top 5 things to do in Hendersonville, NC.
Visit Downtown Hendersonville
Downtown Hendersonville is historic, manicured and timeless. Its Main Street serpentines through town, passing shops, restaurants and breweries, even an aquarium. Downtown is full of things to see and do with your friends and family. Many times throughout the year you can follow parades through the town’s center as well as visit various art and antique shows that pop up over the summer.
Don’t miss Hendersonville’s famous Apple Festival, which takes place every Labor Day weekend, filling the town with apple goods, pastries, pies and amazing smells. Stop to sit on a bench on a flower box-lined street to watch people mill about and take in the small mountain-town charm. Imagine what life was like when the Hendersonville was first founded in the 1900s.
Grab Dessert at McFarlan Bakery
This award-winning and traditional bakery is every local’s favorite place for a sweet treat. At McFarlan’s, everything is “made from scratch,” just as it was when the doors were first opened over 80 years ago. Here you can find some of North Carolina’s best cakes, cookies, pies, breads, and pastries. They even take custom orders for decorated cakes and cookies.
McFarlan Bakery doesn’t believe in shortcuts. They think a good sweet takes time and care to make, so take some time to stop in to enjoy what they have to offer.
Shop for Local Goods at the County Curb Market
The County Curb Market has been a Hendersonville tradition since 1924. All vendors at the market are residents of Hendersonville and their products must be handmade or locally grown. This unique shopping experience has become immensely popular with tourists and locals. Here you can find ripe and flavorful fruits and vegetables, home-cooked treats, colorful flower arrangements, as well as handcrafted toys, decorations and other special products.
The market is open year-round, but most popular from April through December when it’s open from 8-2 every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday.
Learn About Local History at the Heritage Museum
Step into the past to soak in Hendersonville’s history during the controversial Civil War era. It not only features exhibitions and artifacts from previous generations but also demonstrations and performances illustrating the rich backstory of this mountain town. When you’re finished with history, move onto other subjects explored in one of Hendersonville’s many other museums, including the Model Railroad Museum and Historic Depot, the Children’s Museum, Historic Flat Rock Cultural Center Museum, the Mineral and Lapidary Museum, the Western North Carolina Air Museum, and, of course, the Appalachian Pinball Museum.
Catch a show at the Center for Art and Entertainment
For the more artistically-inclined, we highly recommend a visit to the Center for Art and Entertainment. This Center is a hotspot for music-lovers, theater buffs, and film critics alike. In addition to the theater which houses a rotating series of shows year-round, there’s a cafe with locally-roasted beans and also beer, wine and snacks available as concessions. At this location, there is also a pop-up store of one of Asheville’s best bookstores: Malaprop Books.
Stop in to see up-and-coming artists working on their future bestselling novel, or yet-to-be-discovered painters catching up over a coffee. Make sure to add a show at the Center for Art and Entertainment to your itinerary. For a list of upcoming events, visit their website.
After a full day of exploring, you’ll probably be ready to relax. For more things to do in Hendersonville, enjoy a beverage at one of the many breweries and wineries in town or go for a peaceful hike in the beautiful outdoors nearby. There’s so much more to experience!
Not ready to leave yet? Hendersonville, NC is a beautiful place to call home. If you’re looking for a sustainable mountain community to call your own, consider Couch Mountain.