Travel Tuesday: What To Do In Asheville, North Carolina

Headed to Asheville? What’s doing in one of our favorite mountain towns…

I heard nothing but great things about Asheville before stepping into the city limits. This one-of-a-kind mountain town is destined to become (if it’s not already) one of the hippest places in America. Woven among restaurants, shops and bars is a community of talented artists and musicians who, just like the city itself, are unique and inspiring, wooing others to join in. I had 4 days to explore Asheville, and I learned quickly why this place is loved by so many. Below, in my opinion, are some of the places worth checking out. To any I missed, please leave a note in the comments! No doubt, this place deserves a second trip.

Sips & Eats

Battlecat Coffee Bar373 Haywwod Road


My favorite coffee shops are the ones that make you feel at home. Maybe that’s because may of them were a home, at one point or another. Structurally cozy spaces are relaxing, but also provide comfort that can fuel your need to get your work done. Located in West Asheville, Battlecat Coffee Bar is that spot you’ll want to hit up every morning to hang, work, relax, grab a bite or even play a round of chess. Try one of their specialty Thai iced coffees, or head to the back of the shop and order food from Tiger Bay Cafe.


Early Girl Eatery, 8 Wall Street


Early bird gets the worm…or in this case…early girl (or guy) gets one of the best farm-to-table Southern cooked breakfasts in all of Asheville. The fresher the ingredients, the better the meal is. That’s the motto at Early Girl, and they’ve been sourcing farm-fresh goodies from the community since its doors opened in 2001. Arrive early for a delicious morning meal, or stop in for dinner Tuesday-Sunday if am wake-up calls aren’t your cup of tea.


Double D’s Coffee & Desserts, 41 Biltmore Avenue


Double D’s is a literal pick-me-up. Hop on the bus and order a coffee or one of their homemade desserts. Head to the upstairs of the 1963 Lodekka double-decker to get a taste of vintage England, then take in the view to observe modern Asheville below. It’s a real treat.


Also try: 

Sunny Point Cafe (This place may easily serve up one of the best breakfasts in the country, but snagging a table isn’t easy. Be prepared for a wait — it’s well worth it!)


Laughing Seed

Nine Mile



Twice Round Vintage, 667 Haywood Road


Right at the corner of Haywood and Louisiana, Twice Round has curated a collection of funky vintage digs, at prices you and your wallet will appreciate. If you need a last-minute Halloween costume, chances are you’ll probably find one here.


Raven & Crone, 555 Merrimon Ave


Raven & Crone is one of those shops that you’d expect to read about in Harry Potter. It’s an “old-age” metaphysical supply store, so you’ll find anything from sacred altar supplies to a full collection of herbal apothecary. They even have an in-house aromatherapy blending bar. Pop in if you’re feeling witchy — something will surely spike your curiosity.



Harvest Records, 415 Haywood Road


Harvest Records has a collection so good, it has the accolades to prove it. From cd’s to vinyl, they have something to accommodate any music taste, and in an easy-to-find layout. There’s even a stage for in-house performances. Follow them on Facebook for updated music news and ticket giveaways to local Asheville shows!


Villagers, 278 Haywood Road


Villagers is all about inspiring a healthy and sustainable way of living. The moment you walk in, you’ll notice the harmonious energy that’s floating around the shop. I’m holding off on giving away too much, since next week I’ll be posting a full feature on this shop and it’s owner, Natalie Pollard. Stay tuned!


Ragtime Vintage, 20 East Walnut Street


I’ve heard from several folks that Ragtime is one of the best vintage stores in Asheville and, after my first visit, I’d have to agree. I wasn’t sure what I liked more…the well-sorted collection of vintage wears, or the pieces of history that were hung on the walls inside. This place is a definitely a gem worth checking out on a visit to Asheville!




Sky Bar, 18 Battery Park Ave


No matter what, make sure you find time to visit Sky Bar. It boasts some of the best views that downtown Asheville and the Blue Ridge Mountains have to offer. I’d recommend stopping by in the evening — a glass of champagne by a rooftop fire pit is the perfect accompaniment to an epic sunset.


Blue Ridge Parkway


Taking a drive up the parkway is a must. Stop off along the way for a hike picnic, or just to hang out and appreciate the amazing views. This 469-mile stretch of highway follows the ridge of the Blue Ridge Mountains, and connects Shenandoah and the Great Smokey Mountains National Park. It’s a free pass to one of the most scenic drives in America.


+What are your favorite spots in Asheville? Let us know in the comments below!

More travel inspiration from the BLDG 25 Blog.

Follow Jana on Instagram and Twitter.

0 0 vote
Article Rating
Notify of
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
4 years ago

I loved Asheville. I was there a few years ago to visit the Biltmore Estate (surprised you didn’t mention ) and we adored the downtown and the people there. Such a unique city.

4 years ago

Looks like a magical place to me, I’d love to go there someday!

4 years ago

Nice list. Our favorite food was from Rezaz and Jerusalem Garden Cafe.

4 years ago

Asheville is so great. Next time you should definitely check out some of the many breweries. The Thirsty Monk is one of the coolest bars I’ve ever been to. It’s three stories. The main floor and the basement have lots of beers! The top floor is known as Top of the Monk and offers speciality cocktails that are to die for! It definitely has a speak easy vibe.

4 years ago

Vortex donuts; organic, fresh, and amazing!

4 years ago

Oh and Rosetta’s kitchen had the best vegan cake I’ve ever eaten!

4 years ago

Such great travel photography inspiration. Makes me want to go!

4 years ago

I really need to take some time off and travel across our awesome country! x


4 years ago

I absolutely love Dobra Tea. You go towards the back and you sit on pillows in a really nice and dim area and order tea or dessert (I highly recommend the chocolate medicine ball!) There are private little niches and beads strung down. The tea itself is amazing, some of them even come over a small fire. It’s definitely my favorite place to go!

4 years ago

Western NC is my home! Heiwa Shokudo is the stuff of dreams. Rosetta’s peanut butter tofu is delicious. Firestorm Books and Cafe is adorable and all vegan and has a great book selection (plus, it’s a co-op!). It’s a nice place to duck into before or after Sunny Point. All Souls Pizza is incredible. You didn’t mention the farmers’ markets, which is a shame, considering they’re some of the longest-running in the country. At the farmers’ markets, Farm and Sparrow (same folks as All Souls) make the best best bread and pastries of anyone, ever. Also, the smaller mountain towns surrounding Asheville, like Marshall and Waynesville, have super sweet art scenes of their own. Max Patch has the sorts of views you think can’t possibly be real, and if you want to be deep deep inside a lush forest, Big Ivy is so beautiful and has a lot of biodiversity. Sigh!

4 years ago

Dinner and beers at the Wicked Weed Brewery and then a show at the Orange Peel

4 years ago

Thank you for doing this post. I’d waiting for ya’ll do to a post on Asheville and then one day it came. And then I was happy. Beautiful place and now it has top priority in my weekend planning.

4 years ago

I am so glad you loved Asheville! I live here and it is an amazing place to be. Below are some places you should try next time you come :)

Places to eat:
Bull and Beggar (dinner)
King Daddy’s Chicken and Waffles (breakfast/brunch)
White Duck Taco
Chai Pani (amazing indian street food )
Ben’s Tuneup (really good restaurant and bar in an old car mechanic and there isn’t a roof on part of the place. You can eat and drink under the stars!)

The Wedge
Burial Brewery

Hikes and Waterfalls:
Catawba Falls
Sam’s Knob
Skinny Dip Falls
Graveyard Fields

4 years ago

So glad you were able to come over to west asheville, my part of town! Or better known as best asheville! We’ve got a couple new great places that just opened up since your visit. Next time be sure to try out TacoBilly (a new breakfast taco place) Hole (donuts made right in front of you!) and Urban Orchard (cider bar try their El Diablo cider). As far as shopping, Screen Door or Tobacco Barn are absolute musts!

4 years ago

i can certainly second battlecat – that place is like a second home to me. a bit of a head-scratcher on double-d outside the interesting place factor. i find the coffee pretty bad, and i can’t stand up straight in the place. then again, i’m a little tall – but there are better (and taller) places downtown. izzy’s, maybe?

2 years ago

Love the “off the beaten path ” view of hidden gems you shared here. I’ve lived here for almost 3 years and still have yet to try Early Girl. It’s definitely on my list. Thanks for sharing.

2 years ago

Battlecat is my favorite spot to work on cutting edge web design for my Asheville clients

1 year ago

I am moving the NC very soon and as I have been looking for places in NC that others have suggested I visit I have been shocked how often Asheville has come up, however after reading your post, I totally get it. So stunning! Thanks for he amazing post!

2 months ago

PennyCup Coffee is one of my favorite spots for meeting marketing clients in Asheville. Such a great vibe. Totally recommend visiting the one downtown.