18 Best Things To Do At Biltmore Estate To Get Your Money’s Worth

Are you headed to historic Biltmore Estate in Asheville, North Carolina? Is the Biltmore ticket price worth it? Discover 18 of the best things to do at Biltmore from annual passholders and locals.

Before becoming Asheville locals, we were Asheville tourists. We’ll never forget flying over the Blue Ridge Mountains and watching the trees open to reveal Biltmore Estate.

You can also catch a glimpse of Biltmore from the Blue Ridge Parkway driving toward Asheville.

The property is breathtaking, and visiting Biltmore Estate is a must at least once.

Biltmore is such a large part of Asheville’s history. Not only one of Asheville’s most iconic tourist attractions and one of America’s largest homes, but Biltmore Estate helped shape and grow this mountain city.

The Vanderbilts put Asheville on the map. They dedicated time and money to education, forestry, and the community.

Today, Biltmore continues to work on environmental-friendly practices, food access and sustainability, and preserving our natural resources.

Not to mention the endless Biltmore activities and sights:

Peruse the shelves of a spooky but beautiful library filled with 22,000 volumes of books that George Vanderbilt personally collected.

Enjoy 22 miles of scenic hiking trails, including the famous gardens designed by Frederick Law Olmsted.

Daydream about endless wine tasting. Learn how champagne is made. Take a red wine and chocolate tour.

Or, get chatty with some chickens. Channel your inner Martha Stewart and spend Christmas at Biltmore with those blazing fireplaces, a plethora of Christmas trees, and live music.

How about eating southern pickles with seasonal cocktails at Cedric’s Tavern — an ode to the Vanderbilt’s beloved Saint Bernard.

There’s shopping Appalachia-style in Antler Hill Village. Sleep on-site at The Inn On Biltmore Estate or Village Hotel. Plus, don’t forget to drive over to Biltmore Village.

So, who will enjoy Biltmore Estate? Is the ticket price worth it, and how can you get your money’s worth out of Biltmore?

We promise to share the best things to do at Biltmore Estate to ensure that you have a fabulous time.

Below find information, tips, tricks, what to do at Biltmore Estate, and Biltmore FAQs answered by locals and passholders. Let’s get started!

Afterward, be sure to check out our Asheville Guide Of Top Things To Do.

Best Things To Do At Biltmore Estate Asheville with picture of Biltmore HousePin
Explore the best things to do at Biltmore Estate in Asheville, NC — from passholders and locals who frequent the property.

This post may contain affiliate links that earn us a commission at no extra cost to you. If you love these guides, support Uncorked Asheville here.

Who Will Enjoy Visiting Biltmore Estate?

Biltmore Estate Asheville NC house with green grass and people and shuttles out frontPin
If you are headed to Asheville, NC, it is almost impossible to miss Biltmore Estate, including touring Biltmore House.

Biltmore Estate is by far Asheville’s largest tourist attraction.

Families, couples, friends, singles, and travelers looking for something more will all find worthwhile and special Biltmore activities.

Although we don’t have children, our friend and rogue mommy blogger Tori can attest that Biltmore provides plenty of family-friendly activities.

You also don’t have to love history or creepy old houses. Gardeners will love the flowers. Hikers and mountain bikers will enjoy the trails.

Readers will gawk at the library, children will smile at the pigs and chickens, and foodies will crave a meal in the former Vanderbilt stables.

Engagement and wedding events are popular here too. Many people request stunning and sweet proposal pictures at Biltmore Estate.

We highly recommend Sarah Resta Photography and Nick Levine Photography for these services.

Is The Biltmore Ticket Price Really Worth It?

Biltmore Tickets

The plethora of things to do at Biltmore 100% makes your ticket price worth it: the history, property tours, eating, special exhibits, hiking, and wine-ing.

Biltmore ticket prices typically start around $76 when purchased in advance online and go up from there. Prices vary by date and season.

If you know that you are visiting Biltmore Estate for a short weekend in Asheville, we recommend purchasing tickets online as soon as you can to get your desired time slot and a possible cheaper price.

Why The (High) Price?

Many of our readers ask us why there is a high Biltmore Estate ticket price.

You are paying for the massive amounts of restoration, maintenance, and staff it takes to run and sustain Biltmore Estate.

Driving around the grounds, you’ll get a better picture of its size too.

We highly suggest reading Denise Kiernan’s The Last Castle, which truly makes you appreciate the Vanderbilts and the current cost of admission.

This is a nonfiction book that talks about Biltmore mansion construction, the Vanderbilts’ role in society, and how Biltmore operates today.

While everyone has their own personal budgets, interests, and circumstances, the cost of a Biltmore ticket — to us — is worth it. As we mentioned above, we are annual passholders (and have been for years).

There are so many fun and delicious things to do at the Biltmore. You need at least one full day there to experience even a portion of the Biltmore sights.

Plus, we compare the cost of Biltmore Estate tickets to Disney World passes minus the germs and terrifying crowds. It’s also cheaper.

So, let’s make that ticket price and Biltmore Estate visit worth it; keep reading for our top recommended Biltmore activities.

P.S. Be sure to check out these famous Asheville authors, books set in Asheville, and North Carolina books reading lists to inspire your trip.

One Day Biltmore Estate Things To Do Itinerary Pinterest Pin with 1.Tour The Biltmore Home 2. Stroll The Biltmore Gardens 3. Enjoy Lunch At The Stable Cafe or Cedric's 4. Wine Taste At Biltmore Winery Or Take A Special Tour 5. Grab Ice Cream Or Visit The Farm At Antler Hill Village 6. Walk The Lagoon 7. Fill Up With Dinner & DrinksPin
What are the best things to do at Biltmore Estate when you only have one day? Save this Biltmore itinerary for later, and visit Biltmore like a local with Uncorked Asheville.

Wondering what to do at Biltmore Estate? Where do you start? This is our ideal Biltmore itinerary:

  • In the morning, take a self-guided or audio tour of Biltmore House. Walking through the Biltmore mansion takes around 1.5 hours.

  • After your home tour, head straight to Biltmore’s gardens and Conservatory. Budget anywhere from 30 minutes to 1 hour here.

  • Enjoy lunch at Stable Cafe next to the home or Cedric’s Tavern in Antler Hill Village. Make those reservations in advance, though. Enjoy lunch for 1-1.5 hours.

  • After lunch, wine taste at Biltmore Winery or take a Biltmore Winery Tour. Pick up wine souvenirs at the shop. We typically budget around 1 hour for the winery.

  • Shop, drink wine, snack on ice cream, and take advantage of Antler Hill Village, including visiting Biltmore Farmyard. Grab charcuterie at Biltmore Wine Bar, spending 1+ hours here.

  • Before heading out, take a stroll along the lagoon.

  • Of course, you may wish to book dinner here as well. Or, enjoy these Asheville fine dining restaurants.

With that said, keep on reading to see all of the best things to do at Biltmore.

18 Of The Best Things To Do At Biltmore Estate From Passholders

1. Visit & Tour Biltmore House

Outside Facade of Biltmore Estate with ornate architecture and one view of house with lamppost Pin
The line for Biltmore Estate may start queuing directly in front of the house. Because you reserve your entrance time in advance, the line moves quickly. Staff will check your bags as you walk through a metal detector.

If this is your first time visiting Biltmore Estate, start at Biltmore House. (If you’ve been to Biltmore plenty of times before, like us, you may wish to skip this part).

When you book your Biltmore tickets, you must pick what time you’d like to enter the house. If you don’t, you aren’t guaranteed access to walk inside. This also helps with crowd control.

Passholders can enter and leave Biltmore Estate as they wish without reservations/advanced notice but still must reserve times if they wish to tour the Biltmore mansion.

The earlier in the day you visit Biltmore House, the better to beat the rush. Weekdays are quieter than weekends. Holidays and long weekends are the busiest.

The first time that we visited Biltmore — because we booked in advance — we found cheaper tickets that also included a free audio tour.

A word of caution: Use the restroom before you get in line to enter the Biltmore mansion. You won’t see bathrooms again until the end of the 1.5-hour tour.

One set of bathrooms is located right before the entrance to Biltmore House near some of the restaurants and shopping.

What Is A Biltmore Estate Audio Tour Like?

Biltmore Library at Christmas with old books on bookshelves decorated with garlandPin
Of course, you probably already guessed that along with the bowling alley and large banquet hall, one of our favorite Biltmore sights is the library.

If you are planning your Biltmore Estate visit and wondering if you need all the extras and ticket add-ons, you really don’t — although they can be enjoyable.

Personally, we don’t love audio tours, but some of the Biltmore House ones are hilariously fun. One time, we were “guests” at a classy Vanderbilt dinner party.

While the opera singer prepared her vocal cords, a writer practiced her after-dinner reading as Cedric the dog stole an entire turkey.

We are also told that Cedric, the Vanderbilts’ beloved St. Bernard, gives the children’s audio tour. The audio tour lasted about 1.5-2 hours throughout the entire house.

You may also skip portions and jump sections of the recording.

The Candlelight Christmas audio tour was a bit drier with facts about each room.

Do you need an audio tour, though? Debatable.

If this is your first time visiting Biltmore Estate, an audio tour is a great idea to familiarize yourself with the property’s history.

Do I Need To Take A Guided Biltmore House Tour?

Biltmore Estate Indoor Swimming Bowl with no water and mannequins in swimming clothes Pin
Towards the end of your walk through Biltmore Estate, don’t miss the gym, swimming pool, and bowling alley. These are all incredibly intriguing, especially if you are traveling with children.

We have yet to take a guided Biltmore House tour to learn even more behind-the-scenes facts.

However, if you just wish to walk the house on your own without upping the price of your ticket, you can. When family and friends visit, we tour on our own, which still takes 1.5-2 hours.

The rooms explain themselves and are well worth the visit alone. We also have a cheat sheet for some top Biltmore facts.

What Should You See Inside Biltmore House?

Views from Biltmore Estate Asheville NC with trees and Blue Ridge Mountains and Pisgah ForestPin
Don’t miss the stunning views surrounding Biltmore Estate.

Just like you, George and Edith were not at a loss for things to do at Biltmore Estate. They had endless entertainment and grounds to enjoy.

Their Biltmore activities were a little more elite and unique to the time too.

We are not going to lie: We are a little biased; get ready for what we love inside Biltmore House besides all of the bedrooms and dining and sitting rooms.

  • Biltmore Library – According to Biltmore’s historians, as an avid reader and book collector, George Vanderbilt read 81 books on average per year. How do they know this? George personally recorded all of the novels he read in a journal. He also collected over 22,000 volumes of books, and he favored French writing.
  • Biltmore Loggia – Before you enter the library, don’t miss the 360-degree views of the Blue Ridge Mountains from this gorgeous balcony.
  • Biltmore Estate Indoor Swimming Pool – Biltmore’s pool is intriguing, even though it is, of course, empty. At around 10-feet deep, this pool is said to have stored 70,000 gallons of water. We also think the changing rooms are pretty neat.
  • Biltmore Bowling Alley – The Biltmore mansion housed endless luxury rooms including a gym and bowling alley. In fact, this two-lane bowling alley is said to be the first-ever in a private home.
  • Biltmore’s Halloween Room – As you head into Biltmore House’s basement, don’t miss the folklore-ish murals painted on the brick walls. Biltmore historians believe Cecil had the murals painted for New Year’s ball in 1925. Read more about the Halloween Room here→
  • Biltmore Banquet Hall – You can’t miss the banquet hall with its 70-foot ceiling, triple fireplace, and pipe organ. At Christmas, you’ll find a 35-foot tree. This room is truly extraordinary.

Other Biltmore House musts include the Butler’s pantry, laundry room, and George and Edith’s bedrooms.

You may also be wondering if Biltmore is haunted. We definitely consider this attraction as one of Asheville’s top haunted houses.

2. Stroll Biltmore Gardens & Conservatory

Wondering what to do at Biltmore Estate after touring that gorgeous mansion?

Upon exiting the house – especially if you have a morning ticket – we recommend heading to the Biltmore Estate gardens right outside of the home’s entrance.

In the spring, witness the infamous Biltmore Blooms – home to sweet engagements and vibrant photo sessions.

Find acres of both formal and informal gardens with strolling paths. The gardens with paved paths are the most accessible.

Notably, Fredrick Law Olmstead designed Biltmore’s gardens, and you can even explore an Italian Garden.

If time permits, head inside Biltmore Conservatory located at the back of the Walled Gardens. It’s toasty and filled with gorgeous greenery.

Also, find one of our favorite best-kept secrets here: behind the Conservatory, a vendor sells beer and wine. Nothing beats strolling the gardens with Biltmore wine and local Asheville beer.

Explore even more of Asheville’s stunning parks and gardens.

3. Dine At Biltmore’s Delicious Restaurants

One of our favorite things to do at Biltmore Estate as annual passholders is eat. We love heading to one of the Biltmore restaurants for a meal and a glass of local wine or craft cocktail.

We highly recommend using Open Table to make reservations if you don’t want long waits or have your heart set on eating on-property.

What are our favorite Biltmore restaurants?

Stable Cafe At Biltmore

Stable Cafe is one of Asheville’s coolest restaurants. It’s also usually where we take many of our guests.

For lunch, Stable Cafe has your basic and non-fancy sandwiches along with southern treats. Around the holidays, they offer a 3-course dinner menu.

Also one of Asheville’s fun kid-friendly restaurants, select from a few food intolerance-friendly items with gluten-free and vegan items labeled.

Don’t miss out on a platter of smoked meats, and personally, we enjoy a classic chicken salad sandwich.

Plus, if you are lucky to snag a booth, you will find yourself eating in the old Vanderbilt horse stalls. Maybe that’s not your thing, but we love it.

For Candlelight Christmas Evenings, Stable Cafe is also one of the most romantic fine dining experiences in Asheville.

Cedric’s Tavern

While we know that Biltmore has fancier restaurants, our absolute go-to is Cedric’s Tavern — where you can find Cedric’s massive dog collar.

We picture Cedric sounding a lot like Scooby-Doo. The Vanderbilts loved their St. Bernard.

The food and cocktails at Cedric’s Tavern are moderately priced and delicious

Cedric’s Tavern makes their own pickles, and don’t miss their Lusty Monk Mustard. And yes, order a boozy cocktail. They are delicious.

Slightly pricier, the menu and drinks change seasonally and are fresh as well as worth it. The outdoor patio is heated in the winter, and they have bar seating.

Black and white photographs of Cedric and the Vanderbilts flank the tavern walls. Out front is a creepy-fun little statue of Cornelia playing with Cedric.

More Food And Drink At Biltmore Estate

Biltmore Wine Bar Charcuterie Asheville NC with flat black dish filled with small breads, meats, olives, and dips next to red and white wine glassesPin
Spend a relaxing afternoon at Biltmore’s Wine Bar with charcuterie and your favorite glass of Biltmore Wine.

If you are looking for more foodie things to do at Biltmore, explore their full list of restaurants.

Grab an ice cream at the Creamery, brunch at Deerpark Restaurant, or a drink at the Library Bar.

The Bistro is more casual, and if you covet Asheville’s wine spots, nothing beats sitting outside with a charcuterie board at Biltmore’s Wine Bar.

Outside of Biltmore Estate, don’t miss our favorite lunch spots across Asheville.

Many people head to Biltmore Village for lunch at Corner Kitchen, Well-Bred Bakery (a fantastic coffee shop too), and The Cantina.

In the 1930s, Corner Charles Jennings lived in what is today Corner Kitchen. The home started as The Biltmore Café and evolved into the famous Hot Shot. 

Like Biltmore House, George Washington Vanderbilt owned this area and commissioned Frederic Law Olmstead and Richard Morris Hunt to design Biltmore Village’s neighborhood.

If you have time, the area is a must; you’ll find some of the best things to do near Biltmore like shopping and enjoying breweries including Hillman Beer, French Broad Brewing, and Thirsty Monk.

Discover even more great places to eat near Biltmore Estate.

4. Wine Taste At Biltmore Winery

Biltmore Estate Winery Clock Tower with white hand holding up a white glass of wine in front of white and brown trimmed clock tower in Antler Hill VillagePin
If you are looking for things to do at Biltmore Winery, consider a special tour in the clock tower, visiting the Wine Bar in Antler Hill Village, and enjoying a complimentary wine tasting with your ticket.

After eating lunch, visiting Biltmore winery to stock up on reserves is one of our favorite things to do at Biltmore Estate.

If you know Christine from The Uncorked Librarian, you know that we are all in for the wine.

We buy bottles to bring home and know that you can find their more generic wines at Ingles — our main Asheville grocery store chain.

Biltmore’s black label wine is only sold on property.

Our favorite Biltmore wines include the red Biltmore Christmas, Chenin Blanc, Reisling, and Gewurztraminer — some of these are limited releases.

Wine tasting is complimentary with your ticket. Sometimes you will find a line and other times, not so much.

Please check to see if you need reservations for wine tasting — this policy has changed over the past few years.

Plan on tasting about 6-7 wines, but you may get a generous pourer.

If you love wine and have time, be sure to check out all of the Asheville wineries, including the fantastic Hendersonville and Flat Rock vineyards like Stone Ashe Vineyards and Marked Tree.

5. Take A Biltmore Winery Special Tour

Biltmore Behind The Scenes Winery Tour with silver and metal wine fermentation tanksPin
If you think all wine tours are the same, you’ll be in for a treat with the Biltmore winery tours. Plus, you get to try even more of their wines.

If you are looking for more unique and informational things to do at Biltmore Estate, take a special tour.

The Biltmore Winery tours typically run on the hour, and you will need to add on tours to your ticket for an additional price.

Biltmore Estate invited us out to try two of their special tours for free — with no obligation to post or talk about them.

Please know that while the below tours were comped, our opinions remain unbiased. The two tours the Biltmore hosted us for include:

Behind-The-Scenes Winery Tour

Biltmore Behind The Scenes Winery Special Tour with 4 rows of American Oak BarrelsPin
Biltmore Estate treated Uncorked Asheville to a free Behind The Scenes Winery Tour. We learned a lot more about bottling Champagne.

As of 2022, the Behind-The-Scenes Winery Tour is around $10 but is currently on hold. For Biltmore activities, this is a great and cheaper option if you skip a guided house tour.

Staff take you back into the wine production facility and walk you through the Champagne bottling process

See both French and American Oak barrels, the fermentation process, and our favorite: bottling.

We had no idea that Biltmore Winery only started up in 1985. Previously, the space housed the dairy.

Biltmore Estate Insider Tip: When you are walking through the tunnel to enter the winery, you are walking through the old cow manure path. It’s terribly pretty lit up at Christmas; who knew?!

After the winery tour, enjoy a special premium wine tasting away from the crowds. Typically, those wines are only served at the wine bar.

Red Wine And Chocolate Tour

Biltmore Red Wine and Chocolate Tour with 4 glasses of Biltmore Red wine and 5 dark chocolates from French Broad ChocolatePin
Biltmore also invited us out for their Red Wine & Chocolate Tour, perfect for anniversaries, girls’ day out, and chocolate lovers. The chocolates are produced at Asheville’s extremely famous French Broad Chocolates, which is downtown in Pack Square.

For those of you craving more indulgent things to do at Biltmore Estate, we have just the tour recommendation for you…

Drink red wine with rich chocolate truffles on Biltmore’s Red Wine and Chocolate Tour.

As of 2022, for an extra $55 a person, enter a room near the clock tower that smells of delicious red wine.

Find four red wines paired with an array of chocolates from Asheville’s infamous French Broad Chocolate.

If you love sweets and are spending more time in Asheville, be sure to check out these dessert restaurants and chocolate shops.

6. Enjoy A Special Exhibit

Another one of our favorite things to do at Biltmore includes checking out their special exhibits. Exhibits change seasonally, and some are free while others are not.

An example of a temporary Biltmore exhibit was the Downton Abbey period clothing show. Although we never watched Downton Abbey, we loved seeing the dresses, hats, and riding gear.

Around Christmas, you might catch a historic and outdoor train depot display outside of Cedric’s Tavern.

In 2021 through 2022 don’t miss Van Gogh Alive followed by “friends” like Monet and Da Vinci. This is part of the “immersive experience” that’s traveling across the globe.

We’ve been to the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam, but nothing beats seeing Van Gogh’s art swirl around you.

Enjoy a small timeline of artists’ lives paired with instrumental music and brilliant quotes.

7. Shop & Drink At Antler Hill Village

Don’t miss all of the things to do at Biltmore Estate surrounding the home, especially exploring Antler Hill Village.

We’ve purchased beautiful Christmas ornaments, wine, trinkets, specialty food items, and gifts at many of the Biltmore shops.

Asheville Local Tip: If you haven’t tried Roots Hummus, get some in the winery fridge; it’s a big deal here and it’s delicious.

8. Visit The Farmyard

Visiting The Biltmore With KidsPin
Be sure to say “hi” to Biltmore’s horses.

If you are traveling around Asheville with kids, Biltmore has a farmyard near Antler Hill Village.

Say hello to the gorgeous draft horses, and watch chicks flourish under heating lamps. You’ll meet goats, chickens, ducks, roosters, and pigs.

The next few Biltmore activities are incredibly kid-friendly too.

9. Watch A Craft Demonstration

See how a broom is made or watch a Blacksmith at work around Antler Hill Barn. They also host woodworker demonstrations throughout the day.

10. Play At The Wooden Pisgah Playground

We are too big, but if you have littles, they’ll love this giant wooden playground and picnic area.

11. Hike Or Bike On One Of Biltmore’s Many Trails

Asheville Mountain Biking Trails Biltmore Estate with Deer Park Trail leading up to side of Biltmore home and people biking up to gardensPin
Pick up over 22-miles of walking, hiking, and biking trails at Biltmore. We enjoy this side view of Biltmore from the Deer Park Trail. Head over to the Biltmore gardens from here too.

If you are wondering what to do at Biltmore Estate besides eating and drinking, our top non-touristy Biltmore activities include walking and mountain biking on the property’s trails.

Did you know that the Biltmore has over 22-miles of hiking trails and 8,000 acres to explore? Many of these hikes are short and great for the entire family.

And, don’t miss Asheville’s biking trails, especially at Biltmore. Rent bikes from the Bike Barn if you don’t have your own.

Of course, some of these Biltmore activities are better based on the weather, but North Carolina has pretty mild seasons.

The Biltmore Estate trails are especially gorgeous in the fall.

Our Favorite Biltmore Hiking Trails:

Free Things To Do At Biltmore Hiking Trails with white brunette male in front of hiking postPin
If you are looking for things to do at Biltmore without the crowds, why not try one of the many hiking trails? The Westover Trails are the less-frequented areas of the Biltmore Estate.
  • Westover Trails – If you head up the hill behind the Bike Barn, you’ll find all of the Westover Trails. Make sure to have a map. Although labeled, the trails are a little tricky to navigate at first. You’ll pass the Inn On Biltmore Estate from the Blue Trail, which is a 2.8-mile hike.

  • Lagoon Trail – The 3-mile Lagoon Trail is both easy and beautiful. In the fall, you’ll encounter sunflowers, and of course, you’ll pass the stunning lagoon. Look up to see the Biltmore mansion on a hill.

  • Deer Park Trail – We’ve taken the 2.5-mile Deer Park Trail up to the Biltmore House and gardens. Get a great side view of the Biltmore home.

Read more about all of the best hiking trails around AVL, including Craggy Gardens, Blue Ridge Parkway hikes, and the DuPont State Forest waterfalls.

12. Horseback Ride Around The Property

Horseback Riding Biltmore Estate Asheville NC with light brown horse giving side eye over fence with feeding bucket in shelterPin
Near Amherst at Deerpark, find more of Biltmore’s gorgeous horses. We’ve attended special exhibits at Amherst and walked over to watch horseback riding leaving from the barn.

One of the Biltmore activities on our bucket list, we’d love to horseback ride Western-style down one of the Estate’s gorgeous trails.

We’ve visited the area where tours start, and the horses and barnyard across from Deerpark are stunning.

Biltmore offers horseback riding for all levels of experience and comfortability.

Take a guided tour with up to ten other guests. This is for guests aged 8+, and ticket prices start around $95+.

Or, purchase a private two-hour horseback riding tour starting around $220+ per guest.

Read more about Biltmore horseback riding and carriage tours.

13. Take A Quaint Carriage Ride

Visiting Biltmore Estate just got a lot more romantic.

Take a 30-minute, 12-person carriage ride with Biltmore’s Belgian draft horses. Or, enjoy a 1-hour, 6-person carriage ride along Biltmore House’s west façade.

If you are looking for the ultimate luxury, splurge for a private 90-minute carriage ride across the estate with loved ones.

Explore even more romantic things to do in Asheville including dinners out, workshops, spas, and the best sunset spots.

14. Learn How To Fish

Hiking In Asheville Biltmore Lagoon Trail with brown boat sitting on a lagoonPin
Biltmore isn’t just about history and food. Explore the great outdoors, and learn how to fish.

Why not make your Biltmore Estate visit both fun and educational? Learn something new!

Adults and kids can fish (and learn to fish) with professional instructors at Biltmore.

Available seasonally, kids may fish in the lagoon with an instructor.

For ages 8+, Biltmore also offers a fly tying class — all materials are included.

Or, take a 2-hour introduction class to fly-fishing, half-day fly-fishing lessons, or full-day fly-flying wade trip. For the wade trip, you are required to have an NC fishing license, though.

15. Picnic Along The Lagoon

If you are visiting Biltmore Estate just for the grounds, we couldn’t recommend enough a walk and picnic.

Many locals will pack a picnic and chairs and sit along the lagoon or French Broad River.

Bring your own supplies or stock up on snacks around Antler Hill Village and Biltmore Winery. You could also grab subs off-site on your way to Biltmore at nearby Apollo Flame Bistro.

Read more about the best picnic areas around Asheville.

16. Kayak, Raft, Or Float Down The River

Another one of our bucket list things to do at Biltmore (or even in Asheville in general) is float down the river…when it’s not brown.

Rent a kayak or raft and head to the French Broad River. Choose between a single or tandem kayak for your own self-guided tour.

Biltmore also offers a guided raft trip where your hosts paddle for you. Sounds Vanderbilt-esque to us.

17. Stay Overnight On Property

The Inn On Biltmore Estate with hotel on hill, green grass, and two horsesPin
You cannot miss The Inn up on the hill. Imagine the views from those rooms.

Because we visited North Carolina once and immediately moved to Asheville, we have yet to stay on-property.

We actually would love to, though, as we’ve only heard good things.

On property, the Biltmore offers:

Village Hotel – This property is centrally located with moderate prices and spa access. This is the hotel you see next to the winery and Antler Hill Village. The Village Hotel also has a pool.

The Inn On Biltmore Estate – The Inn On Biltmore Estate is considered a luxury hotel, which also means that you will pay more. The Inn has the most conveniences including those requested mountain views. Each suite is named after one of George Vanderbilt’s friends or relatives.

Lastly, there is also the premier cottage if you are George Vanderbilt himself. Cough, cough…

18. Attend Candlelight Christmas Evenings

Biltmore Estate at Christmastime is magical. If you can pick when to plan your Asheville and Biltmore Estate visit, we suggest December.

From early November to early January, the Biltmore mansion truly looks like Martha Stewart descended upon the rooms with a giant Christmas basket.

In fact, encounter 100 intricately decorated trees, 10,000 holiday ornaments, and 100,000 sparkling lights.

Visitors may tour the home in the daytime or purchase special Candlelight Christmas Evenings tickets.

During Biltmore’s Candlelight Christmas Evenings, watch the sunset over the Blue Ridge Mountains before entering the dimly lit home filled with candles, ribbons, and Christmas trees.

Find many of the 65 fireplaces blazing. Harp and guitar players play live music in the common rooms.

There’s even a gingerbread Biltmore House replica hiding in the basement. Afterward, grab a special seasonal dinner with cocktails at one of Biltmore’s on-site restaurants.

Antler Hill Village also lights up, and usually, you can find a special exhibit around this time.

Read more about all of Asheville’s beautiful Christmas lights events, including The NC Arboretum’s Winter Lights Festival.

If you are visiting Biltmore Estate in December, be sure to check out our guide to spending the holidays in Asheville.

Biltmore Estate Visitor Information

Biltmore House Hours:

Biltmore hours change seasonally. You can find the Biltmore hours here. For a general idea, the house is usually open 9-5.

Biltmore Tickets & Parking:

Parking is included with admission. There are shuttles from the furthest lots.

Biltmore ticket prices vary greatly so please check for ticket information here. We highly recommend buying tickets in advance online.

General admission typically starts at around $76+. You may pay more for special exhibits, add-on tours, and events.

The complimentary wine tasting, the trails and gardens, shopping, and access to the grounds are included with your Biltmore house admission.

Biltmore Estate Address, Website & Phone Number:

Address: One Lodge Street, Asheville, NC 28803
Biltmore Website: https://www.biltmore.com/
Phone Number: (800) 411-3812

Where Else You Can Stay Near The Biltmore & In Asheville

Hampton Inn and Suites Biltmore Brevard Rd LobbyPin
One of our favorite hotels across from the Asheville Outlets and near the Biltmore is this updated Hampton Inn and Suites-Biltmore Area at 835 Brevard Road, Asheville.

When we first visited Asheville and then returned to look at houses as well as close on our home, we stayed at a few Asheville hotels. Our recs include:

Asheville, NC Hotels

Hotels and B&Bs tend to book up fast in Asheville, especially in the fall, spring, and around holidays. Make dinner reservations wherever you can, too. A few hotels to consider that either we, our friends, or others highly recommend include:

Downtown Asheville
The Foundry Hotel
AC Hotel By Marriott Downtown Asheville
Hotel Indigo
Aloft – Downtown Asheville *One of our top picks; they renovated in 2020

Near The Asheville Outlets/Biltmore
Hampton Inn And Suites Asheville Biltmore Area *Our second favorite pick. We stayed here before we moved.
DoubleTree By Hilton Biltmore/Asheville
Grand Bohemian Hotel Asheville

North Asheville/Montford
The Omni Grove Park Inn *We frequently stop by the Grove Park Inn for sunsets, drinks, and food.
1900 Inn On Montford

Don’t miss our Top Asheville Hotel, Resort & B&B Picks Here.

See our Top Places To Stay in Asheville.

Don’t miss out on these Asheville properties on Booking.com, too.

More Things To Do Near Biltmore Estate

What are the best things to do around Biltmore?

Shop & Dine At Biltmore Village

Located across from the entrance to Biltmore Estate, dine, shop, and drink local craft beer at Biltmore Village.

Explore More Of Asheville’s Great Museums

If you loved touring and learning about the history of Biltmore, you may also enjoy these art, history, and science museums around AVL.

Visit The Asheville Breweries

Asheville is infamous for its craft breweries. Explore our favorite breweries in downtown Asheville as well as around the area.

Wine Taste At Asheville’s Wine Bars and Wineries

If you love Biltmore Winery, don’t miss the other wineries in and around Asheville, NC. pleb urban winery sits in the nearby River Arts District.

Our Ultimate List Of Things To Do In Asheville, NC

Uncover the 50+ best things to do in Asheville, including restaurants, breweries, Biltmore, hiking, waterfalls, and so much more. This guide will give you all of the ideas.

Save These Biltmore Activities For Later:

Biltmore Estate Things to Do Pinterest Pin With Side of Biltmore Home and Biltmore BloomsPin
Thinking about visiting Biltmore Estate? Wondering if it’s worth the expense? Save our top 18 things to do at Biltmore for your next trip, and make the most out of your Biltmore experience.

What are your favorite things to do at Biltmore? What other questions do you have before your Biltmore Estate visit?

Phew! Of course, we can name 100 other things to do at Biltmore Estate, but if you only have a day, these are our top 18 Biltmore activities for couples, solo travelers, and families.

What questions do you have about your upcoming Biltmore visit? Feel free to ask in the comments.

Also, please let us know what you love(d) and didn’t love doing while visiting Biltmore Estate in Asheville.

Posts You May Also Enjoy:

Visiting The Biltmore With Kids
Best Tours At Biltmore Estate
Biltmore At Christmas

50+ Best Things To Do In Asheville, NC
Our Asheville Food & Drink Guide

Christine and Tom selfiePin

Christine Frascarelli

Christine (pronouns: she/her) is the owner and lead writer of Uncorked Asheville. After falling in love with those gorgeous Blue Ridge Mountains, Christine and her husband Tom decided to call Asheville, North Carolina home. When her pointy Italian nose isn’t stuck in a book, Christine is adopting all of the kitties, getting lost in the forest, and drinking an ESB. She has a BA in English and History from Smith College, her MLIS from USF-Tampa, and is a former U.S. Fulbright Scholar - Indonesia. Christine also owns The Uncorked Librarian LLC with books and movies to inspire travel.

18 Comments

  1. Hi!
    So grateful for your posts here, it’s helping me plan our first day trip there so much! I am curious about the car situation. Do you need a car to visit the estate – just thinking in terms of drinking a bunch of wine and then driving. As well as planning how to get across the estate from the home and gardens to Antler Hill Village?

    1. Hi Nicole, Thank you so much for the kind words! We have always visited the estate with a car, and Biltmore recommends the same. However, Biltmore offers a ticketed (there’s a fee) shuttle service across the property. You could get dropped off at ticketing, for example via Uber, and use this shuttle service to the home and Antler Hill Village. So, yes, technically, you can visit without a car. Biltmore has more info. here: https://www.biltmore.com/faq/how-do-i-get-around-the-estate-if-i-dont-have-a-car/. Have a great visit! Cedric’s also makes delicious seasonal cocktails… haha… AND, the library bar is delicious as well.

  2. Do you have to have a ticket or an annual pass to walk the grounds, wine taste or shop antler village? We’ve already toured the house and just want to experience the aforementioned for our next trip to Asheville!

    1. Hey! Yes; that’s correct. In order to access the grounds, you would need an annual pass or ticket. If a friend has a pass, I believe after 5 PM, they are also allowed to bring people on the grounds (in the same car). We are annual passholders, and for us, it’s worth it. Since you aren’t going to see the house, you don’t need to reserve a house time, especially if you are just planning on walking the grounds and enjoying the restaurants and wine bars. Sometimes, Biltmore offers extremely great annual pass deals where going once or twice all year already pays for itself.

  3. I ordered tickets online but the earliest time for house tour was 11:30 am. Can we go before that time and walk the grounds and check out other things before we tour the house

    1. Hey Tricia, Yes; according to Biltmore and in our experience, you can arrive before that time and walk around: https://www.biltmore.com/faq/can-i-arrive-to-the-estate-earlier-than-my-reservation-time-on-my-ticket/. The ticket time is just for when you can tour the actual inside of Biltmore Home. We are annual passholders; many times, we don’t even go to the house. We just arrive with our passes and head to Antler Hill village, the gardens, or the trails.

    1. Hi Linda,

      Biltmore offers this FAQ page about accessibility that I hope you find helpful: https://www.biltmore.com/help-center/accessibility/.

      That link will tell you about parking, shuttles, what is wheelchair accessible, and what is not accessible for guests with limited mobility.

      I always think it is a good idea to call them with your specific questions too. That number is 800-411-3812. For us, they’ve always been great over the phone to answer our questions to ensure the best visit.

      I hope you have a great time if you go to Biltmore Estate.

  4. I am handicapped and have to use a wheelchair to get around. How do we (my husband and I) get our best Biltmore experience?

    1. Hi Sandra,

      Biltmore has a webpage that talks about accessibility here: https://www.biltmore.com/help-center/accessibility/.

      It’s my understanding that the first and second floors will be most accessible in the Biltmore House. There are also ADA-accessible parking lots as well as shuttles. The Walled Garden and Conservatory are ADA accessible — which are the prettiest spots outside, in my opinion. You’ll find wide and paved pathways.

      According to Biltmore’s website, Antler Hill Village is entirely ADA Accessible, which might be great for food options (Cedric’s is delicious — make advanced reservations if you can). The winery is there, too, which is included with your ticket.

      You may also call Biltmore’s Guest Services if you have questions. Biltmore staff will have the most accurate information, but the above is my overall understanding of accessibility on property as a general visitor and area blogger. I hope that helps a little.

      Have a wonderful visit.

  5. Good places to eat in Asheville beside posana. I have a celiac and dairy free person in my group. Need help.

    1. Hi Melody,

      I am married to a Celiac, and we are both lactose-intolerant. You might find a lot of info on our vegan and vegetarian list (I also mention a lot of gluten-free places here with them): https://www.uncorkedasheville.com/vegetarian-vegan-asheville/.

      Asheville restaurants usually have options for everyone and/or can modify.

      We love Plant for gluten-free and lactose-free food, although it is vegan-only. You can also find more lactose and gluten-free meals at Laughing Seed (it is vegetarian and vegan). Nine Mile (Montford is our favorite location) has an extensive allergy menu labeled on their site. They have meats and pasta and Caribbean-inspired dishes.

      Asheville Pizza and Brewing offers a gluten-free crust and lactose-free cheese, although I don’t think their kitchen is 100% dedicated gluten-free.

      A lot of the Indian, sushi, and Thai restaurants will have options.

      Look for Dare cheese while you are out — it’s lactose-free, too.

      For dessert, head to the French Broad Chocolate Lounge; they have lactose-free desserts (vegan).

      We also love, love, love Chiesa, but you have to request some food modifications. Chiesa’s pasta is gluten-free. They have a few other gf options and can modify for lactose-intolerances. Usually, if you go when it is not too busy, the chef will accommodate. You will most likely need advance reservations, though.

      I hope this helps get you started.

  6. The Biltmore is the #1 place I want to visit when I make it to Asheville. I’d love to stay on the property too! I wouldn’t mind paying extra for a guided tour as long as I have the time to walk around by myself after it’s done. It would be amazing to see it at Christmas all decorated for the season. Or visit the grounds during Springtime for the blooms. Ah, getting excited just thinking about it.

    I need to make this happen!

    1. Yes, the Biltmore was also our number 1 along with The Hunger Games waterfalls.

      We really need to do a guided tour. We’ve been on this kick lately–even for our international travels–where we don’t do any tours. It’s a phase, lol!

      Next year, I think we will splurge on Candlelight Christmas. As passholders, we still have to pay extra for that one and decided to go with Winter Lights instead. We did see the Biltmore all decked out, though, which was great.

      Yay, Asheville trip!

  7. Such a great post! I still can’t fathom only visiting for the gram…these people are really missing out. I’ll never understand just traveling somewhere for a stinking photo. We debated staying on Biltmore property when we visited…I think we’ll have to go for it when we’re back. I’d love to go back to Stable Cafe, and we missed the wine tasting (shocking, I know!) because the line was so long. I LOLed at Tom getting to taste ten wines!!

    1. Thank you! Truly, you don’t visit the Biltmore just because it makes for a cool picture. I’m glad you can’t just run in front of it, snap a picture, and leave–that doesn’t create sustainable or responsible travel.

      We live closeby, and I still want to stay on property. We were like that for the Disney resorts. I’d love to stay at the Grove Park Inn, too.

      I need to get to that library bar at Biltmore. I was just telling Tom that we need to do some serious research this month.

      I literally asked everyone how many wines they tasted and NO ONE gave me the same number lol.

    2. @Christine, When we visited the Biltmore we went at Christmas with our post college daughters, it was beautiful, we stayed at Aloft hotel because they except dogs – it’s our favorite hotel when we travel we’ve always had great experiences and it’s the first hotel we check availability, most large cities have one. The wine tasting was a great time for all! At any rate we bought the annual pass and I returned in the spring with my younger daughter and stayed on site at the Inn for the weekend, it was a great trip! There is still much to see and do so we need to plan our next trip soon! And my retired Naval Officer husband, the cynic, who said
      “how interesting can a house be” fully enjoyed his trip there and I have heard him since recommending a trip there to others, both friends, family and total strangers!
      For us and our adult daughters it is “Disney World” for us!

      1. Biltmore at Christmas is stunning! We love Candlelight Christmas Evenings the most along with Biltmore blooms. The Aloft is a great property, and I’m so glad you enjoyed it. It’s centrally located, fairly priced, newly renovated – and yes, dog-friendly. They partner to adopt out dogs too. I hope you enjoy your annual pass – we love it and renew every year. For us, it’s definitely worth it. We are hoping they bring back their summer concert series (it’s been on hold the past few years with everything going on). We love the Van Gogh Alive and now Monet immersive experiences too. Thanks so much for sharing your fabulous experience. As former Disney passholders, we agree. Have you been to the Omni Grove Park Inn for dinner, drinks, shopping across the street, and sunsets? I feel like you and your family would love that too!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *