West Asheville Guide: Best Things To Do, Eat, & Drink

What is there to do in West Asheville, NC? A lot! Think eating, drinking, shopping, and mural-spying.

West Asheville is a hipster Asheville neighborhood filled with colorful street art and delicious and diverse food. Dive bars and hopping breweries greet visitors and locals alike.

Shopping in West Asheville for local specialty items is a must. Dine at some of the best restaurants for all meals of the day – breakfast, brunch, lunch, and dinner.

Explore fancy, romantic, and fine-dining West Asheville restaurants, too, along with mellow pubs and pizza. Munch on Thai onion rings from a Chef who worked at The Royal Palace in Bangkok.

Did we mention drag shows, highly recommended tattoo parlors, and bowling? The things to do in West Asheville are endless.

Still not convinced? With two gorgeous parks along the French Broad River, escape the crowds or take a casual stroll. Dog park included.

Or, dip into a local West Asheville coffee shop – along with devouring vegan ice cream and classic donuts. Plus, where can you find The Dude, Dolly Parton, and RuPaul?

If you are new to Western North Carolina, though, West AVL might seem overwhelming at first. The neighborhood grows a tad congested with people and traffic.

The West Asheville population includes both young hipsters and older retirees. Then, you have couples like us and even young families.

While West Asheville is mostly considered safe, like all cities, there are crimes and theft. This includes gun violence in the early morning hours.

If you are looking for a house in West Asheville, the housing market is a tad inflated. However, parts of the city still remain cheaper than North Asheville or Downtown.

So, is West Asheville a good area to visit and live in? What are the best things to do in West Asheville, NC? What are the must-visit West Asheville shops, bars, parks, and breweries?

As AVL residents, we are sharing what to see, drink, and do in this eccentric and vibrant Asheville neighborhood. Let’s get started!

Read more about the coolest neighborhoods in Asheville.

West Asheville Things To Do and Shopping with Gus Cutty's mural on Beauty Parade Salon of Dolly Parton and RuPaul
Keep reading for a local’s guide to West Asheville, NC — including where to find Gus Cutty’s RuPaul and Dolly Parton mural

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See our Top Places To Stay in Asheville.

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

Where To Drink & Snack In West Asheville

West Asheville Breweries & Cideries

West Asheville Bars & Events

West Asheville is also known for its popular dive bars and eclectic events:

  • The Whale (507 Haywood Rd #10) – One of our favorite West Asheville bars for beer, The Whale frequently rotates their extensive national and international beer menu. Enjoy beer and grub on their covered and uncovered patios.

  • Fleetwood’s (496 Haywood Road) – If you are looking for a vintage shop, bar, and Vegas-style, rock-and-roll wedding chapel all in one, head to Fleetwood’s. As they say, “Shop. Drink. Get Married.” Y’all this place is wild and one of the weirdest bars in AVL.

  • The Odditorium (1045 Haywood Road) – For drag shows, art, and “freakishly incredible events,” head to Asheville’s Odditorium. A local dive bar surrounded with murals, listen to live music and poetry while sipping on a cocktail.

  • Leo’s House Of Thirst (1055 Haywood Road) – One of Asheville’s delicious wine bars perfect for a midday weekend brunch, enjoy wine, charcuterie, and tapas in a peaceful courtyard under the trees.

Desserts, Donuts, & Coffee Shops In West Asheville

  • Hole Doughnuts (168 Haywood Rd) – For delicious donuts in Asheville, Hole Doughnuts is an award-winning classic. Find traditional doughnuts along with fresh coffee.

  • Bean Werks Coffee & Tea (753 Haywood Rd) – Asheville is full of hipster coffee shops. Bean Werks is a no-frills, quiet spot with beans from fair trade sources. We drop in here for coffee on the run.

  • Izzy’s Coffee House (976 Haywood Rd) – Izzy’s also has a Downtown Asheville location, and they make delicious brews with alternative milk options. Our opossum shirt from here is always a hit.

  • Odd’s Cafe (800 Haywood Rd) – One of our personal favorite West Asheville coffee shops, enjoy vegan and gluten-free treats in one of the hippest spaces in the city. This is a pet-friendly cafe. Read more about dairy-free options in AVL.

  • The Hop Handcrafted Ice Cream (721 Haywood Rd) – The Hop has multiple locations throughout WNC and is perfect for ice cream sundaes, floats, and shakes. Most notably, The Hop has plentiful vegan ice cream options.

Read more about the most decadent dessert bars around Asheville.

Where To Eat In West Asheville

Where can you eat in West Asheville? The breakfast, lunch, and dinner restaurants are plentiful.

We’ll just name a few below but don’t miss our Guide To The Best Restaurants In West Asheville.

  • Sunny Point Cafe (626 Haywood Rd) – Sunny Point Cafe and Biscuit Head are the two most well-known West Asheville restaurants. Find “Southern comfort food from dawn to dark.” Personally, we think Sunny Point Cafe is one of the best breakfast spots in all of Asheville.

  • Taco Billy (201 Haywood Rd) – For some of the best tacos in town – breakfast and build-your-own tacos included – don’t miss Taco Billy.

  • Thai Pearl (747 Haywood Rd) – One of the newer Asheville Thai food restaurants, be sure to order those Thai onion rings. Chef May can make dishes gluten-free, too. The noodles, rice, and Thai salads are delicious. You’ll love the trendy but cozy atmosphere.

  • Green Tea Sushi & Japenese Restaurant (2 Regent Park Blvd) – One of our favorite sushi restaurants in all of Asheville, grab a sake cocktail and sit outside on Green Tea Sushi’s patio while eating delicious sushi rolls. Read more about all of the best Asian food in Asheville.

  • Haywood Common (507 Haywood Rd) – Haywood Common is one of our top restaurants in Asheville. Find lighter and budget-friendly eats along with gf bread and a dedicated gluten-free fryer. We frequent Haywood Common for a casual lunch on their picnic tables, and they also make a stellar weekend brunch. Plus, Haywood Common serves up a delicious flavored iced coffee and handcrafted cocktails. They are family and pet-friendly. We enjoy their burgers too.
  • Gypsy Queen Cuisine (807 Patton Ave) – One of the most unforgettable Asheville restaurants, Gypsy Queen Cuisine makes the best Mediterranean food in Asheville. Think Lebanese street food with Brussels sprouts, falafels, gyros, and grape leaves. GQC also has a delicious food truck that circulates AVL’s special events and festivals.

  • Nine Mile West (751 Haywood Rd) – For stellar Caribbean-inspired cuisine, Nine Mile is a dinner must. We tend to frequent Nine Mile in Historic Montford. Nine Mile extensively labels its delicious pasta, meat, and seafood dishes for allergies and food preferences as well as intolerances.

  • Jargon (715 Haywood Road) – For Asheville fine dining with character, Jargon is both romantic and quirky. Jargon makes the best cocktails, and you’ll find modern American cuisine for dinner. This is also a great restaurant for date night.

Did we mention that many of these restaurants also make for great dining options after visiting Biltmore? They are only about 10 minutes away.

West Asheville Shopping

Firestorm Books & Coffee with children's section with colorful table and chairs and full book display along the wallPin
Firestorm has a fantastic new release book selection and a large children’s reading room.

Where can you shop in West Asheville? Don’t miss:

  • Firestorm Bookstore Co-op (610 Haywood Rd) – Firestorm is one of the most unique and radical bookstores in Asheville. Peruse their shelves for diverse new book releases and highly curated and creative book lists. Firestorm is a queer, feminist collective serving the needs of marginalized communities in the South.

  • West Village Market & Deli (771 Haywood Rd) – An eco-friendly and specialty neighborhood grocery store, find anything from organic wine to the best gluten-free and vegan treats in Asheville.

  • Flora Asheville (428 B Haywood Rd) – We just love Flora Botanical Living. A florist and urban plant shop, find the neatest vases, natural products, and even greeting cards. Order tea at the coffee bar.

  • Asheville Goods (7 Brevard Road) – Shop for local Asheville gifts, including tea, Lusty Monk Mustard, souvenirs, popcorn, and gourmet chips.

Discover all of the best places to shop across Asheville.

More Things To Do In West Asheville

West Asheville Street Art

Asheville is full of vibrant murals and street art. West Asheville is known for some of the best urban art:

  • Dolly Parton & RuPaul (783 Haywood Rd and Mildred Ave) – You cannot miss Gus Cutty’s Dolly Parton and RuPaul mural, which is a collaboration with Beauty Parade.

  • The Dude Abides (Sky Lanes Bowling at 1477 Patton Ave) – Created by lead artists Gus Cutty and Topr as part of the Asheville Mural Project, you’ll just have to go re-watch The Big Lebowski after seeing this mural.

  • Welcome to West Asheville (Bon Paul & Sharky’s Hostel: 816 Haywood Rd) – You’ll know you’ve landed in West Asheville when you see this mural. Look behind you, too, at the fence of international flags.

  • Fox Mural (647 Haywood Rd) – Another Gus Cutty mural, we are pretty fond of this gorgeous fox.

  • Joan Of Arc or “Ella” (265 Haywood Rd) – Across from Archetype Brewing, Ian the Painter (Ian Wilkinson) created this beautiful portrait of his daughter, Ella.

  • The Littlest Birds (647 Haywood Rd) – If you love owls and birds, don’t miss Braxton Art’s mural on the side of this local store.

  • Betty White (781 Haywood Rd) – From local artist, Austen Mikulka, pay tribute at Orbit DVD to one of TV’s greatest, Betty White.

  • Til Death Do Us Part (496 Haywood Rd) – For some dark humor, get married in front of Kathryn Crawford’s mural at Fleetwood’s Chapel.

For more about the individual artists head this way:

Ian Wilkinson (Ian the Painter): Instagram | Website
Topr: Instagram
Gus Cutty: Instagram | Website
Braxton Art: Instagram | Podcast
Austen Mikulka: Instagram
Kathryn Crawford: Instagram | Website

Parks In West Asheville

When we moved to Asheville, we had no idea just how many parks and gardens we could stroll through. In West Asheville, enjoy:

  • French Broad River Park (508 Riverview Dr) – If you are looking for a West Asheville park along French Broad River, French Broad River Park is both scenic and quaint. Enjoy a dog park, gazebo, and picnic tables.

  • Carrier Park (220 Amboy Road) – French Broad River Park and Carrier Park connect via walking trails. Carrier uniquely has a velodrome, a hockey rink, lawn bowling, a picnic pavilion, a playground, and volleyball nets. We love roller skating and rollerblading here.

Where To Stay In West Asheville (And Nearby)

Bon Paul & Sharky’s Hostel – For fun budget accommodations in a great West Asheville location.

Inn On Westwood – This is a historic West Asheville Bed & Breakfast.

Don’t miss all of our Asheville hotel recommendations.

Visiting West AVL? Save This Post For Later:

Shops and things to do West Asheville, NC Pinterest pin with Gus Cutty's The Dude Abides muralPin
Save this West Asheville Guide for later, and eat, drink, and shop like a local with Uncorked Asheville.

What do you love about West Asheville, NC?

Have you been to West Asheville? What are your favorite restaurants? Breweries? Bars? Where do you like to stay in West Asheville? Let us know in the comments.

What neighborhood can you explore next?

Best AVL Neighborhoods
Historic Montford
Asheville River Arts District
North Asheville

You may also enjoy:

Moving & Living In AVL
Asheville Activity 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.

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