A must-see for those visiting Asheville is the 8,000-acre Biltmore Estate, which is home to the 250-room Biltmore House, 125,000 acres of trails and parkland, the Biltmore Gardens, the Biltmore Winery and the River Bend Farm. The Biltmore Estate is the realization of George Washington Vanderbilt’s vision to create an estate both sustainable and beneficial to its surrounding community.
The Biltmore House features four acres of floor space, making up 250 rooms, 34 bedrooms, 43 bathrooms, and 65 fireplaces complete with an underground swimming pool, gymnasium, bowling alley, and kitchens. Its opulence has been utilized in films such as Forrest Gump, Being There, The Swan, The Last of the Mohicans and many others. Self- and guided-tours of the castle-like home and 60 of its rooms are offered daily (the home is still privately owned and used as a residence). Even kids will be impressed by its beautiful art and architecture. The house also features a Courtyard Market with restaurants and shops.
Families can enjoy carriage rides around the estate, as well as horseback riding tours, or self-guided walks and hikes. Antler Hill Village is home to the Biltmore Legacy exhibit, the winery, restaurants, shops and the River Bend Farm, showcasing early 1900s farm life and a petting zoo.
Tickets into the Biltmore House are $49 each and include:
– Self-guided visit of Biltmore Houseâ€¨
– Access to gardens and Antler Hill Village
– Free wine tasting and guided tour at the Wineryâ€¨
– Plenty of dining and shopping opportunities
â€¨- Free parking
Candlelight Christmas Evenings
Are you visiting over the holidays? Candlelight Christmas Evenings feature self-guided, candle-lit tours of the Biltmore Estate, which is decorated for a traditional Vanderbilt Christmas – complete with a 35-foot tree. The nightly event also includes same- or next-day visits to the estate’s gardens and winery. Plus, Santa Claus appears at Antler Hill Village (also located onsite) every weekend, from 1 to 5 p.m., until Dec. 21, 2014. Candlelight Christmas Evenings take place through Jan. 11, 2015. Rates are admittedly steep – starting at $69 per adult and $34.50 for children ages 10 and up (9 and under are free) – but worth the cost for the once-in-a-lifetime experience. You can also opt for a regular daytime pass and still enjoy the holiday dÃ©cor and visits with Santa (plus, it’s slightly cheaper).