A guide to Asheville + nearby excursions

It was on our list to "get in the car, and go to the snow" whenever the probability for snow was within a 9 hour drive and going to be consistently snowing for at least two days. After switching plans, leaving snow gear behind that didn't arrive on time and driving through a mega winter storm across the South, we made it to Asheville, North Carolina. We woke up to a chilling 30 degrees and gorgeous view of the Blue Ridge Mountains.

For the girls first trip to the snow, we choose to stay in Asheville for the hip/modern vibes and chase different areas for better probability of seeing the snow, with the short weekend getaway it worked for us. I'm sharing a little about our trip, where we stayed and some other insider tips.
Cambria Downtown Asheville - what we loved: great location, spacious modern rooms, beautiful rooftop ambiance and Hemingway's Cuban Restaurant/Bar.
I must say all the staff was super friendly, accommodating and gave great recommendations for musts in the area. Our room was very spacious, lots of room for the girls to play with tiny trinkets/toys, equipped with a coffee station, refrigerator and other necessities. The girls loved the shower and playing in it each night, it was their favorite part of being back at the hotel. The valet service was remarkable, the same gentleman, always had a smile on their face (in the freezing weather), our car pulled out front - with the heat on and seat heaters warming, they were amazing). The lobby is the perfect size for the space, with a modern sitting area and has a snack bar with a 24 hour coffee bar.
The location of the hotel couldn't have been better, we walked to coffee shops, local candy store, dinner both nights and much more. This property should be on your list for its modern charm, location and great views of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Did I mention its rate are very affordable?
Where to Eat:
Breakfast - Biscuit Head, Corner Kitchen and Well Bred-Bakery & Cafe
Lunch/Dinner - Caramels (known for the meatloaf, I had the best Caesar salad I have ever eaten, it was amazing), Tupelo Honey, and Buxton Hall Barbeque
Coffee Shops - Trade & Lore, Odds Café and Double D's Coffee
Dessert/Sweets - Rocket Fizz for the children, Fresh Broad Chocolate and DoughP Donuts
Must See:
Biltmore Village (Shopping/Eats)
Tour the Biltmore Estate
Lexington Avenue
North Carolina Arboretum
Drive the Blue Ridge Mountain Parkway (especially when there is snow)
Tour a local brewery
Excursions to chase the snow:
Banner Elk, approximately an hour and 20 minute drive, beautiful scenic drive through the mountains. The day we spent in Banner Elk/Beech Mountain the snow was really falling and it was so windy, which made it hard to stay out and snow tube/play for long periods of time. I got a bit of elevation sickness and had to relax a bit in a local café for a bit. I must say the views here were so breathtaking, I was just waiting to see magical reindeer or an elk walk by. Didn't see any wildlife though, which was a bummer. If your not prepared for a quick snow trip, you can actually rent snow bibs, other gear and sleds all on the mountain. The locals were super helpful.

Maggie Valley, approximately a thirty minute drive, this is an easier drive through snow. Reminded me of a smaller version of Pigeon Forge with touristy places. I must say eat in Waynesville before you go on your snow adventure, because most places were not open or closed early. Known for Tube World and Cataloochee Ski Area, the girls weren't interested in skiing and Caroline wasn't tall enough for tubing so we passed this time around. Instead we found a monster hill near a church and played for hours, up and down the hill the girls went sledding, playing follow the tracks in the snow, building snowmen and eating it. It was an absolute blast. It snowed almost all day long when we were visiting.  
If you followed along on our trip then you know, it was not forecasted to snow in Asheville, and the night we arrived snow flurries were forecasted one of the days we were there. It was super neat for the girls to see snow in a downtown setting. The trip was so magical and worth the drive. A tip for y'all with children, if they get motion sickness I highly recommend looking into Dramamine Kids tablets, they work well for us (of course I am not a medical professional, so please consult your pediatrician).
Thanks to the Cambria Downtown Asheville for the perfect stay, we enjoyed it.
xo, Lauren

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