There’s very little that can visually match Asheville’s stunning sunsets and accompanying color play against a Blue Ridge backdrop. Pretty much any elevated point in the area will afford you some amazing sunset views, but if you’re looking for that guaranteed wow factor, here are the spots to check out.
Grove Park Inn
The famed inn, perched above North Asheville with expansive grounds at its feet, offers a perfect spot to sit back and soak in a broad, unobstructed view of the sunset. Bonus: You can enjoy dinner or cocktails while feasting on nature’s majestic show. www.omnihotels.com/hotels/asheville-grove-park
Downtown rooftop bars
Downtown Asheville has many rooftop bars and restaurants from which to watch the setting sun, many with outdoor firepits that allow for a year-round experience. Among them are Hemingway’s Cuba www.hemingwayscuba.com and Capella on 9 www.capellaon9.com.
Max Patch, a bald mountain 48 miles from Asheville on the N.C.-Tenn. border, is a major landmark along the Appalachian Trail. Climbing the moderate two-mile loop will reward you with 360-degree views, including superb sunset (and sunrise) scenery. As with any mountaintop sunset adventure, smartphone flashlights come in handy for the darker descent back to your car, so don’t forget yours!
There are innumerable spots all over the Biltmore Estate’s 4,000+ acres from which to watch the sun’s display as it sets. Bring a blanket and relax on the sloping lawn adjacent to the home, or visit the estate’s Antler Hill Village for unobstructed sky views from benches and seating areas dotting the grounds. Hike the trails around the house and find a perfectly private spot for some stellar sunset viewing. https://www.biltmore.com
Blue Ridge Parkway
The parkway offers plenty of places to stop for a seasonal sunset experience. A favorite is Waterrock Knob (at milepost 451.2) – with panoramic picnic spots near the parking lot, a visitor center and restrooms (all open in season).
Another favorite, Craggy Pinnacle, is a short, 1.4-mile roundtrip hike to the top of a 5,892-foot summit. The hike, which starts at Craggy Gardens visitor center (milepost 364), will take you along beautiful, rhododendron-draped trails, opening up to a 360-degree view.
If you’re in the mood to trek, Roan Mountain, located near the N.C.-Tenn. state line, 76 miles from Asheville, provides an abundance of points along its terrain to take in the sunset. The Appalachian Trail winds along the grassy summits of its five-mile ridgetop, which climbs to 6,286 feet, and the mountain offers the largest natural rhododendron garden, as well as the longest stretch of grassy bald in the Appalachian range. Bring a picnic and make a day of hiking and exploring, then top the experience off with a sunset display like no other.
If you’d like to live close enough to these spots to experience them anytime, or better yet, if you want to find an Asheville home with its own built-in sunset views, please contact Mike Figura at Mike@MyMosaicRealty.com or call him anytime at (828) 337-8190.
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