Asheville Holidays

Enjoy an Embellished Asheville This Holiday Season

Biltmore Holiday Lights Asheville

Do you light up at the thought of the holidays? So does Asheville – quite literally! Every year, festive displays of glittering, glorious decorations adorn Asheville and the surrounding areas and make already breathtaking vistas even more dazzling. Following, a few favorites:

Winter Lights at the North Carolina Arboretum

Open evenings from mid November through Dec. 31, Winter Lights is an outdoor holiday light exhibit placed throughout The North Carolina Arboretum’s gardens. Visitors can walk through a winter wonderland and enjoy uniquely lit displays and landscapes composed of nearly 500,000 energy-efficient LED lights. All tickets are date-specific and must be purchased in advance.

Christmas at the Biltmore Estate and Biltmore Village Lights

Beginning in early November, and running through early January, the Biltmore Estate takes on a magical glow. Across the estate, dozens of Christmas trees, thousands of lights and poinsettias, and miles of garland set the holiday scene. With a 35-foot live Fraser fir towering over the Banquet Hall, elegant decorations in platinum, gold, silver, and jewel tones adorn the grand spaces. In the evenings, visitors can enjoy Candlelight Christmas Evenings, replete with live music, candlelight and firelight. After visiting the estate, make a stop at Biltmore Village for a stroll through the shopping district’s dazzling display of lights for a truly wondrous Old-World holiday experience.

National Gingerbread House Competition at the Omni Grove Park Inn

Biltmore Asheville Holiday ActivitiesFor a quarter of a century, this highly anticipated gingerbread house competition has wowed thousands of visitors to the Omni Grove Park Inn. Held annually in late November, the competition features houses from all over the country. The winning creations are on display through early January, interspersed with glowing, elaborately decorated Christmas trees. Enjoy a commemorative cup of whipped-cream-topped hot cocoa as you take in the amazing array of gingerbread creations.

Buncombe County Festival of Lights at Lake Julian Park

Beginning the first of December and running until right before Christmas, this annual drive-through event transforms Lake Julian Park into a winter wonderland. The park is brightly lit with thousands of colored lights and more than 50 animated and stationary light displays. The road circling the park becomes a magical journey through tunnels of dazzling lights. Advance tickets can be purchased online.

Explore Holiday Lights in Downtown Asheville

Asheville Holiday LightsEnjoy a post-dinner feast for the eyes in downtown Asheville, where a lights display weaves through the trees in Pack Square and the surrounding streets. Historic buildings take on a festive veneer (don’t miss the fun façade of the Grove House) that adds even more magic to downtown’s architecture. Make a stop inside the Grove Arcade, where the grand hall becomes even more spectacular with added holiday sparkle and garlands.

For a personally guided tour of Asheville, or for information on real estate in the area, please contact Mike Figura at Mike@MyMosaicRealty.com or call him anytime at (828) 337-8190.

Holidays Herald Festive Events Across Western N.C.

Asheville WNC Holiday Events

Every year, the holiday season heralds a bevy of festive activities across Western North Carolina. From parades to light displays to stage performances, there’s something to enchant everyone; here are a few favorites.

A Winter’s Tail

The Western North Carolina Nature Center’s annual Winter’s Tail features festive crafts, games and animal programs, as well as photos with Santa. Standard admission rates apply. Visit www.wildwnc.org for program dates and times.

Holidays in WNCAnnual National Gingerbread House Competition Display

Visitors to the Omni Grove Park Hotel in Asheville can view this eagerly anticipated competition, which features breathtaking entries from all over the country, and in various age categories. Visit www.omnihotels.com/hotels/asheville-grove-park/things-to-do/upcoming-events/national-gingerbread-competition for schedule and more information.

Shadrack’s Christmas Wonderland

Tryon International Equestrian Center is host to Shadrack’s Christmas Wonderland, more than 2 miles of drive-through custom-made displays set to music you play over your car radio. On the weekends, visitors can also enjoy Winterfest Village, featuring photos with Santa and storytelling with Mrs. Claus, carousel rides, animal experiences and live music. Visit www.shadrackchristmas.com/tryon-nc  for tickets and more information.

Winter Lights at the Arboretum

Walk through the N.C. Arboretum’s gardens and enjoy unique displays and landscapes dressed in more than a half-million holiday lights. Winter Lights includes interactive games, a model train exhibit, free crafts, a nature-themed animatronic children’s program and more. Visit www.ncarboretum.org/winter-lights/ for dates, times and admission.

Carolina Christmas Show

Staged at the Colonial Theater in Canton, this dazzling production of live music, dance and comedy features performers from Western N.C. and special guest artists presenting sacred and secular Christmas favorites. Visit www.marlumor.com/christmas-show for schedule and tickets.

The Big Crafty

A favorite art event for the past decade, the weekend-long Big Crafty, held in downtown Asheville, features 150 artisans, crafters and makers from across the region, and boasts the perfect one-stop shop for unique holiday gifts. Visit  www.thebigcrafty.com for schedule and more information. 

Festival of Lights

Lake Julian Park in South Asheville comes to life for this popular Christmas light show. Some 50 animated and stationary light displays shine along the half-mile drive. Go to www.lakejulianfestivaloflights.simpletix.com for schedule and tickets.

Holidays in AshevilleCashiers Christmas Parade

Held annually on the second Saturday in December, the Cashiers Christmas Parade features local businesses, organizations and residents celebrating the holiday season. Chamber staff organizes parade theme, volunteers, participating lineup, awards and live broadcast of the event from the Cashiers Crossroads. Go to www.cashiers411.com/142-cashiers-christmas-parade for schedule and more information.

Santa on Chimney Rock

Visitors to this annual event can watch Santa rappel down Chimney Rock, meet Santa and Mrs. Claus, and enjoy live holiday music, free hot cocoa, cookies and kids’ activities. Visit www.chimneyrockpark.com/event/santa-on-the-chimney-dec-7 for schedule and more information.

Old World Dickens in the Village Festival

Every year on the first weekend of December (Friday and Saturday), Historic Biltmore Village is transformed into a quaint Victorian town for the Old World Dickens in the Village Festival. Visitors to this immersive holiday experience – featuring performances by strolling carolers, actors and musicians dressed in Dickensian era costumes – can enjoy live music, the Mugs of Merriment Hot Chocolate Competition, jugglers, balloon animal makers, and the Montford Park Players performing vignettes from “A Christmas Carol.” Visit  www.historicbiltmorevillage.com for more information.

Montford Holiday Tour of Homes

This annual holiday tour features homes in Asheville’s Montford historic district, exquisitely decorated for the season. An expression of the rich architectural heritage and vitality of Asheville, Montford includes a variety of architectural styles, reflecting the cosmopolitan character of Asheville at the turn of the 20th century. Visit www.montfordtour.com for tickets and more information.

For information about Real Estate in the Asheville area, contact Mosaic Realty owner Mike Figura at Mike@MyMosaicRealty.com, or call him anytime at 828-337-8190.

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