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.

Asheville Area's Aglow With Holiday Happenings

Holiday Lights Asheville

A flurry of festive events makes Asheville the ideal destination this holiday season. From lively parades, to twinkling town light displays, to Old World celebrations, there’s a holiday affair sure to please everyone.

Annual Asheville Holiday Parade

The Asheville Downtown Association hosts this free holiday staple the Saturday before Thanksgiving beginning at 11 a.m. The parade features around 100 entries, from marching bands, floats and street performers to animals, pageant queens and, of course, Santa. The parade begins on Biltmore Avenue at Charlotte Street and concludes on Patton Avenue at S. French Broad. Don’t forget to check out the store windows decked out for the season as part of the downtown association’s annual Holiday Windows Contest. https://www.ashevilledowntown.org/holidays

Christmas at Biltmore

Biltmore Holiday AshevilleFrom Nov. 3, 2018, to Jan. 6, 2019, visitors to the Biltmore Estate can enjoy a rich, magical experience for the senses: holiday décor featuring wreaths, garlands and the sparkle of thousands of ornaments on more than 55 stunning Christmas trees fill the house. The celebration continues across the estate, including colorful holiday blooms in the Conservatory, commemorative Christmas wine at the Winery, and Antler Hill Village's evening illumination display. “Candlelight Christmas Evenings” (additional ticketed event) envelops the estate in a soft glow of candlelight, firelight and twinkle lights. Live performances of Christmas music add to the self-guided evening visit. https://www.biltmore.com/events/christmas-at-biltmore-daytime-celebration-1

Winter Lights at The North Carolina Arboretum

From Nov. 16 to Dec. 31, 2018, 6-10 nightly, visitors to the arboretum can experience an outdoor winter wonderland and enjoy unique displays and landscapes composed of more than 500,000 holiday lights. Listen to the sounds of holiday music favorites and enjoy a cup of holiday-inspired cocoa, cider or beer. https://www.ncarboretum.org/exhibits-events/winter-lights/

Annual National Gingerbread House Competition

Asheville HolidaysCome to the Omni Grove Park Inn Nov. 25, 2018, to Jan. 4, 2019, to take in all the amazing creations that populate this stunning event, in its 26th year.

Except for the base, the gingerbread house entries are constructed entirely of edible materials. While guests with hotel, spa or restaurant reservations may view the display at any time, others are invited to see the winners on Sundays after 3 p.m. and Monday-Thursday anytime (except Dec. 23-Jan. 1). Admission is free, but there is a $20 per car parking fee. https://www.omnihotels.com/hotels/asheville-grove-park/things-to-do/upcoming-events/national-gingerbread-competition

An Old-Fashioned Dickens of a Christmas Festival at Biltmore Village

Historic Biltmore Village transforms into a quaint Victorian village on the first Friday night and Saturday of December. Enjoy concerts, refreshments, horse-drawn carriage rides and strolling vocalists and instrumentalists in costumes of the period. At nightfall, the glowing white lights outlining the historic buildings enhance the ambiance. Shops will stay open late, with many of the shopkeepers dressed in Victorian-era garb. Free admission. Friday starts at 6 p.m. with a tree lighting, Saturday 11-5 p.m.

Asheville’s Downtown Local Lights

Holidays in AshevilleThe City of Asheville, North Carolina Arboretum, Asheville Downtown Association and Buncombe County Tourism Development Authority are partnering for Downtown Local Lights, an artistic holiday light display at Pack Square, and new this year, expanded to Pritchard Park. Downtown Local Lights will kick off Nov. 17 at 5 p.m. at Pack Square with free photos with Santa, hot chocolate from French Broad Chocolate Lounge and holiday carols from The Gay Men’s Chorus. The official lighting ceremony will be at 6:30 pm. https://www.ashevilledowntown.org/downtown-local-lights-ceremony-free-photos-w-santa

"Come Home for the Holidays" Hendersonville

From Nov. 23, 2018, to Jan. 1, 2019, Hendersonville offers a range of festive happenings along with a magical Main Street, decked out in thousands of lights. Events include a Christmas Parade Dec. 1 and a Holiday Tour of Historic Inns Dec. 9, along with Flat Rock Playhouse productions, carriage rides, concerts and an “iceless” ice skating rink. https://www.visithendersonvillenc.org/home-for-the-holidays

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

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