The Blue Ridge Mountains are one of the most famous mountain ranges in the United States.

This natural wonder is 550 miles long and extends through six states.

Not only are they beautiful to look at, they provide visitors and locals alike with plenty of fun activities.

Hiking, horseback riding, swimming, cycling, and rock climbing are some of the most popular sports year-round in Great Smoky Mountain National Park.

Plus, the region is home to Asheville, North Carolina, one of the most prominent cities among the mountains

Asheville offers a whole host of fun attractions for people of all ages.

Continue reading to discover 15 fun things to do in Blue Ridge Mountains on weekends.

1. Blue Ridge Parkway Waterfalls

If you’re in the area, then exploring Great Smoky Mountain National Park is a must.

After all, you may never get the chance to experience such beautiful scenery again.

This waterfalls tour begins in Asheville and takes you on a drive through mountain scenery like you’ve never seen before.

Along the way, you’ll stop at three waterfalls and two protected forests.

You will be transported in a comfortable vehicle between each location, but upon arrival, prepare for some hiking!

The only way to immerse yourself in nature is by hiking the trails yourself.

Tour details

  • Duration: 5 hours
  • Departure Time: 8:30 am
  • Inclusions: Driver/guide, hotel pick up and drop off, drink and snack

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2. Secret Swimming Hole in Blue Ridge Montains

Swimming at Blue Ridge Mountains is a popular pastime, especially in the summer.

This half day trip will transport you from Asheville to a secret swimming hole.

You’ll drive along the mesmerizing Blue Ridge Parkway as you make your way to the hidden swimming destination.

Upon arrival, you’ll hike a short distance to the swimming hole and then it’s time to jump on in!

The secluded spot will provide unparalleled peace and quiet, allowing you to relax and breathe in the fresh mountain air.

After swimming in the hole and tanning on the rocks, you’ll travel back to Asheville, stopping for a pint at New Belgium Brewery along the way.

Tour details

  • Duration: 4 hours
  • Departure Time: 10:30 am
  • Departure Point: 523 Merrimon Ave, Asheville, NC
  • Inclusions: Driver, round trip transportation

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3. Guided Stand-Up Paddleboard Tour near Biltmore Estate

Water sports and a historic mansion all in one? 

Sign us up!

This stand up paddle boarding tour provides the best of both worlds: sport and American history. 

Begin the day with a relaxing paddle board session on the Class I waters of the French Broad River.

From the river, you’ll be able to spot various sites in Asheville’s bustling downtown core.

As you make your way further down the river, you’ll eventually come to the Biltmore Estate, where you’ll be able to paddle along its outer boundary.

This tour provides a unique perspective on one of America’s most treasured buildings.

Tour details

  • Duration: 2 hours 30 minutes
  • Departure Point: 192 Riverside Dr, Asheville, NC
  • Inclusions: Use of all equipment, professional guide, shuttle to launch point

Check Tour Biltmore Estate


4. Run through Pisgah National Forest 

Ever wanted to try your hand at trail running?

The Blue Ridge Mountains are the place to do it.

Specifically, this tour will have you winding your way through Pisgah National Forest.

Pisgah National Forest is the oldest of its kind in the eastern United States.

It spans 500,000 acres and features over 1,600 miles of trails.

Tour groups will complete a 7 mile loop that includes 1,400 feet of vertical.

You’ll see waterfalls and mountain peaks, and eventually end up at Slate Rock, one of the most stunning lookout points in the forest.

Tour details

  • Duration: 3-4 hours
  • Inclusions: Water bottle, snacks

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5. Scenic E-Bike Tour in the Blue Ridge Mountains

Explore the great outdoors by e-bike!

This one of a kind tour will take you on a scenic bike ride through the Blue Ridge Mountains.

The tour will begin in Asheville, where you’ll hop on an electric bicycle.

You’ll ride through town to Patton mountain.

Once at Patton mountain, you’ll be treated to breathtaking views of the Appalachian Mountains and the Asheville valley.

Tours will continue riding downwards into Asheville valley, before making one final stop at the Grove Park Inn.

Tour details

  • Duration: 3 hours
  • Departure Time: 9:30 am
  • Departure Point: 523 Merrimon Ave, Asheville, NC

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6. Horse Riding through Flame Azalea Trail

Horseback riding is one of the most popular activities in the region – and as soon as you do it, you’ll understand why.

There is nothing quite like riding up a mountain on horseback.

Not only will you get to live out your wildest cowboy fantasies, but you’ll get to see the mountains from a new perspective.

This tour takes groups on the Flame Fern Trail.

On this journey, you’ll be surrounded by flame azaleas with their bright orange flowers, as well as an enchanting white pine tree forest.

Prepare to see all types of wildlife on this leisurely and picturesque equine experience.

Tour details

  • Duration: 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Departure Point: Arrowmont Stables & Cabins, LLC
  • Inclusions: Use of all equipment, safety orientation, horseback ride, local guide

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7. Mountain Yoga Hike

Get in touch with your spiritual side on this mountain yoga hike.

Have you ever done yoga on a mountain?

Not only will the photos be legendary, but there is nothing like doing mountain pose while on an actual mountaintop.

This tour includes 2-3 miles of hiking with a guide, as well as 60-minute yoga session.

Following yoga, your group will engage in a guided meditation session.

Outdoor yoga mats are provided and yogis of all skill levels are invited to participate.

Tour details

  • Duration: 120-180 minutes
  • Departure Time: 8:30 am
  • Departure Point: Black Balsam Knob Road, Black Balsam Knob Rd, Canton, NC
  • Inclusions: Yoga mat, free pictures

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8. See the Night Skies in the Mountains

For all you city slickers, you’ve probably never seen anything like this.

This night skies tour takes you up into the Blue Ridge Mountains to witness something truly incredible.

Outside of Asheville, where there is little light pollution, you’ll be able to see a star-filled night’s sky.

Marvel at the Milky Way while learning some photography tips on how to capture the beauty before you.

The sight will be so magical, you won’t know what to think.

Private transportation is provided from Asheville to this stunning location. 

Tour details

  • Duration: 5 hours
  • Inclusions: Bottled water, private transportation, entry fees

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9. Climb Looking Glass Rock

Never tried rock climbing outside the gym?

Now’s your chance!

Few people get to climb Looking Glass Rock, one of the most beautiful rocks in the world.

After completing a moderate hike to get you warmed up, you’ll come to Looking Glass Rock.

You’ll be given a brief rock climbing lesson, before you get in your harness and try it out for yourself.

Not only will you learn the basics of the sport, but you’ll be treated to unforgettable views the higher you climb.

Tour details

  • Duration: 5-7 hours
  • Departure Point: 41 Forest Gate Dr, Pisgah Forest, NC

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10. Bird Watching at Beaver Lake Bird Sanctuary

Calling all bird enthusiasts! 

The Blue Ridge Mountains are home to all kinds of wildlife.

There are especially lots of birds in the area, and this tour will bring you right to them.

A guide from Ventures Birding Tours will take you on an outdoor exploration, pointing our different species of birds along the way.

Not only will get to see these beautiful creatures for yourself, but you’ll get to learn all about them from a professional.

Whether you’re a seasoned birder or new to the hobby, this scenic tour is suitable for everyone.

Tour details

  • Duration: 2 hours 30 minutes
  • Departure Time: 8:00 am
  • Departure Point: Beaver Lake Bird Sanctuary, 1020 US-25, Asheville, NC
  • Inclusions: Coffee and tea, snacks

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11. Elijah Mountain Gem Mine

Elijah Mountain Gem Mine is one of the best attractions in Asheville.

Educational and fun, this is the perfect way to spend a day with your family.

At this establishment, the visitor becomes a prospector from the nineteenth century.

That means that you get to mine for real gold and other gem stones that you can keep!

It is Asheville’s original gem mine and it’s open 7 days per week.

You can expect to find all types of gems, including topaz, opal, quartz, aquamarine, emeralds, sapphires, and rubies.

Tour details

  • Duration: 2-3 hours
  • Departure Point: Elijah Mountain Gem Mine, 2120 Brevard Rd, Hendersonville, NC
  • Inclusions: Sales tax, bucket price, entry fees

Check Tour Official site


12. Brewery Tour in Asheville

Asheville’s beer scene has taken off in recent years.

Case in point: BREW-ed.

BREW-ed offers the only brewery tours in Asheville led by certified experts.

As you sample some of the best beer the city has to offer, your beer guide will teach you all about the fascinating brewing process.

Tours range in length and will have you visiting between 2 and 3 breweries, with multiple tastings at each.

Between each stop, your guide will teach you about the city of Asheville and its history.

Tour details

  • Duration: 2-3 hours
  • Inclusions: 2-3 breweries, alcoholic beverages, certified guide

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13. Asheville Ghost Walking Tour

With a long history comes a spooky past.

Learn all about Asheville’s eerie past on this Ghost Walking Tour.

An expert local guide will take your group to some of the scariest sites in Asheville.

You’ll hear terrifying tales at each stop, which include the Grove Park Inn and the River Arts District.

Eventually, you will arrive at the basement of the Asheville Masonic Temple to explore the Asheville Mystery Museum.

By the end of the tour, you’ll have learned all about Asheville’s haunted hotspots.

Tour details

  • Duration: 2 hours
  • Departure Time: 8:00 pm
  • Departure Point: Asheville Masonic Temple, 80 Broadway St, Asheville, NC
  • Inclusions: Local guide

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14. Asheville Segway Tour

Explore Asheville on two wheels on this guided Segway Tour.

Nicknamed the Paris of the South, exploring Asheville by segway is one of the best ways to experience the city.

Plus, you’ll have the benefit of moving quicker, which means you can cover more ground for those only in town for a short time.

Your tour will begin with a quick lesson on how to use a Segway i2.

Once you’re comfortable, you’ll begin gliding along the city centre’s sidewalks.

You’ll pass buskers, breweries, restaurants, town squares, and you may even be able to witness the city’s famous drum circle in action.

Tour details

  • Duration: 2 hours
  • Departure Times: 10:00 am, 1:00 pm, 5:00 pm
  • Departure Point: 36 Montford Avenue Asheville, NC
  • Inclusions: 2-hour guided segway tour

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15. Asheville Walking Tour

Exploring Asheville by foot is one of the best ways to get a feel for the city.

This guided walking tour promises to provide you with a deeper understanding of the city’s rich history and culture.

Stops include Park Square, the Thomas Wolfe Memorial, the Grove Arcade, Pritchard Park, and the Basilica of Saint Lawrence.

You’ll also enjoy insider access to a number of hidden gems only reachable by foot.

Your expert guide will answer all of your questions along the way.

Tours are limited and run at 10:00 am daily. 

Tour details

  • Duration: 1 hour 45 minutes
  • Departure Time: 10:00 am
  • Departure Point: Asheville by Foot Walking Tours, 1 N Pack Square, Asheville, NC

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The Blue Ridge Mountains are one of the most beautiful areas of the United States.

And with a historic city like Asheville nearby, a trip to the region is sure to be a success for all.

From rock climbing and mountain yoga to craft beer tours and haunted ghost tours, we hope this list has provided plenty of inspiration for your upcoming adventure.

Find more Things to do near Blue Ridge Mountains

emily
Emily is a freelance writer from Canada and it was during her time studying History that she became interested in travel. Countries I've visited include the United States, Mexico, the Cayman Islands, New Zealand, Costa Rica, the United Kingdom, Greece, Spain, Portugal, Italy, France, Germany, Sweden, Poland, Austria, Belgium, the Netherlands, and Switzerland.