Your Guide to the Coolest Neighborhoods in Asheville

From popular downtown to the quiet neighborhoods of Asheville, let us show you around.

Exterior of Curate in downtown Asheville

If you are looking for the best places to explore and stay while visiting Asheville…

Our Asheville neighborhood guides are just for you! They give you an overview of our favorite spots in the main shopping and dining areas in Asheville.

Generally speaking, Asheville is broken into four quadrants (north, south, east and west), all centered around downtown. There are a few exceptions to this that we will cover below.

Our highlighted neighborhoods are some of the best places to explore as a visitor to the city.

This is where you’ll find the tastiest restaurants in Asheville, the cutest local shops and the ‘only in Asheville’ feel that we all love.

Though there are a ton of smaller neighborhoods within these areas, you’ll see that we focus on the larger areas instead. We’ll not only give you a general idea of various neighborhoods in Asheville, but we’ll also map out where they are in relation to one another.

The first one we’ll look at is a crowd favorite: downtown Asheville. Downtown Asheville is a must-visit. It’s small enough to not feel overwhelming, but still has a ‘big city’ downtown feel. Downtown is full of local shops and delicious restaurants.

Downtown Asheville

Guide To Downtown AVL

About Downtown Asheville

If you love local shopping and great food, then downtown Asheville is for you!

Small businesses and specialty shops are mixed in amongst award-winning restaurants all set in the heart of the mountains. It’s a very walkable part of the city and you are bound to find something you love.

WHAT IT’S LIKE: Local · Big City Feel · Hip

KNOWN FOR: restaurants · shopping · architecture

LOCATION: city center

We typically tell people that downtown is the epicenter of Asheville, and you can go any direction from there. For example, if you head north you will find North Asheville. Easy, right?

North Asheville is very residential and is home to the UNCA campus. There are several grocery stores, parks and neighborhood eateries. The original Luella’s BBQ is in North Asheville and is definitely worth a visit if you love great barbecue. The impressive Omni Grove Park Inn is also located in North Asheville, as well as the peaceful Botanical Gardens. Oh, and one of our favorite farmers markets— the North Asheville Tailgate Market.

North Asheville

Guide To North AVL

About North Asheville

Local restaurants and walkable neighborhoods make North Asheville a popular residential area.

North Asheville is home to many neighborhoods (Charlotte St, Grove Park-Sunset, Five Points, Beaver Lake…), UNCA’s campus, the Omni Grove Park Inn and the Botanical Gardens.

WHAT IT’S LIKE: family-friendly · residential · historical

KNOWN FOR: local restaurants · walkable neighborhoods · UNCA · Omni Grove Park Inn

LOCATION: north of downtown Asheville

You’ll also find the historic Montford neighborhood just north of downtown. There are only a few eateries in Montford, but there are several historical bed and breakfasts. It’s a very desirable area to live in Asheville because the homes and properties are beautiful. But most come at a very hefty price tag!

Historic Montford Neighborhood

Guide To Montford

About Montford

Tree-lined streets, bed & breakfasts and historic houses are all a part of the beautiful Montford neighborhood.

Montford is located just north of downtown Asheville and is within walking distance of it. There you’ll find a few restaurants and parks, but it’s primarily a residential neighborhood.

WHAT IT’S LIKE: residential · historical · desirable

KNOWN FOR: tree-lined streets · bed and breakfasts · architecture

LOCATION: just north of downtown

If you continue going north of downtown you’ll eventually get to Woodfin and Weaverville, NC.

Now, let’s head south of downtown Asheville.

First, you’ll find an extension of downtown called South Slope. And this is where many of the breweries are. There are so, so many breweries in South Slope. It’s walkable from downtown Asheville.

South Slope Brewing District

Guide To South Slope

About South Slope

South Slope has quickly become the brewery district of Asheville, with over ten breweries, as well as a cidery and distillery.

The area is also home to some great restaurants like Cultura and Little Chango, a fun cheese shop and some of the best donuts in Asheville.

WHAT IT’S LIKE: hoppy · walkable · fun

KNOWN FOR: breweries · restaurants

LOCATION: just south of downtown

If you go a bit further south from downtown you will stumble upon Biltmore Village and the entrance to the Biltmore Estate. Speaking of, you should definitely look at a map of Asheville to appreciate how much land the Biltmore Estate actually takes up. It’s staggering.

Biltmore Village

Guide To Biltmore Village

About Biltmore Village

A shopping and dining district in Asheville located just by the entrance to the Biltmore Estate.

You’ll find Tudor-style architecture, cobblestone sidewalks, local shops, national retailers, and a few restaurants sprinkled in at Biltmore Village. It’s a relatively small area and can be easily seen in under a day.

WHAT IT’S LIKE: historical · charming · small but mighty

KNOWN FOR: shopping · restaurants · architecture

LOCATION: just south of downtown

If you keep heading south on Hendersonville Highway, you’ll get into ‘South Asheville‘, which includes Biltmore Park and Arden.

It definitely feels like the suburbs in South Asheville. You’ll find a lot of grocery stores and strip malls. But you’ll also find an entrance to the Blue Ridge Parkway and the NC Arboretum. It’s also really close to Mills River, which is home to the mega Sierra Nevada brewery. The airport is also right there.

One interesting thing to note is that several Asheville restaurants have opened locations in South Asheville over the last year or so. Four that immediately come to mind are Biscuit Head, Early Girl, Tupelo Honey and Vinnie’s Italian. Baked Pie Co’s only shop is also located in South Asheville.

South Asheville

Guide To South AVL

About South Asheville

South Asheville is a popular residential area with all of the amenities needed for convenient living.

This area has seen a high volume of development in recent years along I-26, Brevard Road and Hendersonville Highway, giving area residents and visitors plenty of places to eat, shop and play.

WHAT IT’S LIKE: suburban · family-friendly

KNOWN FOR: The NC Arboretum · Biltmore Park Town Square · AVL Airport

LOCATION: south of downtown and Biltmore Estate

One of the most well known areas in South Asheville is Biltmore Park and Biltmore Park Town Square. This is Asheville’s first mixed-use community and a very desirable place to live.

Biltmore Park

Guide To Biltmore Park

About Biltmore Park

Biltmore Park is Asheville’s first mixed-use community, with several restaurants, shops and living opportunities.

Biltmore Park is a world-class example of a successful mixed-use community. You’ll find everything from a grand neighborhood to an excellent shopping center with local restaurants, national retailers, a YMCA, professional offices, and even a tinkerer space for kids.

WHAT IT’S LIKE: convenient · walkable · residential

KNOWN FOR: Restaurants · Shopping · Movies

LOCATION: South Asheville

Let’s now look at other areas near downtown Asheville, starting with the River Arts District. It’s southwest of downtown but only about a 3-minute drive.

As the name suggests, the River Arts District is along the river and is a destination for art lovers. You’ll find tons of artist studios and galleries mixed in amongst breweries and coffee shops. There are a few houses and apartments in the area but it’s less residential than other areas.

River Arts District

Guide To RAD

About The River Arts District

The River Arts District is a creative haven, with working artist studios and galleries filling former warehouses and mills.

From painting to pottery, glassblowing to textiles, you are bound to discover something you love! Apart from the vibrant art scene, you’ll find barbecue, burgers, craft breweries and coffee shops.

WHAT IT’S LIKE: creative · funky · industrial

KNOWN FOR: local art · galleries & studios · restaurants · murals & graffiti

LOCATION: southwest of downtown, just over the French Broad River from West Asheville

Finally, you have east and west of downtown Asheville. East Asheville is another pretty residential area. This is where the mall is located and big box stores. The WNC Nature Center is also in East Asheville, as well as access to the Blue Ridge Parkway.

Meanwhile, West Asheville is the total opposite. It’s home to vintage shops, popular restaurants, long brunch lines and a distinct West Asheville feel. Check out our guide to West Asheville restaurants for our top picks of where to dine.

West Asheville

Guide To West AVL

About West Asheville

Known for busy brunch spots and vintage shops, the eclectic West Asheville up-and-came in the last decade.

You’ll find breweries, music venues, bookstores, dive bars and vintage clothing shops in West Asheville. Haywood Road is the main corridor in West Asheville, connecting the neighborhood with the River Arts District.

WHAT IT’S LIKE: hip · lively · vibrant

KNOWN FOR: vintage finds · restaurants · local everything

LOCATION: west of downtown, just over the French Broad River from River Arts District

And that wraps up our list! We hope this overview of Asheville neighborhoods has been helpful.

If you are local or planning to move and need a roommate in Asheville, a great place to start is with Asheville Room Finder. It’s a locally-owned site with a mission to help people find housing safely, easily and freely. So, keep it local and check out Asheville Room Finder!

Disclaimer: Hours, pricing, menus, etc. may have changed since we last updated this post, so make sure to confirm all of this directly prior to visiting any business or attraction listed on our site.

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