July Summer Adventures You'll Crave in the Asheville Mountains
Is Summer Your Season, but Not Sure What to Plan? Here’s 5 Must-Do’s to Pique Your Interest
It’s hard to find the sweet spot between a deliciously sultry summer and a mild month. July in Ashville will offer you both. Asheville’s mountain summer is not so cool as to take the fun out of summer activities. Yet it’s enviably mild when compared to most Southern state’s punishing heat and humidity.
Like a favorite playlist, Asheville’s July is a great mix. A fresh backdrop to making nostalgic memories. So what’s there to do? What mountain summer experiences are worth making a part of your July getaway?
Let’s talk about 5 activities that will really set the summer mood:
Float Down the River
Complete your summer with an original lazy river float (where you’re not bumping into other tourist tubes, like at a water park). Grab your bathing suit, an old pair of sandals or shoes, a cooler of drinks, and head out for the best summer do-nothing activity.
Here are a few local float options, all of which provide tubes and transport:
Zen Tubing (no-reservation required tubing)
French Broad Tubing (discount if you have your own tubes)
Sky Tubing (includes picnic tables and changing rooms)
While float trips vary in float distance and in the swiftness of the river, float trips are typically 2 to 4 hours long. The average cost per person for a float trip is around $20.
Visit a Funky Coffee Shop
Level up your routine by taking your coffee break to a memorable coffee shop. Sit and read awhile. Or people watch. Instagram your adorable coffee (go for it—you know you want to).
Want coffee with an experience? Peruse Battery Park Book Exchange, where you can wander through a maze of books to find just the right hidden cafe table. Or really shake it up by having coffee and a double-decker bus: Double D's is an eclectic coffee and dessert experience, without the car sickness. If your coffee hour needs some sweetness, hit up the French Broad Chocolate Lounge. There, you can pair your coffee with virtually whatever chocolate treat you want—cake, truffles, ice cream, cookies, and more.
Or maybe your Asheville vacation won’t be complete without dropping into a true “Asheville-feel” coffee shop. For that unique industrial yet eco-conscious vibe, check out High Five Coffee, Trade and Lore, Filo, or Izze’s. In true Asheville fashion, these coffee shops also offer brews with booze: mixed coffee drinks, as well as coffee beers.
Feast on Mouthwatering Peaches
July is Asheville’s peak peach season! Droves of growers pick their morning batch and drive up from South Carolina and North Carolina Farms. That is, peaches you see for sale may only be several hours old.
You can find vendors at the WNC Farmers Market. And if you drive around Asheville for any length of time in July, you’ll likely pass at least one vendor that’s set up camp on an intersection.
You’ll probably see the massive 8-quart baskets peaches are sold in. Don't be intimidated by the volume! Ask vendors what they charge per peach or for a small basket or bag. Vendors are typically very understanding and will sell you a small batch for a lower price.
Plus, you never need to worry about committing to a whole basket of subpar peaches. Vendors will always let you try a slice before you buy.
Visit a Historical Site
Do you get your thrills through uncovering stories and discovering interesting details? If so, visiting a historical area is a great addition to your vacation. Some excellent places to try are:
Biltmore Estate. Its reputation precedes itself, and when you visit, you'll find an impressive amount of things to see besides the house. The gigantic house itself (America's largest private home) is filled to the brim with details. The ground and Biltmore Village offer an incredible narrative as well. As you journey the property, details unfold about the young wealthy couple, their summer house, and their role in the Great Depression.
Carl Sandberg’s Home. Not only is the famous poet’s house fascinating to explore, but you can also check out the surrounding grounds. There, you can immerse yourself in the space that inspired his well-known poet. The crisp yet quiet nature of the trees and lawns feel pulled from a movie set.
Basilica of St. Lawrence. Consecrated in 1920, the Asheville’s Basilica of St. Larence stylistically sets itself apart from its neighbors—that is, the modern and historical downtown Asheville buildings. Tour through or attend mass to admire the impressive stained glass and woodworking.
Enjoy Dinner With a View
Top off your day on top of the world. Unobstructed by trees, dinner with a view gives you the best seat in the house for easing into a mountain sunset and twilight. It also avoids street-level light pollution, meaning you get a better view of the moon and stars.
Asheville dinners with a view are usually high up the mountain or on a rooftop. Both have excellent mountain views. Check out the following:
Smoky Park Supper Club (great for large gatherings). Overlooks the French Broad River.
Omni Grove Park Inn’s Blue Ridge Artisanal Buffet (excellent breakfast/brunch option), Sunset Terrace Restaurant (outdoor seating). Both have a sweeping view of the valley and surrounding mountains.
Montford Rooftop Bar (swanky indoor rooftop dining) Overlooks downtown Asheville and surrounding mountains.
Hemingway's Cuba (rooftop Cuban dining). Nestled in/above downtown.
Pillar Rooftop Bar (intimate rooftop bar). Tall views, yet cozied into downtown.
Come on Down, Y’all!
Leave the crazy humidity and sweltering heat to the rest of the south. The mountains will give you the ideal summer weather and activities!
And leave piling into a cramped, bare-bones hotel room for a conference trip. You’ll thank yourself for booking comfort lodging. Especially when you dip into your private hot tub. And enjoy the sunset on your private porch.