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Mother’s Day in Asheville—A Local’s Perspective

Mothers! Many of us have them. Caretakers, nurturers, teachers, astoundingly adept finders of things that are lost. Like when I can’t find the mayonnaise or my keys or some such; inevitably mom finds it within five seconds of searching. How do they do that?

Grand mysteries of life aside, if you’re treating your mom to a tour of Asheville this Mother’s Day, it pays to be well informed. Luckily, come May, the Paris of the South is fair-weathered, and filled to the brim with events and diversions sure to make your mom feel like the specialist mother in town. Which she is.

Read on and discover five of the best things to do for Mother’s Day in Asheville

Mother's Day in Asheville - flowers
Image from Unsplash

Just as Asheville enters prime wildflower season, the NC Arboretum follows up with a more manicured approach. From May 4th to the 19th, Bloom With a View presents visitors with a sprawling display of living floral arrangements, all across the upper gardens. 

Designed by world-class landscapers in partnership with local artisans, these floral installations elevate a stroll through the Arboretum—which in my experience, is typically a mom-pleaser all on its own—into the kind of special event perfectly suited for Mother’s Day weekend. 

Conclude your visit with a stop for a coffee or tea at the Arboretum’s Bent Creek Bistro, sit outside, and enjoy the sweet Blue Ridge air, emboldened with the fragrance of over one thousand bulbs. 

Tickets are thirty dollars per standard-sized vehicle, or free for card-carrying members of the NC Arboretum.

Mother's Day in Asheville - tea
Image from Wix

One of Asheville’s most iconic landmarks, this historic mountain resort has long been the shelter of those seeking rest, relaxation, and a truly memorable place to celebrate each year’s landmark holidays, Mother's Day included.

This year, they’re offering not only one great thing to do for Mother’s Day, but two. From noon to two thirty on the twelfth, they’re putting on a Mother’s Day brunch. Buffet style, composed by the Inn’s master chefs, and served in their Blue Ridge dining room, with a stunning view of the eponymous mountains.

Now if you really want to wow your mom, double-up. Get tickets for the brunch—long in advance, I advise—plus reserve a spot at their Mother’s Day tea party on the afternoon of the eleventh. Indulge yourselves in top-shelf brews, delicate pastries, hors-d'oeuvres, and live musical accompaniment. It just doesn’t get any classier than that. 

Mother's Day in Asheville - spa lounge
Image from Wix

Everyone knows motherhood is hard work, and in the hearts of mothers everywhere, spa day is regarded as ample recognition of their unceasing talents. Here in Asheville, we’re practically swimming in spas. When we’re not swimming under a waterfall, that is.

Which takes us back to the Grove Park Inn. Their gargantuan semi-subterranean spa complex offers just about every treatment imaginable, from luxury facials to pedicures. That’s head to foot right there, that’s the whole package. 

Plan ahead, and customize your Mother’s Day spa-trip to your heart’s content. You may want to consult your mom as well. Just an idea.

And if you don’t find what you’re looking for, simply take a gander at this article right here, breaking down the rest of Asheville’s fine spas, with everything from Japanese-style to salt caves. 

Mother's Day in Asheville - brunch spread
Image from Wix

There’s a long standing tradition of pairing mothers with brunch. Why brunch of all meals? Why not dinner or lunch? Because moms are always waking up so gosh darn early. That, and breakfast food is delightful.

I’ve already gone over the Grove Park Inn’s Mother’s Day brunch, but if you’d like to go a little off the beaten path, then downtown Asheville’s the place for you. Specifically, I’d recommend Café Bomba, La Bodega, and Ukiah Japanese Smokehouse. Let’s break them down one by one.

Situated smack dab in the middle of downtown, Café Bomba’s covered patio offers unparalleled people-watching opportunities and their menu’s stacked with sprawling breakfast platters with a Latin twist. Space is limited, so hop on those reservations pronto. 

Now nestled behind Curate, one of Asheville’s best tapas-joints, you’ve got La Bodega, the famous taperia's spinoff with a focus on breakfast, brunch, and honest-to-goodness Iberian delicacies. Pintxos, fried anchovies, Spanish tortillas, manchego cheese, jamon serrano, and imported wines. 

And finally, Japanese may not be what first comes to mind when you’re planning your Mother’s Day brunch, but perhaps it should be. The South Slope’s Ukiah serves dynamite fusion dishes, like breakfast ramen with maple bacon, karaage chicken with Carolina sauce, and platters of smoked pastrami brisket with kimchi kraut, meant to be shared. 

Mother's Day in Asheville - picnic with coffee
Image from Wix

All these ideas are well and good—and not exclusive to each other either, I recommend trying them all—but what really makes a Mother’s Day in Asheville is the greatest mother of all: Mother Nature.

Drive on up the Blue Ridge Parkway, and you’ll be treated to spanning vistas, the likes of which you can only find in this corner of North Carolina. If you’d like to get a little more up-close and personal, simply take your mother to any one of these beautiful trails, each with its own specialty, from waterfalls to wildflowers.

Whether or not you choose to tack on a hike, a Mother’s Day drive up to the Blue Ridge wouldn’t be complete without an al-fresco luncheon, facilitated, perhaps, by a visit to one of Asheville’s many great farmer’s markets or bakeries. Which could be yet another great thing to do for Mother’s Day in Asheville, now that I think of it.

Businesses Mentioned

NC Arboretum


100 Frederick Law Olmsted Way, Asheville, NC 28806

The Omni Grove Park Inn

(800)-438-5800 290 Macon Ave, Asheville, NC 28804

Café Bomba


#1 SW, N Pack Square, Asheville, NC 28801

La Bodega by Curate


32 S Lexington Ave, Asheville, NC 28801

Ukiah Japanese Smokehouse


121 Biltmore Ave, Asheville, NC 28801


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