It was time to squeeze in one last road trip of 2015, and this time we decided to see the beautiful little city of Asheville in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina. The kids are getting better in the car so the 4 hour drive from Raleigh wasn’t bad. We stayed in downtown Asheville which is perfectly picturesque, hilly, and compact to explore on foot. I got the sense that the people here take great pride in shopping and eating local. There was not one chain store in sight. I kept passing cute little gift stores which I think would go out of business elsewhere in the country, and in the few blocks of downtown I must have passed at least 3 independent bookstores which looked like they were thriving. Speaking of books, I also discovered a place that I thought only existed in my dreams – Battery Park Book Exchange and Champagne Bar. The vibe here was that of a speakeasy but with books!! People, young and old were huddled in corners with books and drinks, looking excited and cheery. I seriously felt like I was in some kind of a secret place!
Some of the notable places were we ate included the Wicked Weed (which has really good beer and a huge canvas painting of Henry VIII made out of little dots), Rhubarb, Doc Chey, and the noodle shop where Asha had fun eating with her chopsticks! Overall, I felt like I needed another week to eat at all the places that looked interesting.
Because the weather was a little cold, I tried to find some indoor activities for the kids. We went to the Asheville Museum of Arts and the downtown public library both of which has an amazing play space for kids. We also visited the Biltmore Estate which once was Vanderbilt’s country home. The whole time I kept feeling like I was walking around on the set of Downtown Abbey. It was very cool!
What a perfect way to end this year a top the Blue Ride mountains! Life you are truly beautiful and good.