Nestled in the heart of the Blue Ridge Mountains and caressed by the waters of the French Broad River, Asheville, NC has always been a magnet for nature enthusiasts and wanderers. Ask any transplant to Asheville about their journey, and you’ll often hear a tale of a brief visit turned lifelong romance.
Before you hitch your compact abode and settle in the heart of AVL, there are some nuggets of wisdom you ought to be privy to.
What To Know
1. Locals play hard to get!
If the natives seem a tad frosty at first, don’t sweat it! It’s not you, it’s just their way of showing hometown pride.
They’re head over heels for their mountain vibes, diverse culture, and stunning landscapes. And hey, once you bond over the city’s DIY spirit, you’ll be in the inner circle in no time!
2. Keep it in the family!
Asheville is all about that local love. Big chains? Meh. But local businesses? They’re the real MVPs here. So, if you’re thinking of grabbing a bite or going shopping, remember the city’s mantra: “Love Asheville. Keep It Local.” And trust us, with the Asheville Grown movement, shopping small has never felt so good!
3. Cheers to Beersville!
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If you’re thirsty, you’re in luck! With a brewery count that’s always on the rise (currently hovering around 30), including big names like Sierra Nevada and New Belgium, Asheville is basically the Willy Wonka factory for beer enthusiasts. So, grab a pint and dive into the frothy goodness!
4. Feast in Flavorville!
Hungry? Asheville’s got you covered! Often dubbed the “foodie wonderland,” this city is bursting with mouth-watering eateries. With over 700 restaurants, you can travel the world on a plate – from tantalizing Thai to exquisite Ethiopian, fancy French, and soul-soothing Southern delights.
And hey, when Zagat says it’s one of the most exciting food cities, you know you’re in for a treat!
5. Traffic Tango!
Driving in Asheville? Brace yourself for a dance with traffic! As this gem of a city grows, so do the number of cars on the road. With a population nearing 90,000, it sometimes feels like a grand parade on the streets. But hey, it’s all part of the city’s charm, right?
6. Subaru Squad!
Want to blend in with the Asheville crowd? Get yourself a Subaru! While it might sound cliché, these cars are the unofficial mascots of the city’s roads. Known for their rugged charm and eco-friendly vibes, you’ll often spot them flaunting a medley of political stickers. So, if you’re looking to fit right in, you know what to drive!
7. Snow? More like Snow-No!
While snowfall isn’t a frequent guest in Asheville, when it does decide to visit, the city turns into a scene straight out of a comedy movie. Just a whisper of snow sends everyone rushing to the grocery stores, emptying shelves of bread and milk faster than you can say “snowflake.” If the ground gets a fluffy white blanket thicker than a couple of inches, consider it a city-wide snow day!
8. Rainbow Vibes Everywhere!
Asheville wears its rainbow colors with pride! Boasting an LGBTQ+ community that’s off the charts, this city is a beacon of love and acceptance. The Blue Ridge Pride Festival is a must-visit, drawing over 10,000 attendees every October. And fun fact: Asheville was quick to embrace love, hosting the state’s first gay wedding the moment it became legal in 2015.
9. Job Hunt? Consider It Done!
Whether you’re into healthcare, education, or the service industry, Asheville’s got a spot for you. Major employers include the Mission Health System & Hospital and the Buncombe County school district. But if you’re looking for a touch of luxury, The Biltmore Company, with its grand estate and myriad of businesses, is where it’s at!
10. Furry Friends Galore!
Asheville isn’t just for humans; it’s a paradise for pets too! From dogs to cats, goats, and even chickens, this city welcomes them all with open arms. Many establishments roll out the red carpet (or should we say, the furry carpet?) for our four-legged buddies. With water bowls dotting storefronts, special pet menus at eateries, and the honor of housing the first official Dog Welcome Center in the U.S., Asheville truly is a pet lover’s dream!
11. Hotel Boomtown!
Asheville’s skyline is getting a makeover with new hotels sprouting up like mushrooms after rain. But remember, the locals aren’t exactly throwing a party about it (refer back to point #1 for a refresher).
12. Home Sweet… Wait, Where?
With everyone wanting a piece of Asheville, finding a place to call home is like hunting for a needle in a haystack. But fear not! New apartments are rising from the ground, ready to welcome the city’s newest residents.
13. Dig Deep into Those Pockets!
Living in Asheville might require a bit of a financial stretch. With the housing market tighter than a hipster’s jeans, homes come with a hefty price tag. The going rate? A cool $272,000 on average, and that’s just the starting bid!
14. Southern Charm with a Twist!
Amidst the quirky LaZoom tour buses and the vibrant city life, Asheville hasn’t forgotten its southern roots. Venture a bit outside the city center, and you’ll be greeted with good ol’ southern accents and traditional values.
15. Veggie Vibes Everywhere!
Asheville is a paradise for plant-lovers! Not one, but TWO festivals celebrate the green lifestyle: Asheville VegFest and Asheville VeganFest. Whether you’re a full-fledged vegan, a curious vegetarian, or just someone looking for a tasty plant-based meal, Asheville’s got a plate waiting for you.
16. Adventure’s Calling, Will You Answer?
Why stay indoors when Asheville’s great outdoors beckons? Whether you’re scaling mountains, biking scenic trails, navigating rapids, or simply taking a leisurely walk in Carrier Park, the city promises a dose of adrenaline or tranquility, whichever you seek. And with the majestic Blue Ridge Parkway just a stone’s throw away, every day can be an adventure!
17. A Canvas Called Asheville.
Art isn’t just confined to galleries here; it’s in the very soul of the city. The River Arts District is a treasure trove, boasting over 25 studios and the creative genius of 200+ artists. And even if art galleries aren’t your thing, the vibrant graffiti murals adorning Riverside Drive’s industrial buildings will surely catch your eye.
18. Asheville’s Got Star Power!
While it might not be Tinseltown, Asheville has its fair share of glitz and glamour. Celebrity sightings? Check. Blockbuster movie sets? Double-check. From “The Hunger Games” to “Cold Mountain,” the city’s scenic beauty has graced the silver screen more than once.
19. Biltmore: More Than Just a Mansion.
Sure, the Biltmore Estate is America’s largest private home, but it’s so much more than that. Its sprawling grounds and meticulously manicured gardens are a sight to behold. Even if you’re not into architecture, the sheer grandeur of the place is worth a visit.
20. Cooler Than Your Current Zip Code!
Forbes wasn’t kidding when they dubbed Asheville one of the “15 Coolest Places to Go in 2018.” So, if you’re looking for a sign to pack your bags and head to this hip city, consider this it!
What do I need to know about moving to Asheville NC?
Asheville is a vibrant city known for its artsy vibe, outdoor activities, and rich history. While it offers a unique blend of southern charm and modern living, it’s essential to be aware of the rising housing costs, the city’s emphasis on local businesses, and the diverse culture that makes Asheville special.
What are the issues in Asheville NC?
Like many growing cities, Asheville faces challenges such as increasing traffic congestion, a housing crunch with rising real estate prices, and concerns about overdevelopment, especially with new hotels. There’s also a discussion about maintaining the city’s unique character amidst rapid growth.
Is It a good place to move to?
Absolutely! Asheville offers a mix of natural beauty, cultural richness, and a strong sense of community. However, like any city, it’s essential to research and determine if it aligns with your lifestyle and financial situation.
What do people do for a living in Asheville NC?
Asheville’s economy is diverse. Many residents work in the medical and education fields, with major employers like Mission Health System & Hospital and the Buncombe County school district. The service industry, especially tourism-related businesses, is also significant. The Biltmore Company, with its estate, hotels, and shops, is a major employer in the service sector.
Is it safe to walk around Asheville at night?
Generally, Asheville is considered safe for residents and tourists. However, like any city, certain areas might be less secure than others. It’s always a good idea to stay aware of your surroundings, stick to well-lit areas, and avoid walking alone late at night.
Is there a homeless problem?
Yes, Asheville, like many cities, faces challenges related to homelessness. The city and various organizations are working to address the issue and provide resources and support for the homeless population.
What is a livable salary there?
To live comfortably in Asheville, taking into account housing, utilities, transportation, and other basic expenses, a salary of around $40,000 to $50,000 for a single person is often considered livable. However, this can vary based on individual circumstances and lifestyle choices.
Asheville, with its eclectic mix of art, culture, and nature, is undeniably a city that captures hearts. Not only is it a great place for living, but it can be a very interesting and beautiful vacation spot for you and your family. Whether you’re drawn to its vibrant arts scene, the call of the mountains, or the allure of its unique community spirit, Asheville promises a life less ordinary.
Before making the leap, arm yourself with knowledge, embrace the city’s quirks, and get ready for an adventure in the heart of the Blue Ridge Mountains.