10 Awesome Things to Do in Asheville for Teens

Asheville, North Carolina is one of our families’ favorite destinations in the South.  With incredible mountain views, and unique shopping and restaurants, it’s the perfect blend of nature and city.  Sometimes it can be difficult to plan vacations with teens, but Asheville makes it easy.  Here is a list of our family’s favorite things to do in Asheville for teens.

Play Pinball at the Asheville Pinball Museum

Multiple vintage toys with a yoda, play school telephone, and C3PO at the Asheville Pinball Museum

With vintage vibes and a quirky feel, teenagers will love the Asheville Pinball Museum. With over 50 pinball machines, and classic arcade games, it’s the perfect place to spend an afternoon in Asheville with teenagers.

They have a small selection of sodas, beer, and snacks. The staff are always friendly and professional, and they have an incredible selection of both vintage pinball as well as vintage video games. From Donkey Kong and Galaga to Frogger and Burger Time, families can spend hours playing unlimited games.

Old Vintage Pinball Museums at the Asheville Pinball Museum

We recommend getting there before they open if you are visiting on a weekend or holiday. They can get quite busy, but typically the first crew of people will be let in.  If not they will put you on a waiting list and call you when they have availability.

Asheville Pinball Museum

Address:  1 Battle Sq Ste 1A Asheville, NC 28801

Enjoy Dessert at French Broad Chocolates

The front of French Broad Chocolate Lounge on tree lined street in Asheville

The French Broad Chocolate Lounge is a must-visit spot for teens and adults alike. With an incredible selection of handmade chocolates, truffles, and other treats, it’s the perfect place to indulge in something sweet.

Located right in Pack Square downtown, the atmosphere is cozy and inviting, and the staff are always friendly and helpful.  

counter at French Broad Chocolate lounge with coffee cups and coffee makers

On a cool day, relax into their coffee shop-like atmosphere and indulge in a “Liquid Truffle” – their thick and velvety hot chocolate. For the summer months, French Broad Chocolate Lounge is a great place to stop for a milk shake or an ice cream float.

If you are a chocolate lover, their factory offers tours. Be sure to call ahead to ensure availability.

French Broad Chocolate Lounge Menu

Address:  10 S Pack Square, Asheville NC 28801

Find a Read at Malaprop’s Bookstore

Malaprop’s Bookstore is a great place for teens to find their next read.  Malaprop’s has the atmosphere of a small book store, but is quite spacious.  It is well -stocked with books from all genres, and the staff are always helpful in finding the perfect book.

Book shelves at Malaprop's Bookstore

One of the coolest things in Malaprop’s Bookstore is the paper wrapped mystery books . There is a giant section of wall with blind-date (paper wrapped) books with single-word descriptions written by employees.  Teens can choose their own adventure by purchasing one of these books and getting a surprise read.

Malaprop's bookstore from the window

Malaprop’s Bookstore also features a small coffee bar with pastries. You can snag an espresso or a latte to sip on as you browse.

Malaprop’s Bookstore

Address: 55 Haywood St, Asheville NC 28801

Hike to a Waterfall

Triple falls surrounded by trees

There are so many incredible hiking trails in and around Asheville. Whether you are looking for a short hike or an all day adventure, there is something for everyone.

Teenagers can manage a longer distance with hiking, but still like to have great rewards and see sites along the way.  We recommend the Triple Falls Hike in Dupont State Forest. It’s a moderate hike of about 3 miles round trip, and you get to see three beautiful waterfalls.

Triple falls

Pisgah National Forest also has several great hikes for teenagers.  Black Balsalm Knob and Graveyard Fields are both easier hikes but have great views and rewards along the way.

Check out our dedicated blog post with Waterfall hikes in the Asheville area if you want more ideas for family friendly hikes. You really can’t go wrong by getting outside around Asheville and exploring nature.

If you are new to hiking, and prefer a guide, consider this three waterfall guided hike which is teen friendly and will pick you up at your hotel.

Explore the Biltmore

The Biltmore Estate is a great thing to do in Asheville for teens. Located just outside of Asheville, the estate is the largest privately owned home in the United States. It was built by George Vanderbilt in 1895 and has been open to visitors since 1930.

The front of the Biltmore mansion

The first time we visited the Biltmore, we couldn’t believe how expansive is.  It is definitely more than just a house tour.  Visitors have access to an 8,000 acre estate, which includes impeccable gardens, beautiful trails, and winery, and even an ice cream shop. 

The interior for the Biltmore with lanterns hanging from the ceiling

The Biltmore Estate is a great destination for teenagers, as there is something for everyone to enjoy. For lovers of nature and the outdoors, there are extensive grounds with lush gardens and breathtaking views. Antler Hill Village on the Biltmore property has guided bike rides, and falconry and archery lessons which are all open to teenagers.

The Biltmore

Address: 1 Antler Hill Rd, Asheville, North Carolina 28803

Take a Break at the Coffee Bus

Double decker bus that's red and sells coffee through their windows

Double D’s Coffee and Desserts is a special place in the heart of downtown Asheville.  When you step into the red double decker bus, you are transported to a magical place.  The staff is friendly, and the drinks and desserts are divine.

We recommend the Honey Lavender Latte. If you are feeling more indulgent – a warm brownie sundae is the way to go!

There are several tables in front of the bus for guests to enjoy their treats prior to browsing Asheville. Double D’s Coffee is a must see, and is a really unique thing to do in Asheville with teenagers.

Double D’s Coffee & Desserts

Address:  41 Biltmore Ave.  Asheville, North Carolina 28801

Raft on the French Broad River

Family on a raft in the French Broad River

If you are looking for exciting things to do in Asheville for teens, consider taking a rafting trip on the French Broad River. The French Broad is one of the oldest rivers in the world, and it winds its way through some of the most beautiful scenery in Western North Carolina.

The river is perfect for all levels of rafters, from beginners to experienced paddlers. There are several companies that offer guided rafting trips, and they can provide all the necessary gear. Asheville Adventure Company is in town and provides both kayak and rafting experiences.

Two rafts on the French Broad river

We also recommend Blue Heron Whitewater. We did a float trip with them, and they were professional and knowledgeable. They have half and full day trips that journey through Class III and Class IV rapids. The scenery is beautiful and the rapids are exciting and fun for teens and adults alike.

Blue Heron Whitewater

Address:  35 Little Pine Road, Marshall, North Carolina 28753

Explore the Blue Ridge Parkway

View of the mountains off of the Blue Ridge Parkway

The Blue Ridge Parkway is a 469-mile scenic drive that runs through the Appalachian Mountains of North Carolina and Virginia. It is one of the most popular attractions in Asheville, and it offers stunning views of the surrounding mountains.

The Blue Ridge Parkway is one of the best things to do in Asheville for teens. It has several overlooks where visitors can stop to take in the breathtaking views. There are also plenty of hiking trails for those who want to explore further. It’s an easy area to explore if you have a car. You also can consider this teen friendly jeep tour which allows you to take in the views and not worry about the road.

Sign that says Craggy Gardens Trail

The Craggy Gardens Trial is a great moderate choice for families with teenagers on the Blue Ridge Parkway. It takes you through a high elevation forest with beautiful mountain scenery and wild flowers along the way.

Visit Linville Caverns

Rock formations in Linville Caverns with a green color

Linville Caverns is a must-see destination for teens visiting Asheville. Located in the Blue Ridge Mountains, this natural cave system is home to some of the most interesting underground formations in the region.

The Linville Caverns are filled with stalactites, stalagmites, and other unique rock formations that have been formed over millions of years. Visitors can take a guided tour of the cavern. Linville Falls is also close by, and a trip out here makes a great day trip near Asheville with teenagers.

Linville Caverns

Address:  19929 US-221, Marion, North Carolina 28752

Make Music at the Moogseum

This small but fun museum teaches families about the history Bob Moog and the development of electronic synthesizers.   You will come away with a new appreciation about how synthesizers impact the music we listen to today.

Through hands on exhibits, teenagers will enjoy trying the five different types of instruments.  There is a lot to look at in this small space.  This place is unique, and the type of thing you can only find in Asheville.

If your family is into music, you can also check out this teen friendly Historic Music Scene Walking Tour that visits music related sites around the city, and ends at the Moogseum.

The Moogseum

Address: 56 Broadway Street, Asheville, North Carolina 28801

Check out our Other Blog Posts about Asheville!

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