Visiting Asheville During COVID-19

Frequently Asked Questions

As you make plans to enjoy the serenity of the mountains, we know you may have questions about visiting Asheville during the Coronavirus pandemic. We're here to help answer these thoughtful frequently asked questions. The health of Asheville's visitors and community members is our top priority. Providing you with the most up-to-date, clear information is part of our commitment to you. We've also created the Stay Safe Pledge, a cooperative effort that unites visitors, businesses and accommodations to take important precautions to keep each other healthy. Learn more about the pledge and how to responsibly visit Asheville. We look forward to welcoming you when you're ready.

What is open in Asheville?+

While many shops, restaurants, breweries, lodging, and attractions - including Biltmore House, Gardens, and Grounds - are currently open in Asheville, individual businesses are weighing their responsibility to employee and customer health. Some businesses have altered operations and hours, so it is recommended you contact businesses prior to your arrival to be sure they are open and to learn if there are any changes to their hours or services.

What is the mask policy in Asheville?+

The Governor of North Carolina has issued an order requiring masks be worn inside all public places. You must also wear a mask at outdoor public places where social distancing isn't possible.

Are restaurants open for dine in service? If so, are they at limited capacity?+

Restaurants are permitted to be open for dine in service. Based on guidance from state and local government, restaurants are operating at no more than 75 percent capacity indoors, and many restaurants continue to offer outdoor dining, takeout or delivery service. It is recommended you contact businesses prior to your arrival to be sure they are open and to learn if there are any changes to their hours or services.

Where can I dine outside?+

Asheville is known as the "Paris of the South," in part because of its wealth of outdoor patio and bistro dining. The number of restaurants offering outside dining is increasing as establishments working with city of Asheville leaders to create "parklets" -- additional outdoor seating areas that safely utilize portions of the street and/or sidewalk in front of restaurants. For a list of restaurants that report having outdoor seating available for guests, GO HERE »

What breweries have outdoor areas?+

Nearly all of the brewery locations in Asheville have an outdoor seating area. For a list of more than 20 locations with outdoor areas GO HERE »

What precautions are Asheville businesses taking to increase visitor and local safety?+

Asheville's businesses and community members have taken the Asheville Stay Safe Pledge -- a shared commitment to take important precautions to keep each other safe during the Coronavirus pandemic. As part of this pledge, businesses have put into place enhanced cleaning and safety protocols, and employees are required to wear masks. Guests are required to wear masks inside public businesses. Guests also are required to wear masks outdoors where social distancing isn't possible.

Determining whether it is safe to travel to Asheville is ultimately a decision that is up to you and your family. We respect whatever decision you make. We will look forward to welcoming you when you're ready.

Where can I go to avoid crowds?+

The Asheville area is home to hundreds of thousands of acres of pristine forests, mountain peaks, thundering waterfalls and scenic drives. The outdoors are a great place to go for social distancing. Check out the wide open spaces of Asheville's mountain balds. And, take the trails less traveled by exploring these off-the-beaten-path hikes. Please keep in mind that popular trails, particularly the trailhead parking areas, can become crowded on weekends and midday. We suggest being prepared with alternative destinations and staying willing to drive past crowded areas.

Closer to town, explore quiet neighborhoods, historic district and shopping areas such as Biltmore Village, the Montford Historic District and the River Arts District. Or, head to Asheville's small neighboring communities such as Black Mountain and Weaverville.

When is the least busy time to visit Asheville?+

Weekdays tend to be the least traveled time. If you will be in town on the weekend, we recommend arriving as early in the morning as possible to enjoy popular areas with fewer people.

Is The Biltmore Estate open?+

Yes, Biltmore Estate is currently open. Biltmore House is open for self-guided tours. A prior reservation is required (you will be given an entry time with your reservation). Guided tours of Biltmore House are being offered at very limited capacity and by reservation only. The Christmas at Biltmore celebration is also open to guests at this time. The 8,000-acre grounds and gardens are open. The Estate's restaurants and hotels are welcoming guests. 

Biltmore employees are required to wear masks in all guests areas. Guests are required to wear masks in all indoor public spaces.