Top Events and Festivals in Asheville, NC

Aerial photo of a crowd surrounded outside near a stage at Salvage Station

2024 Asheville Festivals, Events & Exhibits at a Glance

Which fest is the best? Here are top choices for Asheville festivals, events and exhibits happening in Asheville in 2024.

Truly one of the great things about Asheville is that no matter what time of year you visit, there’s a good chance you’ll find a festival or event taking place either in the streets of downtown, by the banks of the French Broad River or tucked away in a remote mountain meadow. Ashevillians love a good party and with so many celebrations planned throughout the year, it’s no wonder why this place is one of the country's premier travel destination. 

The following list is a collection of some of the best mountain music jamborees, foodie-fueled fiestas and artsy adventures throughout the year in the Asheville area. 


Biltmore Blooms

Asheville Symphony Orchestra Masterworks 
March 16 - May 18, 2024

Experience the music of this full orchestra thanks to a series of Masterworks concerts. Check out the Violin Virtuosi program on March 16 headlined by husband and wife duo Noah Bendix-Balgley and Shanshan Yao or music from Vienna to old Hollywood on April 20. The season finale on May 18 features two powerful titans of Western repertoire in Tchaikovsky and Mahler.  

Biltmore Blooms
March 25 - May 23, 2024

Welcome spring in high style with more than 130,000 flowers blooming in gardens fit for a Vanderbilt. At Biltmore Blooms, the estate's annual festival of flowers, the color and fragrance of orchids and thousands of spring bulbs steal the show.

Leaf Global Arts Retreat 
May 9 - May 12, 2024

Join together with music lovers gathered at beautiful Lake Eden in the nearby town of Black Mountain to experience powerful music, art and culture. This beloved local tradition takes place on the site of the historic Black Mountain College. The theme of this year’s spring retreat is World Changers: Artists & Activists and we will celebrate the extraordinary global citizens who champion causes that resonate with the heartbeat of humanity. 

May 24 - 26, 2024

GRINDFest is a free, three-day festival that celebrates Black freedom, as well as the success of Black entrepreneurs + business owners in Asheville. Held in the River Arts District, the celebration includes a weekend full of music, live performances, food, local vendors + learning opportunities.

Other Asheville spring festivals: Asheville Orchid Festival, Asheville Herb Festival, Get in Gear Festival 


Hola Asheville Festival

Hola Asheville
June, 2024

Downtown Asheville comes alive with the sights, sounds, music, pageantry, colorful costumes and extraordinary talent of Latin America. Don't miss the delicious food vendors and shopping.

Asheville Ideas Fest
June 17 - 20, 2024

Innovative thinkers and inspiring speakers will descend on UNC-Asheville in June for the third annual Asheville Ideas Fest. 

LoveShinePlay Festival
July 25-28, 2024

Formerly known as the Asheville Yoga Festival, LoveShinePlay is a four-day event held in downtown that includes an expansive schedule of more than 70 styles of offerings, including Bhakti and anatomy, Kundalini and Yin, and everything in between. Attendees can experience lectures on practical astrology, Ayurvedic yoga classes, yin yoga and story time, plus classes and concerts from DJ Drez and MC Yogi. Classes will be located around Asheville in hotels, community centers, and outdoor stages alongside a downtown marketplace that features 60-plus hand-selected vendors offering high-quality wellness products. You’ll also find food trucks, free community events and outdoor spaces to rest.

Craft Fair of the Southern Highlands
July 18 - 21, 2024

Showcasing the finest artwork of nearly 200 craftspeople from around the region, this four-day festival offers a unique opportunity to watch artists practice their craft in live demonstrations. Live music also helps set the stage for this event, which features work across every medium, including clay, glass, fiber, paper, wood, jewelry, leather, and metal. If you can't attend the summer event, make plans to attend the fall festival, October 17 - 20, 2024.

Mountain Dance and Folk Festival
August 1 - 3, 2024

Hailed as the nation’s longest running folk festival, this is the preeminent event for old-time and bluegrass music. Here, ballad singers, banjo players and cloggers converge to tell stories of a by-gone era through their music and dance, and by doing so they continue to preserve our classic Southern Appalachian culture. If you can’t make it for this annual August event, you may be able to catch a summer showing of Shindig on the Green, a smaller, yet just as lively, concert series held for free on select Saturdays in downtown Asheville.

AVL Fest
August 1 - 4, 2024

AVL Fest enters its second year after a smashing success in 2023! This multi-day music and arts festival kicks off in August and will be a celebration of Asheville's thriving arts and culture scene. Asheville's many local concert halls, clubs and outdoor venues will be featuring amazing lineups of local, regional and national talent. 

Other Asheville summer festivals: Downtown After 5, Skyview Golf Tournament, Asheville Comedy Festival and Sourwood Festival.


Asheville Art in the Park
October 5, 12 & 19, 2024

Explore and purchase artwork by some of the finest artists in the region. Asheville Art in the Park takes place on three consecutive Saturdays in downtown Asheville in October. Some of the local artists who exhibit at these events are nationally-known. Not only can you take home a one-of-a-kind piece, when you make a purchase you'll also be helping to support a local art non-profit organization.

LEAF Festival
October 17-20, 2024

Travel the word -- through music and the arts! Enjoy the 50th anniversary of LEAF through a spirited celebration of our local and global community. Stages are more elaborate with headline performers and global artists. This is the fun filled weekend with activities bursting at the seams that our community has come to know and love.

Goombay Festival

For more than 40 years, this annual celebration of African-Caribbean food and music has filled downtown Asheville with memorable flavors and the sounds of gospel, reggae, funk and soul.

Blue Ride Pride Festival

Y'all means all in Asheville! The Blue Ridge Pride Festival comes together to celebrate the LGBTQ+ community through inclusion, entertainment, education, art and more. Held in downtown Asheville, the annual event features a Welcome Parade, musical acts, food and dozens of vendors.

Other Asheville fall festivals: ASAP Farm Tour, Greek Festival, Asheville VeganFest, Krafthaus and Fall by the Tracks Festival


Biltmore Christmas

Christmas at Biltmore
November 2, 2024 - January 5, 2025

See stunning decorations at America's largest home. Nearly 100 hand-decorated Christmas trees, include a 35-foot fraser fir in the Banquet Hall, transform the home for the holidays. In the evenings, Biltmore glows with candlelight and firelight for Candlelight Christmas Evenings (separate admission). Step back in time and experience Biltmore much like the Vanderbilt's did during their first Christmas Eve in 1895! See our Christmas at Biltmore guide for more information.

Winter Lights at the North Carolina Arboretum
November, 2024 - January 2025

Nearly one million lights illuminate the nationally-known gardens creating a whimsical winter wonderland. Along the self-guided walking tour, see magical glowing natural landscapes including the popular Quilt Garden and 50-foot animated tree! Tickets must be purchased in advance. Check out our guide to Winter Lights for tips on visiting.

Dickens in the Village
December, 2024

The beautiful, historic district of Biltmore Village transports you back in time to the days of Charles Dickens and A Christmas Carol! The Old World Dickens in the Village Festival is an immersive holiday experience featuring performances by strolling carolers, actors and musicians dressed in costume.

Other Asheville winter festivals: Lake Julian Festival of Lights, Asheville Restaurant Week and Asheville Celtic Fest.

Updated May 14, 2024