Historic Home Full of Life

A home that was once a dream that was brought to reality through the hard work and dedication of George Washington Vanderbilt III. Vanderbilt's dream brought America's largest home into being and was shared with family and friends starting on Christmas Eve 1885. The home is over 175, 000 square feet and for its time was the most modern with running water, true bathroom facilities, power, refrigeration, indoor pool and so many more amenities. It is hard to believe that a home of this kind could have been built in our North Carolina Blue Ridge Mountains. He truly thought of everything from design, transportation of building materials, designers and even how labor should be paid. Vanderbilt was a man that was far ahead of his time and a brilliant business man. In March of 1930 the Biltmore Estate was opened to the public which brings us to present day at the Biltmore.

Today one can tour the Biltmore home, take in the gardens and so much more. Ready to find out more? Let's dive in!

  • The main attraction is the Biltmore house itself. There are a few different ways to tour the house and grounds.
  • The self guided tour is the main way to enjoy the estate. Within the house you have a audio to guide you through each room giving you the story behind its use. Plus there are wonderful guides at various locations throughout the home to answer all those curious questions.
  • There are behind the scene type tours that are guided to parts of the home that you don't get to see otherwise. Such tours include a rooftop tour and backstairs tour.
  • Have kiddos? No worries the Biltmore thinks of everything. There is a kid's audio guide to the Biltmore house too!
  • The Gardens are beautiful any time of year, but Spring and Summer they really come to life!
  • There is the formal gardens, informal gardens and the walled garden. Each one has there own unique flora to offer.
  • The Conservatory is a beautifully constructed building with a glass ceiling. The plants and flowers within are extremely beautiful year round. They never disappoint!
  • Beyond the gardens the property is magnificent with the forestry, trails, pond and even a waterfall.
  • For everyone that enjoys a glass of vino from time to time there is the winery. Here are options that are available.
  • The indoor complimentary tasting room. No reservations required, but there are times the wait can be long as it is first come first serve. Here you can taste the wine under the guidance of the knowledgeable wine hosts and learn a brief history of the vineyards and operations. Don't worry if you have a non drinker with you or the kiddos they can indulge in grapes as well in the form of tasty grape juice. Make sure to have ID as you must be 21 to be served wine.
  • If this isn't what you are looking for and just want to relax with a glass of wine head over to the Wine Bar at the Winery. Here you have the option of indoor or outdoor seating. Want a little light snack with your wine? They have this covered with a cheese plate, charcuterie board or even a selection of chocolates. You must be 21 so have your ID ready.
  • If you truly are a lover of wine become a member of the wine club. With this you are able to receive a minimum of 3 bottles of the seasonal wine at a special rate. You can pick these up yourself or have them shipped to you. If you elect to pick them up yourself get the annual pass so you don't have to purchase a ticket each time you go.
  • Ready to enjoy the great outdoors? There are many ways to enjoy the various options available.
  • Do you enjoy Hiking? You are in luck! On the Estate there are 22 miles of hiking trails. You have the option for guided hikes (this may be for a fee) or you can set off on your own at your own pace. If you want to set out on your own be sure to pick up a detailed map at the Bike Barn or Outdoor adventure Center.
  • Biking more your thing? You have access to 20 miles of biking trails. You have the option of bringing your own bike or renting one at the Bike Barn. If renting a bike it is first come first serve and advanced reservations are not offered or required. The hours of the Bike Barn do vary with the season so make sure to check the hours before heading over.
  • Hiking and Biking not your thing head over to the to he Naturalist area. Here you can enjoy a glimmer of what the natural habitat is like. This is available year round no matter the temperature. This is a paid activity and you have to be over 17 or accompanied by a parent or guardian.
  • River life more your thing. Take part in river float trips or learn to fly fish. Both of theses are guided and has added fees.
  • Prefer sporting clays and archery? This activity does come with a fee. Here you receive coaching on the proper way to handle the weapons. Make sure to make advanced reservations to secure your spot.
  • For those who prefer to remain in your vehicle no worries. Take part in a two-hour Land Rover Experience. Lean the basics of off road driving and then test the newly found skills. Age restrictions and added fees are set for this experience. Make your reservation before you go!

While this is far from a complete list of all the Biltmore Estate has to off it gives you a glimpse into what you can do. I didn't cover it here, but you have options to stay on property at the Village Hotel, The Inn on Biltmore Estate and even Cottages on Biltmore Estate. Each one has its own advantages to staying on property. I'm not giving the cost of events, stay or ticket prices as they can change at any time. For full information on costs and reservations head over to www.biltmore.com to learn all the juicy details!