Things to Do in Henderson, North Carolina

March 9, 2023

things to do in henderson north carolina

Whether you want to explore the Blue Ridge Mountains or connect with modern entertainment, Henderson County offers plenty of things to do.

A great way to unwind and enjoy nature is to visit Bullington Gardens. This beautiful garden is full of trails and themed areas that will keep you entertained for hours.

The Mineral and Lapidary Museum

The Mineral and Lapidary Museum is a volunteer-run museum that is affectionately nicknamed the “Geode-Cracking Museum”. It has been open since 1997, and visitors can watch geodes crack in half by the friendly volunteers.

The mineral museum is a great place to learn about minerals, gems, and fossils. It has a world class collection of North Carolina minerals and other interesting exhibits.

It also features a Henderson County Meteorite that is on loan from the Smithsonian.

Another place to visit in Henderson is the Western NC Air Museum located across E Gilbert Street. This museum is run by three members of the Western Carolina aviation community.

The Henderson County Heritage Museum is a historic museum located in the 1905 county courthouse in the city’s main square. The museum’s displays include a gallery of regional Carolina history.

Jump Off Rock

Located in Laurel Park, Jump Off Rock overlooks a panorama of the Blue Ridge and Pisgah mountain ranges. It’s a popular destination for visitors and residents alike.

The overlook is a short drive from downtown Hendersonville. To get there, simply take 5th Avenue West to Laurel Park Highway and drive until you see the park on your left.

In addition to a stunning view, Jump Off Rock offers several modest hiking trails for those looking for a short walk or a family-friendly hike.

It’s also home to an annual half marathon that starts at Jump Off Rock and ends in downtown Hendersonville. The race is a point-to-point course that takes runners on a scenic journey through Laurel Park, historic city streets and Osceola Lake.

Hendersonville is known as North Carolina apple country, with dozens of orchards and farms offering picking opportunities throughout the Fall season. Families also enjoy hayrides, fresh cider and photos in the crisp mountain air.

Holmes Educational State Forest

Henderson, North Carolina is a charming mountain town that has plenty of things to do, including unique boutiques, noteworthy eateries and a wealth of outdoor recreation. It also boasts a thriving downtown area and is tucked away from the hustle of city life.

Holmes Educational State Forest is a lovely 235-acre park that is part of the state’s managed forests program. It offers a wide variety of hiking trails, a small campground, exhibits, and an audio-visual display about the ecology of a managed forest.

The forest is open Tuesday through Sunday from mid-March through late November and offers free admission. There are a few trails in varying degrees of difficulty, streams, mossy bridges, and educational features like the Bluebird Labyrinth.

Holmes was once the site of a tree nursery operated by the Civilian Conservation Corps during the Great Depression, and it offers a number of scenic vistas. It has a diverse mixture of mountain hardwoods, rhododendron, flame azaleas, and wildflowers. It is a quiet, wooded retreat that is well-suited for families looking for a fun day in the mountains.

Gallery at Flat Rock

Flat Rock is a great place to find unique shops, diners, museums, breweries, historical locations, galleries, and hiking trails. There are so many fun things to do in this charming city, so make sure to take your time when you visit.

Founded in 2015, Gallery at Flat Rock is a unique art gallery that showcases some of the finest artworks in Western North Carolina. This gallery features a wide variety of original works in painting, sculpture, clay, glass, fiber and photography.

The gallery has a mission to promote and increase the art experience in Henderson County by creating a safe and comfortable place for artists, friends and learners to connect. It also plays host to events and offers a variety of artist talks and workshops throughout the year.

The gallery's owner, Suzanne Camarata, works with more than 60 regionally and nationally acclaimed artists to curate an inviting space that showcases some of the finest art in Western NC. Look for one-of-a-kind craft, jewelry and functional ceramics alongside fine original artwork in painting, sculpture, clay, glass, mixed media, fiber and photography.


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