With great beer, food, music and outdoor activities, Asheville, North Carolina, is a worthy destination year-round—but it really shines in the fall. The Blue Ridge Mountains’ vibrant foliage peaks in October, while the city stays busy with fall festivals, concerts and events.
After you’ve toured the historic Biltmore Estate, stopped in at a few of the city’s 13 breweries, and checked out some Hunger Games filming locations, you’ll need a place to rest your weary head. Hotels range from budget to luxury, but Airbnb offers some of the most unique lodging experiences in Asheville and the surrounding area, ranging from rustic cabins and yurts to artist studios. Here are 10 of our favorites.
Note to reader: Descriptions correspond to the images just above text. And, please make sure to double-check prices and details before booking your stay.
The Rebel Belle is a 1966 Avion camper parked on a little site two miles from the restaurants and breweries of funky West Asheville. With kitschy, vintage décor and all the necessities—including Wi-Fi, a kitchenette, and private bathroom—the camper is a cozy place to relax after a day of leaf-peeping. Although the camper currently only has cold water, there’s hot water available in a shared outdoor shower. The hosts rent out two other vintage campers and some “glamping” tents as well.
This quiet studio is located beneath a modern home in the woods of West Asheville. There’s a queen size bed, table and chairs, kitchenette, and a private deck that looks out over the trees, plus access to bikes and a laundry room. Downtown Asheville is just five minutes away by car.
Get a taste of tiny house living with this rental in Arden, a few miles south of Asheville. At just 8’ x 18’, the house may be small, but it includes a queen size bed in a loft, a composting toilet, and a kitchenette. The owners live next door in an 1840s-era log cabin. The neighbors also include two goats and two alpacas.
This airy, open house is within easy walking distance of the Blue Ridge Parkway, and rumor has it that bears visit the neighborhood from time to time. There’s a fully equipped kitchen, fireplace, Wi-Fi, and a relaxing porch with Adirondack chairs.
Located in secluded Swannanoa, between Asheville and Black Mountain, the Little Red Casa has two bedrooms, with room for up to four guests. At the end of a dirt road, the cottage has an open floor plan with thoughtful amenities that invite guests to settle in, like a fire pit, board games and a little library.
On the bottom floor of a local artist’s home in the historic Kenilworth neighborhood, this private one-bedroom apartment has the feel of a treehouse thanks to the surrounding forest. Scenic Kenilworth Lake is a 10-minute walk from the house. Included in the price is one gourmet breakfast prepared by Jake, one of the hosts.
A mile from West Asheville’s popular Haywood Road, this tidy garage apartment has a full, updated kitchen and plenty of space for enjoying the outdoors, including a deck with rocking chairs, a hammock, and a yard with a picnic table.
The downstairs unit of this quaint cottage (upstairs is available as well) has a private brick patio, one bedroom, and a bathroom with a double shower and underfloor heating. The eat-in kitchen has a coffee maker, toaster and blender, and a golf course and mountain bike trail are just outside the gate.
Within walking distance of downtown Asheville, this modern studio is in the quiet Montford neighborhood. It has a full kitchen, washer/dryer, and a large walk-in shower, plus a few necessities like coffee and tea. Past guests praise the host’s savvy suggestions for things to do in Asheville.
Bring the long johns for your stay at this three-season, hand-built cabin on organic SparkleBark Farm—you’ll need them on those cold mountain nights. The lodgings are rustic, with an outdoor shower made from reclaimed materials and a composting toilet a few yards from the cabin. The owners, an artist and woodworker, raise chickens and ducks and grow their own vegetables. Downtown Asheville is 15 minutes away.
Find out more about local happenings by reading WNC Magazine, Mountain Xpress and ExploreAsheville.com.
Top photo: Jeffrey Pott, CC-BY
Paste’s Airbnb columnist Erica Jackson Curran is a former alt-weekly editor turned moonlight freelancer based in Richmond, Virginia.