Fall is fabulous in Hendersonville with vineyards, farms and orchards

The tourism industry in Henderson County continues to do well, despite the pandemic.

Western North Carolina offers a variety of outdoor activities for people looking to get away from it all socially and experience the best of nature by hiking the trail for a day of biking or hiking a lane. green or a trail.

As October and a fabulous fall approach, travel trends point to a busy season ahead. Fall is a prime time to visit Hendersonville with the beauty of the fall leaves and the apple harvest.

The fall leaf forecast looks promising for a bright season this year. Experts predict it could be a little later than usual, with the current climate extending the leaf season until November.

What makes fall so special in the Blue Ridge Mountains is the longer time frame to view the leaves, due to a variety of elevations, from higher peaks to gently rolling foothills. The leaves change first in the higher elevations and move down the hill.

Karen baker

Hendersonville is fortunate to have the famous Blue Ridge Parkway in its backyard. There are several access options to the Parkway, a short drive from the city center. The Blue Ridge Parkway is the ultimate destination for leaf lovers making their fall pilgrimages to get a glimpse of the colorful foliage dotting the landscape.

Self-guided driving tours around the apple country of Henderson County and views of the colorful leaves painting the mountains are available at the visitor center or online at visithendersonvillenc.org/scenic-tours hikes.

Tourism in Henderson County has been a constant economic driver for decades and is one of the most stable industries in our region. Henderson County ranks 14th of North Carolina’s 100 counties in terms of dollars spent on tourism-related businesses and services. Figures for 2020 are expected to be announced shortly.

Agritourism is one of the fastest growing segments of the tourism industry. The word “agritourism” is used to describe agriculture-based activities in rural and urban settings that encourage people to explore farms, orchards and agribusinesses.

People are looking for an authentic experience for fun and education. Farmers’ markets, wineries, cider houses, breweries, picking from your own farms and orchards and corn mazes are all examples of agrotourism.

Many local producers have embraced agritourism by creating activities that bring visitors to their orchards, such as wagon rides, orchard tours, baked goods, wagon rides, farm animals, playgrounds, U-pick, pumpkins, apple cannons, produce or a corn maze.

Henderson County’s climate and soil make it an ideal location for growing a variety of apples, grapes, and other crops.

The county’s heritage is deeply rooted in the roots of agriculture. Many apple growers have been in these areas for generations, but today vineyards grow all over the countryside.

Henderson County has been designated by the Office of Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Commerce as an American wine-growing area. The Blue Ridge Henderson County Wine Area Ridge allows local winemakers to better describe the origin of their wines, and consumers to better identify which wines they can buy.

The county is home to six wineries, three cider houses and a mead, and several serve award-winning drinks. Many offer production tours, tasting rooms, entertainment, catering, and bottles of their products to take home.

These businesses are becoming a tourist destination in Henderson County and have a huge economic impact. Hard cider has grown in popularity across the country with flavors ranging from fruity and spicy blends to traditional blends.

North Carolina is the 7th largest apple-producing state in the country, and Henderson County is North Carolina’s largest apple-producing county, producing 85 percent of all apples grown in the state.

The county grows over 40 varieties of apples, including Red Delicious, Golden Delicious, Rome Beauty, Honey Crisp, Granny Smith, Stayman, Fuji and Galas. It was only natural that Henderson County was home to several cider houses, such as Bold Rock Hard Cider and Appalachian Ridge Artisan Cidery.

Breweries are popping up across the country in cities of all sizes, creating jobs and bringing visitors and locals together. There are 11 breweries in Henderson County, and each has its own unique style of beer and atmosphere.

To meet the demand for skilled beer-making employees, Blue Ridge Community College offers the Craft Beer Academy.

The Henderson County Tourism Development Authority publishes a series of trail brochures that include Crest of the Blue Ridge Orchard Trail, the Cheers Trail, and the Farm Market Trail. Stop by the Visitor Center, 201 South Main Street, to pick up copies of these brochures or visit the Visitor Center’s website, visithendersonvillenc.org.

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