Ready to kick back, relax and take in the scenic beauty of the mountains from the seat of your boat? If the answer is yes, then the Biltmore Estate section of the French Broad River Paddle Trail may be just what you’re after. When it comes to a relaxing summer adventure, nothing beats a leisurely float and paddle down the French Broad River in Asheville. Add in a few pit stops at some of the local watering holes and you’ve got yourself an adventure to remember.
This relaxing float trip starts at the Bent Creek River Park near the NC Arboretum and the Blue Ridge Parkway in Asheville and meanders casually past the Biltmore Estate on a slow-moving journey toward Asheville’s River Arts District. We recommend packing a cooler and a light lunch so you stay well hydrated during your journey and capping the day off with a refreshing beverage from one of Asheville’s breweries found just a short walk from the takeout at Carrier Park in the River Arts District.
For a shorter trip with more beer-friendly stops along the way, we recommend launching at Hominy Creek Park before paddling down to the River Arts District where you can chain up the boats at the river access below the Haywood Bridge and make the short walk over to The Wedge Brewery. From the Wedge, head down the French Broad River through a series of shoals where the river picks up the pace a bit before the takeout at The Bywater located on the banks of the river where you’ll find great drinks, local beers and an outdoor area with grills, games and frequent live music.
For boat rentals, shuttles and more gear, we recommend hooking up with French Broad Outfitters.
Directions from Asheville: Take I-240 W to I-26 E and get off on exit 33, NC 191. Turn left and head south on NC 191 until you cross under the Blue Ridge Parkway overpass. The Bent Creek river access is the first left.