12 Exciting Things To Do In Brevard, North Carolina

things to do in brevard north carolina

Looking for things to do in Brevard after you’ve booked one of the best vacation rentals? Are you ready to completely immerse yourself in the culture and community of a small but beautiful, serene, and active town? Whether you’re in the city or staying at the best VRBOs near Brevard, you will find something fun to do. Granted, Brevard is not the most well-known town, but it contains beautiful scenery in and around the city, with various indoor and outdoor activities, from film festivals to biking and camping around the plentiful forests. If you’re planning a visit to Brevard, use this list as your guide to the top attractions and festivals!

1. Hike and camp in Pisgah National Forest

Pisgah National Forest (8143243097)
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Jeff Gunn used under CC BY 2.0

First in Brevard’s points of interest is Pisgah National Forest, which boasts beautiful scenery that can sometimes seem like a vacation paradise. It’s over 500,000 acres (202,342.8 hectares) and includes various long and short trails, rivers and waterfalls, all with the backdrop of the beautiful mountains of the East Coast. There’s plenty of options for everything here, including camping, fishing, horseback riding, and water activities. It’s clearly not a place to miss if you love the outdoors.

Pisgah National Forest

Website: Pisgah National Forest

2. Try your hand at kayaking in the French Broad River

2019 French Broad 15 (48580992181)
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user anoldent used under CC BY-SA 2.0

The third oldest river in the world, the French Broad River has seen thousands of years of history and is now a wonderful spot for outside water activities. Try your hand at kayaking along the river! There are parts of the river to explore for all skill levels, from just gently floating and wading to whitewater rafting. And, if you’re not a fan of getting in the water, walk alongside and just enjoy the view!

French Broad River

Website: French Broad River

3. Challenge yourself with the Looking Glass Rock hike

Looking Glass Rock
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user bradploeger used under CC BY-SA 2.0

If you’re looking for a hike with a quite a bit of a workout but a stunning view to make up for all the climbing, Looking Glass Rock is your place to go! A favorite for locals but not overly crowded, the Looking Glass Rock hike is filled with switchbacks and even includes a waterfall on the way! At 5-6 miles (8-9.7 km), it’s quite a difficult hike, but definitely one to get pumped for, as it offers some of the best scenery in North Carolina.

Looking Glass Rock

Website: Looking Glass Rock

4. Explore some waterfalls at Gorges State Park

Bearwallow Falls at Gorges State Park
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user DaNASCAT used under CC BY-SA 3.0

Just like the name implies, Gorges State Park is filled with water! It is one of the most thrilling places to visit in Brevard. If you didn’t catch a waterfall at any of the previous places, there’s a ton around here, as well as huge rock walls, a plethora of wildlife to spot, river gorges, and long hikes around the beautiful area. There are opportunities to camp at the park, but if you’re feeling adventurous, many also backpack through the park, a fully immersive experience!

Gorges State Park

Website: Gorges State Park

5. Bike Transylvania County!

N.C. 281 in Toxaway, Transylvania County
Source: Photo by Flickr user NCDOTcommunications used under CC BY 2.0

Brevard is known for its amazing bike trails, so it’s a perfect opportunity to plan out that long bike ride you know you’ve always wanted to make. With multiple established loops for bikers of any level and at many different lengths, it’s a great way to experience a large area of Transylvania County in such a short time! So try it out - climb the hills, speed through the mountains and enjoy the nature of Brevard!

Bike Transylvania County

Website: Bike Transylvania County

6. Grab a bite at Rocky’s Grill & Soda Shop

Editor's Note: There's no photo available at the time of writing

Brevard may not be a well-known town, but if you know where to look, it has a lot of hidden gems that may just be the highlight of your trip to North Carolina. Aside from their obviously good food, Rocky’s Grill & Soda Shop is one of the most frequented spots in town. The curb appeal alone is enough to catch every visitor’s attention. This restaurant is the definition of all-American. After you’ve downed a few cheeseburgers or chili hotdogs, it’s time for some moon pie sundae. Of course, don’t ever forget the milkshake!

Rocky’s Grill & Soda Shop

Address: 50 South Broad Street, Brevard, NC 28712, United States

Website: Rocky’s Grill & Soda Shop

Opening hours: Mon: 11am - 7pm ; Thu - Sat: 11am - 7pm; Sun: 11am - 5pm (closed on Tue & Wed)

7. Drink craft beers at Brevard Brewing Company

Beer Actor
Source: Photo by Flickr user Alan Levine used under CC BY 2.0

Photo is only for illustrative purposes

If you’re someone who takes your beer seriously, Brevard should take you by surprise. You may have never heard of this town until today, but one of the things they’re most proud of is Brevard Brewing Company. The brewery opened in April 2012 and is a local business owned by a family whose specialty is German-inspired lager beers, although their American ales are just as popular. Take a piece of Brevard back home with you by purchasing some bottled or canned beers from this craft brewery.

Brevard Brewing Company

Address: 63 East Main Street, Brevard, NC 28712, United States

Website: Brevard Brewing Company

Opening hours: Mon - Thu: 2pm - 11pm; Fri - Sat: 12pm - 12am; Sun: 2pm - 10pm

8. Tour the historic Silvermont Mansion

Silvermont, Brevard, NC (45754691715)
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Warren LeMay used under CC0

When you’re feeling particularly nostalgic and wish to delve deep into Brevard’s rich history, make sure to pay a visit to Silvermont Mansion on East Main Street. The house was built in 1917 and established into the National Register of Historic Places in 1981. Silvermont Mansion features colonial revival architecture. The mansion is open to the public and is one of the most interesting attractions that you’ll find in Brevard. Bring out your cameras for a mini photoshoot in front of Silvermont Mansion!

Silvermont Mansion

Address: 364 East Main Street, Brevard, NC 28712, United States

Website: Silvermont Mansion

Live music, film and culture!

Brevard is famous for its music, so you have to check out one of Brevard’s many festivals when visiting the town. Pop on over to the live music calendar or try out one or two of these cool festivals.

9. Check out some bluegrass and folk music at the Mountain Song Festival

2018 - Pol’and’Rock Festival - Big Mountain 29
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Ralf Lotys used under CC BY 4.0

Photo is only for illustrative purposes

The Mountain Song Festival, in Brevard, features the best in acoustic bluegrass, newgrass, folk, jazz, and more! Often featuring huge headliners and Grammy winners, it’s not only a place for fans of these styles of music to go but for anyone who wants to enjoy listening to talented musicians and maybe discovering a new genre!

The festival often emphasizes environmental conservation and includes themes of giving back to the community, as well, making it a tight-knit event.

Mountain Song Festival

Website: Mountain Song Festival

10. Tell ghost stories and carve some pumpkins at the Halloween Festival

Halloween Festival Tama-Center
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user [Unknown] used under CC BY-SA 3.0

Photo is only for illustrative purposes

A fitting event for Transylvania County, the Halloween festival is always fun and takes place in downtown Brevard. With events for both children and adults, the celebration lasts an entire day. You can participate in events like monster drawing, pumpkin carving and ghost stories. For those wanting to give back, the festival even includes a blood drive! And for the athletic types who want to go on a run in costume, the early morning 5K/10K/Fun Run is definitely a reason to set that alarm clock.

Halloween Festival

Website: Halloween Festival

11. Immerse yourself in mountain film culture at the Banff International Film Festival

Editor's Note: There's no photo available at the time of writing

Banff is an annual film festival hosted by Brevard College and it brings in many tourists from a variety of cities. Possibly the epitome of the small focused culture here in Brevard, it’s a film festival dedicated to mountain culture. So apart from enjoying the amazing views each day, go see the stunning films that are created by people everywhere, who also love the mountains!

Banff International Film Festival

Website: Banff International Film Festival

12. Dive into classical music at the Brevard Music Center Festival

Song festival
Source: Piqsels

Photo is only for illustrative purposes

Still no clue on what to do in Brevard? The Brevard Music Center is a beautiful location, with many concerts and events all year, culminating in a summer festival! Focusing mainly on classical music, it still features a diverse set of concerts each year, including chamber music, orchestras, soloists, and fully-staged operas during the summer, as well! Tickets are extremely affordable and it’s a great way to engage younger generations with classical music.

Brevard Music Center Festival and Events

Website: Brevard Music Center Festival and Events

Pack your bags!

Downtown Brevard North Carolina
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Gmgmarshall used under PUBLIC DOMAIN

The name Brevard may not turn heads like New York City and Los Angeles, but there are amazing opportunities to immerse yourself in the outdoors or discover some new music, all in the comfort of a small, tight-knit community. Hit the road and get to know these Brevard tourist attractions.

Editor’s Note: Due to Covid-19, the business hours of these attractions/restaurants may differ from the stated timings in this article. Please be sure to check the updated hours from the websites.

Frequently asked questions about things to do in Brevard, North Carolina

1. What are the best attractions to visit in Brevard?

Brevard may not be a popular tourist spot, but it is peppered with some interesting attractions. Rocky’s Grill & Soda Shop is one of the city’s top places to visit. Check out Pisgah National Forest as well.

2. What are the best outdoor activities in Brevard?

If there’s only one thing we can say Brevard is known for, it’s outdoor activities. You can go kayaking at French Board River or enjoy hiking to Looking Glass Rock. You can also choose to bike the entirety of Transylvania County!

3. What are the most popular things to do in Brevard with kids and family?

Finding entertaining things to do in Brevard with your family shouldn’t be a hard task. Take them to Rocky’s Grill & Soda Shop for some nice food, or bring them for a quick tour at Silvermont Mansion.

Disclosure: Trip101 selects the listings in our articles independently. Some of the listings in this article contain affiliate links.

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Elena Aguirre is a travel writer with Trip101 and a student at UC Berkeley. In the past she has worked on technical, marketing, and creative writing. Favorite pastimes include traveling (of...Read more

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