Usually our family vacations are concentrated days of close-quartered togetherness with all activities crammed in together. But on our recent trip to Biltmore Mansion in North Carolina, we synchronized our watches and splintered off to each do our own thing for a while. This is a new option as my son is a teenager now (I don’t recommend this strategy with two year olds). As Biltmore continues to expand their offerings, we managed to visit the same destination and have three completely different experiences.
If you like to sample some relaxation when you travel as I do, stop and enjoy a wine tasting, a quiet stroll in the gardens and greenhouse, and a leisurely look around the gift shops.
If you’re in it for the history like my son, the Farm in Antler Hill Village has demonstrations in blacksmithing and woodworking. The mansion itself is 250 rooms of architectural marvels and priceless antiques, a time capsule of an era gone by.
If you’re an outdoor thrill-seeker like my husband, then take advantage of Biltmore’s 8,000 acres and Outdoor Adventure Center that offers fishing, horseback riding, shooting clay targets, Segways, and off-roading with Land Rovers.
We all rendezvoused at the end of the day to take the Biltmore House Butler’s Tour together. A great behind-the-scenes look at the life of Biltmore’s silent residents: the servants and staff. A very knowledgeable tour guide led our small group through parts of the house that are usually off limits, but were the “offices” and private rooms of the servants like the china pantry and pie kitchen.
Visit Biltmore This summer, kids 16 and under visit free.
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