Visiting the Biltmore Estate in the Fall is the best time to explore the largest home in America! Located south of Asheville, the Biltmore Estate is the perfect addition to any North Carolina itinerary.
In addition to 175,000 square feet of house, there are 8,000 acres of adjacent gardens and trails that showcase the most stunning gold and red hues of fall foliage.
Touring the house is not cheap or quick, but it is worth the effort to do at least once. What makes the Biltmore Estate in the Fall even more special is the supplemental magic of Christmas decorations and lights in the month of November.
Disclaimer: This post is in no way sponsored. We paid for all the activities mentioned and all opinions are our own. This page may contain affiliate links, which means I may earn a commission (at no extra charge to you) if you make a purchase after clicking my link. Thank you for being a loyal reader!
Biltmore Estate FAQ’s
What is the best time to visit the Biltmore?
Generally, a week day is the best time to visit Biltmore. Week days are less crowded and cheaper! However, each season has a perk. Spring and Summer boast stunning tulips, azaleas, and roses in the Biltmore Garden.
Fall is perfect for cooler temperatures and colorful leaves. To enjoy both Fall foliage and Christmas decorations around Biltmore, try to visit in November.
Stay up to date on the Biltmore Events to help plan what time of year is best for you.
Can you walk the Biltmore grounds for free?
Unfortunately, no. Alternatively, Biltmore Estate offers a Gardens and Grounds admission that is slightly cheaper than regular admission. This includes access to Antler Hill Village, a wine tasting, and complimentary parking.
Does Biltmore decorate for Fall?
Yes, and no. Fall at Biltmore is celebrated the month of October and part of November. You’ll see more ornamental Christmas décor verses Fall décor. Enjoy the natural Fall foliage around the grounds! You can even check the Fall Color Report to decide when the best time is to visit to witness peak colors.
Do the Vanderbilts still live at Biltmore?
No. However, direct descendants of George and Edith Vanderbilt are still involved in day-to-day care of the property.
How much does the Biltmore cost?
Depending on the season and type of ticket you choose, the cost varies from $72 per person (regular admission) to $424 per person (regular admission plus specialty tours). Kids, ages 10 to 16, receive discounted admission and children 9 years and under are free.
However, what I suggest (to get the biggest bang for your buck when visiting the Biltmore Estate in the Fall) is to choose a Candlelight Christmas Evening Biltmore House Admission for $124 per person.
Enjoy the Biltmore Estate after 4:30PM on your first day and see the Christmas lights aglow inside and out of the Biltmore House. Then, the next day, tour the Biltmore Gardens, Antler Hill Village, and Winery (with complimentary wine tasting!). It’s like getting two days for the price of one! And you get to enjoy the Biltmore Estate in the Fall, with Christmas lights.
TIP: Seniors and military save $10 on regular adult daytime admission.
Can you take pictures in the Biltmore?
According to Biltmore Estate policies, flash photography and video is not allowed inside the house. Phones or cameras are okay to use as long as the flash is turned off. Tripods, monopods, and selfie sticks are also banned. Furthermore, Specialty Tours do not allow any photography.
What is free at the Biltmore?
Not much, ha! With a general admission ticket, you have access to the Biltmore House, Gardens, Winery, and Antler Hill Village. As well as the use of hiking and biking trails on the property.
Biltmore Estate History
The Biltmore House boasts 35 bedrooms, 43 bathrooms, and 65 fireplaces. It took about 6 years to build and George Vanderbilt welcomed family and friends to his home in 1895. The 250-room French Renaissance Chateau even has an indoor swimming pool and bowling alley!
In addition, what I found most intriguing is George Vanderbilt’s daughter, Cornelia, was born in the house. Cornelia’s son, George Henry, was also born in the house in the very same room! The Biltmore Home is still owned and operated by the descendants of George and Edith Vanderbilt.
To learn more about the building process of Biltmore House, construction of gardens, development of the horse barn and winery, or the collection of art in the home check out the Biltmore History Timeline.
2-Day Itinerary for Visiting the Biltmore Estate in the Fall
First Evening at Biltmore
- Enter grounds after 4:30 PM (arriving at least 45 minutes prior to your slot time)
- Park in designated lots A or B and enjoy a leisurely stroll to the house (walk takes about 10 minutes)
- Then, enjoy your Candlelight Christmas Evening House Admission! (choose from slots 5:30PM to 11:00PM by booking online in advance) The house tour typically takes about 2 hours.
- Afterward, depending on how much energy you have, go check out Antler Hill Village! There are shops, restaurants, and dessert cafes. Also, the village trees and buildings are aglow with lights. It’s purely magical!
Second Day at Biltmore
- Reserve your wine tasting slot! (You can do this by visiting any Guest Services location on the grounds or on your phone!)
- Optional Activities- there are countless outdoor activities and specialty tours to choose from. Of course, these come at additional costs.
- Afternoon walk around Biltmore Estate Grounds & Gardens
- Complimentary Wine Tasting and tour the Winery
- Dinner at Cedric’s Tavern and dessert at The Creamery in Antler Hill Village
- Stroll around the village after dark to see the lights
Biltmore Estate Map
The grounds at Biltmore are expansive and can be a bit confusing for first time visitors. There are three different areas of the Estate- The Biltmore House and Gardens, Deerpark Area, and Antler Hill Village and Winery.
Check out this map on the Biltmore website to find parking areas, dining, outdoor activities, and other attractions on the grounds.
Biltmore Estate Interior
If touring the interior of the Biltmore Estate, you should give yourself at least 2 hours to see everything. Regular admission includes an audio guide, as well. The headset will be available when you first enter the house.
During the tour you’ll see A LOT! Our favorites were the wall to wall books in the library, multiple chandeliers as you climb the large spiral staircase, and seeing the servants quarters- including the working kitchen.
When we visited the Biltmore Estate in the Fall, the interior was decorated beautifully for Christmas. Large rooms such as the dining room and library have their own Christmas Tree. In addition, every fireplace mantel is covered in lights and ribbons.
Biltmore Estate Christmas
Christmas at Biltmore is early November through early January. You can enjoy the Fall foliage and the Christmas decorations during the month of November! It’s like a two-for-one special!
During Christmas celebrations at Biltmore, the house is decorated with trees, garlands, ornaments, lights, and roaring fireplaces. There is also a great Christmas Tree on the front lawn by the fountain.
Furthermore, the Antler Hill Village is covered in colored lights around the gazebo and buildings, as well as lights around the trees. The Winery also has a tunnel of lights to walk through.
Do you want to be able to capture those Christmas Lights and Fall sunsets while visiting the Biltmore Estate? Check out my complete guide on Golden Hour Photography settings and tips!
Biltmore Estate Gardens
Think that nothing could possibly be blooming at the Biltmore Estate in the Fall? Think again! The Biltmore Historical Gardens is only a short walk from the house.
We enjoyed the rich colors of poinsettias and orchids in the Conservatory. In addition, we saw vibrant chrysanthemums and some roses!
Biltmore Antler Hill Village
Access to Antler Hill Village is included in a general admission ticket. The village is a great place to leisurely stroll around looking at shops, lights, and dining at your choice of restaurant.
The Antler Hill Village is also were the winery is located and where you will enjoy your complimentary wine tasting. In addition, visit the Antler Hill Farmyard to learn what farm life was like on the estate and see some cute animals!
TIP: Santa is rumored to make an appearance at the Village during certain dates & times in the Fall, check out his schedule so you won’t miss him!
The Biltmore Winery is located in Antler Hill Village. Be sure to schedule your complimentary wine tasting as soon as possible, because capacity is limited! The tasting room is by reservation only.
You’ll enter the winery and then walk through the underground cellar where the wine is stored. As you wait for your turn to enter the tasting room, you can peruse the shopping area or enjoy live music coming from the wine bar.
During the tasting, you’ll have your choice to sample multiple wines- don’t pass up the Christmas at Biltmore wine (red or white is delicious)!
Tips for Visiting the Biltmore Estate
Purchase your Biltmore Estate Admission tickets online in advance! Dates and time slots sell out fast. To enjoy two days at Biltmore in the fall AND the Candlelight Christmas Evening admission, book in November!
Avoid traffic congestions and give yourself time to walk from the parking lot to the house by arriving at least 45 minutes prior to your time slot. It’s okay to arrive early to your time slot. If you’re late, you aren’t guaranteed entrance to the house.
Expect a 10 minute walk from parking lots A or B when parking to tour Biltmore House. Follow the signs along the path toward the house.
Bring an umbrella- just in case!
When planning your outfit for visiting the Biltmore Estate, it’s important to consider the amount of walking that is required. Comfy clothes and shoes are a must! However, be sure to dress for the elements. For example, during the fall I wore flat heel boots, dark jeans, and a sweater.
If you plan to spend a lot of time during the day outside, I’d suggest sunscreen and/or a hat!
Decorating for Christmas at Biltmore typically begins in mid to late October. So, for stunning fall foliage, some Christmas decorations, AND a cheaper price tag- try to book in late October!
Reservations are required for all wine tastings and must be made on the day of your visit.
Large bags or backpacks are not allowed inside the Biltmore Estate. So, you’re required to leave them in a locker or in your vehicle.
There are no public restrooms INSIDE the Biltmore House. Definitely hit the head before your interior tour begins!
The Biltmore’s outdoor spaces are pet-friendly. You can read more on Biltmore’s pet policies here.
Not sure where to start when planning your road trip or itinerary? Check out my easy 5 Step Plan before making arrangements for your vacation!
Visiting Biltmore Estate in the Fall Conclusion
In conclusion, to maximize your experience for your dollar, I’d highly recommend visiting the Biltmore Estate in the Fall. Not only will the weather be cool, crisp weather, you’ll have front row seats to vibrant Fall colors AND stunning Christmas decorations. It’s really a win-win!
Have you ever visited the Biltmore Estate? What are your favorite activities? Let me know in the comments below!
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