Terror in the Blue Ridge Mountains
Most people come to Asheville to enjoy its famous craft breweries or indulge in the beauty of the surrounding Blue Ridge Mountains. Many innocent visitors don’t realize that lurking beneath the charming town, the scenic overlooks, and the Biltmore Estate, is a city with a dark and mysterious past…
Home to some of the nation’s most famous paranormal hotspots—including Helen’s Bridge, the Grove Park Inn, and the site of Zelda Fitzgerald’s tragic death—Asheville is a city built on more than 200 years of gruesome history.
On your 8 or 12 stop walking tour of the city’s historic downtown region, you’ll experience a side of Asheville that’s rarely seen. Learn the secret behind the hauntings at the Battery Park Hotel, the Jackson Building, and many more of Asheville’s most active paranormal locations! You’ll learn all about the Civil War’s impact on Asheville, how the Great Depression tore through the town, driving the Mayor to Suicide in one of the buildings downtown. Discover what makes Asheville the Paris of the South and one of the country’s most haunted places.
The ghost stories all spring from historical events, straight out of the pages of the history books. It includes established local legends and eyewitness accounts of paranormal activity. These supernatural happenings occur across Asheville’s downtown area. We’ve conducted extensive research on each of the stories your entertaining local guides recount at the 8 or 12 stops on your route. We strive to bring you the most accurate and up-to-date information about Asheville’s troubled past and paranormal activity. Visit the About Us page to learn more about Asheville’s history and find out why our tour is the best in town!
Book your tour today to experience all the thrills, chills, and fun Asheville has to offer!
The underground alcohol of Asheville!
Ashville has had a tumultuous history with Alcohol. It’s all come good recently with over 20 breweries in the downtown area alone. Voted no less than four times ‘Beer City USA’, there is a glass of something for everyone. But it wasn’t always this way. Asheville too voted for Prohibition in the 1920s, but the town had the taste of hooch deep in its veins even then, and a healthy bootlegging ring was soon in operation. The human cost of booze features heavily on this tour, with stories of domestic abuse, murder, and alcoholism terrorizing the town. But don’t worry, the revenge of the abused ghosts gets the upper hand in the end.
The Bootlegging operation in Asheville was centered on what is now Pack’s Tavern on Spruce street. Back then, it was a lumber warehouse, and the ferrying of lumber from the hills and out to the city and beyond made for a perfect cover. Tunnels were dug, routes were established, and soon the liquor flowed, even the police were involved.
Civil War in the Blue Ridge mountains.
The Civil War in Asheville can be found in the gruesome stories of the field hospital established in Pack Square, today a bustling park; the ground is soaked in blood from the only battle the town saw. A Union force of 1,000 men were making gains along the nearby French Broad River. The town hastily raised a force of 300 men and handily repelled the Union soldiers. The wounded were treated in the Peck Square field hospital, the many amputations left to fall to the ground. The square today bears no visible trace of the death, disease, and mutilation that happened before. Late at night, though, the square’s bloody past rises to terrorize those susceptible to seeing the supernatural.
Our tour passes through the square, and some have seen or heard the ghosts of the Civil War. Indeed Pack Square holds a monument to Colonel Zebulon Baird Vance, two-time governor of North Carolina and leader of the New South, a movement after the Civil War to modernize, integrate and throw off the agrarian and plantation-based economy of the old South.
Our tour through Asheville’s historic downtown area takes you to some of the city’s most paranormally active locations. Learn the truth behind Asheville’s gruesome history as your guide introduces you to some of the city’s most chilling legends and mysteries!
Tours meet outside the historic Jackson Building, located at 22 S Pack Square, Asheville, NC 28801. Look for the distinctive “bullseye” in the sidewalk at the eastern corner of Pack Square and South Market Street. Tours are held rain or shine, so come prepared!
Please note that the tour does not go inside any buildings, though we encourage you to visit public locations after our tour.
Standard Tour: Approximately 60 minutes and 1 mile walking. Standard tours include eight stops.
Extended Tour: Approximately 90 minutes and 1.3 miles total. Extended tours include an additional four stops, making twelve stops total.
Both the standard and extended tour follow a circuitous route, beginning and ending at the Jackson Building. Please note that Asheville is a mountainous region and the tour does follow a route with inclined terrain.
Tour times may vary, click on ‘book now’ for all available times. Please aim to arrive 10-15 minutes early to allow for traffic and parking limitations.
Tickets must be purchased in advance on this site. You do NOT need to print your ticket or have access to a mobile pass. Once you have completed your reservation online, you will be automatically added to the admissions list. Simply bring your ID to verify your reservation!
You must attend the tour for the date and time of your purchase. Rescheduling may be done upon approval and may be subject to a rescheduling fee.
There are several paid public parking decks near the meeting location.
- College Street parking deck – 164 College Street
- Broadway Street Garage – 16 Broadway St (beside AC Hotel)
- Pack Square Parking – 4 Biltmore Ave
There is also paid streetside parking near Pack Square along College Street, but spaces are limited.
We also provide group tours for large or private parties. Please visit our Group Tour page for more information.
Reasons to take the Asheville Terrors ghost tour
Only we show you the true history of Asheville
Asheville is a pretty town, even more so if you take into account the views from the rolling peaks that surround the town. But the city hides an unsavory past that only comes out at night. These stories reveal what lies beneath the surface more than any museum ever could. We take you to the actual locations of the stories and the ghosts that haunt the town today.
Only Asheville Terrors will relate in such a poignant way, the tragic story of Zelda Fitzgerald and her untimely demise at the nearby Highland Hospital for the mentally ill. She stayed there for nine years and her tragic death, and the nine others who died with her was a black mark on the whole town.
What if you only have a day or two in the mountains?
The days are full and active in Asheville, but the nights get cold and empty here in the hills. Warm yourselves with a brisk one mile walk, 1.4 miles for the extended tour, and reveal another layer to this fun city in the cradle of the Blue Ridge Mountains. All tours leave from the historic Jackson Building on South Pack Square, each evening and take advantage of the descending darkness to bring out another side to Asheville.
You and your party will see that the supernatural side of Ashville is just as interesting as the city in the daylight. These carefully selected ghost stories bring the history and character of Asheville to life and will live on in your mind for years. A good memory really is the best souvenir.
You want an Asheville activity the whole family can enjoy
We don’t want anyone to lose a night’s sleep, so we keep the tour family-friendly, that’s not to say these ghost stories are not scary, or gory, or incredibly memorable. They involve the people who made Asheville the fascinating town it is today. Their human stories of striving, loss, adventure, and ruin will live on in your memory for years to come.
So bring everyone, we welcome younger guests and older ones too!
You want to see more architecture by Rafael Guastavino
This Spanish immigrant brought his talent and drive to bear on more than 1000 buildings in the United States and the chances are you have already been in under one of his patented Structural tiled vaults. The magnificent arched vaults under Grand Central Station – that’s Guastavino too. the vaults in Carnegie Hall, the Capitol in Washington, and the Boston Public Library – all Guastavino. He was involved in the construction of the Biltmore Estate and liked it so much here in Asheville he retired here.
His retirement didn’t last long though, unsatisfied with the meager church here at the time, he convinced the city to build the Basilica of St. Lawrence, a magnificent finale and final resting place of Rafael Guastavino, it was however over 3 months after he died that the frozen ground in Ashville was soft enough to bury poor Rafael, his unhappy ghost still roams the Basilica today, some say grumbling about his delayed interment.