Hendersonville | Visitors Information Center | Jump Off Rock | Town of Laurel Park | Hendersonville, NC

Hendersonville

Apple Valley Model Railroad Museum

650 Maple Ave
Hendersonville, NC
(828) 890-8246.
 
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The first steam engine puffed up the Saluda Grade to the Hendersonville Depot in 1879. The steam engine needed a “help engine” attached to the rear of the train at Melrose for additional power to push the train up the Saluda Mountain Grade, the steepest main-line standard gauge railroad in the United States. The Carolina Special ran between Charleston, South Carolina and Cincinnati, Ohio from 1911 until 1968. The restored Depot houses a HO scale railroad layout that is highly detailed and is prototypical of Hendersonville, Saluda, Asheville, and Western North Carolina.  The Deport features historical artifacts, a Southern Railway cabooser and a special children’s exhibit where they can operate a Thomas the Tank train in a scenic layout. See the 10ft x 80 ft Garden “G” scale layout.

Author Thomas Wolfe’s first novel was Look Homeward, Angel.

 
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Author Thomas Wolfe’s first novel was Look Homeward, Angel. In the book there are constant references to an angel statue carved from Italian marble. This is the angel Wolfe placed in American literature. Thomas Wolfe’s father, W.O. Wolfe, sold the statue to the Johnson family to mark the family plot in Oakdale Cemetery. Oakdale Cemetery is located on Hwy. 64 W., just a short distance from downtown. A wrought iron fence protects the statue, and there is a historical marker located on Highway 64 West.

Bullington Gardens

Hendersonville, NC
(828) 698-6104
 
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Bullington Gardens is a 12 acre, nonprofit horticultural education center offering programs, activities and workshops.The gardens and grounds include a therapy garden, shade garden, butterfly garden, perennial borders, native woodland garden, pumpkin patch and herb garden. The grounds also include a half-mile nature trail through the wooded area of the gardens.

DuPont State Recreational Forest

High Falls parking lot, 1300 Staton Rd,
Cedar Mountain, NC
(828) 877-6527
 
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DuPont State Recreational Forest encompasses 10,268 acres in Henderson and Transylvania counties that include waterfalls and 80 miles of roads and trails wandering through mountainous terrain. Open to the public for hiking, mountain biking, swimming, and horseback riding. Fishing is allowed with a valid NC fishing license. Hunting is by special permit only. Many scenes from the 2012 hit movie, The Hunger Games and the 1992 film, The Last of the Mohicans were shot in DuPont State Recreational Forest. The Hunger Games were filmed entirely in North Carolina. Download the Hunger Games film locations. dupont-hunger-games-shots.pdf

  • Bicycle Trails
  • Nature Trails
  • Fishing
  • Hiking
  • Picnic Area

Open Year Round

Hands On! – A Child’s Gallery

318 N. Main Street
Hendersonville, NC
(828) 697-8333
 
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Hands On! – A Child’s Gallery is a children’s museum located on Main Street in Hendersonville – it’s the place where LEARNING comes into PLAY.  Hands On! provides educational exhibits that stimulate the imagination and motivate learning. It is an affordable, educational and fun way to spend the day with your children, grandchildren, and students ages 1 – 10. Hands On! is open Tuesday – Saturday from 10:00am – 5:00pm (check the website for special summer hours). 

Henderson County Curb Market

221 N. Church St
Hendersonville, NC
(828) 692-8012
 
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Henderson County Curb Market is a unique farmers market requiring sellers to be residents of Henderson County. All items sold at the market must be either hand-made or locally grown. The vendors offer a variety of goods such as: crafts, baked goods, jellies, plants, flowers, toys, and produce. The market has been in continuous operation since 1924. The Curb Market is located on the corner of 2nd Avenue and Church Street.

Henderson County Genealogical & Historical Society

 
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Henderson County Genealogical & Historical Society has an extensive library on history and genealogy of North and South Carolina and surrounding states. Holdings include Henderson County deeds, estate records, early newspapers, early court minutes, maps, church and school histories, photographs, Bible records and family histories. Volunteers are available to assist researchers.

Henderson County Heritage Museum

1 Historic Courthouse Square #4
Hendersonville, NC
(828) 694-1619
 
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Henderson County Heritage Museum is housed in the Historic Henderson County Courthouse on Main Street. It offers public displays, artifacts, lectures, collections, archives, libraries, demonstrations, a replica of a turn of the century county store and other similar exhibitions relating to the history, culture, heritage of Henderson County. The museum celebrates veterans of all wars, and has an Civil War Display.

Hendersonville City Hall

145 5th Avenue East.
Hendersonville, NC
(828) 697-3000
 
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Hendersonville City Hall was built in 1928, and contains many artifacts and historic items, including large statues of of the three Presidents from North Carolina, General Andrew Jackson, James Knox Polk and Andrew Johnson. The statue is actually the ceramic model used for making the molds to cast the bronze statue on display at Capital Square in Raleigh, NC. City Hall was designed by well-known North Carolina architect Erle G. Stilwell.

Historic Downtown Hendersonville

 
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Historic Downtown Hendersonville was entered into the National Register of Historic Places in March of 1988. The serpentine street features planter boxes brimming with, benches, seasonal flowers and trees. Downtown boasts a wide array of shopping, antique stores, galleries, museums, an aquarium and a variety of restaurants. Downtown offers free Wi-Fi for everyone to enjoy. Downtown hosts many activities including the NC Apple Festival held during Labor Day weekend, as well as, art shows, an antique show, car shows, and parades throughout the year. For additional information call the Main Street Program.

Historic Henderson County Courthouse

1 Historic Courthouse Square
Hendersonville, NC
 
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Historic Henderson County Courthouse (1905) was designed by Richard Sharp Smith, the “resident architect” of Biltmore House. The focal point of the Courthouse is atop of the copper dome, a 6-foot statue of “Lady Justice.” The statue is the Greek goddess Themis (“The Greek Goddess of Divine Justice and Law”) who is without a blindfold, holding a sword in her right hand and scales in her left. It is believed to be only one of only three in the United States without a blindfold, statues of Themis/Justice are blindfolded to typify that Justice should be impartial. It is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Historic Johnson Farm

3346 Haywood Road
Hendersonville, NC
(828) 891-6585
 
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Historic Johnson Farm is a fine example of a late 19th and early 20th century farm & tourist retreat. The entire structure was handmade from bricks that were fired on site from French Broad River mud. Over the years many outbuildings were constructed, including a tool shed/blacksmith shop, barn, boarding house, and a cottage.

Holmes Educational State Forest

1299 Crab Creek Road
Hendersonville, NC
(828) 692-0100
 
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Holmes Educational State Forest offers a series of well-marked trails, accented by exhibits and displays depicting ecology of a managed forest. Picnic sites with tables and a spacious picnic shelter (with grills) are also available. Located about 8 1/2 miles from downtown Hendersonville.

  • Nature Trails
  • Playground
  • Hiking
  • Picnic Area

Open March – November

Jump Off Rock

Laurel Park Highway
Hendersonville, NC
828-693-4840
 
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Jump Off Rock is a scenic overlook, which provides a panoramic view of rolling pastures, the Blue Ridge and Pisgah mountain ranges.  Jump Off Rock also holds an Indian legend that has been passed down for many, many years. Over 300 years ago a young Cherokee Indian maiden received word that her young Indian Chief had been killed in battle, so she climbed to the edge of the rock and jumped off.  Indian legend has it that on moonlit nights you can see the ghost of the maiden on Jump Off Rock. Jump Off is located about 5 miles from downtown at the end of Laurel Park Hwy.  The park is open daily, sunrise to sunset. No admission charge.

  • Nature Trails
  • Hiking

McClintock Chime Clock

located on the corner of 4th and Main Street
Hendersonville, NC
 
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is attached to the Old State Trust Co. building, now the Henderson County Genealogical & Historical Society, this unique clock dates back to 1927.

Mineral & Lapidary Museum of Henderson County

400 North Main St
Hendersonville, NC
(828) 698-1977
 
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Mineral & Lapidary Museum of Henderson County houses exhibits from North Carolina, the Smithsonian, English minerals, Indian artifacts, a specialty of a single mineral, fossils, fluorescent minerals and gems. A 260-lb. amethyst geode from Uruguay and replicas of World Famous Diamonds are featured displays. Open Monday-Friday 1pm-5pm and Saturday 10am-5pm. Admission is free. Located on the lower level of the Henderson County Genealogical & Historical Society building.

Serpentarium Magic

8488 Boylston Hwy.
Mills River, NC
(828) 776-HISS
 
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Serpentarium Magic offers educational tours with over 200 snakes, a two-headed Corn Snake as well as albino collection of snakes, turtles, toads and frogs. Plus, lots of other unique interactive exhibits.

The Pisgah National Forest

 
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The Pisgah National Forest has 501,691 acres stretching across the eastern edge of Western North Carolina’s mountains. The Forest offers hiking trails, fishing, camping, picnic sites, and spectacular waterfalls. the attractions include Looking Glass Falls, Sliding Rock, Pisgah Forest State Fish Hatchery, Pisgah Center for Wildlife Education, The Cradle of Forestry and the North Mills River Recreational Area.