Updated: Aug 14
In 2013, 127 years after the first railroad chugged into town, Hendersonville, North Carolina was reborn. In the early 1800s, the mountains surrounding this small burg were not known for much aside from a collection of sanitariums and while nearby Asheville rapidly became the go-to destination for tourists, Hendersonville remained incognito.
But in 1903 the town was wired for electricity and regional newspapers proclaimed the town’s “bracing atmosphere, pure mountain water, beautiful scenery, picturesque drives, elegant streets, and accommodations par-excellent.” Quite an endorsement and it rang true in grand style, for the visitors came with their culture and new ideas and by the turn of the 20th century, Hendersonville was a modern mountain town. But it still didn’t quite measure up to its more popular sibling to the north.
Keeping up with Asheville
In the past few decades, Asheville launched to the top of best-of lists for everything from hip craft breweries to one of the “it” adult communities in North Carolina. Hendersonville soon decided to follow suit by incorporating pedestrian-friendly plazas and planting a veritable forest of native trees, shrubs, and flowers. Fountains, sculptures, and thoughtfully placed benches adorn the town’s main thoroughfare, flanked by all manner of lodging, restaurants, and venerable business establishments.
In fact, Hendersonville’s restored Main Street holds a proud place on the National Trust for Historic Preservation and the six blocks of downtown boast well over 100 visitor-friendly stores and eateries, along with unique shopping experiences including an authentic toy store, antique shop, the circa 1930 McFarlan Bake Shop, and a palpable small-town charm steeped in history.
Community at heart
While Asheville’s hip and vibrant reputation remain firmly in place, tourists gradually drifted toward Hendersonville and today the area is high on the list of America’s favorite places. Indeed, for those looking for North Carolina mountain homes for sale, this region is ideal for retirees or younger families.
Throughout the year, Hendersonville hosts community-focused events that celebrate the area’s close-knit spirit, which is especially bright over the holidays. A towering Christmas tree with thousands of colorful lights appears at the courthouse, the sound of sleigh bells and carols fill the air, and the Olde Fashioned Christmas vibe makes the whole town smile. There’s even a gingerbread house competition!
The Flat Rock Playhouse, located in its namesake North Carolina, has brought lively artistic events to the area since 1940, including Broadway musicals and comedy shows. Check it out duringmid-December’s Holiday Gallery Hop. The action continues the rest of the year as well, with street festivals like the July 4th parade, Memorial Day’s Garden Jubilee Festival, Apple Festival, Fiesta Hendersonville, and Art on Main.
This friendly and welcoming town has a lot to offer and people from around the world gravitate here when searching for North Carolina mountain real estate for sale. This is a place for those who value living in neighborhoods where you actually know your neighbors and appreciate a life-list of active interest options including hiking in the mountains, tennis, walking or biking the parkways, and refreshing mountain air.
For example, the mountain village feel is alive and well in nearby Carriage Park, just three miles from downtown Hendersonville and its inherent conveniences. Carriage Park is home to unforgettable mountain vistas and a feel of living “way out there,” yet it is easily accessible to everything you need.
For lack of better words, Hendersonville feels like home, whether you are a born and bred local or brand new to town. It is a comfortably livable community that celebrates life in the mountains with engaging events all year ‘round that brings everyone together in a spirit of joy.
Shhhh, don’t tell anyone but Hendersonville is one of North Carolina’s best-kept secrets. It is one of the Blue Ridge Mountains’ most spectacular places to live, surrounded by majestic scenery and percolating in nostalgia. The 1800s-era town holds onto its historical roots with the perfect blend of modern touches. Many longtime locals choose to stay right here and enjoy this close-knit mountain oasis filled with community events and a lifetime of adventures waiting in the rugged mountains near town. The Great Smoky Mountains, Pisgah National Forest, and French Broad River Valley offer endless escapes in the form of verdant woods, waterfalls, myriad wildlife species, and of course the legendary Blue Ridge Parkway.