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Top 6 Rainy Day Activities at Biltmore

Written By Jean Sexton

Posted 07/21/15

Updated 04/19/24

Events & Activities

What’s the best way to enjoy all that our sprawling, 8,000-acre private mountain estate has to offer when Mother Nature isn’t cooperating? 

In George and Edith Vanderbilt’s day, you could curl up in the Library with a good book, enjoy a dip in the indoor pool, warm up with a brisk workout in the Gymnasium, or even spend the afternoon bowling—all without ever leaving Biltmore House! Fast-forward over a century and there’s still plenty to do to ensure a rainy day doesn’t damper your vacation to Biltmore Estate in Asheville, North Carolina!

Things to do on a rainy day at Biltmore

📷 by @heyheatherangel on Instagram. See more from our guests with #ChihulyatBiltmore.

1. Immerse yourself in the spellbinding world of Chihuly

Just as George Vanderbilt loved sharing world-class artwork with his guests over a century ago, we look forward to sharing Chihuly at Biltmore with you! Be transported to another world as you move through the breathtaking galleries of our Amherst event center. In addition to the awe-inspiring installations in Amherst, guests have the opportunity to marvel at two large-scale installations presented on estate grounds: A Winter White and Glacier Blue Tower on the East Terrace in front of Biltmore House and a freestanding Torchlight Chandelier at the Entry Green in Antler Hill Village.

Tip: This special exhibition is on display March 25, 2024, through January 5, 2025 and is included with select ticket types or as part of select lodging packages. Biltmore Annual Passholders may purchase discounted exhibition-only tickets. Don’t wait to plan your visit.

Inside Biltmore's Conservatory
Biltmore’s historic Conservatory is a tropical getaway all year long, but an especially nice retreat during a rainy day at Biltmore!

2. Explore our historic Conservatory

Situated down the hill from Biltmore House and past the Walled Garden, this glorious garden-under-glass is a fascinating place to explore in any weather, but it’s especially nice to enjoy all the benefits of a lush garden full of tropical plants without getting drenched in a downpour!

Butler's Pantry
Step inside the Bulter’s Pantry of Biltmore House with a specialty tour.

3. Upgrade your visit to include a Biltmore House specialty tour

Let the rain fall while you experience a different side of Biltmore House and its surroundings. Specialty tours such as the Biltmore House Backstairs Tour offer a behind-the-scenes look at the rarely-seen domestic staff’s areas and what it was like to work at America’s Largest Home over a century ago.

Tip: Specialty tours offered in Biltmore House will change periodically and may have limited capacity. For our most current offerings, please visit our Tours page online.

Guests at The Vanderbilts at Home and Abroad exhibbition
Learn about the Vanderbilt family and their travels, including their fateful decision to not board the Titanic as planned.

4. Learn more about the Vanderbilts at The Biltmore Legacy

Antler Hill Village is home to The Biltmore Legacy, an exhibition space that features a fascinating glimpse into the lives of the Vanderbilt family and their treasures with our The Vanderbilts at Home and Abroad exhibition. Exploring this guest-favorite exhibition is a perfect rainy-day activity at Biltmore!

Biltmore Wines
Discover our entire portfolio of Biltmore Wines at our Winery in Antler Hill Village.

5. Enjoy Biltmore Wines at America’s most-visited winery

Let it pour outside while you enjoy the “pours” inside at America’s most-visited winery! This original estate dairy barn was converted to a winery in 1985, and you can experience a complimentary wine tasting (included with any admission type!) and other delicious offerings! Plus, Biltmore’s Winery recently welcomed a stunning Chandelier by world-renowned artist, Dale Chihuly, which is on display daily inside our Wine Shop.

Afternoon Tea at The Inn
Savor decadent scones as part of the elegant Afternoon Tea service offered at The Inn.

6. Shop, Savor, and Stay!

What better way to wait out a rain shower than to savor decadent farm-to-table meals or pick out momentos from your time at Biltmore? With over 20 unique shops and restaurants on the estate available only to Biltmore guests and Passholders, you’ll have plenty to choose from!

Make your time on George Vanderbilt’s visionary estate even more memorable with an overnight stay at one of our unique lodging properties, including our four-star Inn on Biltmore Estate, cozy Village Hotel on Biltmore Estate, or a historic, private Cottage on Biltmore Estate.

Raindrops settle on coneflowers in Biltmore's gardens.
Summer rain showers leave glistening drops on native coneflowers in Biltmore’s gardens.

BONUS: Pack an umbrella and explore our gardens and grounds

The weather in the mountains changes frequently, so much so, that the locals in Asheville often say “If you don’t like the weather, just wait ten minutes.” During light showers, you might even enjoy grabbing your umbrella or rain poncho for a peaceful stroll through our historic gardens.

Tip: Be sure to check the local weather radar and have a backup plan in case the forecasts predict more severe weather than a mild sprinkle.

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