The Western North Carolina Nature Center is located in Asheville NC.  It is a pretty typical small town Nature Center, and if you are traveling with younger children, it is a wonderful place to visit during your stay in Asheville, NC.  There are 42 acres in which to walk and explore – with award winning exhibits, perfect for younger children and adults who aren’t looking for overwhelming entertainment.  Walking trails, indoor exhibits as well as outdoor exhibits, farmyard, the delightful Otter exhibit, bears, cougars, birds of prey, native wolf and many other special animal exhibits to view as you walk along the Trillium Trail and take in all the Nature Center has to offer.  Indoor exhibits will also educate and entertain you and your child with many hands on activities, all highlighting plant and animal life of Western North Carolina: underground world, night time animals in “the cave,” snakes, fish, turtles and more.

The center is open 7 days a week, 10 am to 5pm.  Tickets are $8 adults, $4 children.
Preview the Guest Map.

Check out a “Wild Child” Pack to use for the day, at the front desk.  Free to use, the packs include many handy items and educational tools such as a hand lens, monocular, field thermometer, compass and activity booklet.  The packs are available for all to use (thanks to REI) and the activities are targeted for six year olds to sixteen year olds.

A sampling of upcoming special events to attend include “Ground Hogs Day,” on February 2, 2013, at 2:00 pm, when the Nature Center will celebrate this special and quirky day with a “whimsical presentation” on groundhogs by Carlton Burke and a chance to meet some live and local groundhogs, including Nibbles.

Or join in on a field trip on Tuesday March 12th, 2013, from 3 to 8pm, to Cataloochie Valley and see the Native Elk species that have been returned to the Mountains of North Carolina, $20 per person, reservations required, (828) 259-8082.

On March16th join a behind the scenes tour of the Nature Center to see what happens behind the “Staff Only” doors.  The next tour for this very popular event will be Saturday, March 16th, 1:45 pm to 3:15 with an admission cost of $25 per adult and $15 for children 16 & younger and includes admission to the Nature Center.  Registration required, email

Again, this is only a sampling of activities and events to consider.  Be sure and check out the website for more upcoming and current events to consider at Asheville and Western North Carolina’s Nature Center.

If you need a place to stay with your family during your visit consider  Oakland Cottage Bed and Breakfast, centrally located in Asheville, and about 5 mi from the Nature Center.  For an Asheville Cabin Rental or an Asheville Vacation Rental, contact the offices of Vacation In Asheville at 828 994-2627, 9am to 7pm daily.