From model trains in a miniature landscape, to the thrill of a raptor encounter, to stars gracing the concert stage, Biltmore shines this summer with experiences to bring wonder and a touch of nostalgia to guests of all ages.
Biltmore Gardens Railway
Biltmore Gardens Railway opens May 24 and runs through September 29 with a model train exhibition in two estate locations: the historic Conservatory and Antler Hill Village.
In the Conservatory, nearly 800 feet of track carries G-scale locomotives and railcars as they traverse bridges and trestles in multiple rooms at varied viewing levels. Adding to the charm, trains weave through exotic botanicals and miniature replicas of estate landmarks. The plant-based recreations of estate structures include replicas of Biltmore House, the Stable, the Conservatory, Lodge Gate, the Bass Pond Waterfall, the Gardener’s Cottage, plus All Souls Church and the train depot in Biltmore Village.
In Antler Hill Village, a second railway display showcases the travels of Biltmore’s founder George Vanderbilt. Model trains travel on 250 feet of track, passing replicas of international landmarks including the Eiffel Tower in Paris and London’s Tower Bridge. The landscape is designed by Biltmore’s gardeners using shrubs, trees, and flowers.
The miniature replica structures were handcrafted out of all-natural materials by Applied Imagination, an award-winning crew of artists, botanical experts, and landscape designers known for popular exhibitions across the U.S. including the New York Botanical Garden and the United States Botanic Garden in Washington, D.C. Many of the materials used in the design ofBiltmore Gardens Railway were collected directly from the estate including pine cones, bark, bamboo, grapevines, honeysuckle, acorns, pods, seeds and grasses.
Biltmore Gardens Railway is included with regular daytime admission to the estate.
Insider-tips: What’s not to miss at Biltmore this summer
New adventures in Biltmore’s backyard: Visitors can now discover the ancient art of falconry on the estate’s grounds, learning how to handle a trained hawk or falcon. Another new offering is the Outrider USA Adventure Tour that takes participants off-road through remote trails and roads of the estate on electric recumbent tricycles. Another idea for getting out in Biltmore’s 8,000 acre backyard— guests staying at either of Biltmore’s lodging properties are offered complimentary guided hikes and yoga classes.
23rd Annual Biltmore Summer Concert Series:Biltmore House, the sunset over the Blue Ridge Mountains, and a canopy of stars serve as the backdrop for enjoying music during the Biltmore Summer Concert Series. The 2019 concert line-up includes The Beach Boys, The B-52s, The Charlie Daniels Band and The Marshall Tucker Band, Chicago (sold out), The O’Jays and Kool & The Gang, and Amy Grant and Steven Curtis Chapman. Details and tickets can be found at www.biltmore.com/concerts or by calling 866-336-1255.
Antler Hill Village & Winery: Enjoy live music daily in Antler Hill Village this summer. Sample Biltmore’s extensive portfolio of wines at Biltmore Winery. Visit friendly farm animals at the farmyard.
Mile-long sunflower patch along Winery Drive: In mid-to-late summer, tall sunflowers and wildflowers stretch amid meadows of native grasses on the road leading from Biltmore House and gardens to Antler Hill Village & Winery.
Italian Gardens: Reflecting pools teem with exotic water lilies, elephant ears and papyrus, with koi and goldfish swimming just beneath.
Stay at Biltmore
Available June 1 through August 27, Summer on the Farm packages at The Inn on Biltmore Estate and Village Hotel on Biltmore Estate allow guests to reconnect with nature, explore Biltmore’s farm life, and enjoy acres of gardens and trails. The Summer on the Farm package at each estate property includes bike rentals and an exclusive farm experience consisting of one of the following: hands-on crafts and demonstrations, a farmyard visit to gather eggs and wagon ride, or a Farm to Forest tour. More information and additional summer lodging packages are available at Biltmore.com/stay.
· Kids 16 and younger receive FREE admission to the estate with paid adult admission from Memorial Day through Labor Day, May 24 through September 2.
· Guests save $10 by booking online seven or more days in advance of a visit.