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Western North Carolina Nature Center

Certificate of Excellence
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Address: 75 Gashes Creek Rd, Asheville, NC 28805-2529
Phone Number: +1 828-259-8080
Website
Today
10:00 - 17:00
Closed now
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Hours:
Sun - Sat 10:00 - 17:00
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Description:

Visit the Western North Carolina Nature Center - home to over 60 species of...

Visit the Western North Carolina Nature Center - home to over 60 species of animals including river otters, black bear, red wolves and cougars. The Western North Carolina Nature Center connects people with the animals and plants of the Southern Appalachian Mountain region by inspiring appreciation, nurturing understanding, and advancing conservation of the region's rich biodiversity. The Nature Center is proud to be accredited by the Association of Zoos & Aquariums. Founded in 1924, the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) is dedicated to the advancement of zoos and aquariums in the areas of conservation, education, science, and recreation. Look for the AZA logo whenever you visit a zoo or aquarium as your assurance that you are supporting an institution dedicated to providing excellent care for animals, a great experience for you, and a better future for all living things. Less than 220 facilities in the United States have met the high accreditation standards set by AZA

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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 528 reviews
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  • 279
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  • 52
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An absolute gem.

I am ashamed to say that after all the times I've visited family in Asheville, this is the first time I've been to the Nature Center....it was wonderful. Of course, the beautiful... read more

5 of 5 bubblesReviewed 1 week ago
Hydrokitty
,
Long Island, NY

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528 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 524: English reviews
Long Island, NY
Level Contributor
48 reviews
20 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 79 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago

I am ashamed to say that after all the times I've visited family in Asheville, this is the first time I've been to the Nature Center....it was wonderful. Of course, the beautiful weather and first day free from smoke haze helped. The animals are all housed in huge fenced areas that closely resemble natural habitats. It was fun trying to... More 

Helpful?
Thank Hydrokitty
Salt Lake City, Utah
Level Contributor
7 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

The Nature Center is a great place to visit with children. Well used space that sprawls over many acres of land. Lots of activity spaces!

Helpful?
Thank tostle
Wake Forest, North Carolina
Level Contributor
50 reviews
22 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 weeks ago

So, on the way to the CMA Awards in Nashville, TN, we wanted to have a stopping point where our young kids could get out and run around and have fun and the Western North Carolina Nature Center was perfect for this! The combination of animal exhibits combined with things like the gem mining made this a great time (although... More 

Helpful?
Thank MarshallTFoster
Lumberton, North Carolina
Level Contributor
198 reviews
26 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 77 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 weeks ago

I have mixed feelings about places like this. Seeing animals out of their element, confined in "natural" settings... it's weird and feels wrong. They had raccoons at this place... why? I see those all the time in rural parts of town for free and they're in their natural element. I'm not saying don't go. I'm just not saying go.

Helpful?
1 Thank TheBogotano
Mount Airy, North Carolina
2 reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 November 2016

This is pretty much a small zoo which features animals native to western North Carolina. That being said, it was well worth the price of admission and more. My wife adored the otters, who were quite playful and put on a show. With exception of the bears, deer, and wolves many of the other animals were asleep. Coming earlier in... More 

Helpful?
Thank aldengrath
Level Contributor
8 reviews
4 attraction reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 30 October 2016

It's a small nature center, but well worth the trip... If you've never seen wolves up close... or looked into a Cougar's eyes {a Huge insanely confident cat}...or watched bears waking from a nap... or watched otters swim and flip in the water... You Must GO!

Helpful?
Thank Heather S
Saylorsburg, Pennsylvania
Level Contributor
252 reviews
104 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 116 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 27 October 2016

Went there for an afternoon visit, and enjoyed the various animals, especially the otters. also had many other animals native to North Carolina. Worth visiting if you get tried of fighting the crowds n the downtown area.

Helpful?
1 Thank Wtrav77
Navarre, Florida
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 25 October 2016 via mobile

A lovely place to bring children. Lots of animals and interactive thing for little ones to do. Plenty of places to sit if you cannot walk far. If you like animals you'll enjoy.

Helpful?
Thank scrappy1799
Asheville, North Carolina
Level Contributor
13 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 21 October 2016

Perfect place to spend a day for all ages. Learned about the animals of Western North Carolina as well as seeing them in their natural habitats. We packed a picnic lunch and enjoyed the park! Animals were well taken care of and the staff were very informative! Loved it!!

Helpful?
Thank jburleson24
Nottingham, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
41 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 41 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 19 October 2016

We took my 21 year old son to this Nature Centre!!! We had a rainy morning to fill and are always interested in local wildlife so decided to give the Nature Centre a go. We were there in the late morning and all the wildlife seemed active. We particularly enjoyed the snake house, the otters and the black bears. This... More 

Helpful?
Thank 23betty

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Typical questions asked:
  • Will you pick up and drop off at my hotel?
  • I have a family of 7. Can your tour accommodate all of us together?
  • How should I dress for this tour?