The Orchard at Altapass
The Orchard at Altapass
4.5
Wednesday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Thursday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Friday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Saturday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Sunday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
About
The Orchard at Altapass is a not-for-profit working apple orchard, educational and entertainment venue now in its 27th year and open May through October. Activities, open days and times may vary as the season progresses.
Suggested duration
1-2 hours
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  • Jill S
    49 contributions
    What a wonderful stop!
    A visit to the historic Orchard can't help but make you wonder about its early days and all the work that went into making it the must stop that it is. Nothing like sitting on the huge back deck and watching the butterflies, honey bees, hummies and barn swallows come and go. Bonus - on weekends they feature local musicians playing out in the pavilion and if you're lucky you'll get to see grandmas and grandpas get up and start clogging or square dancing. Just the best.
    Thanks for your review. Being a non-profit, lots of early days and lots of work but for a great cause—Saving the good stuff.
    Written July 14, 2021
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited July 2021
    Written July 13, 2021
  • Susan M
    Bradenton, Florida26 contributions
    Don't pass this up!
    We drove past the orchard several times while traveling on the Blue Ridge Parkway. Then we read some reviews and decided we had to stop by and have some of their apple pie a la mode. Good decision! Excellent pie with a perfect flakey crust. Choices of ice cream flavors but we went with traditional vanilla. Besides the ice cream, fudge and pie section, the general store offers various fruit ciders, fruit butters and jams as well as other gift shop items. The staff are very friendly and helpful. There is also a fascinating display about the Over the Mountain Men who passed through this area en route to the Battle of King's Mountain, which was a turning point in the Revolutionary War. My husband's ancestors fought in that battle, so he was very interested in the film and the written presentation. Off to the side of the general store is an open air pavilion where an old time blue grass band was playing, and older folks were flat footing, which is an old dance form in the mountains. The view from the back porch of the general store is wonderful. We were too full of pie to walk up to the butterfly garden or the orchards. But we will return!
    Thank you so much for all your kind words. Hope that you make it up to the Butterfly Garden. That was Judy's (a co-founder) passion. We wrote and got a grant and received several memorial donations with which we "cleaned" it up and enlarged. Hopefully, we'll be able to keep the pollinator plants going and the weeds gone.
    Written September 3, 2022
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited July 2022
    Traveled as a couple
    Written July 30, 2022
  • John G
    Asheville, North Carolina428 contributions
    Fun visit
    The histroy of this place is very interesting. We took the wagon tour but the wagon had one flat tire so we didn't get the full tour. The band was nice to listen to which was one of the main reason we came on a Saturday.
    Apologies for the lateness of this response. Remember the flat tire. Not according to plan, but it will happen rarely. Glad you enjoyed your visit. Come back.
    Written September 3, 2022
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited June 2022
    Written June 29, 2022
  • Noah S
    Mebane, North Carolina128 contributions
    Friendly staff, confusing layout, and little variety
    We went with a group of four hoping to pick apples. We went into the general store and saw a long line. We weren’t sure if we were supposed to wait in line to go apple picking, or if we were supposed to go somewhere else. Once we determined that we were supposed to wait in the line with those checking out from the store and ordering ice cream, we were told that there weren’t many apples to pick, and that we could pay $10 for a bag, and if we were unable to fill it, they would fill the bag with apples that had already been picked. We went out to the orchard and found that there weren’t any apples to be picked. We then returned to the store, and ordered some of the home-made apple pie. It was delicious! We browsed the store for several more minutes and found some jellies and salsas. Overall, however, there was not a wide variety of items for sale in the store. Hopefully, with more apples, it would be more enjoyable. I would give it a second chance next time I’m in the area.
    Thanks for your review. Apologies for the long lines. We had to redo everything for c-19 and utilizing line traffic was one. Hopefully, it will be in a less congestion arrangement next season, no matter what the situation. I do hope that you did get your bag filled upon your return. Seems that people have been over exuberant with the apple picking and ending up with more than their share or picking the unripe apples. It happens, but makes less for others near end of season. And glad you loved the pie. Please do give us a second chance next season. We have great things planned and do want to see everyone happy with their experience. Again, thanks for your comments. They help.
    Written October 11, 2020
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited October 2020
    Traveled with friends
    Written October 10, 2020
  • Traveler746191
    16 contributions
    sooty blotch and flyspeck on the apples and no one told us
    At first I thought it was a great experience but now I am not so sure. Free entry.The apple pie and ice cream was tasty. The hot apple cider was just barely warm, not hot, and not filled to the top of the cup - $4 was expensive for that. It was $10 for a bag of small apples and the apples had splotches all over them. Now that I have googled it, it is sooty blotch and flyspeck - two fungal diseases. Are the apples sprayed or organic? well if organic, they don't advertise it. If sprayed, then there shouldn't be fungus on the apple skin. The apple cider is very expensive and it isn't organic and it is in a plastic gallon jug (not glass).
    First, thanks for the review. It's a hard middle of the road for a "just right" warmth for cider, and apologies for the cup not completely filled. $10 would have been for U-pick apples that would have been half peck. Bagged apples were $6 for half peck. We are not an organic orchard and make certain that folks know that the few pesticide(s) we use are for the critters that can rot out/through the apples; we do not spray for the two "fungal diseases" you referenced as they do not effect the taste or rot the apple. Most commercial orchards use far more pesticides than the O, ergo their blemish-free appearance (as those available in the grocery stores). We opt for taste. Our apples, all heirloom varieties, are more flavorful than ones that are heavily sprayed. Don't really have a response for the glass vs. plastic cider. The orchards for which I'm familiar that offer cider do use plastic. Glass is far more expensive, and being a non-profit small batch heirloom apple orchard, we rely on the generosity of our donors and visitors in order to continue to "Save the Good Stuff." Thanks again for allowing me to clarify some of your concerns and hope you'll make it back to the O in 2022. This was an unusual year in that we had apples up to our last day (Nov. 1) and we thrilled to be able to give people the Orchard experience of U-Picking.
    Written November 11, 2021
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited October 2021
    Written November 3, 2021
  • TRPADVSR1200
    Jacksonville, Florida24 contributions
    Worth a stop!
    Worth a stop! The view from the back porch is incredible! There was live music in the afternoon, basic food from the grille (burgers, etc), and a cool shop. We got food and pie and sat on the porch to listen to the music and enjoy the view. The staff was very nice.
    Thanks so much for your review. The Orchard itself is a wonder with views that will never change; trees, some over 100 years old, that will be replenished into the future and the clean air, that hopefully will remain. Add to that natural beauty, a staff that tries hard to make everyone feel welcome and it's a winning combination for someone just wanting to get away and "be."
    Written September 15, 2022
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited September 2022
    Traveled with family
    Written September 14, 2022
  • suzie b
    16 contributions
    Great Place♡♡♡
    Any silly visitor who thinks this should be a hustling place in the middle of a pandemic, needs to go back to wherever they came from. Friendly ppl, great gifts, yummies & fun drive♡ When pandemic was not a thing, we liked the banjo pickers. Great apples & cider♡♡♡ Amazing location.
    Don't know when you visited, but in January we are closed. That said, we appreciate your words and thank you for your visit whenever it was.
    Written September 11, 2021
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited October 2020
    Traveled with family
    Written January 28, 2021
  • PandaHouston
    Houston, Texas6,233 contributions
    Very Busy on a Saturday - Stop for Apple Pie!
    We came on Saturday, October 9 and it was crazy busy. There was a person directing us into the parking lot and she told us where to park. We really just came to get some apple pie. We got a slice of apple pie for $4.40. It was really good but a bit small. Definitely stop by if you like apple pie!
    Thanks so much for your comments. We do appreciate all. And even if you just came for pie, we had to find you a place to park. We were extremely lucky this year with our apple crop and yes, it was crazy busy the last few weeks, but think all got to u-pick, got to buy apples by the bag, and enjoy apple pie...if that was what they wanted. Hope you come by again in 2022 for another slice.
    Written November 4, 2021
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited October 2021
    Written November 3, 2021
  • firerunner1965
    Lakeland, Florida86 contributions
    Not anything like the website
    I guess I was a little disappointed in this stop. I read the website and it said U Pick (not available) only one type of apple was available (which is understandable since it is natures products) but there were no hayrides, no real walking trails, we hoped to buy a whole pie, nope not available, the little butterfly exhibit looked like it had not been touched in years. Guess it just look old and neglected and it was more like a store then anything else. We did buy some apple cider and apple butter but at most we spent 30 mins here.
    Thank you for your comments. Not at excuse, but as explanation. We were caught just as we prepared for our opening this past spring—turned everything upside down. "Heyrides" are still/were prohibited directly from the state as are numbers of people allowed inside. No concerts. However, this year, we had the greatest number of monarch butterflies ever. Guessing when you saw it, all had broken out of the chrysalises and flown south. And since we close in two weeks, we are not restocking any supplies/food stuffs. Apologies for not having enough pies to offer you a whole one. We always want to start the season with fresh foods, new goods. Trails are always open, although we are down to three (due to more tree planting) with no trails between apple trees. We hope you will give us another opportunity to make you feel welcome. Your views help us understand our visitor needs and we appreciate yours.
    Written October 22, 2020
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited October 2020
    Written October 21, 2020
  • Lisa K
    3 contributions
    Not impressed
    The two stars is for the view of the Blue Ridge Mountains from the back porch. Otherwise, this place was dead mid day on an October 24 Saturday when the Blue Ridge Parkway had plenty of visitors. There were a few people milling about, most asking "where are the apples?". Even though I had read before coming that there is live music on weekends, there was none.
    Sorry that you were not impressed with the Orchard. Our mandated cancellations of both music, grill, and "heyrides" was posted throughout the season on both our website and on our Facebook page. We are a small batch orchard, non-profit with a mission to preserve and protect the land and the culture of the region. With that in mind, we graft and plant heirloom apple trees (over 75% of their varieties have been lost over the last few decades). They ripen at different times from late July through October (in that perfect world), but we cannot control the weather. Sometimes they ripen earlier, sometimes later and because we don't have hundreds of trees in one or two varieties and don't have same number in acreage, the quantities are smaller. We posted weekly what was available and when they were gone. We hope that you'll give us another opportunity next season to impress. We are working on a plan to "Bring the Music Back" in 2021, open the grill and perhaps even reinstate "heyrides." The pandemic threw the entire globe in unchartered waters and gov't mandates restricted what we could present. But we do thank you for your comment. Each helps us do better for our visitors and our lands.
    Written October 26, 2020
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited October 2020
    Written October 25, 2020
These reviews are the subjective opinion of Tripadvisor members and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Detailed Reviews: Reviews order informed by descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as cleanliness, atmosphere, general tips and location information.
Popular mentions

4.5
189 reviews
Excellent
114
Very good
42
Average
21
Poor
9
Terrible
3

Noah S
Mebane, NC128 contributions
Oct 2020 • Friends
We went with a group of four hoping to pick apples. We went into the general store and saw a long line. We weren’t sure if we were supposed to wait in line to go apple picking, or if we were supposed to go somewhere else. Once we determined that we were supposed to wait in the line with those checking out from the store and ordering ice cream, we were told that there weren’t many apples to pick, and that we could pay $10 for a bag, and if we were unable to fill it, they would fill the bag with apples that had already been picked. We went out to the orchard and found that there weren’t any apples to be picked. We then returned to the store, and ordered some of the home-made apple pie. It was delicious! We browsed the store for several more minutes and found some jellies and salsas. Overall, however, there was not a wide variety of items for sale in the store. Hopefully, with more apples, it would be more enjoyable. I would give it a second chance next time I’m in the area.
Written October 10, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thanks for your review. Apologies for the long lines. We had to redo everything for c-19 and utilizing line traffic was one. Hopefully, it will be in a less congestion arrangement next season, no matter what the situation. I do hope that you did get your bag filled upon your return. Seems that people have been over exuberant with the apple picking and ending up with more than their share or picking the unripe apples. It happens, but makes less for others near end of season. And glad you loved the pie. Please do give us a second chance next season. We have great things planned and do want to see everyone happy with their experience. Again, thanks for your comments. They help.
Written October 11, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Traveler746191
16 contributions
Oct 2021
At first I thought it was a great experience but now I am not so sure. Free entry.The apple pie and ice cream was tasty. The hot apple cider was just barely warm, not hot, and not filled to the top of the cup - $4 was expensive for that. It was $10 for a bag of small apples and the apples had splotches all over them. Now that I have googled it, it is sooty blotch and flyspeck - two fungal diseases. Are the apples sprayed or organic? well if organic, they don't advertise it. If sprayed, then there shouldn't be fungus on the apple skin. The apple cider is very expensive and it isn't organic and it is in a plastic gallon jug (not glass).
Written November 3, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
First, thanks for the review. It's a hard middle of the road for a "just right" warmth for cider, and apologies for the cup not completely filled. $10 would have been for U-pick apples that would have been half peck. Bagged apples were $6 for half peck. We are not an organic orchard and make certain that folks know that the few pesticide(s) we use are for the critters that can rot out/through the apples; we do not spray for the two "fungal diseases" you referenced as they do not effect the taste or rot the apple. Most commercial orchards use far more pesticides than the O, ergo their blemish-free appearance (as those available in the grocery stores). We opt for taste. Our apples, all heirloom varieties, are more flavorful than ones that are heavily sprayed. Don't really have a response for the glass vs. plastic cider. The orchards for which I'm familiar that offer cider do use plastic. Glass is far more expensive, and being a non-profit small batch heirloom apple orchard, we rely on the generosity of our donors and visitors in order to continue to "Save the Good Stuff." Thanks again for allowing me to clarify some of your concerns and hope you'll make it back to the O in 2022. This was an unusual year in that we had apples up to our last day (Nov. 1) and we thrilled to be able to give people the Orchard experience of U-Picking.
Written November 11, 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

TRPADVSR1200
Jacksonville, FL24 contributions
Sep 2022 • Family
Worth a stop! The view from the back porch is incredible! There was live music in the afternoon, basic food from the grille (burgers, etc), and a cool shop. We got food and pie and sat on the porch to listen to the music and enjoy the view. The staff was very nice.
Written September 14, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thanks so much for your review. The Orchard itself is a wonder with views that will never change; trees, some over 100 years old, that will be replenished into the future and the clean air, that hopefully will remain. Add to that natural beauty, a staff that tries hard to make everyone feel welcome and it's a winning combination for someone just wanting to get away and "be."
Written September 15, 2022
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

suzie b
banner elk16 contributions
Oct 2020 • Family
Any silly visitor who thinks this should be a hustling place in the middle of a pandemic, needs to go back to wherever they came from. Friendly ppl, great gifts, yummies & fun drive♡ When pandemic was not a thing, we liked the banjo pickers. Great apples & cider♡♡♡ Amazing location.
Written January 28, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Don't know when you visited, but in January we are closed. That said, we appreciate your words and thank you for your visit whenever it was.
Written September 11, 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

PandaHouston
Houston, TX6,233 contributions
Oct 2021
We came on Saturday, October 9 and it was crazy busy. There was a person directing us into the parking lot and she told us where to park. We really just came to get some apple pie. We got a slice of apple pie for $4.40. It was really good but a bit small. Definitely stop by if you like apple pie!
Written November 3, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thanks so much for your comments. We do appreciate all. And even if you just came for pie, we had to find you a place to park. We were extremely lucky this year with our apple crop and yes, it was crazy busy the last few weeks, but think all got to u-pick, got to buy apples by the bag, and enjoy apple pie...if that was what they wanted. Hope you come by again in 2022 for another slice.
Written November 4, 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

firerunner1965
Lakeland, FL86 contributions
Oct 2020
I guess I was a little disappointed in this stop. I read the website and it said U Pick (not available) only one type of apple was available (which is understandable since it is natures products) but there were no hayrides, no real walking trails, we hoped to buy a whole pie, nope not available, the little butterfly exhibit looked like it had not been touched in years.

Guess it just look old and neglected and it was more like a store then anything else. We did buy some apple cider and apple butter but at most we spent 30 mins here.

Written October 21, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thank you for your comments. Not at excuse, but as explanation. We were caught just as we prepared for our opening this past spring—turned everything upside down. "Heyrides" are still/were prohibited directly from the state as are numbers of people allowed inside. No concerts. However, this year, we had the greatest number of monarch butterflies ever. Guessing when you saw it, all had broken out of the chrysalises and flown south. And since we close in two weeks, we are not restocking any supplies/food stuffs. Apologies for not having enough pies to offer you a whole one. We always want to start the season with fresh foods, new goods. Trails are always open, although we are down to three (due to more tree planting) with no trails between apple trees. We hope you will give us another opportunity to make you feel welcome. Your views help us understand our visitor needs and we appreciate yours.
Written October 22, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Lisa K
3 contributions
Oct 2020
The two stars is for the view of the Blue Ridge Mountains from the back porch. Otherwise, this place was dead mid day on an October 24 Saturday when the Blue Ridge Parkway had plenty of visitors. There were a few people milling about, most asking "where are the apples?". Even though I had read before coming that there is live music on weekends, there was none.
Written October 25, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Sorry that you were not impressed with the Orchard. Our mandated cancellations of both music, grill, and "heyrides" was posted throughout the season on both our website and on our Facebook page. We are a small batch orchard, non-profit with a mission to preserve and protect the land and the culture of the region. With that in mind, we graft and plant heirloom apple trees (over 75% of their varieties have been lost over the last few decades). They ripen at different times from late July through October (in that perfect world), but we cannot control the weather. Sometimes they ripen earlier, sometimes later and because we don't have hundreds of trees in one or two varieties and don't have same number in acreage, the quantities are smaller. We posted weekly what was available and when they were gone. We hope that you'll give us another opportunity next season to impress. We are working on a plan to "Bring the Music Back" in 2021, open the grill and perhaps even reinstate "heyrides." The pandemic threw the entire globe in unchartered waters and gov't mandates restricted what we could present. But we do thank you for your comment. Each helps us do better for our visitors and our lands.
Written October 26, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Maps229673
Wigan, UK30 contributions
Aug 2023 • Couples
This was recommended by the lady from the previous stop off. It was so worth a turn round as we missed it as we went past . Apple pie to die for with the best ice cream. Bill Carson came over and asked if we’d like to hear the story of how he and his sister got the orchard and saved the land from developers. Take my hat off to this gentleman what a story as you eat your apple pie. Well worth a stop off.
Written August 6, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Lisa S
Hummelstown, PA9,924 contributions
Aug 2020 • Couples
We were visiting Asheville and had hiked at Craggy Gardens then drove here. When you get to the turn it’s a very sharp right turn (if you came from CG way) so best if you have it on a navigation route to warn you!

It was fairly empty the day we were there. Only the store part was open, however, that’s where the bathrooms are so all good! Each of us couples split a pie a la mode and it was perfect. We sat on the deck overlooking the orchards and it was very pleasant. As we were on vacation we did not pick any apples although I did see some people doing so as we were leaving.
Written September 17, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thanks so much for your review. We were forced to cut back on some of our usual activities this season due to the pandemic. Hopefully, the restrictions will be lifted and the virus just another blip in history. That said, happy to hear you had a good time.
Written October 1, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Michael E
20 contributions
Aug 2021
The Orchard at Altapass is beautiful. We stopped and stayed around 2 hours. We picked our own apples for $10.00. Our kids had a blast playing games on the back porch. (checkers, corn-hole, connect-four) We bought some cider, fudge, and some souvenirs.

The view was amazing! We sat on the back deck and enjoyed the beautiful scenery. On our recent trip to Spruce Pine, NC and the Blue Ridge Parkway, this is a top highlight for us!

I highly recommend stopping by if your get the chance.

Friendly staff and awesome products!
Written August 18, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thanks so much for your review. Our staff works hard to make it all happen smoothly and mom nature does her best to keep the views spectacular and the apples delicious. We appreciate your words.
Written September 11, 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

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The Orchard at Altapass - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (with Photos)

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The Orchard at Altapass is open:
  • Wed - Sun 10:00 AM - 5:00 PM



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