8 Fun Things to Do in Charlotte, North Carolina
Charlotte is the largest city in North Carolina, and among the fastest-growing cities in the country. It’s known as a major financial center, being the headquarters of both Bank of America and Trusit Financial, as well as the East Coast operations of Wells Fargo. It can have a straight-laced vibe about it, but it’s also got plenty of ways to let loose.
Affectionately known as the Queen City (well, one of them…Cincinnati‘s another one), Charlotte has an impressive Downtown (which they call Uptown, interestingly enough), plenty of green space, and plenty to keep you entertained.
Read on for 8 Fun Things to Do in Charlotte, North Carolina!
1. Tryon Street
Tryon Street is the main thoroughfare through Downtown–excuse me–Uptown Charlotte, and is lined with sculptures, museums, bars, and restaurants. You can also find a lot of very popular food trucks along the way, with lines stretching down the block, and you can admire some of the tallest buildings in the city, like the ornately-crowned Bank of America Corporate Center.
Just off Tryon is The Local, a restaurant by day and a club at night.
You can also check out the monumental sculptures at Independence Square at the intersection of N Tryon and W Trade.
2. Go to a Museum
The Queen City is home to many cultural institutions, particularly the Mint Museum of Art. There’s also the Levine Museum of the New South, which is fitting for Charlotte, one of the New South’s premier cities. It catalogs the development of the South from the end of the Civil War up until the present.
Sports and religion run deep in Charlotte, so if you’re a fan of either NASCAR or the late televangelist Billy Graham, you will also find the National NASCAR Hall of Fame, and the Billy Graham Library.
3. Catch a Game
Back in Revolutionary War times, the young city of Charlotte was described by one British general as “a hornet’s nest of rebellion.” This moniker stuck with the city throughout the years, and today lends its name to the Charlotte Hornets of the NBA.
You can also check out the Carolina Panthers of the NFL.
4. Enjoy Some Local Food
If you need a bite to eat in the middle of the night, the Midnight Diner is a lively 24-hour diner close to Uptown.
The Carolinas are big on barbecue, and I would recommend Midwood Smokehouse, which has several locations spread around the Charlotte metro area. Be sure to try their mustard-based Carolina bbq sauce.
Pro Tip: You don’t even have to a local restaurant to get local fare. You can even go to any Charlotte-area Wendy’s and look on their “Local Flavor” section for the Carolina Classic, a burger topped with cole slaw and chili. It’s actually pretty good.
5. Chill at a Park
Charlotte is dotted throughout with gorgeous city parks and greenways that offer respites from city life and excellent views of the Charlotte skyline. The Green is one big green space with a literary twist: you’ll find sculptures and plaques throughout that reference classic books, poems, and plays.
Romare Bearden Park in Uptown, Elizabeth Park, and the Little Sugar Creek Greenway are just a few of the major parks to enjoy.
8. Head Out to the Mountains
Last but not least, Charlotte is situated at the foot of the Appalachian Mountains, meaning a daytrip is well within reach.
If there is anything at all I’ve missed, please feel free to add it in the comments below.
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