North Carolina is an underrated state in the U.S. with so much to offer, including fantastic food, rich history, wonderful accommodation options, beautiful landscapes, and engaging cities. Charlotte, the Queen City, has all of these things. In fact, it might surprise you to hear that Charlotte is the biggest city in North Carolina and the largest banking center in the U.S. after New York. Though Charlotte may be primarily a business town, you can look beyond the banks and skyscrapers and find exquisite dining, a strong luxury hotel market, lots of great outdoor areas, fun museums, and more.
4 Reasons Why You Need To Visit Charlotte NC
Food and Drink
This metropolis has countless options to satisfy your palate and quench your thirst. The Seventh Street Public Market is a great place to start. This indoor gourmet food hall is a foodie’s heaven. Here, you’ll find craft coffee and beer, imported cheese and wine, gourmet burgers, and cold-pressed juice.
Then there’s Amelie’s French Bakery & Cafe for those with a craving for France. The selection of coffee, baguettes, croissants, and pastries won’t disappoint. For some Southern grub, the fried chicken at Price’s Chicken Coop is famous.
Exploring the Outdoors
You can easily escape the hustle and bustle of the city and find yourself surrounded by nature. Within the city, you’ll find tree-lined streets and the beautiful Freedom Park. But for the real woods, head over to the hiking trails at the 737-acre Reedy Creek Nature Preserve.
Take a short drive west of the city, and you can climb to the top of Crowders Mountain. Or visit the Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden for 110 acres of beautiful gardens and fountains. If you have the time, a day trip to the Blue Ridge Mountains is well worth the drive.
Luxury and Budget Accommodations
Because of the strong financial industry and the never-ending cultural attractions, Charlotte, North Carolina, offers magnificent accommodations. If you’re into luxurious and contemporary spaces, try the Ritz-Carlton Charlotte in the heart of downtown. This high-end spot has a full spa facility, a busy bar, and the hotel’s own beehives located up on the building’s green roof.
For some romance, the highly rated, historic Duke Mansion B&B, with a gym and a library, is a top pick. There are also several low-budget options including the Super 8 and the Budget Inn.
Aviation enthusiasts, shouldn’t miss the Carolinas Aviation Museum. For science and fun, check out Discovery Place, one of the Carolinas’ biggest attractions. And don’t miss the NASCAR Hall of Fame if you’re a speed junkie. Then there’s the excellent Bechtler Museum of Modern Art, and the Levine Museum of the New South for an interactive look at history.
There’s so much more, with cool neighborhoods to explore, gallery crawls, hopping nightlife, bike and haunted history tours, and even more arts, history, sports, and tummy-filling activities and events. Convinced to visit Charlotte, North Carolina yet?
[Featured Image via Flickr by garryknight]