Things To Do in Charlotte (1)
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Things To Do in Charlotte – Exploring Charlotte: Top Activities and Attractions

Often referred to as the Queen City, Charlotte has accelerated growth in the past two decades and has become the most densely populated city in North Carolina. It is modern but has a rich history and boasts a major commercial hub, along with a prevalent race culture, given that the city is home to NASCAR. The humid subtropical climate makes Charlotte a great place to visit all year round, and there are plenty of activities and attractions to offer visitors. Here are our top picks for the top 10 Things To Do in Charlotte:

10 Things To Do in Charlotte

Here are 10 Things to do in Charlotte, from exploring the NASCAR Hall of Fame to enjoying outdoor adventures at the U.S. National Whitewater Center.

NASCAR Hall of Fame:

NASCAR Hall of Fame (1)

Charlotte hosts NASCAR’s epicenter, housing most NASCAR teams, their race shops, and the Charlotte Motor Speedway. The NASCAR Hall of Fame, an 86,500 sq ft facility, celebrates exceptional drivers, owners, crew chiefs, and broadcasters. Visitors can explore inductees, and enjoy racing simulators, interactive exhibits, Championship Cars, and a high-octane movie theater.


Carowinds (1)

Carowinds is one of the premier Cedar Fair parks located on the border of North and South Carolina. The park is split right down the middle between the two states, and they have a ton of great rides. This is a must-visit for coaster fans, primarily because of Fury 325, but they have a great supporting lineup, and the park is so easy to access. It’s like 20 minutes from the Charlotte International Airport. You often see planes flying by while you’re in the park, making it easy to do a day trip here. But they have a lot to offer.

Carowinds is a 407-acre amusement park with a mix of adult and children’s attractions, including 14 amazing roller coasters and Carolina Harbor water park. Visitors can enjoy 56 rides, 32 eateries, live entertainment, and seasonal events, with lodging options and vacation packages available. Carowinds is one of the best Things To Do in Charlotte.

Discovery Place:

Discovery Place (1)

Discovery Place is the nonprofit leader in the Carolinas, bridging the STEM learning gap for people of all ages. Discovery Place is a Science and Technology Museum with interactive exhibits targeting all ages, especially kids. It features a two-level Amazon rainforest, an aquarium with exotic marine life, and the Accenture IMAX Dome Theater for presentations.

At Discovery Place, learning, testing, and innovating are in our DNA, and share those values with our community. Every year, our kids come to Discovery Place Nature; they all work together, they all problem-solve, and they all are really surprised at how strong they are.

US National Whitewater Center:

US National Whitewater Center (1)

The U.S. National Whitewater Center is a must-visit destination for locals and visitors alike. With over 50 miles of trails, whitewater rafting courses, and more than 30 recreational activities for you and your family to enjoy, you don’t want to miss this Charlotte day trip.

Set on 1,300 acres, the US National Whitewater Center offers access to 30 outdoor activities, including whitewater rafting, kayaking, paddleboarding, obstacle courses, mountain biking, ziplining, rock climbing, and more.

The Whitewater Center is a lifestyle-focused activity center with tons of things to do, built around the whitewater rapids used by the U.S. Olympic team in training for whitewater rafting and kayaking. You can enjoy the fun with a local guide who will safely take you around the exciting rapids. The U.S. National Whitewater Center is one of the best Things To Do in Charlotte.

Charlotte Motor Speedway:

Charlotte Motor Speedway (1)

Charlotte Motor Speedway is a 1.5-mile oval track hosting NASCAR racing events, Speedway tours, racing schools, go-kart tracks, and Speedway Christmas, a holiday light show. The track is actually in use with driving schools, TV commercial shoots, and special events about 300 out of 365 days per year. So let’s get on the bus and enjoy the tour off the racetrack.

Charlotte Motor Speedway is one of the most impressive facilities on the NASCAR tour. The track is located in Concord, North Carolina, just a few miles away from Charlotte. In 1960, it became the first track to run a 600-mile NASCAR race. Scott Cooper, Vice President of Communications, will tell us what’s so special about the Charlotte Motor Speedway.

You can Book Your Charlotte Motor Speedway Ticket Booking Online with Tiqets and get up to 50% discount.

Book travel attraction ticket online with Tiqets

Race Shop Tours:

Race Shop Tours (1)

NASCAR fans can visit race shops for various teams, such as Team Penske, Joe Gibbs Racing, and Hendrick Motorsports, for behind-the-scenes tours and to purchase team merchandise. Race Shop Tours is one of the best Things To Do in Charlotte.

Camp North End:

Camp North End (1)

Charlotte is known for being a banking city, but Camp North End is this amazing, magical anomaly that used to be a Ford factory, which was then turned into a missile plant, turned into a distribution center, and now today, it is an innovative space for artists, chefs, and more.

Camp North End is like its own little city, a breath of fresh air filled with unapologetic black art, historic relics untouched by developers, and an inclusive collection of businesses. Perhaps the coolest thing about this place is that the original Model Ts factory remains standing as is.

Formerly a military depot and Ford factory, Camp North End now hosts innovative businesses, shops, eateries, craft bars, and recreational activities, with live entertainment and seasonal events.

Levine Center for the Arts:

Levine Center for the Arts (1)

The cultural hub includes the Bechtler Museum of Modern Art, Harvey B Gantt Center for African-American Arts, Knight Theater for Performing Arts, and the Mint Museum Uptown, showcasing global art and design collections.

Lake Norman:

Lake Norman (1)

North Carolina’s largest man-made freshwater lake offers water sports, fishing, and scenic views, with options for renting watercraft, hiring boat captains, and finding fishing guides.

Nestled in the heart of North Carolina, Lake Norman is a sprawling waterway that truly captivates the soul. Beyond its natural beauty and historical significance, Lake Norman embodies a way of life that beckons people from all walks of life. Whether you’re a water enthusiast, a nature lover, or simply seeking solace in the quiet moments, there’s a place for you here.

Lake Norman, with its 520 miles of pristine shoreline, stands as a testament to the beauty of nature. As the sun kisses the horizon, the water shimmers like a sea of diamonds, reflecting the orange spring beauty of North Carolina’s diverse landscapes.

Little Sugar Creek Greenway:

Little Sugar Creek Greenway Park (1)

North Carolina is renowned for its natural beauty and outdoor recreation, but it’s not just mountain and beach towns that boast great trails here. Little Sugar Creek Greenway is a relatively flat and wide urban trail connecting parks, neighborhoods, and communities all across Charlotte.

Explore the urban walkway linking Freedom Park, Central Piedmont Community College, and the Charlotte Nature Museum, offering benches, public art, playgrounds, shops, and eateries.

One thing about Little Sugar Creek Greenway is get to see nice scenery versus running in the gym on the treadmill. You’re always going to run into fellow joggers, walkers, or bikers, so everybody’s just staying active.

Freedom Park and the widely popular pond loop are a great place to start your Greenway Adventure. From there, a northern route will take you towards the businesses and restaurants of Midtown Charlotte, while the southern way chases the creek through neighborhoods and parks, and onto the newest section of the trail that now connects the upper and lower Greenway into one contiguous path. Little Sugar Creek Greenway is one of the best Things To Do in Charlotte.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) for Things to Do in Charlotte

1. What are some must-visit attractions in Charlotte?

  • The NASCAR Hall of Fame
  • Discovery Place Science
  • Mint Museum Uptown
  • U.S. National Whitewater Center
  • Freedom Park

2. What outdoor activities can I enjoy in Charlotte?

  • Exploring the Carolina Thread Trail
  • Kayaking or paddleboarding on Lake Norman
  • Hiking at Crowders Mountain State Park
  • Biking along the Little Sugar Creek Greenway
  • Picnicking at Romare Bearden Park

3. What are some family-friendly activities in Charlotte?

  • Visiting the Charlotte Nature Museum
  • Exploring ImaginOn: The Joe & Joan Martin Center
  • Riding roller coasters at Carowinds amusement park
  • Enjoying a day at Ray’s Splash Planet
  • Taking a Charlotte City Tour by Segway

4. What cultural experiences can I have in Charlotte?

  • Attending a performance at Blumenthal Performing Arts
  • Exploring the Levine Museum of the New South
  • Visiting the Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts + Culture
  • Taking a tour of the Historic Rosedale Plantation
  • Enjoying live music at the Evening Muse or the Neighborhood Theatre

5. What dining options should I try in Charlotte?

  • Sampling barbecue at Midwood Smokehouse or Noble Smoke
  • Exploring the culinary scene in NoDa or South End
  • Trying Southern comfort food at Mert’s Heart and Soul
  • Enjoying international cuisine in Plaza Midwood
  • Indulging in craft beer at breweries like Olde Mecklenburg Brewery or NoDa Brewing Company

6. What sports events can I attend in Charlotte?

  • Watching NBA games at the Spectrum Center (home of the Charlotte Hornets)
  • Attending NFL games at Bank of America Stadium (home of the Carolina Panthers)
  • Catching minor league baseball games at Truist Field (home of the Charlotte Knights)
  • Enjoying NASCAR races at Charlotte Motor Speedway
  • Participating in or watching various outdoor sports events at the U.S. National Whitewater Center

7. Are there any unique experiences or hidden gems in Charlotte?

  • Exploring the street art in the South End neighborhood
  • Attending a performance at the Evening Muse or the Neighborhood Theatre
  • Visiting the Billy Graham Library and its tranquil grounds
  • Sampling craft cocktails at hidden speakeasies like Dot Dot Dot or The Cellar at Duckworth’s
  • Exploring the vintage shops and quirky boutiques in Plaza Midwood

8. What seasonal events should I look out for in Charlotte?

  • Charlotte Pride Festival & Parade (August)
  • Carolina Renaissance Festival (October-November)
  • Southern Christmas Show (November)
  • Speed Street Festival (May)
  • Charlotte Oktoberfest (September)

9. How can I explore Charlotte’s history and architecture?

  • Taking a guided walking tour of Fourth Ward or Dilworth neighborhoods
  • Visiting the Historic Latta Plantation
  • Exploring the Duke Mansion and Gardens
  • Taking a self-guided tour of Historic Fourth Ward Park
  • Joining a guided tour of the Duke Energy Center or Bank of America Corporate Center

10. Are there any day trips or nearby attractions from Charlotte?

  • Biltmore Estate in Asheville
  • Great Smoky Mountains National Park
  • Historic Downtown Charleston
  • Blue Ridge Parkway
  • Greenville, SC (for Falls Park on the Reedy and The Peace Center)

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