Things to do in Charlotte

About Charlotte

The NASCAR Hall of Fame is a high-octane must-see for visitors, offering interactive exhibits and race simulators. The Billy Graham Library is another iconic stop, providing insight into the life of the influential preacher. For art lovers, the Mint Museum Uptown exhibits a compelling collection of visual arts.
Charlotte offers the Discovery Place Science, with its hands-on exhibits, to spark curiosity in young minds. ImaginOn: The Joe & Joan Martin Center gives children a space to explore literature and the performing arts. Lastly, the interactive fun continues at the Sea Life Charlotte-Concord Aquarium.
Outdoor enthusiasts can hit the trails at the U.S. National Whitewater Center, enjoy boating on Lake Norman, or take a leisurely stroll through the Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden, which offers beautiful flora and themed gardens year-round.
For indoor fun, visitors can explore the immersive world of virtual reality at the Immersive VR Journeys, or enjoy the thrills of axe throwing at Bad Axe Throwing. The Great Escape Room offers a mind-bending challenge for those who love puzzles.
Charlotte's best tours include the Queen City’s culinary tours, rich in southern flavors, the intriguing Haunted Charlotte Ghost Tours, and the educational Charlotte History Tours, each offering unique perspectives of the city.
Popular museums in Charlotte include the Levine Museum of the New South, highlighting post-Civil War southern history, and The Bechtler Museum of Modern Art, with its collection of 20th-century European art. Both are educational and culturally enriching.
For rainy days in Charlotte, visitors can enjoy the Charlotte Art and Culinary Tour, which provides an indoor feast for both the eyes and the palate. The indoor Go Karting experience also offers exhilarating fun away from the wet weather.
For a quick cultural dive, the Charlotte Center City Walking Tour gives a brief overview of downtown landmarks. The Charlotte's Historical City Tour offers a rich narrative of the city's past in a succinct format perfect for those on a tight schedule.

Best Things to Do In Charlotte

Explore the vibrant energy and southern charm of Charlotte through an immersive self-guided audio experience.

Charlotte: Discovery Place Science

What is it?
An interactive science and technology museum that inspires curiosity and creativity in visitors of all ages.
Why you should go?
At Discovery Place Science, science comes to life in an engaging way. This attraction is one of the best things to do in Charlotte, providing a hands-on experience that fuels imagination. From live science demonstrations to awe-inspiring exhibitions on technology, engineering, and the natural world, visitors can spend a day immersed in educational fun. It's a perfect spot for families and curious minds eager to explore and learn.

Charlotte: Levine Museum of the New South

What is it?
An insightful museum that delves into the Southern United States post-Civil War history and culture.
Why you should go?
Levine Museum of the New South is essential for understanding what makes Charlotte tick. It's a cultural hub where one can gain a deep appreciation for the city's past and present. Engaging exhibits showcase the transformation of the South over time, tackling topics of civil rights, social justice, and cultural evolution. This museum is a thought-provoking place that contextualizes Charlotte within the larger Southern narrative.

Charlotte: Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden

What is it?
A 380-acre botanical garden with a diverse array of plants, breathtaking fountains, and a serene conservatory.
Why you should go?
A visit to Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden offers a peaceful retreat among nature's splendors. What to do in Charlotte for tranquility? Wander through themed gardens, marvel at the orchid conservatory, and relax by the water features. Seasonal events, including holiday lights and plant sales, add variety to the offerings here. It's ideal for garden lovers, photographers, and anyone seeking a beautiful escape.

Charlotte: Epicentre

What is it?
A vibrant multi-level entertainment complex offering dining, nightlife, shopping, and entertainment options.
Why you should go?
Epicentre is the pulsing heart of Charlotte activities after dark. Visitors can jump from fine dining to casual eateries, catch a movie, or enjoy a rooftop cocktail with a view of the city skyline. With a mix of nightclubs, live music venues, and frequent special events, it's the place to be for those who love to immerse themselves in the local night scene.

Charlotte: The Billy Graham Library

What is it?
A library-cum-museum that chronicles the life and legacy of the world-renowned evangelist, Billy Graham.
Why you should go?
The Billy Graham Library offers a journey through historical exhibits relating to the evangelist's inspiring missions. This tranquil site, complete with charming gardens and a reflective memorial prayer garden, allows insight into Graham's influence worldwide. Visitors from all walks of life can explore his global ministry, enjoy the peaceful grounds, and connect with the community-oriented spirit that Graham fostered.

Charlotte: NASCAR Hall of Fame

What is it?
An interactive and high-tech museum dedicated to the achievements of NASCAR drivers, teams, and owners.
Why you should go?
Whether you're a racing enthusiast or simply intrigued by the world of high-speed motorsports, the NASCAR Hall of Fame is one of the top Charlotte excursions. Here, you can explore exhibits on the history of NASCAR, get up close to legendary race cars, and even try your hand at a racing simulator to get a taste of the action. It's an all-encompassing look at a sport deeply woven into the fabric of American culture.

Charlotte: The Mint Museum

What is it?
Charlotte's first art museum featuring a diverse collection ranging from ancient to contemporary art.
Why you should go?
The Mint Museum stands out among the things to do in Charlotte for its vast art collections, encompassing everything from European paintings to fashion. Visitors can indulge in a cultural feast, attending workshops, artist talks, and interactive exhibits that make art accessible to all. Its inviting atmosphere provides the perfect setting for those looking to admire creative works and find inspiration within its walls.

Charlotte: Freedom Park

What is it?
A sprawling urban park featuring walking trails, sporting facilities, and peaceful lake views.
Why you should go?
When pondering what to do in Charlotte for a more relaxed experience, Freedom Park is the respite you need from the urban bustle. This green sanctuary offers spaces for family picnics, sports, and leisurely strolls. It's also home to the annual Festival in the Park, celebrating arts and crafts, making it an engaging spot that offers a sense of community and tranquility in one scenic location.

Charlotte: Bechtler Museum of Modern Art

What is it?
A modern art museum known for its architecture and impressive 20th-century European art collection.
Why you should go?
Art aficionados looking for what to see in Charlotte should not miss the Bechtler Museum of Modern Art. Designed by Swiss architect Mario Botta, its edifice is a work of art in itself. Inside, it holds a plethora of masterpieces from icons like Picasso and Warhol. This museum not only presents art; it stimulates discourse and thought, providing a sophisticated outing for all patrons.

Charlotte: U.S. National Whitewater Center

What is it?
An outdoor recreation and athletic training facility for whitewater rafting, kayaking, and canoeing.
Why you should go?
Adventure seekers looking for exhilarating Charlotte activities will find the U.S. National Whitewater Center to be an ideal destination. Boasting the world's largest man-made whitewater river, it's a playground for watersports and more—with mountain biking, zip-lining, and rock climbing available. Not just for thrill-seekers, the center also offers festivals and musical performances, underscoring its status as a versatile attraction.

TOP-5 tours in Charlotte for first time visitors

  • Embark on a journey through the heart of the city, where things to see in Charlotte unfold through its storied streets and landmark buildings, providing a perfect introduction.
  • Delve into the fun things to do in Charlotte with a tour highlighting the bustling art districts and innovative museums, allowing a peek into the city's cultural core.
  • Enjoy the places to visit in Charlotte with a scenic walk through lush parks and gardens, encapsulating the natural beauty amidst urban landscapes.
  • Discover the best things to do in Charlotte with a culinary adventure, narrating the tales behind local delicacies and historic eateries, a treat for food enthusiasts.
  • Pursue active Charlotte activities with a tour that combines the thrill of adventure sports with the serenity of serene spots just a stone's throw away from the city hub.

Fun Things to Do in Charlotte with Kids

Charlotte is a wonderland for families, boasting an array of activities that appeal to children's curiosity and sense of adventure. A must-visit is the imaginative Discovery Place Science, a staple in the list of fun things to do in Charlotte. With interactive exhibits, a captivating aquarium, and educational shows, it's a venue where science is both learned and lived. Another brilliant spot for families is Carowinds, the celebrated amusement park straddling the North and South Carolina state line. Packed with thrilling rides, entertaining shows, and the Carolina Harbor waterpark, it provides a full day of excitement for all ages. Finally, the Charlotte Nature Museum, nestled next to Freedom Park, offers kids a chance to encounter wildlife and engage with natural habitats. The museum's hands-on approach encourages playful discovery and a deep appreciation for the wonders of the natural world.

Things to Do in Charlotte with Family

Charlotte shines as a destination for family-friendly adventures, offering a rich tapestry of experiences that caters to all ages. First on the list is the wonder-filled Discovery Place Science, where interactive science exhibits and thrilling IMAX presentations captivate the imagination of both kids and adults. For outdoor enthusiasts, Freedom Park provides ample space for family picnics, sporting activities, and serene walks by the lake, making it one of the best places to visit in Charlotte for a leisurely day out. Rounding out the family fun, the adventure-packed U.S. National Whitewater Center invites families to bond over an array of activities from whitewater rafting to treetop canopy tours. Here, exhilarating outdoor experiences combine with the beauty of the natural surroundings to create unforgettable memories for the entire family. Each destination is an opportunity to discover the best things to do in Charlotte while creating cherished moments together.

Free Things to Do in Charlotte

Charlotte offers an array of complimentary attractions that promise to enrich your visit without costing a dime. Revel in the beauty of nature at the UNC Charlotte Botanical Gardens, where families can explore the lush landscapes, charming greenhouses, and diverse plant collections, making it a serene escape and a top contender among free things to do in Charlotte. Art enthusiasts will find delight in wandering through the vibrant corridors of the Mint Museum on Wednesdays, where free admission opens doors to explore extensive art collections and special exhibits. For a dose of history, stroll along the Charlotte Liberty Walk, an engaging self-guided tour that takes you to historic sites pivotal to America's fight for independence. This walkable trail combines education and exercise, presenting what to see in Charlotte through the lens of the past, and is sure to captivate history buffs of all ages.

Cheap Things to Do in Charlotte

Charlotte brims with budget-friendly attractions that promise to entertain without breaking the bank. One of the most popular is the 7th Street Public Market, where you can meander through local vendors, taste regional delicacies, and immerse in the local culture for just a few dollars. Take advantage of the seasonal splendor at Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden, which offers affordable entry to explore its picturesque landscapes, fountains, and themed gardens, providing a memorable outing for a modest fee. History and architecture aficionados will find joy in visiting The Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts + Culture, where minimal admission fees open doors to a world of exhibitions and visual storytelling. From engaging cultural experiences to natural beauty, these sites are highlights for those searching for things to do in Charlotte on a budget, ensuring a rich experience that preserves the wallet's contentment.

Things to Do in Charlotte for Couples

Couples will find Charlotte to be a city of romance and adventure, with an array of unique experiences to share. A visit to the picturesque grounds of Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden offers a romantic backdrop for a day spent amid vibrant blooms and gentle fountains—perfect for a peaceful stroll hand in hand. For those who appreciate the finer things in life, touring the vineyards and savoring local wines at one of Charlotte's nearby wineries secures a spot among the best Charlotte activities for couples looking for a leisurely escape. As the sun sets, the city's skyline becomes the canvas for a different kind of experience—rooftop dining in Uptown. There, you can wind down with a cocktail and enjoy gourmet dining while taking in the breathtaking city views, making it one of the most elegant things to do in Charlotte. Each attraction offers couples an opportunity to make new memories and celebrate their journey together.

Things to Do in Charlotte at Night

As the sun sets, Charlotte transforms, offering a vibrant nocturnal scene for locals and visitors alike. Begin your evening with a performance at the Blumenthal Performing Arts Center, known for hosting Broadway shows, concerts, and dance performances, making it a cultural staple among Charlotte activities. For a more laid-back experience, the NC Music Factory complex presents an array of entertainment options from live music venues to comedy clubs, inviting you to immerse yourself in the rhythm of the city. Lastly, no night out in Charlotte would be complete without sampling the local brews at one of the numerous craft breweries in the South End. Here, beer aficionados can savor artisanal creations and enjoy the convivial atmosphere. These attractions showcase the diverse options available for those wondering what to do in Charlotte at night, ensuring every evening is filled with excitement and discovery.