Don’t be like all of the other Charlotte, North Carolina, tourists! Come on, you’re more creative than that. While the city’s main attractions are certainly worth a visit, there are some pretty quirky hangouts if you know where to look.
What better way to get to know local tastes than to try out one of the breweries? Charlotte has a lot of them, but Bird Song is a favorite for its quirky offerings. This brewery has all of the standard stuff as well as a lineup of funky brews for you to sample. Try the Jalapeño Pale Ale, Thyme Witbier, or the Eat a Peach Ale. The ambiance is artsy so sip and stay for a while or do a brewery tour.
Find the Street Art
Graffiti is no longer a symbol of a bad neighborhood. Now, colorful murals mean art, culture, and passionate locals. Plus, exploring street art is a free way to spend an afternoon while getting some exercise at the same time. Prowl the streets and keep an eye out for the murals, especially if you happen to have your camera. Check out the Frazier Park tunnel, the area around Chantilly, and the area around NoDa.
The Punch Room
Speakeasy-style bars are totally in right now. If you want to relive the 1920s, head to the Punch Room for some craft cocktails in a pretty toned-down setting. This cocktail bar only has 37 seats and offers an intimate space to relax while feeling epically fancy. Try the Buzzed Bunny or the Hanky Panky.
Choosing your accommodation is important because it’s where you’ll spend a good chunk of your travel time. If you really want to get off the beaten path, where you rest your head at night matters. Choose something interesting that will make your trip to Charlotte even more memorable. Do a hotel search to find some of the more interesting properties like The Duke Mansion or the Morehead Inn, where you can experience real luxurious Southern living.
Do a Coffee Crawl
You’ll want to be good and caffeinated as you wander around Charlotte. The best way to achieve that is by going on a coffee crawl. Unlike the more popular beer crawl, a coffee crawl will help you stay awake while you explore the best beans and the quirkiest cafés. In fact, you can actually snag yourself a coffee passport and collect stamps as you make your way through the city’s best coffee hangouts.
Start at Boquete Mountain Coffee and move on to Smelly Cat Coffee House for roasting demos. Learn how to brew the perfect pour over with a visit to The Daily Press, and then perk up with some espresso at Ozpresso, an Australian-themed café. Don’t forget to visit Crown Station, where you can actually get coffee-infused cocktails. Try a coffee flight at Sunflour Baking Company, and try to pick up a bag of beans to take home from one of the stops along the way.
The Common Market
This conglomerate of shops and hangouts considers itself a neighborhood living room and has become one of the top places to mingle and relax in the city. It’s a place where you can get your coffee and all three meals of the day while stopping off for a beer, listening to live music, and shopping for some pretty funky knickknacks.
While you’ll probably want to experience everything that Charlotte, North Carolina, has to offer, make some time to get off the beaten path. You’ll learn more about the city, make some great conversation with the locals, and get some pretty unique photos out of it, too!