Here at GoBeyond SEO, we’re big fans of being active on the weekends (unless a new season of Orange is the New Black comes out). With our children – both two and four legged – keeping busy on the weekends is a must. Here is a list of our favorite day trips from Charlotte.
James Doerflinger, Creative Director – Asheville, NC
Since anywhere west of Texas takes at least a day to get to, even if you stab it and steer going 90, I’d have to say the quaint and unassuming mountain town of Asheville, North Carolina tops my list of favorite day trips from Charlotte. From their dog friendly businesses to their pedestrian focused city streets, it seems to have everything Charlotte lacks, while still being close enough for a day excursion. An infinitely better night life means bars with craft beers, obviously, but also Kombucha infused goodness and plenty of vegan options and restaurants within walking distance to wherever you are downtown. Their music scene is quite impressive too, with a lot of less than mainstream acts opting to play there. (The Orange Peel may be my favorite venue). Up until last year, they were the hosts of two electronic music festivals, Moogfest & Mountain Oasis Music Fest. The beauty of Asheville is in the culture and past they maintain. Original buildings are kept up, in their cracking, fading luster, and the brick sidewalks move below your feet as you pass local, non-corporate business on Lexington & Walnut Street. Something you see less and less of in American cities these days. A constant reminder of what makes this little town so great.
Now, if I can just convince GoBeyond to relocate!
Things to check out while there:
- MOOG Music – Synth Makers & Excellent FREE Tour Givers
- Plant – Amazing & Classy Vegan Restaurant
- Harvest Records – For all your vinyl needs
- The City itself
Brian Saemann, Director of Products & Marketing – The Beach
When I think day trip, it isn’t just my eyes & mind that turn toward the beach, but my entire soul. Growing up 4 miles from the beach, the sights, smells & feelings of the beach take me back to a time when figuring out how to get to the beach was the greatest obstacle in my life. The beaches surrounding Charleston are some of the best beaches in the country, if not the world.
Just across the Arthur Ravenal Jr. Bridge lie the white sandy beaches of Sullivan’s Island. And just off the beach are some of the area’s most fun restaurants. The legendary Poe’s Tavern is just a block from the beach and directly across the street is Hometeam BBQ. The ribs are great and the Gamechanger cocktail will truly change your game.
Of course there are other beaches you can go to from Charlotte but the beaches near Charleston – especially Sullivan’s Island – are my top spot.
Billy Saemann, Director of Internet Marketing – Lazy 5 Ranch; Mooresville, NC
One of my favorite day trips from Charlotte is driving up to Mooresville to visit the friendly folks at Lazy 5 Ranch. I’ve taken my nephews there a few times and every time we go we have an absolute blast. We typically grab a snack and hang out on the picnic benches and park for a little bit, but then it’s off to the real fun.
At Lazy 5 they have a safari that you can drive through and see all sorts of cool animals. They have some giraffes, rhinos, cattle, zebras, all sorts of birds, and I’ve never realized how big a buffalo was until it was sticking its nose inside my window. At the beginning of the car ride you can buy a bucket of food and a lot of animals will come right up to your car and eat from your hand. Be warned though; you will start laughing hysterically and food will get all over your car.
Trish Saemann, Director of Business Development – Sugar Mountain, NC
I’ve recently become familiar with Sugar Mountain. The trip takes about 2-2.5 hours and the drive is beautiful. One of the things I like most is the fact that during the summer months, the area is warm, but not HOT LIKE THE SURFACE OF THE SUN. Charlotte’s latest heat wave has been oppressive and though I like a sunny day, it is hard to enjoy when you can hardly breathe from the heat. If possible, check out http://seesugar.com/. The site isn’t fancy, but it offers a tremendous amount of useful info on the area. It’s great for families, couples and anyone who needs a vacation.
Ali Phalen, Content & Social Media Manager – South Mountains State Park, NC
My boyfriend and I love to take our dog Derby (who was featured in my Instagram post, check it out) hiking. From Asheville to Sugar Mountain to local McDowell Park, we love getting out there and getting our adventure on – plus wearing out the puppy. We’ve been to Crowder’s Mountain, which is great except it puts the crowd in Crowder’s. For Valentine’s Day we decided to head up to South Mountains State Park for the day instead and it was great!
Personally, I’m a big fan of amazing views and look at them as my reward for hiking 8 miles round trip. We took the Chestnut Knob Trail and got a great workout to get to the amazing view at the overlook. Plus, the trails were very well maintained, making it easy for me and my bum knee to hike. We also frolicked around in the Jacob Fork River on the Hemlock Nature and High Shoals trails to the waterfall, which was very refreshing (a.k.a. freezing in February), but I can only imagine how glorious it would be in the summer! I would love to go back this fall for some horseback riding and camping.
I definitely think South Mountains State Park is perfect for a day trip. It’s a great alternative to more crowded hiking options, especially if you have a pup who loves to explore. However, I highly recommend packing your own lunch seeing as there wasn’t much around the state park. Plus, the South Mountains State Park is perfect for a picnic!
If you’re looking to take a day trip from Charlotte this weekend, these are 5 places you should definitely consider! Have a place we forgot? We’d love to hear about it so shoot us a tweet!