Uptown / Charlotte

→ Uptown

Charlotte’s city center is also known as "Uptown" by locals. Several Fortune 500 companies have their headquarter in Uptown Charlotte such as Bank of America, Duke Energy, and the East Coast operations of Wells Fargo. Headquarted in Mecklenburg County are Family Dollar Stores, Nucor and Sonic Automotive.

Charlotte’s city center may also be known for several famous stadiums and event facilities: The Bank of America Stadium, home of the NFL’s Carolina Panthers, the Time Warner Cable Arena, home of the NBA’s Charlotte Hornets, the baseball stadium BB&T Ballpark, home of the International League’s Charlotte Knights, and the NASCAR Hall of Fame.

Museums, theaters and over 200 restaurants and bars are located in Uptown, which welcomes over 18 million visitors each year.

The city center is split into 4 neighborhoods (Wards) along the intersection of Trade Street and Tryon Street.

© Lavilo LLC, North Carolina. All rights reserved. Title: Carolinas Aviation Museum in Charlotte, North Carolina
→ Carolinas Aviation Museum

Home of the original Airbus of US Airways Flight 1549, which made a successful emergency landing in the Hudson River, the Carolinas Aviation Museum has several iconic aircrafts on display such as the legendary DC-3, which has changed air travel forever. Visitors also have the opportunity to sit in a Boeing 727 cockpit, which once was used as a procedures trainer for pilots to learn how to operate a Boeing 727. In contrast, visitors can also climb into the cockpit of an F-4 Phantom II.

© Lavilo LLC, North Carolina. All rights reserved. Title: Billy Graham Library in Charlotte, North Carolina
→ The Billy Graham Library

The Billy Graham Library is dedicated to the life and legacy of the famous American Pastor, who used indoor and outdoor rallies, as well as radio and television broadcasts to speak to millions of believers. The exhibition A Journey of Faith not only reflects his very own journey but is also meant as a continuation of his “Crusades” and Ministry, where “people would have the opportunity to be won to Christ”.

© Lavilo LLC, North Carolina. All rights reserved. Title: METALmorphosis in Charlotte, North Carolina
→ METALmorphosis

Adorning a cute plaza at the Whitehall Corporate Center just a few miles south of Uptown Charlotte, METALmorphosis is a giant head-shaped sculpture crafted by contemporary Czech artist David Černý. 25-foot tall and built from about 14 tons of stainless steel, the glittering structure is divided in seven, independently rotating layers creating the impression of change reminiscent of Franz Kafka’s famous nouvella The Metamorphosis.

© Lavilo LLC, North Carolina. All rights reserved. Title: Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden, Belmont, Charlotte Region, North Carolina
→ Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden

The 380-acre Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden caters to all ages from its Orchid Conservatory filled with beautiful orchids to the child friendly carousel in the Lost Hollows. The well-manicured paths take you through themed gardens with stunning fountains and several benches to sit back and enjoy the surroundings. The garden holds many special events throughout the year, from concerts in the amphitheater to bird and horticultural walks and their famous Holiday At The Garden where the garden magically lights up in the evenings during the holiday season. There is always something new to see throughout the year.

© Lavilo LLC, North Carolina. All rights reserved. Title: Latta Plantation Nature Preserve, Lake Norman, Charlotte Region, North Carolina
→ Latta Plantation Nature Preserve

This 1,343-acre nature preserve just outside of Charlotte is nested along a peninsula between Mountain Island Lake and Gar Creek in Huntersville. Latta Plantation Nature Preserve has much to offer, hiking, Segway adventures, kayaking, fishing, and horseback riding. There is a Visitors Center, 2 canoe launches, a fishing pier, 2 picnic areas, several parking lots, even one designated for horse trailers. 16 miles of trails are spread throughout the park. Biking is limited to roads and paved paths.
Located within the park are also the Latta Equestrian Center, the Historic Latta Plantation House and the Carolina Raptor Center. One can easily spend the day exploring and learning about local nature and the history of the area, and with so many different options there is surely something for everyone.

© Lavilo LLC, North Carolina. All rights reserved. Title: Historic Latta Plantation House, Lake Norman, Charlotte Region, North Carolina.
→ Historic Latta Plantation House

Once a cotton plantation owned by James Latta in the early 1900s, it has now been transformed into a living history farm. Visitors can see what daily life was like on a plantation in North Carolina before the Civil War. The Historic Latta Plantation House offers guided tours through the original historic main house (an early Federalist style) that is decorated with period pieces to match. The grounds have several buildings from a smokehouse to a large old barn and several farm animals. The plantation still grows Short Staple Cotton, which was its main crop in the 19th century.

Several historical events are hosted here throughout the year where the Historic Latta Plantation staff dresses in period attire to reenact the history and bring it back to life for everybody to enjoy.

© Lavilo LLC, North Carolina. All rights reserved. Title: Latta Equestrian Center, Lake Norman, Charlotte Region
→ Latta Equestrian Center

If you love horses then this is definitely worth a visit. Within the Latta Plantation Nature Preserve, the Latta Equestrian Center offers pony rides for kids 2 to 7 years old, arena rides (7 years and up), riding lessons, guided trail rides through the Preserve (age 12 and up), horse shows, tractor-drawn hayrides, parties and group events. During the summer a weekly Day Camp is available for kids age 7 and older. Reservations are required for most activities, however walk-ins for the pony rides are welcome.

© Lavilo LLC, North Carolina. All rights reserved. Title: Carolina Raptor Center, Lake Norman, Charlotte Region
→ Carolina Raptor Center

Part living museum, part avian medical facility, the Carolina Raptor Center is nicely located in the Latta Plantation Nature Preserve. Visitors can admire eagles, owls, falcons, hawks, vultures and other raptor species, who were injured and are now being nurtured back to health by a dedicated and passionate team. Regular shows such as Meet the Raptor, Vulture Feeding or Free Flying are offered.