Charlotte is the largest city in the state of North Carolina. Famous for being a major financial centre, the city has quite a rich history dating back to the time of the American Civil War. Today, it’s known for having a number of successful sports teams, while it’s not too far away from some amazing natural sights including lakes and mountains. In Charlotte, you’re likely to come across shimmering skyscrapers towards the city centre, but away from there, there’s a chance that you might find yourself in one of its many vibrant neighbourhoods. Museums and cultural venues are plentiful here, where local performers and artists use their backyard as a place to move onto bigger and better things.
Charlotte is a pretty easy city to get around courtesy of its grid system, but for turning corners and parking, a smaller vehicle is a must, as spaces can be scarce.
Driving in Charlotte
Road Driving Side
Urban Speed Limit
Rural Speed Limit
Motorway Speed Limit
Important things to note
Away from the older parts of town, road directions aren’t as clear as they should be. If in doubt, ask locals for directions.
Some of the names of the secondary roads in Charlotte tend to change frequently. This means that you should ensure your satnav is up to date.
The best road for getting around Charlotte quickly is the 1-277, which goes around the perimeter of most of the city. Another highway is currently under construction.
Highlights & Hotspots
The Mint Museum, spread over two sites – Randolph and Uptown – takes in a variety of artworks, exhibitions and artefacts from all over the world. Modern and historical exhibits are often displayed side by side to offer a treat for the eyes.
A little less serious than the Mint Museum, Discovery Place is a museum geared at kids. Most of the exhibits are science-related, although there are usually one or two exhibitions where there’s something a little different like the Dead Sea Scrolls on display.
The kids will also love a trip to the Children’s Theatre of Charlotte, a modern facility that has family-friendly shows on throughout the day. Coming here is a great alternative to going to the cinema if you want your kids to have fun.
Charlotte is a great sporting city. Here, you can visit the NASCAR Hall of Fame in the city centre, watch the NFL’s Carolina Panthers at the Bank of America Stadium or the newly-renamed Charlotte Hornets play in basketball’s top flight.
Charlotte Douglas International Airport is five miles west of the city centre. It has one main terminal for passengers with five concourses, each serving flights from across the Americas, Europe and seasonal flights from other continents.
The airport is accessible from a link road which takes you eastwards to Billy Graham Parkway. From there, you can turn right onto Wilkinson Boulevard, which goes further east to the city centre.