Wednesday, November 2, 2011


(does not include Asheville, Chapel Hill, Durham, Outer Banks or Raleigh; includes Blue Ridge Parkway, Charlotte, Inner Banks & Winston-Salem)

Sights & Sites
North Carolina Birding Trail – 1751 Varsity Drive (Raleigh); 919-306-5981;; links 300+ bird watching sites and birders with communities, businesses & educational attractions.

Bakeries, Coffee, Ice Cream, Juice & Tea
Cup 22 – 1711 Saxapahaw-Bethlehem Church Road (at Haw River Ballroom); 336-675-2440;; coffee and pastries in 1st-floor cafĂ©.
Bars & Nightclubs
Eddy’s Pub – 1715 Saxapahaw-Bethlehem Church Road; 336-525-2010;; gastropub.
Saxapahaw General Store – 1735 Saxapahaw-Bethlehem Church Road; 336-376-5332;; no-frills convenience store with excellent restaurant; ambitious, seasonal cuisine.
Saxapahaw Artists – 1610 Jordan Drive; 336-525-2394;; 2-story art gallery.
Saxapahaw General Store – 1735 Saxapahaw-Bethlehem Church Road; 336-376-5332;; no-frills convenience store with excellent restaurant.
Sights & Sites
Haw River Ballroom – 1711 Saxapahaw-Bethlehem Church Road; 336-675-2440;; soaring, 3-story music venue.

Sights & Sites
Emerald Hollow Mine – 484 Emerald Hollow Mine Drive; 828-632-3394;; fee digging for garnets, rubies, rutile & sapphires.

BLUE RIDGE PARKWAY (includes Blowing Rock & Cashiers)
High Hampton Inn – 1525 Highway 107 South (Cashiers); 828-743-2411 or 800-334-2551;; built in 1922 as private residence; 1.4K acres in Blue Ridge Mountains; high on knoll overlooking lake and mountains; reminiscent of Adirondacks camps; near-perfect climate; no electronic devices, like telephones or televisions, in guestrooms; many activities are nature-driven; boating, fishing, hiking, mountain golf, spa services, swimming, and tennis; children’s programs throughout summer months; on National Register of Historic Places; Afternoon Tea and dressing for dinner.
Westglow Resort & Spa – 224 Westglow Circle (Blowing Rock); 828-295-4463 or 800-562-0807;; Greek-revival mansion in Blue Ridge Mountains; Relais & Chateaux Hotel.
Canyon Kitchen – Lonesome Valley Road (Cashiers); 828-743-7967;

New Bern
Moore’s Old Tyme Barbecue – 3711 Doctor Martin Luther King Junior Boulevard; 252-638-3937;; over 50 years old.

Pig Whistle – 1641 West 15th Street;; “whole hog barbecue.”

Winston-Salem (includes Clemmons, Lexington & Mocksville)
Lexington Barbecue – 10 US Highway 29 70 South (Lexington, west of Raleigh); 336-249-9814;; only shoulder meat here; pitmaster Wayne Monk has been undisputed west-NC-style barbecue king since 1962.
Sights & Sites
Cooleemee Plantation – State Route 1812 (Davie County, located between Lexington & Mocksville, at State Route 1812’s terminus on Yadkin River);; US National Historic Landmark; not open to public.
Tanglewood Park – 4061 Clemmons Road (Clemmons); 336-778-6320;; 800 rose bushes adorn picturesque manor house.GUILFORD COUNTY
Sights & Sites
Weatherspoon Art Museum – 500 Tate Street; 336-334-5770;

INNER BANKS (includes Ayden, Beaufort, Fort Fisher, Kure Beach, Morehead City, Southport & Wilmington)
U-352 – German WWII submarine.
Cedars Inn – 305 Front Street (Beaufort); 252-838-1463;; historic coastal inn.
Frying Pan Shoals Light Station – Southport (29 miles offshore, to southeast); 704-907-0399;; decommissioned lighthouse modeled after steel oil drilling platform, known as “Texas Tower” on top of 4 steel legs; engineered to be used as lighthouse housing several Coast Guard members; 80' light tower marks shoals at Cape Fear River’s and Atlantic Ocean’s confluence; platform consists of 2 floors; subfloor is 5K' square living that includes 7 bedrooms, kitchen, office, storage area, recreation area and toilet facilities.
Cedars Restaurant – 305 Front Street (Beaufort); 252-838-1463;; historic coastal inn.
Floyd’s 1921 – 400 Bridges Street (Morehead City); 252-727-1921;; deviled eggs & fried oysters.
Skylight Inn – 4618 Lee Street (Ayden); 252-746-4113;; uses cornbread recipe from 1830; legendary pork barbecue.
Olympus Dive Center – 713 Shepard Street (Morehead City); 252-726-9432;
Sights & Sites
Cape Lookout National Seashore – 131 Charles Street (Harkers Island, visitors’ center); 252-728-2250;; 56-mile long section Southern Outer Banks (Crystal Coast), running from Ocracoke Inlet (northeast) to Beaufort Inlet (southeast); 3 undeveloped barrier islands make up seashore - North & South Core Banks and Shackleford Banks; seashore includes 2 historic villages on Core Banks, Shackleford’s wild horses (see below) & Cape Lookout Lighthouse, which has black-&-white diamond pattern.
Fort Fisher – 1610 Fort Fisher Boulevard South (Kure Beach); 910-458-5538;; Confederate fort during Civil War that vital port trading routes at Wilmington from 1861 until its capture by Union in 1865.
North Carolina Aquarium – 900 Loggerhead Road (Fort Fisher, at Kure Beach); 910-458-8257;
Shackleford Banks – Harkers Island (2 miles south); 252-728-2250; or; barrier island system; contains herd of feral Spanish mustangs, scallop, crabs & various sea animals, including summer nesting by loggerhead turtles; part of Cape Lookout National Seashore.

Chef & Farmer – 120 West Gordon Street; 252-208-2433;; try “Dirty Farro.”

Charlotte (includes Belmont)
Bakeries, Coffee, Ice Cream, Juice & Tea
Amelie’s French Bakery – 2424 North Davidson Street; 704-376-1781;; open 24 hours; pastries.
Bars & Nightclubs
Blue Bar – 2906 Central Avenue; 704-567-2158; ghetto Laotian-Vietnamese bar; hip-hop; considered by many best bar in Charlotte.
Petra’s Piano Bar – 1919 Commonwealth Avenue; 704-332-6608;; famous for its cocktail list.
Scorpio – 2301 Freedom Drive; 704-373-9124;; 3 bars, dancing, and famous drag shows.
Snug Harbor – 1228 Gordon Street; 704-333-9799;; grunge rock and punk bar.
Soul Gastrolounge – 1500 Central Avenue; 704-348-1848;; cocktails and tapas.
Whiskey River – A-208, 210 East Trade Street; 704-749-1097;; owned by Dale Earnhardt, Jr.
Ballantyne Hotel & Lodge – 1000 Ballantyne Commons Parkway; 704-248-4000 or 888-627-8048;; plastic-looking.
Ritz-Carlton – 201 East Trade Street; 704-547-2244 or 800-542-8680;
Amelie’s French Bakery – 2424 North Davidson Street; 704-376-1781;; open 24 hours; salads, sandwiches, and soups.
Dish – 1220 Thomas Avenue; 704-344-0343;; unpretentious, diner-y food.
Landmark Diner – 4429 Central Avenue; 704-532-1153; Greek and Italian.
Penguin Drive-In – 1921 Commonwealth Avenue; 704-375-6959;; hamburgers.
Soul Gastrolounge – 1500 Central Avenue; 704-348-1848;; sushi and tapas.
Common Market – 2007 Commonwealth Avenue; 704-334-6209;; deli with beer, wine; vegetarian friendly.
Paul Simon Men’s Wear – 4300 Sharon Road (Village at South Park); 704-366-4523 or 704-372-6842;
Paul Simon Women’s Wear – 4300 Sharon Road (Village at South Park); 704-333-6139;
Taylor Richards & Conger – 6907 Phillips Place Court; 704-366-9092;; men’s and women’s wear.
Sights & Sites
Bechtler Museum of Modern Art – 420 South Tryon Street; 704-353-9200;; modern works, especially statuary.
Billy Graham Library – 4330 Westmont Drive; 704-401-3200;; documents his Christian journey.
Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts – 551 South Tryon Street; 704-547-3700;; reknowned Hewitt Collection.
Knight Theater – 430 South Tryon Street; 704-372-1000;; North Carolina Dance Theater’s permanent home.
Little Sugar Creek Greenway – 7th to Morehead Streets; 704-432-1570;; beautiful landscaping, bike trails, and event areas.
Mint Museum Uptown – 500 South Tryon Street; 704-337-2000;; new annex for Charlotte’s revered institution; will house American and contemporary collections.
Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden – 6500 South New Hope Road (Belmont); 704-825-4490;; among America’s top 20 gardens; exceptional Orchid Conservatory.

Kindred – 131 North Main Street; 980-231-5000;; imagine casual Southern restaurant that studied abroad; charming; college professors linger over drinks in white-tiled room, while staff recommends local dive bar; try crispy oysters & Carolina shrimp rolls; house-made pastas, like squid-ink conchiglie with blue crab & sea-urchin butter, are menu stars; warm, milk-bread rolls.

Sights & Sites
North Carolina Zoo – 4401 Zoo Parkway; 336-879-7000 or 800-488-0444;; 5 pathway miles through 40K plants and 200 animal species, living in nature-inspired habitats.

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