To truly see what Charlotte, NC has to offer; it is crucial that you find the time to explore the outdoors. There are all sorts of places for outdoor recreation near Charlotte, from vast open spaces to quaint parks. In fact, the inner city has enough green spaces to keep you busy for a long while. Here are some of the best parks in the city to keep you enjoying the great outdoors.
Wild Hiking Trails: Reedy Creek Nature Preserve
Reedy Creek Nature Preserve once housed Charlotte’s elite. However, residents now use the area for its 10 miles of scenic hiking trails. Try out the Robinson Rockhouse Trail, which is a two-mile loop that goes through the ruins of old stone houses that are over 200 years old. There is also an excellent Nature Center for those who want to learn more about their surrounding area through trail maps and exhibits.
Urban Park: Freedom Park
Freedom Park is a great example of one of Charlotte’s many urban parks. It is often called the Central Park of Charlotte for its convenient location and huge popularity with local residents. It is a superb location to take a picnic and catch some sun. However, what makes this park most popular is its trails. You’ll always find joggers and walkers around the paved trail path, which snakes along a pristine lake. This is also a fantastic place to walk your dog or go for a bike ride.
Riverbank Trail: Little Sugar Creek Greenway
Little Sugar Creek goes through a few of Charlotte’s urban neighborhoods, which makes it a great park to go to if you want a break from your busy schedule. The city spent almost a decade working to develop the 15-mile long greenway so that Charlotte residents could travel to and from various point in town while enjoying the region’s natural beauty. This greenway follows a riverbank and passes by many highlights of Charlotte, such as Central Piedmont Community College.
Fitness Loop: The Booty Loop
You can find The Booty Loop in the neighborhood of Myers Park. It is a 2.8-mile trail that is popular among fitness junkies who want to get in their morning or afternoon run. The Lance Armstrong Foundation even uses it for one of their annual fundraiser courses. If you want to check out the Booty Loop for yourself, then start off at the corner of Queens Road and make your way around.
Mountain Bike Trails: U.S. National Whitewater Center
U.S. National Whitewater Center is touted as having the best network of mountain bike trails in the entire region. If you are into mountain biking yourself, then the 14 miles of trails will likely be of interest to you. These trails wind through the woods and follow the Catawba River, allowing riders to catch some incredibly gorgeous views.