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Courtesy Charlotte Regional Visitors Authority

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5555 Concord Pkwy S

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Sports Type
1 to 2 hours Time to Spend

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  • 2.5Value
  • 3.0Facilities
  • 4.0Atmosphere

If you're hungry for a taste of NASCAR culture at its finest, take the 16-mile drive northeast of downtown Charlotte to Concord, where you can catch a race at the Charlotte Motor Speedway. Keep in mind that a visit here is more of an experience – it's nomral for die-hard fans to camp near the speedway. It's best to snag your tickets at least a month ahead of race day; last-minute tickets are a possibility, but you'll have a tough time purchasing them without breaking the bank.

For a more affordable – albeit less adrenaline-fueled – visit, consider taking one of the daily tours. The Feel the Thrill Speedway Tour allows travelers to see areas that are off-limits during race days, including the Winner's Circle. Past visitors say this tour, which costs $10 for kids and $12 for adults, is an informative introduction for uninitiated race fans.     

Although the season is limited, the Speedway does host a wide range of events throughout the year, including concerts and the Richard Petty Driving Experience. Check the Speedway's website for more details.

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#1 U.S. National Whitewater Center

Take your pick between more than 30 different land and water activities at the U.S. National Whitewater Center, a 1,300-acre facility northwest of downtown Charlotte along the Catawba River. At the world's largest man-made whitewater river, you'll have your choice of a variety of activities, including kayaking (both flatwater and whitewater), stand-up paddle boarding, and, of course, whitewater rafting. If you'd prefer to stay dry, the center can accommmodate you there, too: land activities include mountain biking, rock climbing and zip-lining, with plenty of running trails and obstacle courses for those with a competitive edge.

Past travelers said the center is a great place to take your family for the day  though visitors admit tickets can get pricey.

Take your pick between more than 30 different land and water activities at the U.S. National Whitewater Center, a 1,300-acre facility northwest of downtown Charlotte along the Catawba River. At the world's largest man-made whitewater river, you'll have your choice of a variety of activities, including kayaking (both flatwater and whitewater), stand-up paddle boarding, and, of course, whitewater rafting. If you'd prefer to stay dry, the center can accommmodate you there, too: land activities include mountain biking, rock climbing and zip-lining, with plenty of running trails and obstacle courses for those with a competitive edge.

Past travelers said the center is a great place to take your family for the day  though visitors admit tickets can get pricey.

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Kyo H Nam/charlottesgotalot.com
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