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Fayetteville: Exploring America’s Hometown
Historic buildings, picturesque parks, modern amenities and the world’s largest military base are all to be found in Fayetteville, North Carolina, a city lovingly referred to as “America’s Hometown”. If you plan on visiting this little corner of the Tar Heel State, expect a warm welcome, friendly atmosphere and no shortage of intriguing sights.
Fayetteville Downtown Historic District
History is proudly displayed in Fayetteville, NC, a city that boasts no fewer than 70 listings on the National Register of Historical Places. Many of these architectural antiquities are to be found in the Fayetteville Downtown Historic District.
Take a leisurely morning or afternoon stroll around the district, and you’ll catch glimpses of the city’s past. The likes of Liberty Point and the Cool Spring Tavern which dates back to the 1700s, while the Market House and Hay Street Methodist Church reflect nineteenth century architecture in the region. Even the city’s railroad station, which opened in 1911, is considered a historic landmark. As you take in the city’s rich heritage, you’ll find plenty of friendly places to stop off for a drink or snack.
A select number of hotels and guest houses are to be found in downtown Fayetteville, though the neighbourhood’s historical aspect means that most modern hotels and inns are located a short distance from downtown Museums in Fayetteville.
The city’s long-standing historic buildings aren’t the only place you can revisit history either. Fayetteville is home to an array of museums that offer insight into what life in the region was like in the past.
The Museum of the Cape Fear Historical Complex is the best place to start for those looking to explore the past. Here you’ll discover exhibits detailing the history of the State of the North Carolina, including a look at the Native American tribes who originally resided here and the European explorers who subsequently arrived on the Carolina shores, as well as details of the American Civil War and much more. And, just so you know, the Edgar Allan Poe house here refers to a local businessman, not the noted Baltimore author.
Fayetteville and the surrounding area has an important military history, as illustrated by the museums to be found at Fort Bragg. You’ll find another interesting military museum in downtown Fayetteville: the Airborne and Special Operations Museum. With permanent and temporary exhibitions, video displays and a motion simulator ride, there’s plenty to grab the attention here.
For those interested in trains, the Fayetteville Area Transportation and Local History Museum is a must visit. This restored railway depot dates back to 1890 and houses a host of interesting exhibits, including model trains.
Picturesque Gardens and Green Spaces
Fayetteville’s unhurried atmosphere makes for an easy-going getaway. If you’re really looking to unwind though, a trip to one of the city’s picturesque parks is a good place to start.
Care Fear Botanical Garden, located along the bank of the Cape Fear River, offers 77 acres of scenic vistas. An abundance of flowers and shrubbery makes for the ideal backdrop against which to enjoy a stroll. The same can be said for Fayetteville Rose Garden.
Elsewhere in the city, Arnette Park offers long stretches of natural beauty. In addition to miles of walking trails, the park also features a picnic area, playground, disc golf and various sporting fields. For those travelling with their four-legged friends, Riverside Dog Park offers a dog-friendly destination, complete with doggie bathing stations.
Entertainment in the City
Whilst history plays a prevalent role in and around Fayetteville, NC, you can still expect to find plenty of modern amenities, entertainment venues and fun activities in the city.
Situated between downtown and Fayetteville Regional Airport, the Crown Coliseum is the city’s primary events venue. Regularly hosting ice hockey and indoor football, the multipurpose arena also welcomes touring bands and hosts military events. If you’re planning on attending an event at the arena and looking for a hotel nearby, you’ll be pleased to find several choices in close proximity.
During the summer months, you can catch a baseball game at J. P. Riddle Stadium, home to the Fayetteville Swampdogs. Alternatively, Cape Fear Regional Theatre hosts a number of plays, musicals and other performances throughout the year. Several other theatres can be found around the city.
Fort Bragg Military Base
Home to some 50,000 active military personnel, Fort Bragg is considered the largest military base in the world. Understandably, the base – located approximately 11 miles from downtown Fayetteville – is one of the most visited destinations in this part of North Carolina, with military families and officials making their way here on a regular basis. A number of hotels and other accommodation options can be found either on-site or nearby.
Despite the official nature of the base, there are still several attractions at Fort Bragg that appeal to civilians. Both the 82nd Airborne Division War Memorial Museum and the John F. Kennedy Special Warfare Museum prove popular with those interested in military history, while the many memorial monuments and gardens are often frequented by Fayetteville visitors looking to pay their respects.
Additionally, you’ll find no fewer than 13 lakes in Fort Bragg that are open to the public. If you’re on the lookout for a pleasant place to enjoy an afternoon stroll, you could do worse than to make the trip here.