A destination full of southern hospitality and rich history, the city of Fayetteville, North Carolina offers many different things to do for both visitors and local residents alike. The city is particularly proud of its military history, understandably so with its close proximity to Fort Bragg. There are several different museums and monuments that share the stories of Fayetteville’s military background, with the city noted as “America’s Most Pro-Military Town” and a Military Sanctuary Community. There’s more to Fayetteville than military, however. There are delicious restaurants, children’s museums, parks, farms, shops, and much more.
1.Airborne and Special Operations Museum
© Airborne and Special Operations Museum
The Airborne and Special Operations Museum is a small military museum dedicated to “preserving the memory of the sacrifice” of those who served an airborne troops and special operations forces. Visitors will find a variety of period artifacts, along with an array of dioramas and visual and audio exhibits that stimulate the senses. The museum even features a motion simulator in which gives guests the feeling of being an All American Airborne soldier. The Airborne and Special Operations Museum is open Tuesday through Saturday from 10:00am until 5:00pm and on Sundays from noon until 5:00pm.
100 Bragg Blvd, Fayetteville, NC 28301, Phone: 910-643-2778
2.Cape Fear River Trail
The Cape Fear River Trail is made up of a paved path stretching ten feet wide, able to be used for biking, cycling, jogging, or walking. The walking trail spans more than five miles, taking people on a journey past wildlife, beautiful wildflowers, majestic trees, and more. The Cape Fear River Trail winds along the river, allowing for those who travel down it to take in plenty of beautiful views of the water. Along with the paved part of the trail, there is also a 700-foot boardwalk that takes people over lush wetlands and wooden bridges. Deer and turtles may also be spotted.
Fayetteville, NC 28301
3.Cape Fear Botanical Garden
Encompassing a spectacular seventy-seven acres, the Cape Fear Botanical Garden boasts amazing views over the Cape Fear River and the Cross Creek River. The grounds are covered by a variety of themed gardens, as well as educational and interesting exhibits like the “water-wise” garden display. The Cape Fear Botanical Garden features native plants of North Carolina, centuries-old oak trees, and abundant colorful wildflowers. The garden is also home to a restored farmhouse where visitors can see period farming tools and live demonstrations, such as how to harvest cotton, tobacco, and other crops typically grown in the southern United States.
536 N. Eastern Blvd, Fayetteville, NC 28301, Phone: 910-486-0221
4.1897 Poe House
© 1897 Poe House
The 1897 Poe House in Fayetteville, as the name suggests, was built by Edgar Allan Poe back in the year 1897. Poe lived at the house as prominent businessman with Josephine, his wife. Tours are offered Tuesday through Friday at 11:00am, 1:00pm, and 3:00pm, on Saturdays on the hour every house starting at 10:00am, and on Sundays every hour starting at 1:00pm. The last tour begins at 4:00pm on the weekends. The 1897 Poe House still looks much of how it did during the early 20th century and is full of memorabilia and period antiques.
206 Bradford Ave, Fayetteville, NC 28301, Phone: 910-500-4244
5.Gillis Hill Farm
© Gillis Hill Farm
The Gillis Hill Farm is a family-owned and operated farm in Fayetteville, North Carolina that has been around for eight generations. The family farm raises pastured poultry and beef cattle with plenty of space to roam and grows hay, wheat, soybeans, and corn. In addition to raising animals and farming crops, the Gillis Hill Farm also offers school tours and runs an on-site ice cream shop. The farm is open to visitors between the months of April and October, and guests get a free walking tour of the farm when they purchase ice cream from the shop.
2701 Gillis Hill Rd, Fayetteville, NC 28306, Phone: 910-867-2350
© Veterans Park
Located within the historic downtown area, the North Carolina Veterans Park os the first park in the state dedicated to veterans, both deceased and living. From all of the Armed Services branches, including the Coast Guard, the Air Force, the Marines, the Navy, and the Army. Known as the “First Sanctuary Community for the Military,” Fayetteville is a perfect place to be the home of the state’s Veterans Park. The park is situated adjacent to the Airborne and Special Operations Museum and features a chandelier made out of 33,500 service member identification tags, or “dog tags,” measuring 3,500 square feet.
300 Bragg Blvd, Fayetteville, NC 28301, Phone: 910-433-1457
© Christopher Boswell/stock.adobe.com
The Market House is often considered to be the focal point of Fayetteville, North Carolina’s historic downtown district. The building was constructed where the old State House once stood, the place where the state’s delegates ratified the United State Constitution and that had burned down in 1831 during the Great Fire. The Market House is one of the fifty National Landmarks located in the state of North Carolina, established as a National Landmark in 1973, and is the only landmark found in Cumberland County. There is now a museum located on the Market House’s upper level.
Fayetteville, NC 28301, Phone: 910-433-1457
The Segra Stadium is now the home of the minor league Fayetteville Woodpeckers baseball team, the city’s home team that plays in the Carolina League. This ballpark is able to accommodate up to around 5,290 guests for baseball games during the season, as well as other special events that the Segra Stadium may host throughout the year. Along with the spectator stands and the baseball field, there is also a Kids Zone for entertaining young children during the games, as well as the RF Grill and the Bleacher Bar. Concession area can also be found throughout the stadium’s concourse.
460 Hay St, Fayetteville, NC 28301, Phone: 910-339-1989
9.Fascinate-U Children's Museum
© Fascinate-U Children's Museum
Established in 1994, the Fascinate-U Children's Museum is a non-profit organization in the historic downtown district of Fayetteville. The hands-on, interactive museum is a place where kids are encouraged to explore the world around them through creative and fun role-playing, interaction, and manipulation. Fascinate-U features a variety of interactive and safe exhibits, classroom space, and static displays. Hands-on exhibits are designed to represent a miniature city, in which children can practice dentistry, dress up as soldiers, be on television, run a store, and more. The Fascinate-U Children's Museum is open every day of the week but Mondays and major holidays.
116 Green St, Fayetteville, NC 28301, Phone: 910-829-9171
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10.Lake Rim Park
The Lake Rim Park is a popular Fayetteville park and a great place to relax or take part in outdoor recreation activities for both local residents and visitors alike, whether they’re looking to have a picnic with family or friends, play a game or two of soccer, or take a walk along the one-mile nature trail to Bones Creek through wetlands. All of the park facilities on open on a first-come, first-served basis, with the exception of those that are reserved. Pets are allowed at Lake Rim Park as well, provided they remained leashed at all times and under control.
2214 Tar Kiln Dr, Fayetteville, NC 28304, Phone: 910-433-1018
11.Museum of Cape Fear
© Museum of Cape Fear
The Museum of Cape Fear Historical Complex showcases almost four hundred year of local history that intertwines patriotism and patriots. As visitors meander their way through the two floors of historical exhibits, they will be surrounded by the circumstances that have determined patriotism in the past. Exhibits at the Museum of Cape Fear include a general store, pottery, toys, textiles, agriculture implements, the Civil War, the Antebellum years, the Revolutionary War, Socttish immigration, exploration and settlement of early Europeans, and Native American. The purpose of these exhibits is to ask and answer questions about the past and how it has influenced the present.
801 Arsenal Ave, Fayetteville, NC 28305, Phone: 910-500-4240
12.Fayetteville Area Transportation and Local History Museum
© Fayetteville Area Transportation and Local History Museum
The Fayetteville Area Transportation and Local History Museum is housed inside of the 1890 Cape Fear and Yadkin Valley Railroad Depot, which has been beautifully restored and now features two different floors of artifact-filled and engaging exhibits. The area’s rich local history is highlighted in this museum, from pre-history time up through the early twentieth century. Favorites areas of the Fayetteville Area Transportation and Local History Museum are the recreated Station Agent’s Office and the interactive steamboat. The numerous exhibits at the museum are regularly rotated, with other areas including a 1920’s gas station and vintage cars.
325 Franklin St, Fayetteville, NC 28301, Phone: 910-433-1457
13.Cape Fear Regional Theatre
The Cape Fear Regional Theatre on Hay Street in Fayetteville, North Carolina has been delighting audiences through children’s favorites, off-Broadway productions, classic comedies and dramas, and elaborate musicals for many years. The theater puts on several productions throughout the year, including special events, performances, and plays that educate, inspire, enlighten, and entertain both audiences and performers alike. The Cape Fear Regional Theatre also provides behind-the-scenes tours to the public with advance arrangements. The mainstage season each year features six different shows, as well as robust outreach and education programs for students throughout the region and audiences of all ages.
1209 Hay St, Fayetteville, NC 28305, Phone: 910-323-4233
The Cumberland County Crown Complex is a quality landmark entertainment venue to the residents and visitors of Fayetteville, providing a place to hosts a wide variety of events year-round. The Crown Coliseum is the center’s newest addition, attracting thousands of people every year to the almost 11,000-seat venue for plays, live concerts, and a myriad of other special events, including several high-profile events and other entertainment events.. The county’s Crown Center is also the home of Fayetteville’s Southern Professional Hockey League team, The Fayetteville Marksmen, as well as the Cape Fear Heroes, the Arena Indoor Football team.
1960 Coliseum Dr, Fayetteville, NC 28306, Phone: 910-438-4100
15.Cross Creek Mall
© Cross Creek Mall
The regional shopping mall known as Cross Creek Mall in Fayetteville is located off of the 401 Bypass, between the All-American Freeway and Morganton Road. The shopping center features several large stores, such as Macy’s, JCPenney, and Belk, as well as more than one hundred speciality shops, including White House Black Market, Build-A-Bear Workshop, H&M, Vans, Chico’s, and numerous other stores. Guests will find an array of dining options at the Cross Creek Mall as well, such as Chili’s, Red Robin, Starbucks, Great Steak, Panda Express, Zoe’s Kitchen, Speedy Burritos, Sarku Japan, and several others.
419 Cross Creek Mall, Fayetteville, NC 28303, Phone: 910-868-7668
16.Sweet Tea Shakespeare
The mission of Sweet Tea Shakespeare in Fayetteville, North Carolina is to celebrate the wonder of stagecraft, story, and language by engaging the diverse community with magical, imaginative, accessible theater that’s inspired by the work of Shakespeare, as well as the early modern spirit. Similar to theatre in the past, especially during Shakespeare’s time, Sweet Tea Shakespeare features a surrounded space, meaning the audience is seated around a central performance stage in configurations that are now called “thrust and arena staging.” With the audience surrounding the performance space, they become a part of the play’s world.
206 Bradford Ave, Fayetteville, NC 28305, Phone: 910-420-4383
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17.David McCune International Art Gallery
© David McCune International Art Gallery
The David McCune International Art Gallery is situated on the Methodist University campus in Fayetteville, North Carolina. The university art gallery coordinates a number of exhibitions throughout the year, featuring works of art created by students at the Methodist University, as well as artists from throughout the region, the country, and the rest of the world. The goal of the David McCune International Art Gallery is to educate both the general public and students about various aspects of art through its diverse representation of works of fine art. The gallery is typically open Tuesday through Saturday during the academic year.
5400 Ramsey St, Fayetteville, NC 28311, Phone: 910-425-5379
Spanning almost eighty acres, Mazarick Park offers a wide variety of outdoor recreation activities. The multi-purpose city park features a lake for fishing, several sports fields and game areas, a picnic shelter, walking trails, a playground, and more. The grounds include a baseball field, a tennis court, picnic areas available on a first-come first-serve basis or by reservation, and a disc golf course. The Glenville Lake Pier at Mazarick Park offers fishing opportunities, but visitors are required to abide by the state’s fishing license requirements. A variety of educational programs are held at the park as well.
1400 Belvedere Ave, Fayetteville, NC 28305, Phone: 910-433-1547
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19.The Climbing Place
© The Climbing Place
The Climbing Place in Fayetteville is the most well known and oldest climbing gym in the state of North Carolina. Originally opened in the early part of the 1990’s the gym has stood the test of time, still going strong today. The facility consists of approximately twenty thousand square feet of space for climbing, including a cargo net, campus boards, military ropes, slacklines, obstacles, travers, ledge, top out, bouldering, top, rope, and even Ninja Warrior. The Climbing Place features a gym traverse measuring more than three hundred feet, lead climbing for advanced climbers, and fifty top ropes.
436 W Russell St, Fayetteville, NC 28301, Phone: 910-486-9638
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20.Carter Blueberry Farm
The Carter Blueberry Farm is a family-owned and operated farm that boasts the title of the “largest pick-your-own blueberry farm” in the Fayetteville area. The blueberry farm has been a part of the local community for more than forty years, offering both local residents and visitors alike with an opportunity to pick their own blueberries across the six-acre blueberry orchard. The Carter Blueberry Farm began in 1970, with blueberry bushes planted by Buck and Ellon Carter. Since then, the farm has grown to include more than two thousand blueberry bushes. The blueberry farm is particularly popular thanks to its low prices.
4140 Clinton Rd, Fayetteville, NC 28312, Phone: 910-308-0063
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21.Luigi's Italian Chophouse and Bar
© Luigi's Italian Chophouse and Bar
Luigi's Italian Chophouse and Bar was established in 1982 and quickly became one of the best restaurants in the city of Fayetteville. The restaurant focuses on offering high quality dishes at moderate prices, specializing in daily fresh fish, hand-cut chops and Black Angus steaks, pan-sauteed pasta dishes, and homemade sauces. Along with the main dining rooms, Luigi’s Italian Chophouse also offers seating in two private dining rooms, a bar area, and patio dining, all providing an upscale, yet still casual and comfortable atmosphere. The drink menu here consists of a wide selection of beers, spirits, and award-winning wines.
528 N. Mcpherson Church Rd,Fayetteville, NC 28303, Phone: 910-864-1810
22.Mash House Brewery & Restaurant
© Mash House Brewery & Restaurant
The Mash House Brewery and Restaurant serves some of the best local cuisine in the city of Fayetteville, North Carolina. Established in 2001, the restaurant and brewery has been serving some of the best casual fare, gourmet fusion dishes, and beef in the area, priding themselves on supporting North Carolina growers and farmers by using local ingredients whenever possible. The hand-crafted, award-winning beers served at the Mash House are brewed on the premises, using the traditional brewing methods of the Old World Brewers. Consistently ranked as one of the best restaurants in the area, guests can find delicious chops, steaks, and more.
4150 Sycamore Dairy Rd, Fayetteville, NC 28303, Phone: 910-867-9223
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23.Pierro's Italian Bistro
© Pierro's Italian Bistro
The family-owned and operated Pierro's Italian Bistro is a gem of downtown Fayetteville, featuring vintage hardwoods and exposed brick walls. Guests can relax at the Italian bistro with a glass from one of the area’s most diverse selections of wine, and the Sky Lounge offers a slightly South Beach-meets-Vegas ambiance. Pierro’s Italian Bistro offers a memorable experience, whether customers come for a drink or a delicious dinner within the restaurant’s historic atmosphere. The menu focuses on rustic Italian cuisine, offering everything from salads and antipasti to brick-oven pizzas to specialty entrees and pasta dishes to decadent desserts.
217 Hay St, Fayetteville, NC 28301, Phone: 910-678-8885
24.Huske Hardware House Restaurant and Brewery
© Huske Hardware House Restaurant and Brewery
The Huske Hardware House Restaurant and Brewery is the oldest BrewPub in the historic downtown area of Fayetteville and applies passion and scientific principles to its craft brewery to balance massive flavor and drinkability. The veteran-owned brewery and restaurant has been a local icon for more than twenty years, however, the building structure itself has existed for over one hundred years and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The Huske Hardware House Restaurant and Brewery beer menu features four seasonal brews and six different custom-crafted brews. Outdoor dining is available on the patio during nice weather.
405 Hay Street Fayetteville N.C 28301, Phone: 910-437-9905
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25.Chris's Steak & Seafood House
© Chris's Steak & Seafood House
Chris Poulos opened Chris’s Steak and Seafood House more than fifty years ago, transforming the restaurant into a legendary steakhouse in Fayetteville, North Carolina with one particular thing in mind: to serve only the highest quality seafood and steaks available without compromise. This passion and vision for exceptional service and great food has long been the restaurant’s cornerstone for success. The menu features homemade specialties, U.S.D.A. and Angus Beef hand-cut in-house, fresh Atlantic seafood, and an extensive fine wine selection. Chris’s Steak and Seafood House is open for dinner seven nights a week, starting at 5:00pm.
2620 Raeford Rd, Fayetteville, NC 28303, Phone: 910-485-2948
25 Best Things to Do in Fayetteville, NC
- Airborne and Special Operations Museum, Photo: Airborne and Special Operations Museum
- Cape Fear River Trail, Photo: saran/stock.adobe.com
- Cape Fear Botanical Garden, Photo: Pamela/stock.adobe.com
- 1897 Poe House, Photo: 1897 Poe House
- Gillis Hill Farm, Photo: Gillis Hill Farm
- Veterans Park, Photo: Veterans Park
- Market House, Photo: Christopher Boswell/stock.adobe.com
- Segra Stadium, Photo: StefanoT/stock.adobe.com
- Fascinate-U Children's Museum, Photo: Fascinate-U Children's Museum
- Lake Rim Park, Photo: ipopba/stock.adobe.com
- Museum of Cape Fear, Photo: Museum of Cape Fear
- Fayetteville Area Transportation and Local History Museum, Photo: Fayetteville Area Transportation and Local History Museum
- Cape Fear Regional Theatre, Photo: aerogondo/stock.adobe.com
- Crown Center, Photo: shock/stock.adobe.com
- Cross Creek Mall, Photo: Cross Creek Mall
- Sweet Tea Shakespeare, Photo: maslovskiy.xyz/stock.adobe.com
- David McCune International Art Gallery, Photo: David McCune International Art Gallery
- Mazarick Park, Photo: WavebreakMediaMicro/stock.adobe.com
- The Climbing Place, Photo: The Climbing Place
- Carter Blueberry Farm, Photo: Pixel-Shot/stock.adobe.com
- Luigi's Italian Chophouse and Bar, Photo: Luigi's Italian Chophouse and Bar
- Mash House Brewery & Restaurant, Photo: Mash House Brewery & Restaurant
- Pierro's Italian Bistro, Photo: Pierro's Italian Bistro
- Huske Hardware House Restaurant and Brewery, Photo: Huske Hardware House Restaurant and Brewery
- Chris's Steak & Seafood House, Photo: Chris's Steak & Seafood House
- Cover Photo: Christopher Boswell/stock.adobe.com