***Warning you now, this is a long post***Joe and I recently had the opportunity to spend an extended weekend in the Carolina’s. Joe was in Charlotte for a training and we had enough miles for me to hop out there and join him, so of course I did!
I spent all of Thursday in Charlotte mostly alone since Joe still had training for the better part of the day. Truth be told it was glorious. I got to sleep in, go wherever I wanted for breakfast and lunch, do whatever I wanted. Just the kind of laid back travel day I like. But first, breakfast. I had done a little food research before the trip and decided to try a local crepe place. I was going to get a savory and sweet crepe but decided I would just get the sweet crepe. It was strawberry, banana, nutella and cinnamon. I was in heaven, delicious!
After breakfast I went over the Freedom Park. I didn’t really know what else to do in Charlotte (not a NASCAR or football fan) but I found a few free gardens. This one was very peaceful, not too crowded and was a great place to relax and play with the goPRO. After the park I wanted to try this food truck that has been raved about, Papi Queso, and get the Pig Mac…grilled cheese with mac and cheese and pulled pork. Yes it was just as delicious as it sounds. I also got their homemade basil lemonade which was very refreshing.
I had some time left on the parking meter so I walked to the Bank of America Stadium and took some selfies with the intense looking panthers outside…oh and to make Joe jealous because he was stuck in a room while I was outside. It was a beautiful day and I enjoyed the walk. I then headed to pick Joe up and we went to a local winery called Treehouse Vineyards. It was such a cute country winery with an adorable tree house and unique history. It was $6 / person for a wine tasting a tour. We got to try 8 wines each at a 1 oz pour and we got to keep the glass. Not too shabby for $6! Our first time touring a winery together and we had a great time.
Enough drinking its time to eat. When in Carolina you try the barbecue so we headed over to a high rates BBQ place to try the local fare. The pulled pork is the thing to try and it was ok, my socks weren’t blown off but it was tasty. We rolled ourselves out of the restaurant, back to the hotel and passed out.
Friday we woke up at 5am and make our way to Asheville, North Carolina. I have heard great things about the views and hiking there so I knew we would have a great time. My friend Brittany told me about a great breakfast place, Biscuit Head so we went there to fuel for the day. Let me tell you she was not joking, these biscuits were huge and delicious. I got the mimosa fried chicken and a plain biscuit. All the fresh made jams, butters and spreads were just divine. After breakfast we decided to head over to the Biltmore Estate to explore then go hiking in the afternoon. The Biltmore is HUGE! A few movies have been filmed here and its just so picturesque. We walked around the garden for a little over an hour then it started raining so we headed into the house. The estate was really crowded so we went through the tour pretty quickly then headed to the winery. I will say I thought the tickets were pretty expensive to tour ($55/person) but it included a wine tasting. This was an amazing wine tasting, we got to try about 20 different wines and honestly I liked all but 2. Needless to say we had a great time and money well spent. We even joined the wine club…that alone should tell you how good these wines are!
After the winery it was time to eat, we tried another local favorite barbecue place which again I thought was just ok (sorry, Texan through and through) then made a plan for hiking. The rain would just not stop and it was extremely overcast so we decided to just drive up the Blue Ridge Parkway and stop at some overlooks. This was a great choice because the higher we got the more dense the clouds were. I would have been disappointed if we made that trek and couldn’t see anything. It was a nice drive and I can see why people would come here in the fall to see the changing of the leaves.
It was getting close to dinner time so we headed to downtown Asheville, went to a Honey Store (Beecharmer in case you wanted to know), tasted some honey (because apparently thats a thing in Asheville, who knew) then went to dinner. I am so sad to say this but I hated dinner. It was a french place (Bouchon) that I was pretty excited to try and it just fell flat. It started raining pretty heavily so we called it a day and headed back to Charlotte. All in all this was my favorite day, I love the mountains!
Another early morning we got up at 5am to head to Charleston. I wanted to see the Pineapple fountain and there are a few local beaches Joe wanted to check out. We made it to Charleston and headed to get breakfast at the HLB (hot little biscuit). It was good but not as good as Biscuit Head. After breakfast we went to the Pineapple fountain, took copious amounts of pictures then decided what we wanted to do the rest of the day. We had talked about spending the day in Charleston but from driving around and doing a little research there just wasn’t really much to do and to be honest the city felt old, run down and not too safe. Instead Joe found a beach close by and we stayed for about an hour then the bugs just got to be too much so we left. We decided to make the drive to Myrtle beach but not before having lunch at Bojangles.
I don’t know why this place is so loved, the chicken tenders were not nearly as good as Zaxby’s but the biscuits, mac and cheese and fries were legit. When we got to Myrtle beach we headed to the National Park, walked around the beach for a while, took pictures of some jelly fish then went to dinner. I had a hard time finding a place to eat and the place I found was ok but it was in a really cute shopping/entertainment center. Very relaxing for sure. After dinner we made the drive back to Charlotte for an early morning flight. Today was a lot of driving (about 9 hours) so while it doesn’t seem like we did a lot we did everything Joe and I wanted to do plus some relaxing time on the beach.
I liked visiting the Carolina’s, it was fun and very diverse. I would go back to the mountain area but probably not the beaches. They weren’t what Joe expected and beaches just really aren’t my thing. It was great to get away for the weekend with no real agenda and a new place to visit for both of us. Until next time Carolina!
CHIME IN!!! What do you think of Bojangles? Ever been to the Carolina’s? Beach or Mountains?