20 Ideas to Plan a Night Out on the Town
Looking for a night out on the town? There’s plenty to do in the Queen City. From drinks and dining to live music and art, these night-out ideas are sure to fit any personality.
by Wynee Bermudez
1. Enjoy live music, arts and culture experiences, shopping and more at Camp North End, a 76-acre historic site and one of the largest adaptive reuse projects in the country. The former industrial site is now one of the hottest spots to explore in the city. Check out a local art show at Goodyear Arts, a grab dinner at one of the Keswick Avenue food stalls or make reservations at James Beard Semifinalist chef Greg Collier’s Leah & Louise, and make your rounds at the Boileryard for cocktails and live entertainment.
2. Get outside and enjoy live music on Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights May through September at River Jam, the U.S. National Whitewater Center’s outdoor concert series. Before taking in the sounds, snag a spot on the patio at River’s Edge Bar & Grill overlooking the man-made whitewater river. Take a walk through the trails along the Catawba River and experience all this expansive destination has to offer.
3. Shop and dine at Atherton Mill. With storefronts from national and local brands, stroll through the shops and wind down with a city view from the balcony at Trolley Barn as you sip local beer and share small plates from the team behind acclaimed Legion Brewing.
4. Shop in luxury and enjoy elevated cuisine at Phillips Place, SouthPark’s high-end open-air shopping and dining destination. Grab a glass of wine from RH Charlotte’s rooftop wine bar and enjoy regional fare at Southern Pecan.
5. Explore and experience the unique options lining Montford Drive. Before a night of bowling at 10 Park Lanes and karaoke at the legendary Jeff’s Bucket Shop, stop into Moosehead Grill for an order of Uncle Donnie’s blackened chicken wings, a local favorite, or share the Korean beef and other tasty tapas with friends at Good Food on Montford.
6. Discover Charlotte under the city lights with one of the city’s many tour companies. Book an early evening escapade with Funny Bus City Comedy Tour for a BYOB intro to Charlotte with a good dose of comedic relief. For Segway, scooter, hoverboard or walking tours, book an adventure at dusk with Charlotte NC Tours. If spooky is more of your speed, opt for a Beyond the Grave Tour through Uptown Charlotte with Carolina History and Haunts. Grab snacks before from your choice of vendors at Market at 7th Street and stop in Dandelion Market after for drinks and dancing.
7. Enjoy dinner and a show in Uptown. Dine at La Belle Helene for crispy duck confit or Sea Level NC for fresh oysters. Take in a Broadway performance, musical act or comedian at one of Blumenthal Performing Arts’ venues. Stop in The Local for craft beer and late-night eats after the show.
8. Spend an evening exploring the local restaurants and breweries in Plaza Midwood. Start your evening with classic Carolina ‘cue at Midwood Smokehouse. Enjoy cocktails at Supperland, then explore Plaza Midwood’s bar and brewery scene at spots like like Burial Brewing’s rooftop bar or the classic Thirsty Beaver Saloon. Stop in favorites like Petra’s for an inclusive tiki vibe or Snug Harbor to experience the night like a local.
9. Tour South End breweries via the Lynx Light Rail. Walk to Triple C and Lenny Boy Brewing a few blocks from the New Bern station then take the train to the Bland Street Station for Wooden Robot Brewery and HopFly Brewing Co.
10. Climb, play and dine in South End. Scale the walls of Inner Peaks South End before heading to Pins Mechanical for cocktails, arcade games and duckpin bowling. Round the night out at Hi-Wire Brewing for craft beer and interactive games with shuffleboard and the unique experience of soccer pool.
12. Enjoy the multitude of nightlife options at AvidXchange Music Factory. Start the night out with a sushi dinner at Bocao, then catch a concert at Charlotte Metro Credit Union Amphitheatre, The Fillmore or The Underground. Experience the intrigue of Bazal Gallery Nightclub, an artistic experience with a classy dresscode to mirror its elegant ambiance.
13. Enjoy the elegant aesthetic of Lost & Found, an elevated bar and lounge transforming to an upbeat dance party in the later hours of the night and enjoy elevated late-night bites and cocktails at Cloud Southend.
14. Tour the NoDa’s cocktail scene beginning with sips on the illustrious patio of Goodyear House. Enjoy a limoncello at Ever Andalo before heading to Idlewild, a menuless cocktail bar specially curated for each guest.
15. Cheer on the home team, like the Hornets at the Spectrum Center, Charlotte Knights at Truist Field or either the Carolina Panthers or Charlotte FC at Bank of America Stadium. Drink and snack at Uptown sports bars like Graham Street Pub & Patio or stops in Latta Arcade like Valhalla Pub & Eatery or Courtyard Hooligans.
16. Grab barbeque at Sweet Lew’s BBQ or a burger at ACE No. 3 then head to Super Abari Game Bar in the Belmont neighborhood for nostalgic arcade games and enjoy craft beers, cocktails and housemade soads.
18. Grab snacks and a drink and sit on the patio of Tip Top Daily Market. Head a few doors down to Hattie’s Tap & Tavern, one of Charlotte’s only lesbian-owned bars, for a laidback vibe and late-night drinks.
20. Discover a new band or see one of your local favorites at NoDa’s Neighborhood Theatre or The Evening Muse. Grab a drink Growlers Pourhouse or Salud Beer Shop, voted Best Beer Bar in the U.S. or head upstairs to Salud Cerveceria’s monthly Noche Latina as the boho taproom’s relaxing vibe is transformed into a lively dance club.