Things to do

Top Places to Stop on the Charlotte Light Rail

Whether you’re a light rail regular or newbie, here's what to eat, drink and do at each of the 26 stations along the LYNX Blue Line.

Photo by Kyo H Nam Photography

The LYNX Blue Line light rail has been a game-changer to Charlotteans since its operations began in 2007. The 9.6-mile route had 15 total stations linking South End to Center City. And just last year, the Charlotte Area Transit System added a 9.3-mile light rail extension, connecting Center City to UNC Charlotte, and bringing in 11 additional stops.

So, what is there to do exactly at each of the 26 stations? There’s plenty. Whether you’re a light rail regular or newbie, your $4.40 round-trip ticket just got a whole lot more exciting. From sipping on a cold, local brew to treating yourself to new finds at a boutique, there’s tons of activities to enjoy at each stop.

But first, we’ve got a few tips on how to navigate the light rail. You’ll want to download the CATS Pass mobile app to easily purchase your LYNX ticket ($2.20 each way), along with the Ride CATS mobile to get real-time information on all of Charlotte’s bus and rail services. If you need help figuring out which station to hop off, consult the LYNX stations and parking map. If you need to review boarding and arrival times, check out the official LYNX schedule.

Get your eat, drink and shop on.

South Charlotte

I-485/South Boulevard Station

Address: 9508 South Blvd.

Shop: Carolina Pavilion, Nordstrom Rack, Target, DSW

Do: AMC Carolina Pavilion 22

Station Amenities: Covered waiting area, public art, bike racks, elevators in the parking deck, 1120 park and ride spaces

Sharon Road West Station

Address: 8815 Crump Rd.

Must-See Stop: Snyder’s-Lance Factory

Did you know? The Snyder’s-Lance business began in Charlotte after a local businessman converted a raw peanut deal that had gone awry into a prolific snack brand.

Station Amenities: Water fountain, public art, bike lockers, 188 park and ride spaces

Arrowood Station

Address: 7717 England St.

Eat/Drink: Mi Tierra Restaurant, Taqueria Mexico

Station Amenities: Lighted station, 289 park and ride spaces, covered waiting area

Archdale Station

Address: 6230 South Blvd.

Eat/Drink
: The Burrito Factory, Dina’s Taco Bar, 500 Degrees Pizzeria, Lempira Restaurant

Station Amenities: Platform is on the bridge and is accessible by stairs and an elevator, 432 park and ride spaces, ticket vending machines with passenger assist

Bill Spoon's Barbecue

Tyvola Station

Address: 5703 Olde Pineville Rd.

Shop
: ALDI

Eat/Drink: Bill Spoon’s Barbecue, Vietnam Grille, Lupitas Carniceria & Tortilleria

Hotels Nearby: Crowne Plaza Charlotte Executive Park

Station Amenities: 465 park and ride spaces, platform is on the bride and is accessible by stairs and elevators, water fountain

Montclaire South/Lower South End

Woodlawn Station

Address: 4756 Old Pineville Rd.

Shop
: Sleepy Poet Antique Mall

Eat/Drink: Three Spirits Brewery, Arepas Grill, Beef ‘N Bottle Steakhouse

See: Rountree Plantation

Hotels Nearby: Best Western Plus

Station Amenities: 382 park and ride spaces, bike lockers, wheelchair accessible platform

Chef Alyssa's Kitchen

Scaleybark Station

Address: 3750 South Blvd.

Eat/Drink: Zack’s Hamburgers, Seoul Poke Bowl, Brewers at 4001 Yancey, The Olde Mecklenburg Brewery, Queen Park Social, Sugar Creek Brewing Co., Broken Spoke, Great Wagon Road Distilling Company, GoodRoad CiderWorks, Red Clay Ciderworks

Do: Chef Alyssa’s Kitchen

Hotels Nearby: Four Points by Sheraton Charlotte, Quality Inn

Station Amenities: Covered waiting area, 315 park and ride spaces, emergency call box

South End

New Bern Station

Address: 129 New Bern St.

Shop
: South End Exchange

Eat/Drink: Triple C Brewing Co., Lenny Boy Brewing Co., The Suffolk Punch, The Waterman, Mac’s Speed Shop, SouthBound, Holler & Dash Biscuit House

Hotels Nearby: Super 8 by Wyndham, Quality Inn

Station Amenities: Seating, automatic audio announcements, bike racks and lockers

Bland Street Station

Address: 1511 Camden Rd.

Eat/Drink: The Union, Crispy Crepe, Futo Buta, Wooden Robot Brewery, The Brass Tap, Golden Cow Creamery, The Gin Mill, The Brickyard, Tavern on the Tracks, Oak Room, All American Pub, Hot Taco, Slate Billiards, Bulldog Beer & Wine

Do: Elder Gallery of Contemporary Art

Hotels Nearby: Holiday Inn Express

Station Amenities: Automatic radio announcements, seating, ticket vending machines with passenger assist

Carson Station

Address: 218 E. Carson Blvd.

Eat/Drink: Midnight Diner, The Unknown Brewing Co., Hoppin’, Seoul Food Meat Company, Let’s Meat, Craft Tasting Room & Growler Shop, Nikko Japanese Restaurant, Lincoln’s Haberdashery, Capishe Real Italian Kitchen

Do: Charlotte Cigar Club

Station Amenities: Lighted station, seating, bike racks, public art

Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts + Culture

Uptown

Stonewall Station

Address: 260 E. Stonewall St.

Eat/Drink: Whole Foods, Sandwich Club, Rico’s Acai, Matt’s Chicago Dog, Merchant & Trade, La Belle Helene, Famous Toastery, Rhino Market & Deli, Angeline’s, Ink N Ivy

Do: The Mint Museum Uptown, The Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts + Culture, The Bechtler Museum of Modern Art, Knight Theater

See: Bank of America Stadium

Hotels Nearby: The Westin Charlotte, Hilton Charlotte Center City, Kimpton Tryon Park Hotel, EVEN Hotel (under construction), Home2 Suites by Hilton (under construction)

Station Amenities: Station is located on top of the Westin Hotel parking deck, elevators in Westin parking deck, wheelchair accessible platform

Discovery Place Science

7th Street Station

Address: 260 E. 7th St.

Eat/Drink: 7th Street Public Market, The Cellar at Duckworth’s, Lucky’s Bar & Arcade

Do
: Discovery Place Science, ImaginON, The Joe & Joan Martin Center, Levine Museum of the New South, Charlotte Mecklenburg Library, Carolina Theatre (currently being restored), McGlohon Theater at Spirit Square

See
: First Ward Park

Hotels Nearby: The Holiday Inn, SpringHill Suites by Marriott Charlotte Uptown, Holiday Inn Charlotte-Center City, The Dunhill Hotel, The Ivey’s Hotel, Charlotte Marriott City Center

Station Amenities: Bike racks, public art, covered waiting area

9th Street Station

Address: 237 E. 9th St.

Eat/Drink: Waterbean Coffee, Sports One Charlotte, Duckworth’s Grill & Taphouse, McNinch House Restaurant, Queen City Grounds, Pizzeria Sapienza, Alexander Michael’s

Do: McColl Center for Art + Innovation, Charlotte Ballet

See: UNC Charlotte Center City Campus, First Ward Park

Hotels Nearby
: Holiday Inn Charlotte-Center City, SpringHill Suites by Marriott Charlotte Uptown

Station Amenities: Four ticket vending machines with passenger assist, CCTVs (cameras), ADA accessible, variable message signs

NoDa/Optimist Park/Plaza-Shamrock

Parkwood Station

Address: 327 Parkwood Ave.

Eat/Drink: Optimist Hall (opening spring 2019), Birdsong Brewing

Do
: Abari Game Bar, Mac Tabby Cat Café

See
: Cordelia Park

Station Amenities: Two ticket vending machines with passenger assist, lighted station, emergency call box

Amélie’s French Bakery & Café

25th Street Station

Address: 2227 N. Brevard St.

Eat/Drink: Free Range Brewing, Amélie’s French Bakery & Café, Heist Brewery, Brooks’ Sandwich House, Benny Pennello’s

Do
: CenterStage@NoDa

Station Amenities: Variable message signs, CCTVs (cameras), two ticket vending machines with passenger assist

36th Street Station

Address: 434 E. 36th St.

Eat/Drink: Crêpe Cellar Kitchen & Pub, Haberdish, Growlers Pourhouse, Reigning Doughnuts, Idlewild, Cabo Fish Taco, JackBeagle’s, Popbar, Salud Cerveceria, Salud Beer Shop, Trade & Lore, Stu’s Barrel House, Smelly Cat Coffee, NoDa Company Store, The Dog Bar, The Blind Pig, Boudreaux’s Louisiana Kitchen

Do: Evening Muse, Neighborhood Theatre, Hart Witzen Gallery

Station Amenities: Covered waiting area, three ticket vending machines with passenger assist, ADA accessible

Sugar Creek Station

Address: 644 E. Sugar Creek Rd.

Eat/Drink: Bold Missy Brewery, Deejai NoDa, Divine Barrel Brewing, Crown Station Coffeehouse & Pub, Zoewee’s

Do: Charlotte Art League

Hotels Nearby: Continental Inn Charlotte

Station Amenities: Five ticket vending machines with passenger assist (three in station, two in garage), parking deck with 632 park spaces, eight short-term/21 long-term bike racks

Eastway/Hidden Valley/University City

Old Concord Road Station

Address: 5442 N. Tryon St.

Eat/Drink: Tryon House Restaurant, American Deli, La Zima Bar Mexicano, Lempira Restaurant

See: Eastway Park

Station Amenities: 332 park and ride spaces, ADA accessible, bike racks, two ticket vending machines with passenger assist

Tom Hunter Station

Address: 6505 N. Tryon St.

Shop: Around the World Market

Eat/Drink: Prime at 6538, South 21 Jr., El Taco Veloz

Hotels Nearby: Relax Inn Charlotte

Station Amenities: Two ticket vending machines with passenger assist, variable message signs, public art, lighted station

IKEA

University City Boulevard Station

Address: 7205 N. Tryon St.

Shop: IKEA, Belgate Shopping Center, Camino Thrift Store

Do: Topgolf (early stages of permitting)

Hotels Nearby: Comfort Suites by Choice Hotels, InTown Suites Extended Stay

Station Amenities: Parking deck with 1,513 parking spaces, elevators in the parking deck, five ticket vending machines with passenger assist (two in station, three in garage), nine short-term/32 long-term bike racks

McCullough Station

Address: 8312 N. Tryon St.

Eat/Drink: McCullough Commons, Banh Mi Brothers, Le Kebab Mediterranean Grill, Thai House University, Tea Fusion Café, Crackin’ Crawfish, Peacock Indian Cuisine

Hotels Nearby: Residence Inn by Marriott, Homewood Suites by Hilton, Holiday Inn Charlotte University Place, Country Inn & Suites by Radisson

Station Amenities
: Two ticket vending machines with passenger assist, CCTVs (cameras) covered waiting area, public art

JW Clay Station

Address: 9048 N. Tryon St.

Shop: The Shoppes at University Place

Eat/Drink
: CAVA, Famous Toastery, Ninety’s Ice Cream & Sandwiches, Lazeez Mediterranean Grill, Firewater Restaurant & Bar

Do: Paradise Valley Par 3

Hotels Nearby: Hilton Charlotte University Place, Residence Inn Charlotte

Station Amenities: Parking deck with 800 parking spaces, pedestrian bridge, five ticket vending machines with passenger assist (three in station, two in garage), 10 short-term/18 long-term bike racks, emergency call box

UNC Charlotte

UNC Charlotte - Main Station

Address: 9025 Cameron Blvd.

See: UNC Charlotte

Hotels Nearby: Hilton Charlotte University Place, Courtyard by Marriott Charlotte University Research Park, Sleep Inn University Place

Station Amenities: Two ticket vending machines with passenger assist, variable message signs, public art, lighted station