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36 Fun & Best Things to do in Fayetteville, North Carolina

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36 Fun & Best Things to do in Fayetteville, North Carolina

If you’re looking for things to do in Fayetteville, you’ve landed on the right page of this big ‘ole world wide web book. With historic areas decked out in cobblestones and significant structures, museums exploring military and African American heritage, and parks showing off regional flora and fauna, Fayetteville is a well-rounded city to base an east-central North Carolina vacation.

Located in Cumberland County, Fayetteville is bordered by the Cape Fear River and near cities such as Spring Lake, Holly Springs, Hope Mills, and Lumberton. Along with the recreation factors, the river is an important natural resource in the state.

Don’t let memories of the 1991 Scorsese flick Cape Fear get you down. That was filmed in Florida in Fort Lauderdale and the Everglades. It was also fiction. But, man, De Niro was good in that one.

So, what is Fayetteville North Carolina known for, you ask? It’s only home to one of the largest military bases in the world. That would be the U.S. Army’s Fort Bragg, for those not up on military history.

We’ve collected some of the best things to do in Fayetteville, North Carolina, and Cumberland County for your reading (and, hopefully, traveling) pleasure.

Courtyard by Marriott Fayetteville
1. Courtyard by Marriott Fayetteville
Top Recommendation

When looking for a place to stay in Fayetteville, look no further than the Courtyard by Marriott. This hotel is conveniently located near some of the city’s best attractions, including the Cape Fear Botanical Garden and Fayetteville State University. Guest rooms are spacious and comfortable, featuring cable TV and free high-speed internet access. The hotel also has a well-equipped gym, making it easy to stay active while on the road. Whether you’re in town for business or pleasure, the Courtyard by Marriott is sure to make your stay a memorable one.

Holiday Inn Raleigh Downtown
2. Holiday Inn Raleigh Downtown, an IHG Hotel

Holiday Inn Raleigh Downtown is the perfect hotel for business and leisure travelers alike. Featuring an on-site restaurant and business center, it offers everything you need for a successful trip. The accommodations are spacious and modern, with plenty of amenities to make your stay comfortable. And with free WiFi access, you can stay connected even while on the go. The North Carolina State Capitol building is just a 2 minutes’ drive from the property, making it easy to explore all that Raleigh has to offer. When it’s time to relax, head to the fitness center or take advantage of the daily housekeeping and laundry services.

Comfort Inn Suites Near North Fort Bragg
3. Comfort Inn & Suites Near North Fort Bragg

Located just a short drive from North Fort Bragg, the Comfort Inn & Suites Near North Fort Bragg is the perfect place to stay for those visiting the area. The hotel offers a variety of amenities to make your stay as comfortable as possible, including an indoor heated pool, a 24-hour front desk, and free WiFi. All of the guest rooms feature a TV with cable channels, a refrigerator, coffee maker, and microwave, and select rooms also include a kitchen and additional living space. Business travelers will appreciate the on-site meeting space.


  • Most significant landmark: Fort Bragg
  • Best park: Clark Park Nature Center
  • Best free activity: Cape Fear River Trail
  • Best activity for kids: Fascinate U Children’s Museum
  • Best activity for adults: Sweet Tea Shakespeare
  • Best food: Luigi’s Italian Chophouse & Bar
  • Best nightlife: Huske Hardware House Restaurant and Brewery
  • Best all-around accommodation: Courtyard by Marriott Fayetteville

Fun and Best Things to Do in Fayetteville, North Carolina

1. African-American Heritage Trail

One of the best places to visit in Fayetteville, the African-American Trail is a pathway of sites that give a historic look into the life of African Americans who live in Fayetteville and Cumberland County.

The African American history trail in Cumberland County winds throughout the area. Some of the sites are open to the public, some are by appointment only, and some are only exterior views. Whichever you happen to visit, you’ll find some of the best cultural heritage trails in the state.

Just a few of the landmarks you might come across along the cultural heritage trails include the Sandhills Family Heritage Center, Orange Street School, the Evans A.M.E. Zion Church, the Fayetteville History Museum, Cross Creek Cemetery, and the Henry Evans Historical Marker.  

See Related: Most Beautiful Valleys in the US

2. Sandhills Family Heritage Center

Address: 230 Chapel Hill Road, Spring Lake, North Carolina 28390

Sandhills Family Heritage Center is part of the African American Trail. Located northwest of Fayetteville, the center was founded by African American community members as an activity facility for local youth in 1951. It was originally known as the Spring Lake Civic Center.

There are outdoor exhibits on African American history and heritage, including a plank road and a brush arbor, an open-sided shelter made of vertical poles and topped with smaller branches and brush. Brush arbors were used for camp meetings, revivals, and church services (for shade). Picture a grape arbor with sticks and branches rather than vines and grapes if that helps.

For accommodations near the Sandhills Family Heritage Center, check out the Comfort Inn & Suites Spring Lake. It has an outdoor swimming pool, a fitness center, laundry facilities, and a meeting center.

Guest rooms offer cable TV, free Wi-Fi, a mini-fridge, and a microwave. Some guest rooms have kitchenettes and extra seating areas. The hotel is near Edward Mendoza Municipal Park, Smith Lake Recreation Area, and Carvers Creek State Park.

3. Ghosts and History Tour

Address: North Carolina State Capitol, 1 Edenton Street, Raleigh, North Carolina 27601

Fayetteville is only about an hour’s drive from Raleigh. Treat yourself to a historic walking tour with a spooky side. You’ll learn about local history and see sites reported to house the paranormal and other ghostly happenings.

Visit eight to 12 places around downtown Raleigh, including the Heck-Andrews House, the White Holman House, Isaac Hunters’ Tavern, and the Executive Mansion. We think it’s worth the drive.

If you decide to spend a night or two in Raleigh, the Holiday Inn Raleigh Downtown is a terrific option in downtown Raleigh. The hotel offers an on-site restaurant, lounge, business center, fitness room, and free Wi-Fi.

The North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences, the North Carolina State Capitol, and the North Carolina Museum of Art are nearby. The Longleaf Hotel is another choice in the downtown Raleigh area. Located near the convention center, the hotel has a bar, a terrace, free Wi-Fi, and evening entertainment.

See Related: Best Things to do in Outer Banks, North Carolina

4. Airborne and Special Operations Museum

Airborne & Special Operations Museum Grounds

Address: 100 Bragg Boulevard, Fayetteville, NC, 28301

Located at Fort Bragg, the Airborne and Special Operations Museum is on a mission to engage, inspire, and educate the public on military history. Peruse exhibits on U.S. Army history, WWII vehicles, Korea and Cold War displays, early weapons, current campaigns, special operations forces, audio and visual exhibits, and more.

The museum has a really unique attraction that you’ll want to check out. The Pritzker Motion Simulator puts you in the high-def picture of WWII maneuvers. This can be experienced at an additional cost. We consider it one of the best things to do in the Fayetteville area.

Special events at the Airborne and Ops Museum include film screenings, book signings, lectures, and 5K events. Searching for a vacation cottage in Fayetteville that’s near the visual and audio exhibits at the Airborne and Special Ops Museum? Maverick’s Getaway, near Fort Bragg and the Airborne Museum, is just minutes from downtown Fayetteville. It offers three bedrooms, a fully-equipped kitchen, a living room, a dining area, and free Wi-Fi.

Another hotel near the Airborne Museum is Tru by Hilton Fayetteville I-95. It has a fitness center, a lounge, a convenience store, a game room, and a 24-hour front desk.

Guest rooms have a flat-screen TV, a coffee maker, and free Wi-Fi. Enjoy a continental or buffet breakfast. It makes an excellent anchorage to check out things to do in Fayetteville.

5. North Carolina Veterans Park

North Carolina Veterans Park
refrina – stock.adobe.com

Address: 300 Bragg Boulevard, Fayetteville, North Carolina 28301

Located next to the Airborne and Special Ops Museum, this park is a terrific place to enjoy quiet time after exploring the museum. It’s dedicated to military veterans from all branches, including the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, and Coast Guard.

The park features memorial structures and s a 3,500-square-foot “chandelier” made from 33,500 dog tags of persons who have served or are serving in the Armed Forces, such as the Coast Guard, Army, Navy, Air Force, and Marines.

Visit the Story Garden at North Carolina Veterans Park to listen to personal accounts of military experiences.

See Related: Where to Stay in Asheville, North Carolina: Best Areas & Neighborhoods

6. Lake Rim Park

Lake Rim Park

Address: 214 Tar Kiln Drive, Fayetteville, North Carolina 28304

Lake Rim Park offers a wide variety of outdoor recreation for families and others visiting Fayetteville. Park amenities include sand volleyball, horseshoe pits, a soccer field, tennis courts, a playground, picnic areas, and a Native American-themed garden.

You can go fishing in the lake, but there’s no swimming allowed at Lake Rim Park. The fish are picky like that. Lake Rim Park has a one-mile hiking trail along the wetlands leading to Bones Creek. Leashed dogs are welcome, so bring those four-legged friends along.

You’ll want to check out the tar kilns located throughout the park. In days of yore (around 1700s), pits were dug in the ground. A barrel was placed in them to collect the tar from burning pine wood. As the wood burned, the tar dripped into the barrels.

North Carolina has a history as a producer of naval stores (such as turpentine, tar, pitch, and rosin). These items all came from the state’s pine forests. The state nickname, Tarheel, undoubtedly derived from this.

Holiday Inn & Suites Fayetteville W-Fort Bragg Area is an excellent choice for access to Lake Rim Park and Fort Bragg. Amenities include a business center, a restaurant, a bar, a fitness center, and an outdoor swimming pool.

7. Cape Fear River Trail

Cape Fear River Trail

Address: Fayetteville, North Carolina 28301

Looking for a little exercise paired with great scenery and the chance to see native plant and animal species? The Cape Fear River Trail (CFRT) is a seven-mile trail, with a paved 10-foot-wide path, for walkers, runners, and bicyclists. The trail runs from Hofer Drive to Eastwood Avenue near Providence Presbyterian Church.

Enjoy the scenery of trees, plants, wildlife, and river views through marshes, wetlands, and woodlands. There are wooden bridges and a covered bridge along the way. Pets are allowed but must be leashed.

You can access the Cape Fear Mountain Bike Trail from the CFRT. Parking is available at Clark Park and the Jordan Soccer Complex.

If you’re looking for hotels near the Cape Fear, consider the Holiday Inn Express and Suites – Fayetteville South, an IHG Hotel. There’s an outdoor pool, a fitness center, free Wi-Fi, a daily continental breakfast, and a business center. The hotel is within convenient access to the Airborne Museum.

The pet-friendly Baymont by Wyndham Fayetteville I-95 has an outdoor swimming pool, a fitness center, and daily continental or buffet breakfast options. Guests can enjoy free Wi-Fi. The hotel is near Arnette Park and Riverside Dog Park.

Country Inn & Suites by Radisson, Fayetteville I-95 has an outdoor pool, a fitness center, a 24-hour front desk, and a daily continental breakfast. Guest rooms feature free Wi-Fi, cable TV, a microwave, a mini-fridge, and a dining area.

See Related: Best Father Son Trips & Vacation Ideas

8. Cross Creek Mall

Address: 419 Cross Creek Mall, Fayetteville, North Carolina 28303

Sometimes you just need that retail therapy. Located on the 401 Bypass between the All-American Freeway and Morganton Road, Cross Creek Mall has more than 150 stores for your shopping pleasure.

Browse, buy, and window shop at stores such as Belk, Macy’s, H&M, Yankee Candle, Box Lunch, Pac Sun, and more. Dining options include Panda Express, Cinnabon, Bubble Tea Express, and Smoky Bones Bar & Fire Grill.

If you’re searching for a hotel near Cross Creek Mall and other Fayetteville attractions, Candlewood Suites Fayetteville Fort Bragg is a terrific option. It has a fitness center, laundry facilities, a convenience store, and a business center. Guest rooms have kitchenettes, flat-screen TVs, and free Wi-Fi.

9. Cross Creek Linear Park

Bike on a Trail

Address: Green St, Fayetteville, NC 28301

Situated along Fayetteville’s Cross Creek River, the Cross Creek Linear Park offers a greenway and paved paths for walking, running, bicycling, mountain biking, and nature watching.

Cross Creek Linear Park connects historic sites along a two-mile trail that winds down at the Cape Fear River. One end of the park is Festival Park and the other is the Riverside Dog Park.

Sites within Cross Creek Linear Park include a fountain and a statue of Marquis de Lafayette (Fayetteville’s namesake). We’ll get more into the French general further below, but it’s interesting to note that he played a pivotal role in helping George Washington’s Revolutionary War army defeat Cornwallis at Yorktown in 1781. He was barely 20 when he gained command of his own division 1777 (while defying orders of his own king, no less – what a rebel).

But we digress. Read on for more on Fayetteville and, eventually, its French namesake.

10. Gillis Hill Farm

Address: 2701 Gillis Hill Road, Fayetteville, North Carolina 28306

Gillis Hill Farms, a ninth-generation North Carolina family farm, is a destination farm offering tours and wagon rides. There’s an ice cream shop, which may be one of the best reasons for visiting Gillis Hill Farm. Guests can take a free walking tour of the farm by buying ice cream. We say that’s a win/win.

At Gillis Hill Farm, you can see what it’s like to live on and work on a farm. Take self-guided walking tours to see and feed animals, check out farm buildings, play yard games, swing on swings, and just enjoy nature at Gillis Hill Farm.

See Related: Best Cheap Places to Travel in the US

11. Fascinate U Children’s Museum

Fascinate U Children’s Museum Building
Goldilock Project / Shutterstock.com

Address: 116 Green St, Fayetteville, NC 28301

Fascinate U Children’s Museum is just the place to let the kids go wild with hands-on exhibits and fun-based educational displays. The venue is set up like a mini city where kids can role-play among diners, newsrooms, farmers’ markets, and other interactive exhibits.

The Fascinate U Museum is very popular among the age one to 12 set. It’s also popular among parents of the one to 12 set. If you’re a parent, you get it.

12. Market House

Address: Gillespie St, Fayetteville, NC 28301

The historic Market House, located near Fascinate U, was built in 1838. It’s on the site of the old town hall and state house. The state house burned down in 1831. For historical purposes, Fayetteville was North Carolina’s capital from 1789 to 1794. It’s now Raleigh.

The Market House property was a town hall and a market until the early 20th century. There’s now a museum on the upper level.

13. Carter Blueberry Farm

Fresh Blueberries

Address: 4120 Clinton Rd, Fayetteville, NC 28312

Carter Blueberry Farm began in 1970 with just a few blueberry bushes. Today, Carter Blueberry Farm is where you’ll want to go before you bake your next pie, cake, or batch of muffins. The pick-your-own-blueberry farm sits on six acres and is the largest blueberry farm in Fayetteville.

Peak picking season at Carter Blueberry Farm is usually late June/early July to early/mid-August. It’s one of the best fun things (and most delicious) to do in the Fayetteville area.

See Related: Best Road Trips in the USA

14. Cape Fear Regional Theatre

Address: 1209 Hay Street, Fayetteville, North Carolina 28305

The Cape Fear Regional Theatre features traditional and up-and-coming theater productions as well as educational and outreach programs. The theater group got its start in 1962 with a group of local actors performing at the Fayetteville Courthouse.

The three-story Cape Fear Regional Theater complex now has 300 seats and offers shows and musicals such as The Odd Couple, Matilda the Musical, Jelly’s Last Jam, and The Best Christmas Pageant Ever.

Cultural enrichment opportunities include creative drama classes, musical theater, improv, and acting.

15. Fayetteville Rose Garden

Pink Roses

Address: 2201 Hull Rd, Fayetteville, NC 28303

Established in the 1970s, the 23-acre Fayetteville Rose Garden is an excellent site for fans of roses and peaceful settings. There are more than 15,000 roses in climbing, miniature, and long-stemmed varieties of all shapes and colors.

Not just home to sweet-smelling roses, the garden has decorative stone benches, a gazebo, a fountain, picnic areas, and an eight-foot waterfall that flows into a natural pool.

Concerts, festivals, weddings, and private events are held throughout the year. The garden has an amphitheater that has been used for Shakespeare-type productions and other performances since 1936.

The Fayetteville Rose Garden is located within Fayetteville Technical Community College.

16. Cape Fear Botanical Garden

Cape Fear Botanical Garden Scenery

Address: 536 N. Eastern Blvd, Fayetteville, North Carolina 28301

Located on the river along Eastern Blvd, the Cape Fear Botanical Garden is one of the best things to see in Fayetteville. You’ll find camellias, daffodils, a children’s garden, and more at the 80-acre Cape Fear Botanical Garden.

Take a guided tour of the botanical garden, stroll through themed gardens, book a horticulture workshop, or enjoy other educational classes. There is a farmhouse with a collection of antique period farming tools and demonstrations on harvesting cotton, tobacco, and other crops.

Special events include yoga in the garden, bring-your-dog nights, holiday lights, and other seasonal events. The Cape Fear Botanical Garden has a gift shop, a farmhouse, and a general store.

Located west of downtown Fayetteville, the Courtyard by Marriott Fayetteville is near the Cape Fear Botanical Garden and Fayetteville State University. It has an outdoor swimming pool, a fitness center, a convenience center, and an on-site restaurant.

Guest rooms offer free Wi-Fi, cable TV, a work desk, and a coffee maker. Enjoy the hotel’s outdoor space, which offers a fireplace, seating areas, a garden, a picnic area, and a sun deck.

See Related: Best Vacations for a Group of Friends

17. Huske Hardware House Restaurant and Brewery

Address: 405 Hay St, Fayetteville, NC 28301

The British-style pub was originally a hardware store (round-about 100 years ago). These days, Huske Hardware House, on Hay St Fayetteville NC, offers great food, craft brews, and weekend DJs in a rustic and warm atmosphere. Fayetteville’s oldest brewery, the building was originally built in 1903 and is on the National Register of Historic Places.

Huske Hardware is near the historic Market House and the Airborne and Special Ops Museum, which makes it convenient to grab lunch or dinner after sightseeing.

Looking for hotels near Fort Bragg and the Huske Hardware House restaurant on Hay St Fayetteville, NC? The MacPherson House, about 10 minutes off of I-95, features a beautiful bed and breakfast scene. Relax on the wraparound porch, read in the study, and enjoy fresh hot coffee, savory quiches, and tasty French toast in the morning.

Guest rooms at this Hay St Fayetteville NC home have fireplaces, en-suite bathrooms, king-size beds, and stunning architectural details. Both four-legged and two-legged children are welcome.

18. Sweet Tea Shakespeare

Address: 126 Hay St, Fayetteville, NC 28301

Inspired by Shakespeare (obvs), the Sweet Tea Shakespeare theater company is dedicated to storytelling. Founded in 2012, it tries to stay true to the “Shakespeare style” with fun things like audience participation and early modern staging processes like universal lighting, cross-gender casting, lively costumes, simple staging, live music, and thrust and arena staging, which means that the audience surrounds the stage.

Enjoy productions of Shakespeare’s plays, concerts, musicals, a drunk Shakespeare series (sign us up for that one), and other small productions. And here you thought Fayetteville was only about the military and Civil War history.

19. J. Bayard Clark Park Nature Center

Address: 631 Sherman Drive, Fayetteville, North Carolina 28301

The J. Bayard Clark Park Nature Center is dedicated to preserving the environment and providing a place to enjoy the outdoors. Explore the wild side with exhibits and live animals such as turtles, snakes, and fish. Enjoy walks on wooded nature trails along the Cape Fear River.

There’s a playground, and you can have a picnic near a small waterfall. Events include story time and talks on fungi, edible and medicinal plants, spiders, dung beetles, and much more.

Clark Park joins up with the Cape Fear River Trail, so you just might find yourself winding your way through it.

See Related: Best National Parks to Visit in November

20. Milton E. Mazarick Park

Address: 1400 Belvedere Avenue, Fayetteville, North Carolina 28305

The 80-acre Milton E. Mazarick Park has a lake, a small fishing pier, and picnic facilities. There is also a playground and sports spaces for disc golf, tennis, and basketball at Mazarick Park.

Mazarick Park is part of ecoEXPLORE. Designed by the North Carolina Arboretum, it stands for “Experiences Promoting Learning Outdoors for Research and Education.” It combines science, kid-friendly technology, and fun outdoor learning environments for kids ages in grades K-8.

Kids can visit the park, explore, and earn badges in topics such as ornithology, entomology, botany, and mycology. Lake Rim Park and Carvers Creek State Park are two other such Fayetteville area spots where ecoExplorers can observe nature.

Gather those kids and get out there!

Located within convenient access to Mazarick Park, Haymount Ranch has three bedrooms, a fully equipped kitchen, a dining area, a living room, and a ping pong table.    Enjoy a private swimming pool, a patio, a barbecue, and free Wi-Fi.

This pet-friendly vacation rental is near Fort Bragg and the Airborne Museum.

21. Cameo Art House Theatre

Address: 225 Hay Street, Fayetteville, North Carolina 28301

The Cameo Art House Theatre building was home to one of Fayetteville’s first movie theaters in the early 1900s. Enjoy independent, foreign, and classic films as well as concerts, parties, fundraisers, and other unique events.

You can also catch the latest Hollywood flicks or attend special movie events such as the 100th anniversary of Nosferatu. This Halloween screening complete with prizes for best costumes and free popcorn for those in costume. You can’t beat free popcorn!

Rent out space for receptions, meetings and presentations, fundraisers, birthdays, and anniversary celebrations.

The art deco façade and vintage movie house ambiance put it on our radar of best places to visit in Fayetteville.

The Ambassador Inn is about 3.5 miles from the Cameo Art House Theatre. Guests can enjoy an outdoor swimming pool and rooms with free Wi-Fi, a mini-fridge, a microwave, a coffee maker, and extra seating.

See Related: Best Father Daughter Trips & Vacation Ideas

22. Museum of the Cape Fear Historical ComplexMuseum of the Cape Fear Historical Complex

Address: 801 Arsenal Avenue, Fayetteville, North Carolina 28305

The Museum of the Cape Fear Historical Complex is a local history museum that explores the rich history and culture of southern North Carolina. Learn about local culture and heritage and visit exhibits on the Civil War, American Indian culture, early textiles, settlement, and more at this local history museum.

Other sites on the property include Arsenal Park, which has the remains of a weapons manufacturing factory that served both the Confederate and Federal governments. The 1897 Poe House Victorian house museum (home of the Poe Brick Company owner, not that of other Poe, though his initials are E.A.) is also found at Arsenal Park.

Tour the house to get a peek into early 20th-century life, women’s roles in society, and technological, social, and economic changes.

Also found at Arsenal Park, the “ghost tower” is a giant metal cage that is illuminated at night. It represents an original structure that General Sherman destroyed in 1865. There are Civil War trail markers alongside it.

Candlewood Suites Fayetteville Fort Bragg, an IHG Hotel offers easy access to the museum, a golf driving range, and Mazarick Park. The hotel offers laundry facilities, a convenience store, a fitness room, and a business center.

23. Bar Luigi’s Italian Chophouse & Bar

Address: 528 N. McPherson Church Rd, Fayetteville, NC 28303

For casual upscale dining with an award-winning wine list, make a beeline for Bar Luigi’s Italian Chophouse & Bar. The cozy pub-like setting, complete with a fireplace, is one of Fayetteville’s best restaurants. The menu is filled with homemade sauces, pan-sautéed pasta, and hand-cut black Angus steaks.

Luigi’s offers two private dining rooms, a bar, and patio dining.

24. Chris’ Steak & Seafood House

Cooked Salmon

Address: 2620 Raeford Rd, Fayetteville, NC 28303

Located in the Highland Shopping Center in Cumberland County, Chris’ Steak & Seafood House has been a Fayetteville tradition since 1963. Ribeye, NY strip, sirloin, and prime rib … if it once mooed, they’ve got it.

With “seafood house” in the name, you’ll have lots of sea-based choices along with the land. Broiled scallops, grilled filet salmon, lobster tail, and Maryland crab cakes are just a few selections.

The elegant setting is a terrific place to celebrate a special event, enjoy a glass of fine wine, or hang out at the bar sampling creative cocktails and craft brews.

25. All American Fencing Academy

Address: 207 Donaldson Street, Fayetteville, NC 28301

Looking for a unique athletic outlet? Get your fencing skills on at All American Fencing Academy. Classes are designed for kids, teens, and adults. Classes are a great way to get exercise, learn a new skill, and defend yourself against those Renaissance and Middle Age enemies. Plus, what’s not to love about swords and sabers?

26. Bar Crawl

Explore the craft brew scene with a Wacky Fayetteville Bar Crawl. You’ll use an app to walk to various locations and bars around town. Form smaller groups to complete tasks, solve trivia questions, and complete challenges before the other team. Food and drinks are not included in the price, but that doesn’t mean you can’t indulge if you so choose.

Tours start and end at 3000 Fort Bragg Road. This is a super fun thing to do in Fayetteville with a group of friends, family, or even complete strangers.

See Related: Best Girls Trip Destinations Around the World

27. Fayetteville Area Transportation and History Museum

Address: 325 Franklin Street, Fayetteville, NC 28301

The Fayetteville Area Transportation and History Museum is located in the Cape Fear and Yadkin Valley Railroad Depot. It’s one of the best transportation and local history museums in the area.

Built in 1890, the two-story brick passenger depot is a stunning example of Romanesque Revival-style architecture. The Fayetteville Area Transportation and Local History Museum is on the National Register of Historic Places.

There are two floors of exhibits and a next-door annex featuring vintage cars, a 1920s recreated gas station, model trains plank roads, farm life, fire department history, and a recreated station agent’s office.

Check out this local history museum for a fun take on the early twentieth century at this transportation and local history museum.

28. Deep Creek ATV Park

ATV Adventure

Address: 2601 Slocomb Road, Linden, NC

Deep Creek ATV Park is about a half-hour drive from Fayetteville. If you’re into dirtbike and ATV riding, this is the place to be. The 975-acre property has 40 miles of well-maintained trails and facilities.

Monthly events include sand drag racing, bounty hole (a “mud bog” type of event done with trucks with big tires), and concerts.

The ATV park also has campsites for RVs and tents. Home2Suites by Hilton Fayetteville is approximately 20 minutes from the Deep Creek ATV Park and five miles from downtown Fayetteville. The hotel offers an outdoor swimming pool, a fitness room, a outdoor fitness trail, a business center, a convenience store, outdoor seating areas, and barbecue facilities.

Guest rooms have a mini-fridge, a microwave, a desk, and free Wi-Fi.

29. Explore Historic Districts

With the vast history surrounding Fayetteville and Cumberland County, it’s no surprise that there are several historic districts in the area. Fayetteville’s location on the Cape Fear River, the state’s main seaport, served as transportation inland from port cities such as Wilmington. Settlers arrived by way of the Cape Fear around 1739.

The area was one of the first to employ the use of “plank roads,” which was a key element of travel in the 1840s and 1850s.

The U.S. Constitution was ratified at a meeting in Fayetteville in 1789. America’s oldest state university, the University of North Carolina, was chartered as well. Go Tarheels!

Fayetteville is named for Marquis de Lafayette of Revolutionary War fame. It’s supposedly the only place named for him that he actually visited.

These National Register Historic districts include businesses, farms, and residential neighborhoods with homes and structures such as tobacco barns, mills, and springhouses built from the 1780s to 1950. Architecture styles such as Georgian Revival, Federal, late Victorian, and Queen Anne are represented.

  • Downtown Fayetteville Historic District
  • Haymount National Historic District
  • Liberty Point National Historic District
  • Market House Square Historic District
  • Pope Air Force Base Historic District
  • Hope Mills Historic District

Looking for accommodations in or near a Fayetteville historic district? We’ve got a few suggestions.

Within minutes of downtown Fayetteville, Crafty in Haymount is a craftsman-style cottage in the Haymount area. It offers one bedroom, one bathroom, a full kitchen, a living room, a dining area, a patio, barbecue facilities, and a washer/dryer.

This pet-friendly vacation rental offers free Wi-Fi and proximity to the Airborne and Special Ops Museum, Festival Park, and Crown Coliseum.

The Holiday Inn Express Hotel & Suites Hope Mills-Fayetteville Airport has an outdoor swimming pool, a hot tub, a fitness room, and a lobby with a fireplace and seating space. Guests can enjoy free Wi-Fi, cable TV, a mini-fridge, a microwave, a coffee maker, and daily breakfast.

The Hope Mills Golf Course and the Gordon Butler Nature Preserve are nearby.

See Related: Best Places to Visit in the US

30. Carvers Creek State Park

Address: 2505 Long Valley Road, Spring Lake, NC 28390

Carvers Creek State Park is located in Spring Lake, which is about 13 miles northwest of Fayetteville. The park borders Fort Bragg and Carvers Creek, a Cape Fear River tributary. Long Valley Farm, the former winter home of James Stillman Rockefeller, is within the park.

Ride bikes or horses, have a picnic, go fishing, and wander along pine forest trails Bring binoculars to seek out the local and endangered red-cockaded woodpecker or the rare pine barrens tree frog. There’s also a stunning waterfall that we’ll talk about below.

31. ZipQuest – Waterfall & Treetop Adventure

Address: 533 Carvers Falls Road, Fayetteville, NC 28311

ZipQuest is located at Carver’s Falls, a 55-acre forest in the Sandhills. The Sandhills area refers to a type of habitat characterized by rolling hills, coarse sand, and longleaf pine ecosystems.

The premier zipline and recreation facility has a giant waterfall that offers amazing views from the ziplines and a tree-top adventure park.

Choose from long and short ziplines at ZipQuest. You’ll climb a suspension bridge and floating staircase as you make your way to the top where you’ll soar high above the tree canopy and the waterfall. This is an excellent experience for families, large groups, church outings, and school trips.

SureStay Plus Hotel by Best Western Fayetteville is about 20 minutes from ZipQuest. There’s an outdoor pool, a fitness room, banquet facilities, and a business center. Guest rooms at this pet-friendly hotel offer free Wi-Fi, a mini-fridge, a coffee maker, and a microwave.

Also about 20 minutes from ZipQuest, the Super 8 by Wyndham Fayetteville offers an indoor pool. Guests can enjoy free Wi-Fi, a mini-fridge, a microwave, and a desk.

32. Fayetteville Independent Light Infantry Armory and Museum

Address: 210 Burgess Street, Fayetteville, NC 28301

The Fayetteville Independent Light Infantry (FILI) Armory and Museum was first organized in 1793 after George Washington, president at the time, enacted the Militia Act of 1792. This act provided federal standards for organizing a uniform militia throughout the country.

The museum has antique weapons, memorabilia, uniforms, military art, and artifacts from around the world. A unique item that must be seen is the carriage that Marquis de Lafayette arrived in when he visited Fayetteville in 1825.

If you’re a history and military enthusiast, this small Southern museum needs to be at the top of your list.

See Related: Best Museums in the US You Need to Visit

33. Gordon Butler Nature Preserve

Address: Hope Mills, NC

The Gordon Butler Nature Preserve, which is located in the Sandhills community of Hope Mills, is just south of Fayetteville. The 12.5-acre preserve features colorful mountain laurel, the rare white wicky, and other pine flatwoods plants.

Managed by the NC Botanical Garden (located at UNC about a 1.5-hour drive away in Chapel Hill), it’s on the North Carolina registry of Natural Historic Heritage Areas. The preserve is a serene spot for photographers, nature enthusiasts, and hikers to get a look at North Carolina’s native plants.

The preserve, sometimes called a “nature wonderland,” is open to the public, but it doesn’t really have any organized parking.

34. Winterbloom Tea


Address: 238 Hay Street, Fayetteville, NC 28301

Tea lovers rejoice! There’s finally a non-mocha, latte, and espresso option for you. Maybe you’ve switched from the beans to the leaves. Or maybe you just enjoy a nice oolong, Darjeeling, herbal, or Earl Grey. This is the South, after all.

Winterbloom Tea was created with a mission to educate, preserve, and inspire a love of tea. You won’t find any pre-bagged tea here. It’s all fresh leaves combined with refreshing herbs and spices.

Try creative tea cocktails flavored with lemongrass, mint, ginger, gin, whiskey, and tequila. Tea classes are available to learn about the origins and health benefits of tea.

35. Auman Vineyards

Address: 1300 71st Street, Fayetteville, NC 28314

From tea leaves to grape vines, Fayetteville has a bounty of beverage options. Auman Vineyards has been harvesting muscadine and scuppernong (a larger variety of muscadines and the state fruit of NC) grapes since 1968.

This is a pick-your-own grapes urban vineyard. You can also buy pre-picked grapes if you’re not into the DIY trend. Whether you choose to make wine with them is totally up to you.

You can pick up a bottle of local honey or jar of chestnuts at this Certified Roadside Farm Market.

Auman Vineyards is near Gillis Hill Farm, so you could make a whole day of farm life and fruit picking.

The Courtyard by Marriott Fayetteville is approximately 3.5 miles from Auman Vineyards and Fayetteville State University. The hotel offers a workout room, an outdoor swimming pool, and meeting rooms.

Guest rooms at the Courtyard by Marriott have a work desk, cable TV, and free Wi-Fi. Some rooms have balconies and extra seating areas.

The Airborne Museum, Ft. Bragg, and the Crown Coliseum and Expo Center are also nearby.

36. Craft Brews

Beer with Pastry

While we’re on the subject of beverages, let’s talk microbreweries and craft beer. Enjoy pub eats, local specialties, food trucks, and live music while sampling creative artisan blends mixed with unique flavor such as lavender, orange juice, and cider.

  • Gaston Brewing Company
  • Dirtbag Ales Brewery and Taproom
  • Heckler Brewing Company
  • Bright Light Brewing Company
  • Mash House Restaurant and Brewery
  • World of Beer


What is the best thing to do with kids in Fayetteville?

Things to do in Fayetteville with kids include attractions such as the Fascinate U Children’s Museum, Bayard Clark Park Nature Center, and Carter’s Blueberry Farm.

What are some fun things to do in Fayetteville?

There are so many fun things to do in Fayetteville. Activities run the range from outdoor recreation along the Cape Fear River Trail and Cross Creek Linear Park to historic attractions like the Airborne and Special Operations Museum and the transportation and local history museum.

What are some things to do in Fayetteville when it’s raining?

When it’s raining, the Cape Fear Regional Theatre, Sweet Tea Shakespeare, a local history museum, or Cross Creek Mall are some of the top things to do in Fayetteville.

What are the best tourist attractions in Fayetteville?

Fayetteville tourist attractions include the Airborne and Special Operations Museum, North Carolina Veterans Park, and the Fayetteville Area Transportation and History Museum.

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