Things to Do in Gastonia, North Carolina

Places to visit in Gastonia, NC.

Gastonia is a city in Gaston County in the state of North Carolina. It is well known for its many attractions, outdoor activities, and unique neighborhoods. You can explore the U.S. National Whitewater Center, visit the Schiele Museum of Natural History or take a stroll down Main Ave., lined with boutique stores and eateries.

With an abundance of golf courses, fishing spots, parks, and trails, including Kings Mountain State Park, Crowders Mountain State Park, and the Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden, visitors to Gastonia have plenty to do both indoors and outdoors!

Things to Do in Gastonia, North Carolina

Crowders Mountain State Park

Crowders Mountain State Park is one of the North Carolina state park’s most popular parks. It is situated in Gastonia, NC, and offers visitors several recreational opportunities. Eleven trails are available in the park, with varying difficulty levels.

The park’s peaks offer views of surrounding Piedmont. In addition, there is a seven-acre artificial lake, which is excellent for fishing. Other activities include picnicking, rock climbing, and hiking. This park is also home to various birds, making it a popular place for birdwatching.

Looking west toward the mountains
Looking west toward the mountains

In addition to the peaks, Crowders Mountain offers a variety of trails for all skill levels. Hikers can take a trip to the Pinnacle, which provides a more challenging hike.

Another trail at Crowders Mountain State Park is the Rocktop Trail. This 0.8-mile loop takes hikers along the ridge of the mountain. Each side of the trail has steep drop-offs.

The Schiele Museum of Natural History & Planetarium

The Schiele Museum of Natural History & Planetarium in Gastonia, North Carolina, is a fun and educational place to visit. It’s also one of 70 Smithsonian affiliate museums.

In addition to exhibits and a planetarium, the museum features a replica of an authentic Catawba Indian village, an 18th-century backcountry garden, and a nature trail. Additionally, there is a gift shop and picnic tables.

Best tourist attractions in Gastonia, North Carolina

The museum offers numerous special events, including the Cuddly and Cute Animal Babies event in spring. Also, there is a kid’s Quest after-school adventure program, which features live animals, homework help, and hands-on explorations.

On top of the usual fare, the museum features some of the best local North Carolina natural histories. There are traveling exhibits, as well as permanent displays. A portion of the proceeds from the museum’s admissions goes to support its programs.

Webb Custom Kitchen in Gastonia

A restaurant in downtown Gastonia has caught the eye of both locals and visitors. The Webb Custom Kitchen is a small but stylish dining spot that boasts unmatched service and a stellar wine list. In addition to the usual fare, the restaurant features an upscale menu of American eats. Touted as a gastropub, the dining experience also boasts an excellent cocktail program.

Places to visit in Gastonia, North Carolina

There’s no denying that the restaurant has earned its reputation as a go-to for visitors from around the metroplex and beyond. But the real story is the people that it employs. With 50 employees, the restaurant serves 20,000 patrons a month and has doubled up on the staff. This has prompted owner Jim Morasso to make bold claims about his restaurant’s longevity.

Rankin Lake Park in Gastonia, North Carolina

Rankin Lake Park is a historic park in Gastonia, North Carolina. This large, 80-acre lake has been a centerpiece of the city since 1922. The lake has two piers and a wooden boardwalk that overlooks the lake. There is also a shooting range. A disc golf course is located on the east side of the lake.

Rankin Lake
Rankin Lake

In the late 1980s, the park was fenced in. Today it is open and accessible for visitors to enjoy. A small but impressive 18-hole disc golf course is situated on the park’s eastern side.

The Rankin Lake Loop is a loop trail that encircles the lake. It is about 1.6 miles long. Besides hiking, bike riding, and horseback riding, visitors can enjoy various water activities.

Gaston County Museum in Dallas, North Carolina

The Gaston County Museum in Dallas, North Carolina, is a cultural institution that emphasizes the county’s rich textile heritage. It is located in the former Hoffman Hotel. Various artifacts from the hotel’s history are on display in the museum’s permanent exhibit.

Things to do in Gastonia, North Carolina

The building was constructed in 1852 by Daniel Hoffman. In its heyday, the Hoffman Hotel was a bustling place of business. Many of the prominent business leaders of the day stayed there. As a result, there are period-style rooms and the most extensive collection of horse-drawn vehicles in North Carolina. The Gaston County Museum also has an extensive collection of antiques and art.

In addition to its artifacts, the Gaston County Museum is also a source of information about the area’s history. Its permanent exhibition, “The Textiles of Gaston County,” features interactive videos and Smithsonian patent models. Another exhibit is about the 1929 Loray Mill Strike.

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