LET TRAVELKATZ PLAN YOUR ALABAMA VACATION PACKAGE
Travelkatz will put together a North Carolina Vacation Package custom tailored just for you. We handle all aspects of your trip so you can sit back, relax and enjoy. We provide three options for every state in the USA. If you have any questions or concerns please don’t hesitate in contacting us.
Alabama State Parks:
North Carolina State Parks – Located mid- to south-Atlantic, this state offers a variety of activities to enjoy. Known for NASCAR’s home base, Charlotte is a fantastic city to visit. Southern charm and hospitality are yours for the taking. The coastline offers a multitude of beaches for swimming and fishing, but don’t forget about the Great Smokey Mountains for beautiful vistas of this state, especially in the fall. North Carolina has 27 State Parks, 2 State Forests, and a State Fish Hatchery.
Jockey’s Ridge State Park: The tallest living sand dune on the Atlantic coast is a premier location for kites, sightseeing and sunsets, with a view arcing from the ocean to Roanoke Sound. A visitor center with museum and 360-foot boardwalk with exhibits explain the dune’s ecology and are a gradual entry to the massive dune field. Hang gliding lessons are available, however experienced hang gliders must have a flying permit and a current USHPA membership. By calling ahead a minimum of 24 hours in advance, visitors with mobility issues can request a ride in the all-terrain vehicle to the top of the dunes. Rides will take approximately 45 minutes and availability will depend on weather and staffing. The sound-side access of the park is an experience; offering sunbathing, wading, paddling, and a one-mile nature trail that opens onto wetlands, grassy dunes and maritime thickets. A hike to the top of the ridge can work up an appetite! The picnic area adjacent to the parking lot offers a break from the relentless wind, sun and sand. Eight picnic shelters are spaced among small dunes with low-growing vegetation. Each shelter has two tables and a grill; drinking water and restrooms are nearby. The shelters are free unless reservations are requested. Entrance is the visitor center in Nags Head.
South Mountains State Park: In one of the state’s most rugged areas, This Park features elevations to 3,000 feet, an 80-foot waterfall, mountain streams and more than 40 miles of trails for hikers, equestrians and mountain bikers. A true backcountry experience is offered at 24 backpacking campsites at seven locations. Equestrian camping is available with trailer parking and barn to complement 33 miles of bridle trails. Mountain bikers enjoy a strenuous 17-mile loop. Drive-to campsites sit beside the Jacob Fork River, with the river and its tributaries offering miles of trout fishing. There are two picnic areas and a picnic shelter for groups. A visitor center offers museum-quality exhibits on the cultural and natural history of the South Mountains. You will find this Park in Connelly Springs.
Lake James State Park: This Park offers a full menu of activities. Along with boating, swimming and fishing in the beautiful, clear waters of the 6,812-acre lake, there are 25 miles of trails, 15 of which are for mountain biking. Trails vary from the short, educational Holly Discovery Trail with child-friendly activities, to the more adventurous, historic section of the Overmountain Victory Trail. There are three campgrounds. The Catawba River Area has 20 walk-in campsites, many of which offer lake views. The Paddy’s Creek Area has 33 drive-to, family-friendly campsites. The remote boat-in campground on the Long Arm Peninsula offers a true outdoor adventure for those willing to paddle or steer their canoes, kayaks or powerboats to their own slice of heaven. Boat ramps at Hidden Cove and Canal Bridge on NC 126 are located between the park’s two day-use areas. And canoe, kayak and paddleboard rentals are available at the Paddy’s Creek Area concession stand from May through September. This great Park is in Nebo.
Merchants Millpond State Park: Southern swamp and hardwood forest mingle at This Park, adorning the landscape with massive bald cypress trees, beech groves, Spanish moss and exotic wildlife. Canoes can be rented, or visitors can bring their own for a unique paddling experience. Three types of camping are available at family and group campgrounds, primitive backpacking sites and three remote canoe-in campgrounds reached by paddling trails. The scenic pond is surrounded by picnic grounds, nine miles of hiking trails and a visitor center offering museum-quality exhibits. Some trail segments are open to biking. Fishing is available from the bank, or small boats may be launched at the boat ramp. Found in Gatesville.
TravelKatz is looking forward to helping you and your family discover the great parks found in North Carolina. Call us at 352-277-7300 or “chat” at www.travelkatz.com
North Carolina Museums:
North Carolina Museums – a Mid-Atlantic state and home of NASCAR and quite a few drivers…these museums will touch on that sport or mode of transportation. It is just for testing vehicles, don’t you know…
Wheels Through Time Transportation Museum: The museum is awesome and is something to see. They have a great collection of motorcycles and even a few cars. The history here is incredible. The staff is extremely passionate and knowledgeable about everything there. When visiting The Wheels Through Time museum, you will find it to be very interesting. Even if you are not a motorcycle person you will enjoy the displays and people. One of the employees may even start one of the bikes for you. Definitely worth a visit. You will need to allow at least a couple of hours of see everything. Found in Maggie Valley, N. Carolina!
Swain County Heritage Museum: This is a great opportunity to learn more about Bryson City, the Cherokee Nation, and it is free! Downstairs is the gift shop, one room school & bell, display cases and informative brochures and wall hangings. Upstairs is the actual museum and it is BIG! You can see a typical cabin – inside and out. One glass case features civil war documents & uniforms. In one corner is a 1905 old bank vault & a kid zone with animal photos, small chairs and a rocking chair. In the other corner, the theater features a short movie about Swain County. Photos on the wall recall days of old. Have your kids seen REAL old telephones? They are here! A pay phone is also here, above a switchboard telephone unit. The scavenger hunt is certainly challenging, and the gift shop has a nice variety of options, with proceeds benefitting the Great Smoky Mountains Association. There is so much to see in Bryson City.
Marbles Kids Museum: This is a hands-on, interactive destination that inspires children to be creative thinkers, active learners and confident individuals in today’s world. With five galleries and two outdoor escapes, there is no shortage of activity for kids from 3 to 12 and their families. They have wonderful learning stations for every age group. Don’t miss out on the spooky Halloween costume party. The Christmas party is magical for the whole family. Great place for grandparents to take their grandchildren. Be sure to look into the family pass for a great price. The campus also features the Wachovia IMAX Theatre Museum. This 267-seat giant-screen experience is the only 3D capable IMAX theatre in Raleigh.
Airborne and Special Operations Museum: The doors opened on August 16, 2000, the 60th anniversary of the original Test Platoon’s first parachute jump. The museum offers free admission, a main exhibit gallery, temporary gallery, four-story tall theater, a gift shop, and a motion simulator ride that features two experiences. Admission is free, but they do accept donations in the gift shop and in donation boxes in the lobby. The main gallery is designed as a self-guided tour, in chronological order, through the history of the airborne and special operations soldiers from 1940 to the present. The temporary gallery changes periodically and displays a myriad of exhibits pertaining to the United States Army airborne and special operations units through their history and conflicts from World War II to the present. This museum is in Fayetteville.
Museum of Life + Science: This museum is one of North Carolina’s top attractions. Situated on 84-acres, the interactive science park includes a science center, a butterfly conservatory which is one of the largest in the world and beautifully landscaped outdoor exhibits which are safe havens for rescued black bears, lemurs, and endangered red wolves. The Museum’s Dinosaur Trail takes visitors on a journey through the Late Cretaceous period. Other areas include a Farmyard, Ellerbe Creek Railway, Contraptions, which is a hands-on exhibit for older children and adults, and a sailboat pond, The Lab in Investigate Health!, Play to Learn – an exhibit for children under six, more than 60 species of live animals and so much more. The train is worthwhile mainly for smaller kids under 8 years old. A great museum with good parking and delicious food; found In Durham.
TravelKatz is looking forward to “chatting” with you on www.vacationnationradio.com or your call at 352-277-7300 so we can make a great vacation for you and your family to North Carolina.
North Carolina Festivals:
North Carolina Festivals will offer a great way to see and experience several parts of the state; from the Summer Festivals to the Autumn Festivals…from delicious seafood to fall flavors and crafts for the holidays.
Queen City Summer Festival: This Festival will feature over 50 vendors with the latest products, brands, giveaways and more. There will be food, bounce house, kid activities, face painting, coupons, discounts, entertainment and more! Dance performances from some of the best dance teams the Queen City has to offer will keep you very entertained. Not to mention live band performances! This is a family friendly free event in the beautiful city of Charlotte, all day on the last Saturday of August. Plan to attend in 2020!
73rd Annual North Carolina Apple Festival: This Apple Festival features a street fair on historic Main Street including continuous live musical entertainment, arts & crafts, apple growers selling apple products, children’s & youth activities, special exhibits & open houses, and food. To top it all off, there’s the King Apple Parade! This Parade is held annually on Labor Day as the closing event of the Festival. The parade features professional floats, bands, youth groups, antique cars, fire trucks and many other entries. In Hendersonville; over Labor Day Weekend.
North Carolina Ceramic Arts Festival: The Ceramic Arts Festival is an Asheville and is an event that focuses on ceramic arts of all genres including tilework, sculpture, jewelry, and pottery. The festival includes over 40 ceramic art vendors, food trucks, raku demonstrations, and live entertainment. Come for a day of fun and enjoy lunch from local food trucks, listen to buskers, check out street performers, see amazing ceramic demonstrations, and shop the beautiful and diverse ceramic artist booths. This festival will take place in Pack Square Park, right in the heart of downtown. Fall in downtown Asheville attracts thousands of visitors each weekend, giving our artists fantastic sales opportunities and giving our visitors a bustling, artistic shopping experience in the middle of restaurants, breweries, shops, and entertainment. Sat, Sep 21 in Pack Square Park.
30th Annual North Carolina Seafood Festival: This particular Seafood Festival is among the most popular free festivals in the state. It takes place every first weekend of October in Morehead City, attracting more than 200,000 attendees! The festival has been held since 1989 gaining a reputation for its premium entertainment, family fun, and the most delicious seafood. Over 100 vendors offer a wide choice of foods. Everyone should try “Down East” Clam Chowder, Charcoal Mullet, Sea Urchin on a stick, Calamari, Marinated Eel or Shrimp Burger. Morehead City; Fri, Oct 4 – Sun, Oct 6.
24th Annual Fall LEAF Festival: For 24 years, each May & October, an intergenerational family of 12,000 people come to experience the power music, art & culture to transform lives, strengthen community & foster community. The award-winning LEAF Festival takes place at Lake Eden in the Blue Ridge Mountains among a stunning array of rolling hills, lakes & streams on 300 acres of comfortable camping grounds and features 6 performance stages, 400+ performing artists, 8 family adventure villages, 100+ handcraft items, healing & culinary vendors & so much more! Voted as the #1 Nonprofit Festival Serving the Arts, #1 Music Festival, #1 Camping Festival, #1 Kids Festival, #1 Music-Related Nonprofit & #1 Cultural Arts Event. LEAF Community Arts is a non-profit organization in which all donations & festival proceeds support cultural arts education and programming locally & globally! Since 2004, LEAF Schools & Streets has served over 55,000 youth with various programs in over 20 Western North Carolina locations. LEAF International features cultural preservation programs in 10 countries worldwide. Your attendance at LEAF not only provides you with an amazing weekend experience with friends and family but provides a platform for fostering the growth of our youth into creative leaders in their communities worldwide. Lake Eden Events & Lodging, Black Mountain, Oct 17 – Oct 20.
Come join us in these various festivals in North Carolina…maybe even take in a NASCAR race, too, at the Charlotte Motor Speedway or at least visit the track and take in a tour…call TravelKatz at 352-277-7300 or email Kathryn or Sandra at firstname.lastname@example.org to get on board these fantastic festivals.
PLACE OF INTEREST
Charlotte is a major city and commercial hub in North Carolina. Its modern city center (Uptown) is home to the Levine Museum of the New South, which explores post–Civil War history in the South, and hands-on science displays at Discovery Place. Uptown is also known for the NASCAR Hall of Fame, which celebrates the sport of auto racing through interactive exhibits and films.
Levine Museum of the New South: this museum tells the story of Charlotte from just after the Civil War through today. It does a great job of moving you through the decades with short, lively and hands on exhibits. Charlotte grew up with the Textile Mills and when they left in came the banking giants. The exhibits are informative and well presented. The museum does not shy away from the less than ideal happenings over the past 160 years. The coverage of Jim Crow and the Civil Rights era is well done. Through segregation, through the Civil rights Movement, through good civic leadership today you can see how the south has changed and prospered. Fees for entrance are low. It has a good gift shop. interested guides and lots of ways to explore for both the visual learner and for the intellectual.
Discovery Place: This is by far one of the best children’s museum! There is also an IMAX theater here. So many interesting and interactive exhibits, animals to see, classes and demonstrations to watch daily. Once a month they offer “science on the rocks” where they open after hours and set up Satellite bars for adults to come and hang out, see some fun stuff and relax after a long week, and there are themes for them all! Awesome place.
Carolina’s Aviation Museum: It was full of history and information on all the planes and exhibits. The staff is very friendly and helpful. The jewel of the museum is the US Airways Flight 1549 better known as Sully’s which was truly a miracle that “landed on the Hudson”. There are some short clippings from the TV footage that day as well as many of personal items retrieved from passengers and crew. The museum is a nice activity to do with out of towners or children on a cold or rainy day.
NASCAR Hall of Fame: The NASCAR Hall of Fame is an educational venue that is a must see for racing fans as well as those who are not. From the driving simulators to the pit crew experience. An entertaining place to visit, with a lot more going on than you might expect. Lots of interactive exhibits, and the history of racing along with the technical information. It’s not a museum. You’ll have a really hands-on experience with realistic simulations. It’s all experiential learning. The Racing Simulators exhibit offers one of the most realistic virtual driving experiences that technology can provide. Guests can race alongside up to 15 virtual cars for a hands-on way to discover the many complications that arise on a lap around the track. Simulated races are broadcasted on a 50-foot video screen so group members can cheer each other on.
The NASCAR Hall of Fame features more than 50 interactive attractions, such as the Pit Crew Challenge. Nearly 1,000 artifacts and 40,000 square feet of exhibit space also pay tribute to the history and heritage of NASCAR. The site introduces guests to the NASCAR world with a primer video at the Belk High Octane Theater. From there, Glory Road houses 18 race cars built for speed on a 33-degree banked ramp. The Hall of Honor showcases its honorees on a 360-degree wall for an impressive visual effect.
Richard Petty Driving Experience: Participants can choose between riding around a track with a professional driver for breakneck speeds or hopping into the driver’s seat themselves. The company offers three- or six-lap shotgun rides or firsthand racing sessions that last five minutes or more. On the ride-along experience, you reach speeds greater than 150 miles per hour. You can feel that force when you round the turn. It’s a really cool experience. The race cars zoom around the Charlotte Motor Speedway, which hosts numerous prestigious NASCAR events, such as the Bank of America 500. Richard Petty, nicknamed the King of NASCAR, started the program to introduce fans to the thrill of maneuvering a powerful race car. Those who drive themselves meet for classroom instruction before hitting the accelerator. Once behind the wheel, they can pass other drivers, use car radios and halt for pit stops.
ImaginOn: The Joe & Joan Martin Center: Much more than a children’s library, ImaginOn is a unique interactive collaboration with the Children’s Theater that kids GET! The flow of the place is so exciting. Broadway style kids shows play in the theatre, we can check their schedule. Clean, spacious & enough stuff for the kids to keep them interested for hours. And the best part – it’s FREE! If you come to Charlotte with kids 3-12 then you should make a point of visiting…but be warned you: you’ll have to drag them out this place…
Billy Graham Library: This tour shows how humble he was. He always wanted to make sure the message of Jesus was the first thing that is presented and the last thing that is presented and everywhere in between. The place is so beautiful and peaceful. The exhibits are good for people that cannot stand for any length of time. There are plenty of benches in most every room you enter. It will take a good two hours to go thru all the exhibits and a few minutes to visit the Graham’s grave site along with Cliff Barrows and George Beverly Shea. Also, you can visit his childhood home that is located beside the library. The people that volunteer there are super nice. The 12-part tour, including four galleries, is a deeply moving experience, both nostalgic and authentically spiritual. Admission is free but there are places for donations.
Segway Tours: Instead of slowly walking through the city, guests can glide throughout Charlotte’s interesting parks, buildings and neighborhoods on a Segway. The city’s only locally owned full-service tour company, Charlotte NC Tours offers both Segway and bike tours as an active way to experience the history, food and sites of the Queen City. The popular Segway tours range in length from the one-hour Fun Ride to the two-hour Markets, Museums and Parks Tour. Topics include the Dilworth-Myers Park’s hip spaces, some acclaimed tastes along the Taste and Glide Tour and the city’s diverse architecture in historic Uptown. It’s a great intro to the city. You get a training on the Segway when you go in. The guides there are awesome. They tell you everything you don’t know about Charlotte. One-on-one training with guides ensures that each participant learns to comfortably maneuver a Segway before departing. Usually within five to 10 minutes of personalized instruction, riders feel confident enough to take off. Guides then take the riders along sidewalks and paths while passionately sharing the intriguing area history.
The bicycle tours offer a similar experience with more exercise involved. The three-hour Southern Food Bicycle Tour allows riders to work off their calories as they dine at culinary hot spots such as the Seventh Street Public Market, Mert’s Heart and Soul, and Alexander Michael’s.
Charlotte is a short flight from Tampa so Just give Travelkatz a call at 352-277-7300 and we will make your vacation a very special one for you and your family.
North Carolina State Capital: Raleigh
Raleigh, North Carolina was named in commemoration of the capital of Sir Walter Raleigh’s planned colony, “Cittie of Raleigh,” which was founded in 1587 and mysteriously disappeared a few short years later. Today, the lost town is known as the Lost Colony at Roanoke.
North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences: This is a fantastic place to take the kids! Besides all the interesting exhibits they also have three hand on interactive labs where kids can become real scientist operating microscopes and working with pipettes or touching animal pelts and skulls. There is more to see and do than can be done in one day. This museum exhibits forms of life from life under ground to life in the mountains. Some of the exhibits most like are the razor teeth of a white shark, gemstone collection, fish tank with a humpback guppy, and whale fossils. It takes most people about 4 hours to go through the entire museum because there are a lot of hands-on activities like the Lab. The butterfly exhibit was very cool! Those that love dinosaurs will enjoy the dinosaur exhibit. Everyone was very friendly. The Planet Cafe that is attached to the museum have great choices with a lot of different options for the entire family! TravelKatz does suggest taking cash. The museum is free but donation are accepted and they don’t take credit for donations.
Marbles Kids Museum: Best place in Raleigh to take kids under 10 years old! Interactive and educational play, arts and crafts, and more! This is a very SAFE play-place for children of all ages. Little tykes can play dress-up, be actors on stage, ride in an ambulance, pretend you are a police office, nurse, train engineer, postal worker or a scientist. You can play with ducks in the water, climb mountains and play in a castle.
Pullen Park: What a beautiful park! Ride the carousel or the train, rent a paddleboat or just watch the children having fun! The park is large enough for a leisurely walk as well. The historic Carousel and train ride top the list. But, there are excellent playgrounds appropriate for different ages and kiddy boat rides, too. Food & snacks are available.
North Carolina Museum of History: The museum is full on interesting and interactive exhibits from the history of NC to sports history, the American Revolution, WWI, the Wright Brothers glider and other great time periods. It is right downtown, close to other museums and attractions and a great place to learn more about North Carolina! Much like the science museum it’s very interactive with a lot of quick videos illustrating the history of the state. In addition to local history they also had a WWI exhibit that was fantastic. On the third floor is the North Carolina Sports History and a photo exhibit of Civil Rights March to Montgomery. The museum is free, but a donation is appreciated.
Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts: The Duke center is a very easy to access venue. Parking directly across the street. Shuttle for those with difficulty walking. Small enough to see well from any location. The theater and Music hall venues at this location are varied and always well done. Small enough that it there could not be a bad seat in the place. The seating is very comfortable, the staff pleasant and helpful. Overall, a great experience is to be had.
Neuse River Trail: Using the Paddle Creek kayak rentals to travel down the Neuse makes for a Beautiful day, effortless drop off and picked up. As for walking or biking, it is very scenic as it winds along the Neuse River. There are benches for sitting if you get tired! Great place to get out and enjoy nature! from Falls Dam trailhead to the Millburnie Dam and back is truly is a great, easy ride.
Triangle Glides: Great for families with children 14 yrs. old and older or just adults. Very thorough training before site seeing. Had an awesome day to tour. Allow pictures on the tour as well. Great way to see things downtown. Top notch guides and love the head sets for hearing things.
Historic Yates Mill County Park: It was established around 1756 and is the county’s only remaining water-powered gristmill. It operated for more than 200 years…grinding corn and wheat into meal and flour…sawing logs into lumber and carding wood. There’s a nice path around the pond as well. Don’t miss the museum before heading out to look at the mill.
To get to Raleigh, it is an easy flight from Tampa to Raleigh-Durham airport. Just give TravelKatz a call or visit our website @ travelkatz.com and contact us that way. We are here to help.
Take a trip to the North Carolina shore and see the…
Bodie Island Lighthouse at the Outer Banks, North Carolina
If any place needed a few good lighthouses, this is it. Long ago given the sinister nickname the ‘Graveyard of the Atlantic,’ the slender line of barrier islands and marshy peninsulas that make up North Carolina’s Outer Banks is tricky to navigate even in mild weather. During storms and at night, these waters are positively hazardous. While modern navigational aids such as radar and satellite GPS now keep mariners on course, the historical importance—and sheer physical beauty—of the Outer Banks lighthouses is undeniable.
The Bodie Island light is arguably the most fascinating: Recently restored, the structure is one of only a handful of tall brick tower lighthouses left in the United States. Its first-order Fresnel lens is said to be visible 20 miles out at sea. In daylight hours, we’re guessing one could spot that bold black and white banding from almost as far.
NORTH CAROLINA VACATION PACKAGE MADE EASY
Another option for our North Carolina Vacation Package is the Natural Wonder. See our selection of choice below to see if it fancies your style. Please don’t hesitate in contacting us with any questions or concerns.
NORTH CAROLINA: Blue Ridge Parkway
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