Charlotte Tips and Tricks

clarkfn2284

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I am in need of some tips.

We have a vacation planned in October to visit Savannah, GA and Charleston,
SC. It just so happens that we are flying into Charlotte on Saturday the 7th and I convinced the Wifey to hit the Charlotte race on Sunday. Plane is booked, rental car is booked, hotels are not yet booked and tickets for the race are not yet purchased.

What are some of the better ins/out of the track, best areas to view the race, parking tips,how high up should I get tickets, etc. Also, we will be headed back into Charlotte to fly home the following weekend and I am going to hit the HOF then. Any tips to that adventure would be much appreciated?

Finally, what is the weather like around that time of year? I am assuming that the humidity should not be too bad considering it is in October and most of summer may have burned off by then?
 

Charlie Spencer

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Easy access from I-85 or I-485, clearly marked. Plenty of free parking on track property and paid parking in surrounding lots. I like turn 1, but I like turn 1 everywhere.

Sorry, I'm less than two hours away and haven't made it to the HOF yet.

Be aware the Carolina Panthers are at home on that race weekend. That may play into hotel availability, and will definitely affect traffic. They're on the road the next weekend.
 

sdj

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Plan at least 1/2 day for the HOF, if you are big into history, engines and memorabilia, plan a whole day. Parking down down is a pain in the a**, but, it is what it is.

I use to go to the 600 every year and we stayed at this Holiday Inn express (link below). Lots of places to eat within walking distance, if you like Wings, go to Quaker Steak's next door, fun place good food.Just across the interstate is a Large Bass Pro and mall, If you like that sort of thing.

https://local.yahoo.com/info-26783241-holiday-inn-express-suites-charlotteconcordi85-concord?stx=holiday inn express speedway&csz=Concord, NC&fr=lsrp

Race day, take the day bus from the hotel to the track, couple a bucks, and walk back to the hotel after the race, we did this all the time. It's about 1mile. You will be back to the hotel way before you could get out of the lot.

I agree with Charlie above, turn one bout 1/2 way up is good or anywhere between pit exit and turn one about mid way up.

Have fun.
 

Charlie Spencer

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You didn't ask, but both Charleston and Savannah should be excellent that time of year. Weather should be in the upper 70s in the day and lower 50s at night. October is really the best time of year to be here.

If you're into historic mansions and gardens, there are several just before you get into Charleston. Google 'Magnolia Gardens' and 'Middleton Plantation' off I-26 in Summerville.

Charleston is a peninsula, with riverfronts offering beautiful views of well-preserved homes and churches. The excellent restaurants are off the water, and almost everything worth seeing is within easy walking distance. I recommend staying in Mt. Pleasant; follow US 17 north over the big bridge. 'Patriot's Point' is also on that side of the river, with retired naval vessels including the USS Yorktown aircraft carrier. If you like ribs, Google one of the two 'Sticky Fingers' in the area (there's two in Charlotte too). If time permits, be sure to visit Ft. Sumter, or maybe the research center where they are restoring the CNS Hunley, the first operational submarine to successfully sink another ship in combat.

Savannah is spread along its riverfront and is the reverse of C'ton - a lot of the dining and shopping is along or closer to the river, while the preserved architecture stretches for several blocks away from the waterfront. Scattered in a grid through the area are 16 squares, small pocket parks identical in size but each completely unlike the others. Don't waste your money on the riverboat ride unless you like looking at loading docks and rail yards. There's also a magnificent 'Ships of the Sea' museum, with dozens of detailed scale models (many several feet long) representing the nautical history of the southeast. It's always enjoyable but is especially good when the weather keeps you from doing anything outside. If you want to try Moroccan food with a side of belly dancing, the Casbah was still pretty good last time I was there in '15.

In both cases, I recommend parking at the visitors' centers and getting the 'ride all day' tourist bus tickets. Both are riddled with one-way streets and limited parking (esp. Charleson); you'll have a better time if you just suck up the parking fee. Both have more fantastic restaurants and historical buildings than you can see in a week. Both towns have military bases nearby so if you happen to have an active duty or retiree ID, it's worth asking about discounts.

Oh, and if you're into bird watching, the fantastic Savannah National Wildlife Refuge is between Charleson and Savannah.
 
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clarkfn2284

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Tremendous info above. I really appreciate it. I'm a huge history buff. I like to be places where you can feel that something happened. I was told by someone about an underground city in Charleston that was being preserved or had been preserved where they have the building with cannon balls still stuck in them? I am looking forward to the sights and the food. I'm a big foodie and I love southern cuisine. My wife loves the architecture and the historical impact that the area had on our Country. We have approximately 7 days. Saturday to Saturday before we fly back.
 

DIDIT

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Agree with Charlie and SDJ about seating. Weather is generally good for that race. When parking be sure to park on speedway property for free. There are a few places that looks like speedway property that charge.
We went to this race for 7 years in a row and always had a great time. The speedway used to have a link to race friendly hotels on their website. Not sure if they still do. You might want to check that out.
 
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