6 Things To Do In Hickory, North Carolina

It's time for a road trip to the great state of North Carolina.

The small town of Hickory is located in Catawba County, North Carolina, at the foot of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Situated between big cities Charlotte and Asheville and with a population of about 40,000, Hickory has plenty of Southern charm. Stop into the visitor's center, and they'll describe themselves as having "a history of craftsmanship. Hickory's past and future prospects have drawn to this place a people with an eye for detail and a hand for hard work, a passion for making something of themselves and of the future." The Hickory region is known as "The Furniture Capital of the World," but there's plenty to do once you've picked out your new dining set. Read on for some of our favorite things to do in Hickory, North Carolina.

Hickory, NC
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Relax In Union Square

Downtown Hickory underwent a major revitalization on Union Square, providing lots of space to hang out and relax after visiting shops downtown. Events take place year-round, so you may be able to catch some music, an art festival, or the popular Oktoberfest celebration.

For a truly unique experience, make a stop for breakfast, lunch, or dinner in the historic train station. The Olde Hickory Station also houses a bakery, a gourmet market, and a full-service bar with more than 50 beers and ciders on tap. Try the Station Shrimp and Grit Cake, which is grilled jumbo shrimp served with a stone-ground grit cake, tomato vinaigrette, and white butter sauce.

Hike Baker's Mountain Park

Nearby Baker's Mountain Park has 6 miles of walkable trails across 189 acres of picturesque forest. There's an observation platform for photo opportunities, spots for picnics, and plenty of North Carolina wildlife, all of which make this greenspace a great place to spend an afternoon in Hickory.

Spend A Day On Lake Hickory

This man-made freshwater lake with 105 miles of shoreline has been a popular attraction in Hickory and the surrounding area since its creation in 1927. It's a popular spot for boating and fishing, and it's a must-visit spot for visitors to the neighborhood. Stop at one of three marinas to rent a boat for fishing, waterskiing, or wakeboarding. Dock for lunch at the Copper Penny Grill, which serves seafood favorites like Coconut Shrimp and Crab Cake Sliders.

Hickory Aviation Museum

The state that was first in flight gets a memorable monument in the Hickory Aviation Museum, an exploration of the state's aerospace history. Kids and adults alike will enjoy the Flight Line, with aircraft on display dating back to the 1930s. The museum is located at Hickory Regional Airport and admission is free.

Visit Hickory Furniture Mart

North Carolina is famous for its furniture and has a reputation for beautiful craftsmanship that dates back to the early 20th century. Hickory Furniture Mart is the town's go-to, one-stop shop for finding great pieces, making it an obligatory stop for most visitors. You'll find more than 25 showrooms there as well as outlets with incredible deals.

Watch The Races

The Hickory Motor Speedway is a racing hub and a can't-miss attraction for motorsport aficionados in the area. This short track in Catawba County is known as the "World's Most Famous Short Track" and touts itself as "The Birthplace of the NASCAR Stars." Drivers like Junior Johnson, Ned Jarrett, and Ralph Earnhardt were track champions in the 1950s.

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