To know: Known for its walkable, canopied streets and bungalow homes, Elizabeth is the city’s second oldest streetcar suburb dating back to 1891. It has evolved to become one of Charlotte’s most coveted (and cute) residential neighborhoods, with plenty of locally-owned restaurants and shops. And the streetcar is once again a prominent part of the neighborhood, running straight down Elizabeth Ave. Bonus: It’s free to ride.
To eat: The Fig Tree is known as one of the top fine dining establishments in all of Charlotte. It’s perfect for special occasions, as is The Stanley, newly opened and serving up stunning platings of locally sourced ingredients. If you’re in the mood for jazz, head to Cajun Queen, where some of the best Cajun food available in Charlotte is served in a restored, 100-year-old home with daily, live jazz. Everything at “informal eatery and gourmet grocer” Earl’s Grocery is prepared fresh daily (go for the Brussels sprout slaw) and Bang Bang Burgers pumps out some of the best burgers in town on artisan brioche buns. For dessert, grab a good old-fashioned ice cream cone from Elizabeth Creamery.
To drink: The Spoke Easy is a bicycle shop, yes, but it also offers beer, wine and food like Bodhi bowls and salads. The Tipsy Burro Saloon & Cantina is owned by the same folks who own The Thirsty Beaver Saloon in Plaza Midwood and has a biker-bar-slash-Tex-Mex-restaurant vibe. Customshop offers more than 100 wines by the bottle to complement its eclectic mix of traditional and innovative American dishes.
To do: Independence Park, Charlotte’s first public park, features 19 acres of green space. American Legion Memorial Stadium is the home of Major League Lacrosse’s Charlotte Hounds and also regularly hosts high-profile high school football games. The Visulite Theatre, one of the city’s premier performance venues, draws music-loving crowds to Elizabeth. Then there’s Halton Theater at CPCC that hosts musical and theater productions open to the public. The neighborhood is also home to the city’s oldest road race, the Elizabeth 8K, held each spring. For the adventurous spirit: Search for the entrance to the Trolley Walk, a public stretch of sidewalk that once accessed the streetcar line on 7th Street. Hint: It can be entered from 7th St. across the street from Clarice Ave.