So you’ve got the travel itch? The bug to pack up and go? That desire to venture somewhere new and be able to say, “Hey! I’ve done that?!” While spinning a globe and running off to wherever your finger lands is good in theory, 71% of the earth is covered in water. Those aren’t strong enough odds for me … I’d rather select a manageable, family-friendly destination that I can tackle in a day with no jet lag. So, let me introduce you to Greensboro , one of our favorite North Carolina day trips.
Location, location, location!
Greensboro, located in the Piedmont region of central North Carolina, is only about a 2-hour drive from most major cities in North Carolina. This makes it an ideal location for a day trip—you can probably get there before your kids have even asked “are we there yet?!” Probably.
Live it up!
Quick: name a few of your favorite things. Adventure? Exotic animals? Hands-on science centers where you can get away with styling your hair like Einstein? Well, you’re in luck because Greensboro has all of those things (and more) in one fun place: the recently expanded Greensboro Science Center. This zoo, aquarium, and museum all rolled into one has enough to keep you occupied for the whole day…oh, and the kids too.
This ain’t your everyday aquarium …
The Carolina Sciquarium is exactly what it sounds like: a science aquarium that offers a unique chance to experience animals, fish, and their caretakers behind-the-scenes. Be sure to participate in the live Q&A sessions with a trained scuba diver…while they’re underwater! For the littlest ones, they can burn off all their energy in a hands-on, interactive area designed just for them. They can even build a sandcastle without mom and dad having to worry that they’re going to end up tracking half of it into the car (which, as every parent knows, is precisely what happens every time we visit the beach).
Your house may feel like a zoo, but at least it doesn’t smell like one!
Many of the animals that call Animal Discovery at the Greensboro Science Center (GSC) home are near extinction or very rare, like the Javan Gibbon. This particular Gibbon breed is considered one of the rarest species in the world, and you’ll get to see it up close and personal while you’re visiting. There are mammals and reptiles ranging from tigers and lemurs to iguanas and pythons (with birds, amphibians, and insects in between). Favorite attractions include the petting zoo and discovery house where trained docents help with being able to handle small mammals. And while you’re there, be sure to stop and say hello to the Screaming Hairy Armadillos. (No, I did not make that up.)
But wait! There’s more…
Also located at the GSC is the SKYWILD Adventure Center (that title is just a fancy way of running around screaming “ZIP LINE” at the top of your lungs). The best part of SKYWILD is that their mission compliments that of the Greensboro Science Center: to experience a variety of animal behaviors. This might mean imitating animal sounds and movements, all as part of your zip lining adventure and geared toward appreciating the diversity of life!
Tip: Your SKYWILD ticket includes a complimentary pass to the Greensboro Science Center. Kind of a no brainer…
It’s a bird, it’s a plane!
No, it’s your last stop at the GSC, the OmniSphere Theater! As one of only two locations in the entire country to offer this type of theater (a 40-foot Super MediaGlobe projection system that can show full-dome laser, 3-D, or even act as a planetarium), a show at the OmniSphere simply can’t be missed.
When hunger hits, you don’t even have to leave the premises of the Greensboro Science Center to eat. The Fresh Market Café offers yummy treats like sandwiches, salads, snacks, and coffee (the only thing that really matters). If you want to explore the city, Greensboro has a wide variety of tastes to meet every budget and preference. Try Filipino, Indian, Mediterranean, Korean, Jamaican, or Middle Eastern, all made fresh, all local, and all incredible.
Til’ next time!
At the end of the day, you’ll be able to look back and smile at all the fun memories made in Greensboro, North Carolina. Totally worth the dreams you’ll have about that Screaming Hairy Armadillo…