Here are sample itineraries to get your trip planning started. Contact the Wilson Visitors Center to fully customize your trip.
An Art Seekers Guide to Wilson
Wilson is home to a growing arts community. Here’s the inspiration you need to create the perfect weekend.
Search for Antiques
If you have an eye for heirlooms, antiques, and home furnishings, you’ll find treasures in our warehouses and shops.
Visit a variety of photography studios and art galleries showcasing local and international artists. You’ll find handmade jewelry and pottery, oils and mixed media compositions, and photography.
See Eyes on Main Street
Running from April 27 to August 4, 2019, the 5th edition of Eyes on Main Street will transform historic downtown into an outdoor photo gallery. Explore six blocks of large-scale photographs taken by artists from more than 40 countries.
Explore Famous Folk Art
The Vollis Simpson Whirligig Park & Museum is a can’t-miss destination in Wilson. Located in the center of downtown, the incredible art installations tower above visitors. Learn more about the artist at the museum, then grab a drink across the street.
Catch a Performance
Enjoy a play at Barton College, a concerto by the Wilson symphony, or a live show at the cultural center. Many of our restaurants also feature local musicians.
A Day Tripper’s Guide to Wilson
If you’re here for only a day, you’ll have to prioritize. Here are a few standout activities we recommend for first-timers and seasoned visitors.
Take in the Sights
Spend the morning taking in the sights that Wilson has to offer. Do you prefer gardens and trails or art galleries and museums?
Pick a Favorite
Wilson is famous for its barbecue. You’ve got to try it for lunch. With more than one legendary establishment, you’re sure to find a favorite.
See the Famous Whirligigs
The Vollis Simpson Whirligig Park & Museum is a can’t-miss destination in Wilson. Located in the center of downtown, the incredible art installations tower above visitors. Learn more about the artist at the museum.
Spend the Afternoon at a Brewery
After you see the whirligigs, head across the street to grab refreshments. Wilson has several breweries to choose from, plus a wine shop. We recommend visiting more than one!
Catch a Performance
Before you leave town, enjoy a play at Barton College, a concerto by the Wilson Symphony Orchestra, or a live show at the cultural center. Many of our restaurants also feature local musicians.
A Food Lover’s Guide to Wilson
Prepare to be satisfied by Wilson’s Southern kitchens. From our famous barbecue joints to our blossoming craft breweries, there’s a lot to sample – so come hungry.
Wilson is famous for its barbecue. It’s our bread and butter. Don’t even think about coming to town without feasting at Parker’s or Marty’s.
The Beefmastor Inn Tailgates
If you have time to tailgate in the parking lot and play a few games of cornhole, then you have to put The Beefmastor Inn on your agenda. There’s no menu at this Wilson institution featured in Our State Magazine, but you’ll pick your own cut of steak.
Legendary Home Cooking
Many of our joints have been open for decades, featured in statewide publications, and highlighted on Tar Heel Traveler. Be sure to visit establishments like Bill’s Grill, Flo’s Kitchen, and Dick’s Hot Dog Stand. If you’re lucky, you’ll even meet the owners.
Breweries & Wine Shops
Wilson has several breweries to choose from, plus a wine shop. Plan a bar hop – because we recommend visiting more than one! The whole family will enjoy good food and events like live music.
A Pit Stopper’s Guide to Wilson
If you’re just rolling through town, we’ve got the perfect spots to stretch your legs and sample famous pit barbecue.
Pick a Favorite
Wilson is famous for barbecue. With more than one legendary establishment, you’re sure to find a family favorite.
Stretch Your Legs
Take a break from driving and stretch your legs at the Vollis Simpson Whirligig Park. There’s a lawn for the kids and one-of-a-kind folk art.
Relax at a Brewery
Right across the street from the whirligigs, you’ll find 217 Brew Works. Sit with a view of the art and enjoy a meal. You might even catch live music.
A Tournament Attendee’s Guide to Wilson
So, you’re in town for a tournament? There’s much more to see than just our sports complexes. Between games, find family fun.
Play, Then Spectate
Hit a home run by taking your sports lovers to a Wilson Tobs baseball game in Historic Fleming Stadium. Then visit the North Carolina Baseball Museum on-site.
Run Wild at Imagination Station
After your games, let the kids run wild at Imagination Station in historic downtown. Explore four floors of exciting science and nature exhibits.
Kick Back and Relax
Get out of the stadium and explore downtown’s gem – the Vollis Simpson Whirligig Park. The whole family will love the art, along with events like movies and concerts on the lawn.
Dig in at Legendary Establishments
Between games, grab a bite at family-friendly restaurants with reputations for good food. From Dick’s Hot Dog Stand to Parker’s Barbecue, everyone will leave satisfied.
Find an Excuse to Tailgate
Tailgate with the team at The Beefmastor Inn. Before dinner, challenge everyone to a game of cornhole in the parking lot.
A Weekend Guest’s Guide to Wilson
Reach out to the Wilson Visitors Center for assistance customizing your itinerary to your interests. For now, here are some ideas that everyone will enjoy!
Head Straight to the Tailgate
Pull off the highway and head straight to the parking lot at The Beefmastor Inn. You’ll be joining a party! Everyone gathers to tailgate and play cornhole before dinner. There’s no menu at this Wilson institution featured in Our State Magazine, but you’ll pick your own cut of steak.
Art & Whirligigs
Spend the morning browsing galleries and photography studios in historic downtown. If you’re in town between April and August, you’ll catch Eyes on Main Street, an international arts festival. Be sure to visit the Vollis Simpson Whirligig Park & Museum to see the folk art displayed in the center of downtown.
For lunch, you’ll have to sample Wilson’s famous barbecue. With a several legendary places to try, everyone can pick a favorite!
Step Back in Time
Wilson is home to many historical sites and museums. Learn about the heritage of Eastern North Carolina farm life, visit Imagination Station Science & History Museum, or stop by the North Carolina Baseball Museum.
Take Me Out to the Ball Game
Catch the Wilson Tobs at bat in Historic Fleming Stadium and enjoy an afternoon of baseball. The season begins in June, and games are scheduled Monday through Saturday. Check schedules for football, too. Barton College Football comes to Wilson in 2020.
Kick Back at a Brewery
Wilson has several craft breweries to choose from, plus a wine shop. Plan a bar hop – because we recommend visiting more than one! The whole family will enjoy good food and events like live music.
Enjoy a country breakfast at a local diner like Abrams. You’ll need your energy for your last day in town!
Plan a morning of golf. Whether you want to tee up at one of our country clubs or public golf courses, play Putt-Putt at the Fun Center, or try your hand at disc golf, there is a game for everyone.
Enjoy the Outdoors
Get some fresh air in Wilson. Visit the rose garden, go fishing, or take our bike routes. We have nature trails, gardens, parks, and a lake to explore year-round.