According to the Forbes Best Places to Retire in 2022 list, Winston-Salem is one of their hot spots! That means it’s a thriving place full of attractions to be explored. The small-town-in-a-city environment boasts stand-out art, history, culture, food, and more. From premier shopping and exquisite dining to a haven for outdoor enthusiasts, check out these fun things to do in Winston-Salem.

Bask in the City’s Past

The historic West End District is a gold mine of architectural gems. If you’re into design, you’ll enjoy the area’s building styles, from Queen Anne to Georgian to Federal. Most of the structures on this side of the town date back to the 19th century with more than 500 of them being historically significant. Be sure to visit the Zevely House, which was once the home of the city’s founder.

Hike the Salem Lake Trail

Next on this list of things to do in Winston-Salem is ideal for nature lovers. If you’re a fan of the great outdoors, the seven-mile hike on the Salem Lake Trail will be memorable. It offers breathtaking lake views, especially during fall’s colorful foliage. You can also go horse riding, biking, boating, or fishing, but note that bank fishing is off-limits.

Visit Bethabara Park

The historic Bethabara Park has been around since 1753 and now stands in present-day Forsyth County. Winston-Salem is home to this National Historic Landmark, and you certainly don’t have to cover the whole 183-acre park in a day. There’s always plenty to see, including gardens, a museum, a fort, original houses, an old mill, and more.

Shop on Trade Street

Do you like hunting for unique finds in local shops? Then Trade Street is just the place for you! Located in the heart of Winston-Salem, you’ll find quaint boutiques, galleries, and cafes on every corner. It’s easy to lose a few hours in this area while enjoying the city’s culture and shopping scene.

Discover the North Carolina Barbecue Trail

North Carolina and barbecue go hand in hand! Did you know Winston-Salem is on the North Carolina Barbecue Society’s Historic Barbecue Trail? Stop by Real Q where the legendary, pit-cooked barbecue has been served since 1991. With a motto that says “If it ain’t over wood, it ain’t good,” you’re pretty much guaranteed some excellent dining, secret sauces, unforgettable flavors, and a classic environment! Pro tip: Order hush puppies with your meal.