Map of Greensboro North Carolina Area
A medium-sized city with a lot of small-town charm, Greensboro, N.C., has a little bit of everything for everyone.
From its charming tree-lined residential streets and revitalized downtown to modern restaurants and outdoor sports, Greensboro has become both a desired place to raise a family and a city offering a wide range of attractions for tourists.
Here’s a look at Greensboro, N.C, and all that it offers.
Where is Greensboro, N.C.?
Greensboro is the anchor and biggest city in central North Carolina, which is called the “Piedmont,” French for “foothills.”
It’s part of the Piedmont Triad region, which also includes Winston-Salem to the west and High Point to the southwest. Greensboro, in Guilford County, covers an area of 133.9 square miles and was officially founded in 1808.
With an estimated population of 299,946 in 2020, Greensboro is the third most populous city in North Carolina, behind Charlotte (an estimated 855,000) and the state’s capital, Raleigh (an estimated 475,000).
The Greensboro-High Point- Winston-Salem metro is home to an estimated 752,000 people.
Greensboro’s central location makes it ideal for traveling within the state. It is about 77 miles West of Raleigh and about 93 miles northeast of Charlotte. The mountains and beaches are also easily accessible.
Greensboro is 114 miles east of Boone, 173 miles east of Asheville, 205 miles west of Wilmington, and 300 miles west of the Outer Banks.
Greensboro is surrounded by a large number of towns apart from Winston-Salem and High Point, mostly small residential areas that are a mix of residential suburban and rural areas.
Popular areas near Greensboro include Jamestown, Summerfield, and Pleasant Garden.
Is Greensboro a Good Place to Live?
Greensboro is consistently ranked among the best cities to live in North Carolina and the country.
A survey by Niche ranked Greensboro 61st out of 228 in its best cities to live in America, and it was No. 68 in the best cities to raise a family in America categories.
It also ranked No. 31 among the most diverse places to live in North Carolina.
Major industries in the city attracting residencies include health care, manufacturing, freight delivery, insurance, and banking.
The Piedmont Triad International Airport is home to a major FedEx hub and traditional industries such as textiles and electronics still have a major presence in the city.
Greensboro is also home to several major colleges and universities, attracting students and educated young professionals.
These include the University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG, part of the University of North Carolina system), North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University (a historically black college or university), and Guilford College.
Greensboro is also known for its tree-lined and family-friendly neighborhoods, some historical. Close to downtown are Fisher Park and Old Irving Park, boasting lush landscaping and larger, older homes.
New Irving Park is similarly green but with newer homes and subdivisions.
Other desired neighborhoods include Lake Jeannette in northern Greensboro, Grandover in southwest Greensboro, and the Cardinal in northwest Greensboro.
The immediate residential area surrounding UNCG is filled with quaint and historic bungalows dating from the late 1800s to the early 1900s.
What is Greensboro known for?
Guilford Courthouse National Military Park
Fought on March 15, 1781, the Battle of Guilford Court House (as it was spelled then) predates the founding of Greensboro. It was a British loss and generally is regarded as the battle that led to the overall American victory in Yorktown, Pa., soon after, ending the American Revolution.
Today, it’s a mix of a museum, national historic site, and outdoor green space. Visitors can stroll the battlefield (there’s also jogging and biking trails) and explore the on-site museum about the battle and 18th century Greensboro.
The Greensboro Sit-In
On Feb 1, 1960, the Civil Rights Movement in America found a spark in Greensboro when four NC A&T students sat down at a lunch counter in the then-segregated Woolworth’s store downtown.
The act by the Greensboro Four led to a slew of sit-ins across the country, and the actual lunch counter is now in the Smithsonian. The International Civil Rights Museum & Center opened on the site downtown in 2010.
Greensboro Science Center
The science museum and zoo opened in 1957, but it has received significant upgrades since then. It boasts not just a museum, but an aquarium, zoo, and SkyWild, which simulates animal activity, such as tree climbing, flying, and crawling. The center recently opened its Kiwanisaurus new Treehouse Adventure, a dinosaur-themed outdoor play area.
Greensboro is home to the ACC and NCAA Men’s Basketball tournaments each year at the Greensboro Coliseum Complex, also the site of the ACC Hall of Champions. Golf is big here, too, as it’s home to numerous public courses and the Wyndham Championship.
Greensboro is also home to the minor league baseball team the Greensboro Grasshoppers and the National Basketball Association G League Greensboro Swarm.
More not-to-miss attractions in Greensboro
The past 10 years have brought renewed energy and revitalization to Greensboro’s downtown, now full of modern restaurants, green spaces, and boutique shopping. Bonus: Lots of outdoor breweries. https://www.downtowngreensboro.org/
The Bog Garden
Part of Benjamin park, this 7-acre section is a beautiful bird sanctuary, dotted with trails, native plants, and babbling brooks. https://greensborobeautiful.org/gardens/bog_garden.php
Greensboro History Museum
A good stop for first-time visitors, the museum, housed in a historic church, offers innovative and interactive exhibits about Greensboro history, especially Dolley Madison, the famous first lady who was born in Guilford County.
An outside section includes a historic cemetery and recreations of old homesteads. https://greensborohistory.org/
A go-to destination for shoppers, the sprawling, open-air mall includes high-end stores like Apple and West Elm — and a huge Harris Teeter grocery store. https://www.friendlycenter.com/
Piedmont Triad Farmers Market
There are other great farmers’ markets in and around Greensboro, but the PTFM is the largest and best of them all.
Open 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. every day, the market includes areas for fruits and vegetables, flowers and plants, local artisans, and a huge pottery/garden shop.
Don’t forget to stop for some ice cream.