Spartanburg, South Carolina – A Kalidescope of Unexpected Discoveries - My Family Travels

Founded in the 1780s as a courthouse village, Spartanburg, South Carolina, located in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, is a city with something for everyone.  


Like history?  A great place to start your visit is Morgan Square, the site of the original village.  Some buildings in this area date back to the late 1800s.  Here you can see a statue of a local Revolutionary War hero, Daniel Morgan, general of the American forces in the Battle of Cowpens.  To see the battle site, visit the Cowpens National Battlefield, which has annual reenactments and other events.  While you’re in the downtown area, visit the Magnolia Street Train Depot, one of the oldest buildings in Spartanburg.  Here you can visit the Hub City Railroad Museum and learn about Spartanburg’s history as a transportation center and the origin of its nickname, Hub City.  To get a sense of life in the 18th and 19th centuries, visit one of the area’s historic homes.  Walnut Grove Plantation, the site of a Revolutionary War skirmish and an 18th-century farmhouse, is a wonderful place for the whole family to visit.  The Seay House, the oldest home within city limits, tells the story of women in the 1800s.  The Price House details the transformation of the Upcountry from an isolated area into a place filled with businesses and cotton farms.  You can also visit the Spartanburg Regional History Museum at the Chapman Cultural Center.

Enjoy the arts?  Plan to visit the Chapman Cultural Center or the Spartanburg Memorial Auditorium.  The Chapman Cultural Center houses the Spartanburg Art Museum as well as an auditorium where local productions of musicals and plays are held.  Spartanburg Memorial Auditorium, the largest theater in the Carolinas, hosts local events as well as famous entertainment acts and family shows. The auditorium has hosted musicians such as Taylor Swift and Kenny Chesney, as well as family events like Sesame Street Live and the Shrine Circus.  

Have kids?  Be sure to visit Hollywild Animal Park and the Spartanburg Science Center.  Hollywild is Spartanburg’s only zoo, with hundreds of animals, a “safari” ride, and animal feeding areas.  The Science Center, located in the Chapman Cultural Center, has many different fun and interactive science programs and exhibits.  If it’s summer, visit Shipwreck Cove, Spartanburg’s new water park. 

Love cars?  Spartanburg County boasts the only BMW manufacturing facility in North America.  Here you can visit the free museum in the Zentrum, tour the plant, or take a driving class at the Performance Center.  

Enjoy sports?  Every July and August Spartanburg hosts the Carolina Panthers training camp at Wofford College.  As all practice sessions are free and open to the public, it is a great way for football fans of all ages to see the game up close and personal.  

Like music?  Spartanburg has recently added the Spartanburg Music Trail, commemorating prominant musicians from the city.  .  Every Thursday night in the spring and summer, Spartanburg holds Music on Main, where local musicians share their talents.  

Looking to further your education?  Spartanburg is also a college town, with many different college options, including nationally acclaimed Wofford College and Converse College.  

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