Charlotte ( SHAR-lət) is the most populous city in the U.S. state of North Carolina. Located in the Piedmont region, it is the county seat of Mecklenburg County. The population was 874,579 at the 2020 census, making Charlotte the 16th-most populous city in the U.S., the seventh most populous city in the South, and the second most populous city in the Southeast behind Jacksonville, Florida. The city is the cultural, economic, and transportation center of the Charlotte metropolitan area, whose 2020 population of 2,660,329 ranked 22nd in the U.S. Metrolina is part of a sixteen-county market region or combined statistical area with a 2020 census-estimated population of 2,846,550.Between 2004 and 2014, Charlotte was ranked as the country's fastest-growing metro area, with 888,000 new residents. Based on U.S. census data from 2005 to 2015, Charlotte tops the U.S. in millennial population growth. It is the third-fastest-growing major city in the United States. Residents are referred to as "Charlotteans".Charlotte is home to the corporate headquarters of Bank of America, Truist Financial, and the east coast headquarters of Wells Fargo, which along with other financial institutions has made it the second-largest banking center in the United States.Among Charlotte's notable attractions, some of the most popular include the Carolina Panthers (NFL), the Charlotte Hornets (NBA), Charlotte FC (MLS), the NASCAR Hall of Fame, the Charlotte Ballet, Children's Theatre of Charlotte, Mint Museum, Harvey B. Gantt Center, Bechtler Museum of Modern Art, the Billy Graham Library, Levine Museum of the New South, Charlotte Museum of History, Carowinds amusement park, and the U.S. National Whitewater Center.Charlotte has a humid subtropical climate. It is located several miles east of the Catawba River and southeast of Lake Norman, the largest man-made lake in North Carolina. Lake Wylie and Mountain Island Lake are two smaller man-made lakes located near the city.