Raleigh North Carolina
Kayaking the bald cypress blackwater swamp at Robertson Millpond Preserve
Outdoor dining with skyline views at Transfer Co. Food Hall
Biking alongside sculptures in the North Carolina Museum of Art’s sprawling Museum Park
Live performance during Hopscotch Music Festival as the sun sets over downtown
Mountain biking on an autumn day in William B. Umstead State Park
A garden featuring Auguste Rodin sculptures at the North Carolina Museum of Art
Entrance to the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences
Outside CAM Raleigh, the city’s museum for contemporary art and design
Stylish interior of Brewery Bhavana, an all-in-one dim sum restaurant, craft brewery, library and shop
Aerial view of the North Carolina State Capitol and the city skyline
- Major Airports:
- Raleigh-Durham (RDU)
- North Carolina
Vibrant diversity meets Southern hospitality in North Carolina’s capital
From Museums to Music
Whether you’re an art aficionado, history buff or traveling with little ones, Raleigh has a museum for you. Explore more than 5,000 years of art history at the North Carolina Museum of Art, which boasts the largest museum art park in the USA. The Contemporary Art Musem (CAM) doesn’t have a permanent collection, which means art lovers will always find new exhibits. At the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences, learn all about native flora and fauna – and attend an event inside a three-story-tall replica globe! Or, learn all about state history at the North Carolina Museum of History. Best of all? All four facilities are free. After dark, the city’s music scene comes to life. Check out hot spots including a speakeasy-style jazz club at C. Grace, indie rock at Neptune’s and Kings, or national acts at Red Hat Amphitheater.
Enjoy the Outdoors
With mild winters and warm summers, Raleigh invites outdoor recreation all year. Pedal, jog or walk along boardwalks, paths and bridges spotting historical sites and scenic wetlands on the 44-kilometer Neuse River Greenway Trail. It’s on a segment of the 1,900-kilometer Mountains-to-Sea Trail that traverses the length of North Carolina, and part of greater Raleigh’s nearly 300 kilometers of greenways. Hike through forests and nature trails at the popular William B. Umstead State Park or paddle the Neuse River Canoe Trail. Robertson Millpond Preserve offers a one-of-a-kind kayaking adventure through the only bald cypress blackwater swamp in the area.
A Foodie Paradise
You won’t go hungry (or thirsty) in Raleigh. Start at Brewery Bhavana, where you’ll not only find a Belgium-inspired brewery, but also a dim sum restaurant, community library, bookstore and flower shop all in one. Traveling with picky eaters or just can’t decide what to eat? Head to Morgan Street Food Hall or Transfer Co. Food Hall, where you can please every palate with eclectic food choices ranging from tacos and fresh seafood to bagels and gourmet ice cream. When happy hour hits, pick from more than 350 beers on draft at Raleigh Beer Garden, claiming the largest draft selection in the world. International restaurant favorites include Garland (try the Cauliflower 65 with turmeric-yogurt sauce) and Laotian fare at Bida Manda (the crispy pork belly soup is outstanding).
Raleigh is home to an array of free, world-class museums and arts and cultural attractions, leading to its nickname “Smithsonian of the South.” The term was coined by a local writer and sanctioned by the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C.
Photo: Karen Swain
Raleigh is home to more than 80 live music venues and hosts festivals for nearly every genre; that’s why Rolling Stone dubbed it “One of the Best Music Scenes Right Now.”
Photo: Garrett Poulos
The North Carolina State Capitol building features a statue of George Washington (the USA’s first president) wearing a toga and Roman sandals.