Free Things to Do in the Raleigh-Durham Area

Visiting the Raleigh-Durham area? You won't have any trouble finding free—and fun—things to do throughout the region's cities and towns during your stay. Whether you're looking for a place to hike, jog or stroll for fresh air and exercise, or a museum to gaze upon regional art, you'll find plenty of options in the Triangle.

The North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences in Raleigh is the Southeast's largest natural history museum and consistently ranks as Raleigh's No. 1 attraction. Best of all, it's free! View the only real Acrocanthosaurus skeleton on display in the world, and explore the brand new, state-of-the-art Nature Research Center wing, where you can watch a documentary in the SECU Daily Planet Theater or observe scientists at work.

The American Tobacco Historic District's revitalized warehouses in Durham accommodate restaurants, shops, an ice skating rink in winter and a taste of days gone by. Listen for the crack of a baseball bat during a nearby Durham Bull's Baseball game, or sit a spell on the lawn during a free summer concert.

Pullen Park, founded in 1887, offers a free playground for children in addition to paid attractions, such as its Dentzel carousel, which features an impressive menagerie of more than 50 beautifully restored animals.

Perhaps the Triangle's most famous free destination is Sarah P. Duke Gardens—55 acres of historic flora, fauna and natural beauty. Enjoy a walking tour, which takes approximately 1.5 hours and is free—365 days a year.

Here's more information about these and other free attractions in the Raleigh-Durham area that will enable you to keep your budget in check and get to know the culture, beauty and people of the Triangle.