Things to Do Around Raleigh and Durham

What started as a way to attract modern industries to North Carolina, has resulted in a region that boasts a booming—and educated—population.

The thriving Research Triangle Park was established between Raleigh and Durham by two North Carolina businessmen in the mid-1950s as a way to prevent “brain-draining” the area of graduates from Duke University, North Carolina State University and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. The park, known as "RTP," now accommodates more than 100 companies and 41,000-plus employees who contribute to the region’s culture and economic development.

Add to that a geographical location equidistant to the mountains and coast, and mild but contrasting seasons, and you get a utopic metropolitan area that, not surprisingly, has achieved recognition as one of the country’s most family-friendly places to live.

Across the Triangle, from Wake Forest to Fuquay-Varina, you’ll discover history, culture, cuisine and nightlife. In Raleigh, visit the larger-than-life North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences and stop by the State Farmers Market to sample fresh, seasonal North Carolina produce. Take in a Durham Bulls Baseball game or an outdoor concert on the revitalized American Tobacco Historic District campus. Apex, recognized by Money magazine as the 2015 No. 1 “Best Place to Live” in America, offers a quaint and historic downtown district brimming with boutiques and cafes. 

Other towns like Chapel Hill, Cary, Holly Springs, Wake Forest, Fuquay-Varina and Zebulon claim a unique brand of culture and entertainment as well. You’ll find restaurants, shops and activities that suit every age. While we can’t possibly list all the area has to offer here, get to know the region with this list of fun things to do around the Triangle.