Things to Do Outdoors Around Raleigh and Durham

When visiting Raleigh and Durham, North Carolina, there is a plethora of outdoor activities for every interested traveler to choose from.

Take your visit to the Triangle outdoors, where picturesque scenery and recreational variety thrive throughout Wake, Durham, Orange and Chatham counties. From a 14,000-acre lake just outside of Apex, to a NASCAR racetrack-turned-trail in Hillsborough, you’ll find unique places to enjoy a tranquil boat ride or energizing run, no matter what part of the Triangle you’re visiting.

Escape to floral bliss at Sarah P. Duke Gardens on the historic Duke University Campus in Durham, or hike through cool patches Eastern Hemlock trees at Hemlock Bluffs in Cary. Access the American Tobacco Trail, a rails-to-trails project that winds through cities, towns and rural countryside along the western side of the Triangle, or get your daily run in on the Capital Area Greenway in Raleigh, which connects to the North Carolina Museum of Art’s creatively designed Ann and Jim Goodnight Museum Park trail.

Depending on the season, it’s a good idea to pack the following for your outdoor Carolina excursion:

  • Sunglasses and sunscreen
  • A hat for shade
  • Bug spray—mosquitos and ticks are common companions on trails and in parks
  • Lightweight, microfiber clothing—the humidity level kicks up in the summer

Check out this list of great outdoor ideas for your visit to the area: