What are the five best things to do with kids in Raleigh-Durham?

Even if your kids aren’t old enough to start looking at colleges, Raleigh-Durham still flaunts a whole host of activities for your whole family to enjoy. And, hey, it’s never too early to start looking at higher education. The five best things to do with kids in Raleigh-Durham are:

1. North Carolina Museum of Life and Science in Durham. Exhibits about rocks and robots will vie for your attention, along with the Magic Wings Butterfly House, a farmyard full of animals and hands-on wind experiments.

2. Pullen Park in Raleigh. Carved rabbits, tigers, horses and other artistically carved and painted animals spin round the park’s carousel, which is on the National Register of Historic Sites. While on your adventure at this park, you can make use of the paddleboats or let your little ones monkey around on the jungle gym. For a refreshment, stop by the concession stand

3. Marbles Kids Museum in Raleigh. This hands-on museum includes an IMAX theater that’s all the rage. What’s better than kids learning about all kinds of things such as the Moneypalooza, where kids are encouraged to play smart with their money — a way to teach your kids a life skill without having to drill it into their heads.

4. Eno River State Park. Walk its hiking trails, perch on rocky outcroppings, wade in the knee-high waters, or take a swim in Sennett’s Hole. Let your kids run around in the wild until their hearts are content; trust us, they will sleep much better that night.

5. Durham Bulls baseball game. Take them out to the ball game. This intimate stadium makes for a great atmosphere with the crowd and the goofy entertainment. The best part is, you are close enough to actually watch baseball: You can see what the coaches are doing, how the shortstop holds the runner at second, and what the ball players are like.

  • On November 6, 2013
    Colin Bedford answered the question: Colin Bedford

    What’s the best time to visit Raleigh-Durham?

    Spring is when you get all of the new ingredients — it’s just a fun time in terms of food. It’s also great weather-wise because it’s so hot here in the summer that spring is just a really nice time. It’s so green here — things change overnight, between the leaves and the flowers. The gardens at Fearrington Village are beautiful. It’s just a really cool place in general, and in spring it’s great.

    In the fall, it’s finally bearable and cooling down. Then you can flip into the comfort food. You’ve gone through two seasons of lighter, more refined, elegant ingredients, and then you can get into some robust and braised meats in the fall. I love the smell of fall, too.
  • On November 6, 2013
    Colin Bedford answered the question: Colin Bedford

    What are the best things to see and do in Raleigh-Durham?

    Golf, golf and more golf. We have the best golf courses in this area. I like the Lonnie Poole course at North Carolina State University. The Preserve at Jordan Lake Golf Club is also a great course. I play a private golf course called Old Chatham.
  • On November 6, 2013
    Forbes Travel Guide Inspector answered the question: Forbes Travel Guide Inspector

    What are the best things to see and do in Raleigh-Durham?

    With three major universities nearby, Raleigh-Durham boasts plenty of great things to see and do. Composed of Raleigh, Durham and Chapel Hill, the area is anchored by University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Duke University and North Carolina State University. The five best things to see and do in Raleigh-Durham are:

    1. The North Carolina Museum of Art is home to a surprising collection of Rodin sculptures and more than 5,000 years of art, from the primitive to the post-modern. Get your fill of art in the free museum.

    2. Eno River State Park’s hiking trails, flanked by wildflowers and a tangle of vines, run alongside the 40-mile Eno River or disappear into the woods. You’ll pass spots with names like Coon Foot Island and Buzzard Rock; pause to perch on rocky outcroppings and commune Thoreau-like with nature. Some points on the river, such as Sennett’s Hole, are deep enough for swimming.

    3. Walk through the historic campus of the University of Chapel Hill, one of the oldest universities in the country. Stroll across the quad of the first public university in the U.S. to admit students back in 1795, brush your fingers across its centuries-old bricks, drink from the Old Well for good luck and hope for a sighting of Tarheels head basketball coach Roy Williams.

    4. For kids, nothing beats the North Carolina Museum of Life and Science in Durham. Exhibits about rocks and robots will vie for your attention, along with the Magic Wings Butterfly House, a farmyard full of animals and hands-on wind experiments.

    5. For a respite from museum going, take a spin around this gorgeously landscaped 55-acre Sarah P. Duke Gardens; it’s a perennial favorite of both visiting parents of Duke University students and gardening enthusiasts alike.
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  • On May 7, 2013
    Natalie Wearstler answered the question: Natalie Wearstler

    What’s the best time to visit Raleigh-Durham?

    I personally think that fall is the best time to visit Raleigh-Durham. The air is crisp, leaves are changing colors all around the city and the weather is just right — not quite chilly enough (yet) to necessitate a heavy winter coat, but cool enough to wear your favorite sweaters and boots comfortably. It's a beautiful time of year to get out and explore the city on two wheels with a Triangle Glides segway tour or swing by the North Carolina Museum of Art to take in the collection of outdoor sculptures and works of art as you stroll along more than a mile of paved and unpaved walking paths outside of the museum's main buildings. You could also museum hop through Downtown, as several of the city's most popular cultural outposts are clustered together in a walkable radius.
  • On May 7, 2013
    Natalie Wearstler answered the question: Natalie Wearstler

    What’s the best time to visit Raleigh-Durham?

    I personally think that fall is the best time to visit Raleigh-Durham. The air is crisp, leaves are changing colors all around the city and the weather is just right — not quite chilly enough (yet) to necessitate a heavy winter coat, but cool enough to wear your favorite sweaters and boots comfortably. It's a beautiful time of year to get out and explore the city on two wheels with a Triangle Glides segway tour or swing by the North Carolina Museum of Art to take in the collection of outdoor sculptures and works of art as you stroll along more than a mile of paved and unpaved walking paths outside of the museum's main buildings. You could also museum hop through Downtown, as several of the city's most popular cultural outposts are clustered together in a walkable radius.
  • On August 24, 2012
    Jim Beley answered the question: Jim Beley

    What are the five best things to do with kids in Raleigh-Durham?

    Raleigh, Durham and Chapel Hill are all wonderful playgrounds for families. Raleigh offers a unique, interactive museum for kids called Marbles, which encourages them to learn through experimentation and play. A connecting IMAX theater shows fascinating documentary films in a large-scale, often 3D, format. Close to downtown Raleigh is the historic Pullen Park, a delightful place to enjoy an old-fashioned carrousel or train ride, take a picnic or paddleboat with the swans. Raleigh-Durham also is home to a beautiful Greenway system, with lush walkways perfect for a family bike ride or walking the dog.

    Durham is home to the Museum of Life and Sciences, a state-of-the-art, engaging indoor/outdoor science-technology center that’s ranked as one of the top four family-friendly museums in the Southeast. The museum includes Magic Wings Butterfly House, an impressive display of NASA history, weather learning labs and a small outdoor zoo.

    Finally, children love the wonder of the Morehead Planetarium, located on the UNC campus in Chapel Hill, which has programming for all ages.
  • On June 25, 2012
    Forbes Travel Guide Inspector answered the question: Forbes Travel Guide Inspector

    What are the five best romantic restaurants in Raleigh-Durham?

    While it may not be the most romantic getaway, Raleigh-Durham certainly has a few restaurants that’ll make you walk away with hearts in your eyes. The five best romantic restaurants in Raleigh-Durham are:

    1. Lantern. Self-taught chef Andrea Reusing has been on our radar for years, serving contemporary pan-Asian-meets-Dixie dishes. The glowing white lights give the Chapel Hill-based Lantern its name, thought the lighting is so dim, in fact, you may want to keep your reading glasses handy to make sure you catch every delightful word on the menu.

    2. Herons. At the Forbes Travel Guide Five-Star restaurant of posh The Umstead Hotel and Spa, an intimate dining room overlooks a terrace and lake. And it’s only footsteps away from one of the best local spots for a couples massage.

    3. Four Square in Durham. From the moment you step past ancient trees and into this old home - a beautiful preserved 1903 Neoclassical Revival mansion - you know you’re in for something special.

    4. The Fearrington House Restaurant. It’s not uncommon to witness a proposal, wedding dinner or anniversary celebration taking place in the small dining rooms of this country inn’s Four-Star restaurant — whose reputation for fine dining is known throughout the nation.

    5. Caffè Luna. Take a historic building in a downtown setting, spruce it up with artwork and elegant lighting, throw in a Tuscan-flavored menu and — voilà — instant romance.
  • On June 25, 2012
    Jim Beley answered the question: Jim Beley

    What is Raleigh-Durham’s restaurant scene like?

    The farm-to-fork movement is definitely in full swing here, with talented chefs like those at Herons, Poole’s Diner, Lantern, The Fearrington House Restaurant and the Magnolia Grill forging lasting relationships with local organic farmers and meat, fish and poultry purveyors. North Carolina is rich with farmland, and heirloom tomatoes, winter kale, baby bok choy, purple basil and white peaches are at our doorstep, depending on the season.
  • On June 25, 2012
    Forbes Travel Guide Inspector answered the question: Forbes Travel Guide Inspector

    What is Raleigh-Durham’s restaurant scene like?

    Though the area doesn’t have a big-city feel, when it comes to food, Raleigh-Durham can hold its own against most metropolitan areas. Forbes Travel Guide Five-Star Herons serves excellent American cuisine with an upscale, Southern spin, and the Four-Star Fearrington House Restaurant embraces the farm-to-table movement. Durham — one of the three anchors of Raleigh-Durham — is a small town that foodies love. Food trucks, barbecue joints and alfresco patios — Raleigh-Durham has a little bit of everything, all with that classic Southern charm. Just don’t start a debate of what make barbecue great; you’ll hear disagreement, even from different parts of the same state. And because North Carolina has a strong farming tradition, you’re likely to find locally harvested vegetables and meats on menus. Heck, you may even see the name of the farmer on the menu. The bottom line: Wildly diverse tastes will find refuge in Raleigh-Durham.
  • On June 25, 2012
    Jim Beley answered the question: Jim Beley

    What are the five best Raleigh-Durham food experiences?

    Of course, we highly recommend Herons restaurant, particularly the exquisite Chef’s Tasting Menu that’s served nightly or our lunchtime Market Menu. Both feature the best local produce of the season. Other suggestions include a taste of eastern North Carolina barbecue at Coopers in Raleigh, buttermilk fried chicken and Southern veggies at Mama Dips in Chapel Hill, fried green tomatoes at NoFo in Raleigh, or a walking food tour with the company Triangle Food Tours. These tours are offered in Raleigh, Durham, Chapel Hill and Cary and include the best of our talented local chefs, pastry artists and farmers.
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