Raleigh is the capital city of North Carolina and the seat of Wake County. It is currently home to more than 430,000 people and is considered one of the country's fastest-growing cities. It is named after the English aristocrat, poet, writer and soldier Sir Walter Raleigh, who established the lost Roanoke Colony in what is now Dare County.
Raleigh is nicknamed "City of Oaks" due to the many oak trees lining the streets in the heart of this bustling city. See these magnificent oak trees yourself and get on a bus rental in Raleigh, North Carolina. However, you will be pleasantly surprised to find that there is so much more to the city than these oak trees!
Raleigh ranked No. 1 in Businessweek's list of America's Best Places to Live in 2011. Plus, in recent years, various groups have also named and recognized the city as being business-friendly, most wired, most ideal for raising a family, etc.
All these awards are not surprising, as Raleigh is a dynamic city that provides the best setting for business and leisure. It is a city whose growth fuels an urban revival that attracts many economic and cultural events. It has modern amenities while it preserves its cultural heritage. It is world-class but at the same time warm, welcoming and friendly for all.
So discover and experience this lively city and have a memorable time with family or friends. Get on a bus rental in Raleigh, North Carolina and have a vacation you won't forget!
If you want clean fun for the entire family, you can go to Frankie's Fun Park, where there are rides and attractions that the kids will surely love and enjoy. It has a mini golf course, a road course, a fun house, a laser tag facility, batting cages, a gaming arcade, a sky trail, a drop zone, bumper boats, trampolines, and thrill rides.
There is also Adventure Landing, which allows you to play miniature golf, laser tag, video games, and go-carts. It also has batting cages for future baseball players.
Pullen Park, meanwhile, is the first public park in the state and offers recreational opportunities. It has the historic Gustave A. Dentzel Carousel, kiddie boats, a miniature C.P. Huntington train, pedal boats, a children's amphitheatre, and a playground, among many other attractions. It also has an aquatic center where you can go swimming.
Night life. Those who love to grab cocktails and dance the night away won't be disappointed in Raleigh. The city has a pulsating night life, with a wide array of bars, night clubs, pubs, comedy clubs, live music venues and other venues.
You can try The Pour House Music Hall, located in the Moore Square Art District. The place offers a fine selection of draught beer and a great variety of live music.
If you want to share some laughter with friends, you can head to Goodnights Comedy Club, which hosts comedic talents from across the country. In fact, comedy greats like Jerry Seinfeld, Chris Rock, Jay Leno, Ellen DeGeneres, Robin Williams, and Ray Romano have once graced the stage at Goodnights. ComedyWorx is also a great place to listen to some comedy shows.
Legends, meanwhile, is a nightclub that caters to the city's gay and lesbian communities.
Other bars, night clubs, pubs and other night spots in Raleigh include:
Greater Raleigh is called the "Smithsonian of the South" because of the presence of art museums, galleries, and live performance venues.
You can go to the North Carolina Museum of Art, which opened the country's first major museum collection. It has a collection encompassing more than 5,000 years of art, from ancient works to present ones. This museum has more than 40 galleries and more than a dozen major works. Its permanent collection includes European Renaissance paintings, 19th century masterpieces, Egyptian funerary art, ancient Greek and Roman vase paintings and sculpture, American art from the 18 to 20th centuries, international contemporary art, African art, ancient American art, pre-Columbian art, and Oceanic art. The museum also features Jewish ceremonial objects.
Visit the Contemporary Art Museum of Raleigh, a multimedia contemporary art gallery that showcases works of regional, national, and international artists through exhibits. The museum does not, however, have a permanent collection.
You may also want to check out Moore Square Art District, which is clustered in a three-block radius around City Market and which contains commercial and display galleries.
Other smaller art museums and galleries include:
Performance arts. You can head to the Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts complex, which houses the Fletcher Opera Theater, the Raleigh Memorial Auditorium, the Meymandi Concert Hall, and the Kennedy Theater. Duke Energy Center is the main performing arts venue in the city.
Meanwhile, the Walnut Creek Amphitheatre is an outdoor amphitheatre that hosts large concerts and major international touring acts. It has a seating capacity of 6,847 while the open lawn can accommodate 13,600 people.
The Joseph M. Bryan, Jr., Theater in Museum Park, on the other hand, is a unique performing arts and film venue that hosts an outdoor summer series that features music performances, classic films, blockbuster movies, and family entertainment.
The Lincoln Theater also features regional and national touring acts.
You can also catch theater performances at the Raleigh Little Theatre, the Long View Center, the Stewart and Thompson Theaters at North Carolina State University, Red Hat Amphitheater, Burning Coal Theatre, and the Ira David Wood III Pullen Park Theatre.
Raleigh offers you a feast for your palate with its world of dining options. It has restaurants serving sumptuous food, including cuisine from around the world!
Local favorites include Glenwood Grill; which offers a combination of American, Southwestern, Eclectic, and International cuisine; Gravy, which serves great-tasting American and Italian dishes; and Margaux's Restaurant, where you can get a mix of American, French, Eclectic food, and sushi, too.
However, if you are feeling adventurous and if you are up to exploring new flavors from other parts of the world, you can go to restaurants like Machu Picchu and Mami Nora's, which both specialize in Peruvian Cuisine, to Sitti for Lebanese food, or to Lemongrass Thai Restaurant, where you can try the exotic flavors of Thai cuisine. You can also check out Swad Indian, for some curry goodness, or Guasaca for its South American dishes in general.
If you have a sophisticated taste, why not go French? Head to St. Jacques French Cuisine or to Coquette Brasserie. You can also go German and Polish at J Betski's, go Belgian at Benelux Café, go Cajun & Creole at Rey's Restaurant, go contemporary at Brio Tuscan Grille, or go eclectic at Buku Global Street Food.
Bloomsbury Bistro, on the other hand, serves a combination of American and French. Or perhaps you should try Neomonde Raleigh Café or Baba Ghannouj for some really good Mediterranean cooking.
Meanwhile, Aladdin's Eatery offers Middle-Eastern goodness. Whereas Gonza Tacos y Tequila, Salt & Lime Cabo Grill, Cafe Capistrano, Calavera, Taqueria El Toro, Jose & Sons, Chubby's Tacos, and Dos Taquitos Mexican Restaurant all serve mouth-watering Mexican dishes.
If you want to go oriental, you can go to Asian restaurants like Bida Manda, Red Pepper Asian, David's Dumpling & Noodle Bar, P.F. Chang's, and Spring Rolls. Or perhaps go to Pho Far East for some Vietnamese. Or you can go to Cowfish Sushi Burger Bar or Sushi O, for the best sushi in town. Meanwhile, if you are specifically craving for some Japanese, There is Sono Japanese Restaurant, Tokyo House Japanese Restaurant, Kai Sushi & Sake Bar, and Mura.
Craving Italian? You can head to Casa Carbone Ristorante, Caffe Luna, Bella Monica, Vivace, San Carlo Italian Bistro, Vivo Ristorante, Frank's Pizza & Italian Restaurant, and Dante's Italiano. And if you are in the mood for some tapas, there is ORO Restaurant & Lounge and Humble Pie. However, if seafood is what is on your mind, there is 42nd St Oyster Bar & Seafood Grill, and if it's barbecue you are looking for, you can go to The Pit.
There is also Fleming's Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar for juicy slabs of steak. And if you want some easy-to-eat pizza, there is Lilly's Pizza or Trophy Brewing and Pizza.
Those who just want the familiar tastes of American cuisine can choose from these restaurants:
If you are a vegan or vegetarian, you can try Fiction Kitchen or Zest Cafe and Home Art.
Want to get coffee and hang out a little bit? Sola Coffee Café, Jubala Village Coffee, Sosta Café, and Barry's Café are worth checking out.
People with sweet tooth who need to grab some dessert can head to Fresh Local Ice Cream or to Hayes Barton Cafe and Dessertery.
Shopping. Are you itching to do some shopping while in town? You have plenty of choices!
Go to Crabtree Valley Mall, an upscale mall with a unique mix of more than 200 stores and restos. Stores include Coach, Apple, Pottery Barn, J.Crew, Abercrombie & Fitch, Aeropostale, Banana Republic, Barnes & Noble, Belk, Clinique, H&M, Gap, Lego, MAC, Sephora, Swarovski, Victoria's Secret, and Sears.
Do not forget to check out City Market, which is home to a number of art galleries and specialty shops, as well as restaurants. This historic market has retained its 19th-century charm with its original cobblestone streets lit by lamps.
You can also go to Cameron Village, where you can see more than a hundred distinctive shops, specialty stores, cafes, and services. You can also grab a bite in one of the many restaurants in between hopping from one store to another.
Meanwhile, those who want bargains and cheap finds can go to the Raleigh Flea Market. You can find more than a thousand vendors selling unique and interesting goods and vintage items.
If you are looking for antiques, perhaps you will find something you like at the Antiques Emporium, Antiques at Gresham Lake, Suzanna's Antiques, Father & Son Antiques, Hunt & Gather, or Acquisition Limited.
You can play a round of golf at 401 Par Golf, a 9-hole pitch and putt golf facility. This golf course is really great for beginners and for those who are looking to enjoy a short game. You can also try River Ridge Golf Club, an 18-hole championship golf facility nestled on over 100 acres of property in the heart of the Research Triangle, which is composed of Raleigh, Durham and Chapel Hill.
There is also Wildwood Green, which boasts a beautiful terrain of rolling greens, and Hedingham Golf Club, which is an 18-hole championship golf course that comes complete with ponds, lakes, emerald green grass, thickly wooded boundaries, sculpted sand traps, and gently rolling fairways.
Other golf courses in the city include:
The Carolina Hurricanes of the National Hockey League is based in Raleigh and its home arena is the PNC Arena, an indoor arena that seats 18,680 for ice hockey and 19,722 for basketball. Aside from the Hurricanes, the North Carolina State University Wolfpack men's basketball team of NCAA Division I also plays its home games here.
There is also the Carter-Finley Stadium, which is home to the North Carolina State University Wolfpack football team. This stadium can accommodate 57,583 spectators.
The Reynolds Coliseum is a multi-purpose arena on the campus of the North Carolina State University. It hosts a variety of events, including basketball games and agricultural expositions. It can seat 14,000 people for concerts and around 9,500 for events like basketball. The 7,610-seat J.S. Dorton Arena is also a multi-purpose arena, and it is listed in the National Register of Historic Places.
Other sports venues in the city include:
Raleigh is a city teeming with history. So make sure to visit the many historical sites and landmarks scattered all throughout the town.
The best way to get to know more about a city's past is by starting with history museums. You can go to the North Carolina Museum of History which has exhibits that center on the state's history in general, including military history and cultural heritage. There is also the Raleigh City Museum, which is located at the historic Briggs Hardware Building and which has programs and exhibits on local history.
Raleigh has historic districts, too, that contain a bunch of old and historic structures. These districts include:
Then there are historic churches like the Christ Episcopal Church, St. Mary's Chapel, and St. Paul A.M.E. Church. There are historic schools like Panther Branch School, St. Mary's College, Washington Grade and High School, St. Matthews School, North Carolina School for the Blind and Deaf Dormitory, and St. Augustine's College Campus. There are also historic cemeteries like the Mount Hope Cemetery, City Cemetery, and Raleigh National Cemetery. Meanwhile, the Sir Walter Raleigh Hotel is a historic hotel. All of these sites are listed in the National Register of Historic Places.
You can also check out historic public establishments and structures such as the Raleigh Water Tower, Mary Elizabeth Hospital, Masonic Temple Building, North Carolina Agricultural Experiment Station Cottage, North Carolina Executive Mansion, Raleigh Electric Company Power House, Raleigh Water Works and E.B. Bain Water Treatment Plant, Royal Baking Company, Seaboard Coast Line Railroad Company Office Building, and State Bank of North Carolina.
Historic buildings included in the National Register of Historic Places include:
If you want to take a look at old houses and maybe experience their charm and know more about the owners' story or their significant past, you can check out any of the city's historic homes, because there sure are many of them. Houses listed on the National Register of Historic Places include:
Greater Raleigh has more than 10,000 acres of parkland. These parks have features and amenities like playgrounds, picnic areas, campgrounds, athletic fields, basketball courts, gardens, lakes, and ponds, among many others, that the entire family can enjoy.
There is the 241-acre Durant Nature Park, which offers picnic areas, a playground, nature activities, rental facilities, and five miles worth of trails. You can also go to the Fred Fletcher Park Water Garden, a new park with a garden housing a variety of evergreens and perennial plants.
If you want to go fishing, you can go to Lake Johnson Park, which is more than 300 acres of land surrounding Lake Johnson. You can go boating, canoeing, or kayaking, and you can also go fishing at the lake. The park also has picnic shelters, facility rentals, concessions, and greenway trails. Lake Wheeler Park is also a great destination for fishing, canoeing, sailinh, kayaking and rowing. This 150-acre parkland surrounding a 650-acre lake also offers picnic facilities and sand volleyball.
Other parks you can check out include:
If you love plants, make sure to visit the JC Raulston Arboretum and Botanical Garden. Its collection includes over 6,000 total taxa of perennials, annuals, bulbs, ground covers, vines, trees, and shrubs.
The kids will surely have a fun and educational time at the Marbles Kids Museum, which offers unique hands-on exhibits and interactive experiences that will inspire kids to be active learners and to be creative thinkers.
You can also go to the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences, where you can three floors of various exhibits pertaining to nature and wildlife.
The city also has many charming small farms such as Buckwheat Farm, Boyce Farms, Granny Pearl's Farm, Green Acres, Hilltop Farms, Phillips Farm, Porter Farms and Nursery, and Ken's Produce and Garden Center.
A bus rental in Raleigh, North Carolina is just the perfect transportation solution for your group if you decide to tour the city. Call BusRental.com and ask for a free quote. We have a fleet of clean, well-maintained buses and courteous and professional drivers.