Exploring Durham, NC – family travel guide
Duke we thy anthems raise
for all thy praises untold
We’ll fight for the Blue and White
whose colors we uphold! (To hell with Carolina!)
Firm stands our line of blue
for we are loyal through and through!
Fighting with the spirit true
for the love of old D.U.!
Fight, we’ll fight, with all our strength and might!
Win, we can, so here we’ll lend a hand! Hey!
Rah! Rah! Rah! Rah! D-U-K-E Rah!
D-U-K-E! – “Blue and White” Duke University Fight Song
There I go again with another fight song, lol. Seriously though – it’s there to pump you up! And maybe it has something to do with the fact that I used to be a cheerleader, so all that jazz get’s me excited.
Okay, so I’m back with my second installment of my North Carolina Family Travel Guide. If you need to do some catching up, you can check the first one on Chapel Hill here. Before we jump in, I’d like to thank Discover Durham for helping make this post possible! Ya’ll are awesome!
Fun Facts About Durham
- Before it was known as “The Research Triangle,” it was called “The Triangle” because of the 3 major universities: UNC Chapel Hill, Duke University, and NC State.
- Durham is turning 150 on April 13th, and it’s a year long celebration! It was established in 1869.
- Best Basketball town to visit.
- Number 4 Family Friendly Museum in the southeast (It seriously is!).
These fun facts were found in the on Discover Durham’s website. To find more fun facts and information, be sure to check them out.
Where We Stayed / How We Got Around
What can I say? This place was gorgeous! I wish I actually took some pictures and that we actually got to spend more time here. We were so wiped out from our flight and our first full day of exploring, so we went straight to bed. We had to make sure to take off our Baby Blues, and switch them out for some Darker Duke Blues. I remember walking in and seeing this pretty chandelier, and feeling super elite, then we got some stares for wearing baby blue. That’s a no no in this sports town! The hotel was bigger than I thought, it was walking distance to Duke, and I would definitely stay here again when we come back.
Budget Rent a Car
Renting a car through Costco Travel has been our go-to for pretty much all of our trips. I can always find a great deal even when it’s last minute. Although we’re a family of four, I always like to rent a SUV so that we know we’ll have plenty of space… especially with all the luggage we have to tote around.
What We Did
I mentioned this in my last post, but the amazing thing about North Carolina is all the FREE or low cost activities that are available. It’s super family friendly!
Musuem of Life and Science
This place was seriously AHHMAZING!!! You could literally spend all day here and not get through the whole place. And guess what? We pretty much spent all day here and didn’t see the whole place. We were able to meet with the Director of Marketing when we arrived, and got some really cool tips and insights of what to check out. So naturally – we checked those out first. Our favorites were: The Dinosaur Trail, Ellerbe Railway, Explore the Railway, Hideaway Woods, and who am I kidding? I’m going to keep listing forever, and that’s just the outside! Did I mention the museum is on 80+ acres of land?!?!?! Definitely plan to spend pretty much your whole day here.
This place took my breath away! We didn’t get to tour too much of the University, but what we saw was amazing. To me, it was like what it would be like to live in a castle. We love doing college tours, and Harvard had originally been on the top of my list. Duke may have just taken over as #1! Something else that is cool? Mike Krzyzewski is the winningest college basketball coach in history. I had no idea who that was until my husband told me.
What Else To Do
Since we only had a day and half in Durham, our time was limited. We ended up staying way longer than anticipated at the Museum of Life and Science, so here are some of the other attractions we had planned on visiting, and you should too if you’re there during the right season:
Duke Basketball Museum & Sports Hall of Fame
Bull Durham Baseball Game
Eno River State Park
Where We Ate
Since we were on a time crunch, we only got a late breakfast and dinner in. There were so many amazing looking and smelling places along the downtown area.
After we stopped at the Visitor’s Bureau, we made our way to Monuts. The smell of bacon was just oozing out of the restaurant. The food wass good and the vibe was really cool, and not to mention those DONUTS!
Dinner: Elmo’s Diner
Other Restaurants on our List:
It was such a great time to be visiting Durham with the whole college basketball playoffs going on, and again, everyone was super friendly here as well. Make sure to stop or check out the Visitor’s Bureau before you plan your trip here. They’ll have tons of insights for you and your family. Just let them know what you’re looking for and what you’re interested in. And for some behind the scenes action, make sure to follow me on Instagram, and check out my Instagram Stories Highlights. Have you ever been to Durham?