Items marked with an asterisk (*) are within the N.C. Dept. of Natural and Cultural Resources.

Alamance County

*Alamance Battleground State Historic Site - The site where Royal Governor William Tryon led the NC militia against the Regulators in battle on May 16, 1771. Located on the grounds is the Allen House, a log dwelling characteristic of those lived in by frontier people on the western fringes of the colony.

Animal Park at Conservators Center - The Conservators Center reconnects people with wildlife by introducing visitors to rare, threatened, and endangered species—up close and personal.

Alamance County Historical Museum - Nineteenth Century house-museum depicting the life of textile pioneer Edwin Michael Holt through period room settings and docent-hosted tours.

Alexander County

Hiddenite CenterHoused in the historic Lucas Mansion, the Hiddenite Arts and Heritage Center features a turn of the 20th century history museum, monthly art gallery exhibits, collections of gems and minerals, and an extensive collection of antique dolls and toys.

Rocky Face Mountain Recreational Area – This former rock quarry is now a 318-acre park which includes a walking trail and picnic area, as well as a sheer cliff face popular with rock climbers.

Emerald Hollow Mine - The Emerald Hollow Mine is the only emerald mine in the world open to the public for prospecting. Nestled snugly in the foothills of the beautiful Brushy Mountains, this North Carolina Emerald mine is located in the small town of Hiddenite, North Carolina. This is recognized as one of the most unique and interesting geological locations on the North American continent.

Anson County

Pee Dee National Wildlife Refuge - Pee Dee Refuge includes 8,500 acres, and has a diverse landscape.  The distinct habitats include bottomland hardwood forests, pine forests, mixed pine-hardwood forests, croplands, old fields, wetlands and open waters.

Anson County Historical Society - The Anson County Historical Society is a nonprofit organization devoted to providing educational, cultural, and recreational benefits for the citizens of Anson County and anyone interested in Anson's rich history. 

Cabarrus County

*Reed Gold Mine State Historic Site - Site of the first documented gold find in the United States. Today, portions of the underground tunnels at the Reed mine have been restored for guided tours. A visitor center contains exhibits of gold and historical mining equipment.

North Carolina Music Hall of Fame - Showcases our state’s rich musical history covering nearly every musical genre.

Curb Motorsports Museum - Catch a rare glimpse of NASCAR history- the #2 car Dale Earnhardt drove in his first Winston Cup championship and the #43 car Richard Petty drove in the 199th Winston Cup win. A total of 23 cars are on display, including seven Indy cars and Lee Ann Rime’s first car, surrounded by motorsports and recording industry memorabilia.

Kannapolis Cannon Ballers  – Catch a home game of the Kannapolis Cannon Ballers, the area’s local minor league ball team.

Travel the Dale Trail – Take a self-guided tour of Kannapolis, Dale Earnhardt’s hometown, and visit landmarks related to his life and legendary NASCAR career. Begin on Dale Earnhardt Blvd., visit the Car Town neighborhood, and more.

Caswell County

Richmond – Miles Museum - Located in the Graves-Florance-Gatewood House (circa 1822), the Richmond-Miles Museum offers displays and artifacts of Caswell history.

Catawba County

Catawba County Museum of History - Permanent exhibits in the adaptively reused 1924 courthouse include a rare British Revolution-era red coat, a 1930s racing car, and fine collections of locally crafted historical furniture and pottery.

Catawba Science Center - Changing lives and inspiring learning through science and wonder. Permanent exhibit areas explore physical, natural and earth sciences, while interactive traveling exhibits rotate throughout the year. Freshwater and saltwater aquarium exhibits – featuring North Carolina's only marine touch pool with LIVE sharks and stingrays – offer exciting hands-on learning experiences in immersive habitats.

Hickory Museum of Art – See American art, Southern folk art and changing exhibitions at this free art museum in Hickory.

Chatham County

*Jordan Lake State Recreation Area – Picture the surface of the lake glistening, water spraying your face, the boat motor ahead roaring. Suddenly, your skis give way, splash landing! Hear the laughter of children, smell charcoal drifting through the air, feel a breeze blowing through the campground. With almost 14,000 acres of water, all this and more is yours to discover at Jordan Lake.

Fearrington Village – Fearrington Village is not just a picture-perfect community with white pasture fences, but also an unexpectedly scintillating destination consisting of world-class dining, lodging, shopping, a soothing spa and more.

Small Museum of Folkart - Adding to downtown Pittsboro’s slowly growing collection of small (pun intended) museums (the other can be found in our historic courthouse).

Devil’s Stomping Ground Scenic Byway – Explore the legend of the Devil’s Tramping Ground on this colorful part of the Scenic Byway program.

Cleveland County

Earl Scruggs Center - Housed in the 1907 historic Cleveland County Courthouse, the Earl Scruggs Center offers a variety of services and spaces for all types of special events. From meetings and workshops to corporate retreats and weddings, the Earl Scruggs Center team is available to handle all of your entertainment needs. 

Real to Reel International Film Festival – The mission of the Real to Reel International Film Festival is to offer a forum for independent film, video and multi-media artists from around the world to showcase their talents and expose the works of these artists to our region.

Davidson County

Boone’s Cave Park - The park itself offers six miles of hiking trails, fishing and limited camping with reservations ahead of time. The cottonwood tree is the third largest on record in the state.

The Bob Timberlake Gallery & Museum - Experience the fine art work of N.C.'s most recognized living artist.

Davidson County Historical Museum - The museum offers exhibits, programs and other activities that capture the history of Davidson County through local artifacts, photographs and archival materials from growing collections. In addition, the second-floor courtroom remains intact as it was when serving the community in its original capacity.

Richard Childress Racing Museum – NASCAR fans, be sure to stop by the Richard Childress Racing Museum for a look at more than 50 racecars driven by legends such as Dale Earnhardt, racing memorabilia and more.

Davie County

Wineries - The Yadkin Valley’s unique microclimate and soils have proven to be optimal growing conditions for a variety of grapes.  As a result, Davie County is home to five beautiful wineries with a variety of award winning signature wines available to suit any taste.

Farmington Dragway - For the racing enthusiasts or spectators, the Farmington Dragway is open year round featuring weekly racing programs and special events. Whether you like fast cars, trucks, motorcycles or tractors, a trip to the Dragway is guaranteed family fun.

Durham County

*Bennett Place State Historic Site - Bennett Place is a historic site where the largest Civil War Confederate troop surrender occurred. Visitors to Bennett Place are taken back in time to April 1865 where Major General Sherman and General Johnston met at the farm of James and Nancy Bennett near Durham to negotiate the terms of peace that effectively ended the American Civil War.

*Duke Homestead State Historic Site - Duke family’s mid-1800s home, tobacco barns, original factory, and museum showcase the beginnings of the modern-day tobacco industry.

*Historic Stagville - Once among the South’s largest plantation holdings, the site features an 18th-century house, slave quarters, and a unique great barn at this historic site dedicated to preservation and African-American cultural, historic studies.

*Eno River State Park – This park flows near urban areas of Durham and Orange counties with five scattered access areas, each just minutes from town amenities. The Eno River’s waters roll past mature forests, historic mill and home sites and river bluffs covered with flowering shrubs and across fords used by early settlers.

Duke Lemur Center – Visit the largest collection of lemurs anywhere in the world outside of Madagascar.

Durham Bulls Athletic Park - Nationally acclaimed home of the Durham Bulls Triple-A baseball club, made famous by the 1988 movie Bull Durham. Come out and spend a balmy summer evening watching the Bulls play ball!

Museum of Life + Science – Packed full of attractions, including one of the largest butterfly houses on the East Coast, a dinosaur trail and tons of other indoor and outdoor exhibits, the Museum of Life + Science is a great place to take the kids for hands-on learning fun.

Nasher Museum of Art - The permanent collection includes Medieval art, pre-Columbian American works, classical pieces, and an ever-growing list of modern and contemporary works.

Duke Gardens - A stunning 55-acre public garden on the campus of Duke University and one of the premier university gardens in the country.

Festival for the Eno – Held the first weekend of July at West Point on the Eno, this music and crafts festival is a favorite of locals and visitors alike. Each year since 1980 the Eno River Association has presented the Festival for the Eno to draw thousands of folks to the shaded banks on the Eno River to sing, dance and make merry with great food and crafts all while learning about natural resource conservation and raising funds for land protection in the Eno River basin.

Forsyth County

*Southeastern Center for Contemporary Art - The Southeastern Center for Contemporary Art provides visitors dynamic experiences with contemporary art and artists.

Reynolda House Museum of American Art - Reynolda House Museum of American Art boasts one of the nation's premier collections of American art viewed in the restored 1917 home of RJ and Katharine Reynolds.

Old Salem - Experience early American history in the unique Moravian settlement of Salem. Original structures, gardens, tours, artifacts, hands-on workshops, fun family events and shopping.

Historic Bethabara Park - Visit Historic Bethabara Park for an imaginative journey to the Carolina back country of 250 years ago, where a small group of Moravians settled a religious village and trade center.

Winston Cup Museum - The Winston Cup Museum tells the story of stock car racing during the legendary Winston Cup Series era of NASCAR.

Korner’s Folly - Built in 1880 by artist, decorator and designer Jule Gilmer Körner, this unique mansion showcases the talent, ingenuity and imagination of a true genius. Stroll through a winding maze of doorways and staircases leading you on a journey through 22 rooms in this three-story marvel.

New Winston Museum – Discover Winston-Salem’s rich history through exhibits and oral history. 

Winston-Salem Open – Held during the third week of August, each year more than 40 of the world's top 80 tennis players compete for a chance to be named champion.

Franklin County

Tar River Center for History and Culture – Located at Louisburg College, the Tar River Center for History and Culture promotes a sense of community and shared history by helping citizens of all ages and backgrounds to explore the rich architecture, culture, and history of the Upper Tar River region of North Carolina.

Franklin County Arts Council – Visit one of the Arts Council’s two galleries, in Franklinton and Louisburg, or take a class and learn to make some art of your own.

Gaston County

*Crowders Mountain State Park - Companion peaks at Crowders Mountain State Park – The Pinnacle and Crowders Mountain – offer challenging hikes, towering cliffs and 25-mile views of the surrounding piedmont. Eleven trails range from pastoral to strenuous, including the Ridgeline Trail, which links to Kings Mountain State Park and Kings Mountain National Military Park in South Carolina.

Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden - Located on 450 acres along the banks of Lake Wylie south of Belmont, the Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden offers 110 acres of rolling meadows and woodlands are being developed as one of the most beautiful gardens in the world. Already the perennial garden has been called one of the finest in the Southeast.

Schiele Museum of Natural History – An affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution, this museum has five permanent galleries with vivid natural history exhibits, plus outdoor recreations of an Indian Village and an 18th Century Farm. The James H. Lynn Planetarium features a spacious theater that surrounds the audience.

Carolina Speedway - Roaring to life with spectacular dirt track races the Carolina Speedway is known as “The Action Track”. This 4/10th of a mile oval track hosts different divisions each week.

Gaston County Museum – Explore art, history and Gaston County’s textile history at this museum in Dallas, N.C.

Granville County

Granville County History Museum - Located in the “old county jail” the Granville County Museum offers a unique look at the history of Granville county.

Grassy Creek Recreation Area at Kerr Lake - Operated by the U.S. Army Corp of Engineers, Grassy Creek is a great place to put the boat in for a day on Kerr Lake.

Three Bears Acres - Three Bear Acres is a recreational farm offering kids activities. The 50-acre facility offers a place where children can run loose and use their imagination!

Guilford County

*Charlotte Hawkins Brown Museum at Historic Palmer Memorial Institute - Visit North Carolina's only state-supported historic site to recognize a woman and one of the first to honor an African American. The site is the location of the former Palmer Memorial Institute, an African American preparatory school established by Brown in 1902.

*Haw River State Park - Features the Summit Environmental Education and Conference Center, accommodating up to 200 day and overnight guests in 400 acres of state park. Home to wetlands of the upper Haw River in a natural ecosystem. Park is on the NC Birding Trail.

Greensboro Historical Museum - The Greensboro Historical Museum shares local culture and the city's significant role in American history, from the Battle of Guilford Courthouse in 1781, to the 1960 Greensboro Sit-Ins, the unforgettable events of September 11, 2001.

Greensboro Science Center - Experience the wonders of an aquarium, zoo, science museum, and 3D theatre all in one attraction! See sharks, penguins, otters, stingrays, a fishing cat and other amazing animals from around the world in the new Carolina Sciquarium. Get eye-to-eye with tigers, meerkats, monkeys, crocodiles and other unique animals in Animal Discovery Zoo. Roam through Dinosaur Gallery, take a journey through the human body, experience extreme weather, and have fun in Kid's Alley in the Museum.

ACC Hall of Champions - The exciting, interactive Hall of Champions includes artifacts and photos from games and players from every sport in the Atlantic Coast Conference.

Colonial Heritage Center - Explore history at your own pace, on your own time. The Colonial Heritage Center interprets the history of backcountry life before, during and after the American Revolution.

International Civil Rights Center & Museum -  Located in the former F.W. Woolworth retail store at 134 S. Elm Street - where the Greensboro Four sat down at the "whites only" counter and began a sit-in movement - this must-see vital piece of history takes you on a journey into American civil rights history with vivid photography, artifacts, video reenactments and interactive galleries. 

Weatherspoon Art Museum - Nationally recognized for its exceptional collection of 5,600 modern and contemporary art works, and for its dynamic, thought-provoking exhibitions.

Iredell County

*Lake Norman State Park - Lake Norman State Park, fun is just a matter of scale. On one hand, there's the largest man-made lake in the state, Lake Norman.

*Fort Dobbs State Historic Site - Site of the only French & Indian War fort in NC. Archaeological sites, artifact displays, nature trails and living history events. Named for Royal Governor Arthur Dobbs who authorized the fort's construction in 1756.

Iredell Museums – Offers rotating art, science and history exhibits throughout the year. Visit this summer to see The Mummy Treasure of Al Faiyum, featuring a 3,000-year-old Egyptian mummy.

Love Valley - Visit the Cowboy Capital of N.C! This authentic western town in the foothills of the Brushy Mountains invites you to take a horseback ride through downtown or along its winding trails. From Easter to Halloween, the town host special events including rodeos, horse and wagon parades, concerts, and a chili cook-off. 

Lee County

*Raven Rock State Park - The Cape Fear River is the frequent hiking destination for visitors entering Raven Rock State Park, whether it’s Lanier Falls, the Fish Traps rapids or the massive Raven Rock, an ageless landmark for river travelers. 

*House in the Horseshoe State Historic Site - Circa 1772 house was the scene of a Whig/Tory conflict during the American Revolution, and some of the bullet holes are still visible. Also the home of four-term North Carolina governor and prominent statesman Benjamin Williams from 1798 to 1814.

Lincoln County

Lincoln County Museum of History – Learn more about the history of Lincoln County at this museum run by the county Historical Association.

Arts Council of Lincoln County – View works by area artists at the Cochrane and Carolina Mills Galleries in the Lincoln Cultural Center, take an art class or sign the kids up for summer art camp.

Mecklenburg County

Juneteenth Festival of the Carolinas – The major intent of the festival is to examine the cultural heritage of slaves and their descendants through art, education, and research. Further, our aim is not to recreate the past but, to cultivate the true spirit of freedom.

NASCAR Hall of Fame – Learn about the history and heritage of NASCAR racing, a sport born here in North Carolina, at the NASCAR Hall of Fame in Charlotte. 

The Mint Museum – Visit the oldest art museum in North Carolina, with one of the largest collections in the Southeast.

Levine Museum of the New South – An interactive history museum that aims to explore the “New South,” through exhibits such as “Cotton Fields to Skyscrapers.”

Discovery Place Nature – Walk among the butterflies in the butterfly pavilion, take a closer look at nature’s treasures in the naturalist lab, or run free at Fort Wild.

Charlotte Symphony Summer Pops – Just right for summer, these casual, family-friendly concert experiences at Symphony Park include music from Star Wars to Broadway, jazz and patriotic favorites.

Charlotte Knights – Take yourself out to the ballgame at Truist Field and watch the Charlotte Knights in action.

Montgomery County

*Town Creek Indian Mound State Historic Site - A glimpse of pre-Columbian life in the Piedmont.  The visitor center has interpretive exhibits, as well as audiovisual programs that bring alive a rich cultural heritage from the buried past.  Self-guided tours of the rebuilt structures and mound are available. (Town Creek is currently closed for renovations.)

Uwharrie National Forest - With more than 50,000 acres and nearly 80 square miles of territory, the Uwharrie National Forest is a treasure trove full of beautiful scenery, wildlife and trails for all sorts of activities. 

STARworksVisit STARworks to see the work of nationally renowned glassblowers, metalworkers and potters. Take a class, peruse the gallery or shop for local art at the retail store. 

Moore County

*Weymouth Woods – Sandhills Nature Preserve - Weymouth Woods Sandhills Nature Preserve is a unique window onto the longleaf pine forests that once covered millions of acres in the southeastern U.S.

Pinehurst – Visit the “Home of American Golf,” the Village of Pinehurst, N.C., home to several US Open Championships.

Weymouth Center – This 1920s Georgian mansion is located on 24 acres with extensive gardens, arts and humanities activities. The former home of author James Boyd, it is also home to the North Carolina Literary Hall of Fame.

Orange County

*Occoneechee Mountain State Natural Area - Occoneechee Mountain State Natural Area offers a quick escape into nature with its three miles of trail exploring riverside forests, bluffs reaching to the highest point in the area and mountain laurel and rhododendron thickets.

Morehead Planetarium & Science Center - Morehead Planetarium & Science Center is a family-friendly day trip: planetarium shows, exhibits, live science demonstrations, special events, giant sundial, gift shop, and more.

Ackland Art Museum - The Ackland holds North Carolina’s premier collection of Asian art, as well as European and American paintings, sculptures, drawings, prints, and photographs.

Carrboro ArtsCenter – An intimate venue that hosts live music, theater performances, improv, comedy shows and storytelling, along with rotating visual art exhibits. 

N.C. Botanical Garden – The display gardens and natural areas of this botanical garden at UNC feature North Carolina plants and vegetation, the Piedmont Nature Trails, a green Education Center with exhibits, and more.

Carolina Basketball Museum – If you’re a Tar Heel, you’ll want to check out this museum dedicated to all things UNC basketball. 

Person County

Person County Museum of History - Located in the turn-of-the-century home of W.W. Kitchin, governor of N.C. from 1909-1913. Museum complex includes 7 historic buildings with exhibits in each: the Kitchin Home, Woodsdale General Store and more.

Sunset Ridge Buffalo Farm - Located in the rolling hills of central North Carolina, we are both a working buffalo farm and scenic lakeside event venue.

Mayo Lake Park - Whether you’re looking for quality fishing, camping, or a place to relax, Mayo Park is the place for you. This 120-acre park takes pride in its family oriented atmosphere and clean, well maintained facilities.

Randolph County

*North Carolina Zoo - The world's largest natural habitat walk-through zoo delivers fun with family and friends, face-to-face animal encounters, enchanting outdoor art, and glorious gardens.

Seagrove Pottery - Visit Seagrove, the handmade pottery capital of the United States where artisans create handcrafted pottery inspired by the traditions that began in this community more than 200 years ago.

Linbrook Heritage Estate - Tour one of the largest privately-owned homes in the southeastern United States with more than 60 rooms.

The Petty Museum - Race into this museum showcasing the careers of this four generation NASCAR Hall of Fame racing family including Lee, Richard, Maurice, Kyle and Adam Petty.

N.C. Aviation Museum – Immerse yourself in aviation history. See military and civilian artifacts from WWI to the present at this museum in Asheboro.

Richmond County

The Rankin Museum of American Heritage - Rare and unique artifacts and specimens comprise the museum's holdings of archaeology, paleontology, natural history.

Railroad Museum & Hall of Fame - Opened in 1976, the National Railroad Museum & Hall of Fame is dedicated to preserving railroad history - especially local history. 

Rockingham County

*Mayo River State Park - Envisioned as a riverine park along the Mayo River corridor from Virginia to the Town of Mayodan, Mayo River State park is under development, but offers basic state park amenities on the 400-acre site of the former Mayo Park, a historic and prized community gathering place.

*Haw River State Park - Picturesque terrain makes Haw River State Park the perfect place to connect with nature. Housed within this natural setting is The Summit Environmental Education and Conference Center, N.C. State Park’s first residential environmental education center.

Eden Historical Museum - This not-for-profit museum tells the story of what is now the City of Eden, from the prehistoric period to the consolidation of the three small mill towns that formed the current city.

Rowan County

*North Carolina Transportation Museum - Located on the site of what was once the Southern Railway Company’s largest steam locomotive repair facility. The museum features 13 buildings on 57 acres, including exhibits on early transportation. Seasonal train ride (fee), audiovisual show, visitors center and gift shop.

Yadkin River Trail - The Yadkin River, its tributaries and lakes, provide multiple opportunities for recreation throughout the river basin. North Carolinian's enjoy boating, tubing, swimming, fishing, camping, hiking, and relaxing on and around the Yadkin River.

Eagle Point Nature Preserve - A 200-acre natural area on a remote part of High Rock Lake gives visitors the opportunity to hike three miles of trails to vistas of the lake and wildlife observation points. Self-introspective nature trails, old home sites, seasonal canoe access, and fishing from the shore are also available.

Gold Hill Mines Historic Park - Home of the first gold rush, this 70-acre historic theme park is the site of Barnhardt and Randolph Gold Mines, reportedly, the richest mining properties East of the Mississippi.

Piedmont Players Theater - Take in a show at the Meroney Theater in Salisbury.

Rowan Museum - This 1854 Courthouse survived General Stoneman’s raid in the American Civil War. It is one of the finest examples of pre-Civil War architecture in the state. Housing the collections of the museum, its grand old rooms including the beautiful second floor court and public gathering place, reflect the life and history of Rowan County through displays and interpretive exhibits.

Stanly County

*Morrow Mountain State Park - Choose an adventure at Morrow Mountain State Park, whether it’s hiking, camping, paddling, fishing, horseback riding, swimming or just taking in scenery on one of the highest points in the piedmont.

Stanly County Museum - With so many different cultures and catalysts creating history in this “land between the rivers,” the Stanly County Museum has a unique collection of artifacts—from examples of Native American art and pottery to restored pioneer homes.

Badin Museums – Visit the Baden Historic Museum; the Quadraplex Museum, which stands as an authentic example of a 1915 residence; and the Firehouse Museum, which houses the 1937 Ford American LaFrance fire truck, hose reel, and a display of Badin Fire Department memorabilia.

Oakboro Museum of History - Oakboro Regional is housed in the circa 1935 restored Drye’s Furniture store building with original tin ceiling, plastered walls, 8-foot plate glass windows and glass front door used as an entry into gift shop. A collection of more than 1000 photos, numerous artifacts and rotating exhibits tell the story of the small town that began with one man’s ingenuity.

Vineyards – The fertile soil and mild climate of the Uwharries are perfect for viticulture and winemaking. Try a wine tasting at one of the region’s vineyards.

Lake Tillery – This more than 5,000-acre lake has 104 miles of shoreline. Perfect for swimming, boating, fishing and water sports.

Badin Road Drive-In – One of the last remaining drive-in theaters in the state, this historic gem offers two screens for one ticket. Shows start at sundown.

Oakboro Cruise-In – The largest cruise-in held in a North Carolina downtown, held the 4th Friday of each month.

Stokes County

*Hanging Rock State Park -  Offers the best of a traditional outdoor experience with 73-site campground, picnic grounds, stocked lake for swimming and canoe rentals and more than 20 miles of hiking trails that climb onto spectacular views and weave alongside clear streams and waterfalls.

Sauratown Trail - The Sauratown Trail is a unique 25-mile bridle and hiking trail that connects Hanging Rock and Pilot Mountain State Parks.

Priddy’s General Store - Its opening as a general store in 1888 is reflected in the old-timey merchandise, including: candy, fried apple pies, glass bottle sodas, local produce & ciders, antiques, local art, overalls, hardware and “good old fashioned” Stokes County hospitality.

Wilson-Fulton Museum of Stokes History – Housed in the 1859 Wilson Fulton House, the museum celebrates Stokes County history.

Union County

Museum of the Waxhaws – Preserves the history and culture of the Waxhaw Indians as well as the area’s early European settlers.

Marshville Museum and Cultural Center – Presents an account of the orgin and growth of the Town of Marshville through local artifacts, programs and live presentations. 

Union County Playmakers – Take in some outstanding local theater at this regional community theater in Monroe.

Union County Community Arts Council – Sponsors and supports the arts in Union County, from the Symphony Society to the Storefront Theater to arts in schools, and so much more!

Vance County

*Kerr Lake State Recreation Area – Kerr Lake covers over 50,000 acres and 800 miles of shoreline along the North Carolina and Virginia border and is upstream from Lake Gaston. It features numerous state park campgrounds and offers boating activities and fishing as well as home sites.

Henderson Institute Historical Museum - From its establishment in 1887 by the Freedmen’s Mission Board of the United Presbyterian Church through the beginnings of school integration in 1970, the Henderson Institute was the only secondary school open to African Americans in Vance County.

Wake County

*N.C. Museum of Natural Sciences - The Southeast’s largest natural history museum has four floors of exhibits, live animals, 3D movies, three gift stores, and two cafes. The iconic 70-foot-diameter globe at its center houses a three-story theater with live programming and ambient movies on its giant screen. Visitors can observe scientists at work in five glass-walled research labs, and in three Investigate Labs, they can perform experiments designed and led by Museum educators.

*N.C. Museum of History - Explore more than 14,000 years of North Carolina history. “The Story of North Carolina” exhibition features fascinating artifacts, multimedia presentations and an interactive format for all ages. Other exhibits highlight the state’s military history, sports heroes, decorative arts and more.

*N.C. Museum of Art - One of the premier visual arts museums in the Southeast, home to a world-class collection including more than 30 Rodin sculptures, plus a 164-acre Museum Park. Visit the museum for special exhibitions, family activities, classic film series, lectures and workshops, plus concerts and movies in the Museum Park amphitheater. 

*N.C. State Capitol - Built between 1833 and 1840, this National Historic Landmark is one of the best-preserved examples of a civic building in Greek Revival-style architecture. It originally housed the governor’s office, cabinet offices, legislative chambers, state library and state geologist’s office. The building has been restored to its 1840 to 1865 appearance.

*North Carolina Symphony – The first state-supported symphony in the country, the North Carolina Symphony is a vital and honored component of North Carolina's cultural life. Summertime brings the popular Summerfest series.

*William B. Umstead State Park – A beautiful park in the middle of the city. Hikers, trail runners, bicyclists and equestrians cherish the extensive network of hiking and multi-use trails.

*Falls Lake State Recreation Area - One of the largest recreational facilities in the state, offering a wide variety of activities. Camping, hiking, fishing, boating and swimming are available, as well as picnic areas and playgrounds.

*Jordan Lake State Recreation Area - A collective of nine access areas scattered around the shoreline of this undeveloped, 14,000-acre reservoir, all within an easy drive of Chapel Hill, Raleigh, Sanford and Pittsboro.

Lazy Daze Arts and Crafts Festival – A Cary tradition for more than 40 years, the annual Lazy Daze festival celebrates arts, music and food.

Carolina Mudcats – Take in a minor-league baseball game at Five County Stadium, home of the Carolina Mudcats. 

Warren County

*Kerr Lake State Recreation Area – Kerr Lake covers over 50,000 acres and 800 miles of shoreline along the North Carolina and Virginia border and is upstream from Lake Gaston. It features numerous state park campgrounds and offers boating activities and fishing as well as home sites.

Ridgeway Cantaloupe Festival – Known for its cantaloupes, once shipped to many exclusive restaurants up and down the East Coast, the Ridgeway community celebrates this heritage with an annual festival in July, which invites visitors and vendors from far and wide to enjoy food, music and crafts.

Ridgeway Opry House – Local musicians play and sing at this renovated, circa-1950 stucco structure in Ridgeway every Saturday night.

Yadkin County

*Pilot Mountain State Park - Rising abruptly more than 2,000 feet, Pilot Mountain has been a navigational landmark for centuries, and is a recreational landmark as well, offering miles of trails, camping, climbing and spectacular scenery.

Yadkin Barn Quilt Trail - Follow the colorful hand-painted wooden quilt blocks that dot the landscape in Yadkin County. The quilt trail features unique quilt blacks on barns, buildings, and houses to honor the quilting traditions, beautify the community, promote cultural heritage, farming traditions, and agritourism.  

Wineries – Yadkin is known as North Carolina’s Wine Region. Come check out the many wonderful wineries in the area.