Learning to be a local Series
There’s so much to love about living in the Triangle, with incredible food, entertainment, universities, and more found everywhere you look. But to fully fall in love with what the area has to offer, we recommend you check out the spots that you have to dig a little deeper to find.
With such a massive area to explore, we guarantee there are a number of hidden gems across the Triangle that we just don’t have space to mention. We highly recommend you consider checking out the following to start becoming a true local.
Spots where you can indulge
When: Tue-Fri., 8am-4pm, and Sat., 9am-4pm
Lucettegrace is a phenomenal patisserie located on Salisbury Street in downtown Raleigh you won’t want to miss. Daniel Benjamin, the pastry chef and owner of lucettegrace is reimagining desserts and making them works of art. Whether you’re searching for on-trend macaroons, a decadent baklava croissant, or a mouth-watering pistachio eclair, lucettegrace has something you’ll love. Don’t forget to stop by for lunch to sample from a seasonal menu of soups, salads, and sandwiches.
When: Tue-Sun., 8am-2pm
A trip to A Place at the Table in Raleigh will leave you with both a full stomach and full heart. This unique restaurant is a nonprofit that allows people to pay what they can for a meal. Open for breakfast and lunch, A Place at the Table has a menu filled with fresh, locally- sourced foods. You can even choose to Pay it Forward and cover someone’s meal, or volunteer by working in the restaurant to cover a meal. We promise you’ll be proud you visited.
Bklyn Bakery is a pop-up bakery that prides itself on its local, seasonal, organic, and cruelty free desserts. Not vegan? Don’t worry, we promise you’ll be delighted by how indulgent a vegan cake can be. If you have a sweet tooth, Bklyn Bakery’s Twix cake is a rich chocolate cake layered with chocolate buttercream, homemade caramel and shortbread. They also offer an assortment of filled croissants, seasonal pastries, and gluten- free desserts to satisfy any craving you might have. Watch for their popups surrounding Durham and Chapel Hill!
When: Tue-Thurs., 12pm-9pm; Fri. and Sat., 12pm-10pm; and Sun., 1pm-9pm
Wake Forest’s Lumpy’s Ice Cream started in a shed behind owner Buck Buchanan’s house. But thanks to his commitment to creating ice cream from locally-sourced, hormone-free milk and fresh ingredients, it’s quickly become a community staple for those in the know. Lumpy’s Ice Cream offers beloved ice cream favorites, but they’ve also added in some flavors for more adventurous types, like Bennie’s Bacon and Bourbon, the Wired HIppie (a coffee ice cream with trail mix), the indulgent Charlie’s Cheesecake, and more. Interested in something they don’t have on the menu? Mention your idea and they might just put it on the menu!
When: Mon., 11am-9pm; Tues.-Thurs., 7am-9pm; Fri., 7am-10pm; Sat., 8am-10pm; Sun., 8am-8pm
The entire concept behind Transfer Co. Food Hall is to serve as a place that brings people together through food. It’s housed in the renovated Carolina Coach Garage and Shop in downtown Raleigh, where over 50,000 square feet provides a home to a wide variety of food vendors and their guests. Transfer Co. Food Hall has everything from Asian cuisine to a beer hall to fresh seafood and more. There’s so much to choose from, you’ll want to bring a friend to share and sample from across the hall to enjoy your visit to the fullest.
Spaces for appreciating the outdoors
Keep your eyes peeled for Betty Jean’s Flower Truck, a vintage 1966 Ford truck that pops up throughout its home of Hillsboro and beyond. Named after the owner’s mother, Betty Jean, this truck was created with a mission of spreading kindness and sharing its passion for flowers across the Triangle. You can often find Betty Jean’s Flower Truck offering bouquets for sale at pop-up events, or even book it for your own event.
When: Sun.-Sat., 8am-8pm
Robertson Millpond Preserve is a peaceful location situated between Knightdale and Zebulon that will quickly become your favorite spot to escape the heat this summer because of its lush foliage, or whenever you are looking to explore a beautiful outdoor area. It’s a blackwater swamp habitat, which makes it a rare treasure in the Triangle area of North Carolina. Bring your kayaks, or rent one when you get there, to explore this one-of-a-kind 85-acre preserve. Make sure to look for the animals in this unique habitat, including great blue heron and barred owls, beavers, muskrats, frogs, and turtles.
When: Sun.-Sat., 8am-5pm
Raleigh’s Historic Oakwood Cemetery, a 72-acre cemetery located in downtown Raleigh, has been the final resting place for the departed for more than two centuries. It’s a peaceful, serene location that draws in guests of all kinds and offers insights into the rich history of the community. Drop by for a stroll or stop by to honor the gravestones of soldiers from the Revolutionary War and beyond. Some even claim the cemetery is haunted, so keep that in mind when ghost tours pop back up in the fall!
When: Sun.-Sat., 9am-7pm
Explore a part of the Triangle you’ve never seen before at Raleigh-Durham International Airport (RDU). The airport’s Observation Park is open to the public daily from 9 a.m. to sunset and features panoramic views of its 10,000-foot runway. Located near the Air Traffic Control Tower, it’s a fun spot for plane-watching and listening to the communications happening with pilots and the tower. The park offers free parking, a picnic and play area, and a grass lawn for relaxation while you watch planes fly overhead.
Locations where you’ll be entertained
When: Check website for showtimes
The Alamo Drafthouse Cinema isn’t just another movie theater. It’s quite literally a full cinematic experience. The Alamo Drafthouse Raleigh brings in modern films, but they also like to celebrate the classics on their giant screens. They offer a full menu and bar, and many of their movies are enhanced with special menus—including brunches—that are served directly at your seat. The Alamo Drafthouse is also home to Video Vortex, which allows you to rent from 70,000 DVD and VHS titles for free. Make sure you get there early, because The Alamo doesn’t play just any movie previews, but compilations of old movies, actor highlights and never-before-seen footage before their movies.
When: Check website for showtimes
Raleigh’s Burning Coal Theater Company strives to produce works that are experienced, not just seen. They pride themselves on creating art that is explosive and high-energy, with minimal production. They also focus on re-examining classic plays as well as producing new plays that are gritty, yet forward thinking. Burning Coal Theater Company also offers programming for kids and adults 16+ to facilitate creativity within the theater.
When: Dusk to dawn
Whether you remember the days of massive satellite dishes or not, Satellite Park, located next to the Duke Arts Annex on Gattis St. in Durham, is a spot you’ll want to check out. The former satellite dishes from Duke’s Tel Com department have been converted into works of art by local artists through the efforts of Mural Durham. The park is open from dawn to dusk.
Do you have any hidden gems you’d like to add to our list? Share your favorite spots in the comments below!
The Jim Allen Group provides access to information on this blog/website as a public service for educational purposes only. Although reasonable efforts have been made to ensure that all of the information made available is current, accurate, and complete…[read more]