Raleigh InformationAs the capital of North Carolina, Raleigh boasts plenty of historic attractions that hold local significance. A tour of downtown Raleigh should ideally start at the North Carolina State Capitol, a Greek Revival landmark that has stood on Union Square since the early 19th century. This iconic edifice is neighbored by some of Raleigh’s most popular cultural venues such as the North Carolina Museum of History and the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences. A stroll along Fayeteville Street in downtown Raleigh also leads to some other major venues such as the Raleigh Convention Center and the Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts. On a seasonal basis, the Red Hat Amphitheater hosts some of the most exciting entertainment in the City of Oaks. The Walnut Creek Amphitheater in southeast Raleigh is another spot for great outdoor shows such as music concerts.
Raleigh has a rich sports scene that can be enjoyed at the PNC Arena, which is the home of the Carolina Hurricanes of the NHL. Additionally, this indoor arena is where passionate basketball fans support the North Carolina State University Wolfpak. The PNC Arena is also neighbored by the Cater-Finley Stadium, a great venue for catching NCAA football action. At WakeMed Soccer Park, soccer fans can cheer on the Carolina RailHawks compete against other teams from the NASL.
From classical antiquities to Renaissance paintings, the North Carolina Museum of Art is the best place to see the finest collection of art in Raleigh. After browsing the galleries in the West Building, visitors are encouraged to stroll through the gardens that include installations of sculptures by the great French master Rodin. Those with a taste for abstract masterpieces can explore the exhibits at the Contemporary Art Museum of Raleigh.
Visitors arriving in North Carolina’s capital by airplane should check out the Observation Park at the Raleigh-Durham International Airport. The General Aviation terminal also gives tourists the chance to watch private jets and commercial planes land and take off. Surrounding the airport, William B. Umstead State Park is one of Raleigh’s largest green spaces. Miles of hiking trails through dense forests and running creeks provide a nice escape from the hustle and bustle of vehicle traffic on busy highways such as Interstate 40 and Interstate 440. Lake Johnson Park and Lake Crabtree County Park are some other popular green areas where outdoor recreation can be enjoyed in the heart of Raleigh.