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Guidebook for Durham

JoEllen

Guidebook for Durham

Food Scene
Close to the house. Good food. Friendly staff.
Nosh
2812 Erwin Rd
Close to the house. Good food. Friendly staff.
German bakery, great coffee, tasty brunch but don't overlook it as a dinner option. What was a bustling bakery in the morning becomes a fabulous dinner spot at night. So tasty. Decor is very modern as well. Good service. Dinner reservations recommended.
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Guglhupf Bakery, Cafe & Biergarten
2706 Durham-Chapel Hill Boulevard
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German bakery, great coffee, tasty brunch but don't overlook it as a dinner option. What was a bustling bakery in the morning becomes a fabulous dinner spot at night. So tasty. Decor is very modern as well. Good service. Dinner reservations recommended.
Great coffee and dining spot. Award-winning food. We love sitting outdoors at the many different options of outdoor seating. Very popular spot.
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Foster's Market
2694 Durham-Chapel Hill Boulevard
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Great coffee and dining spot. Award-winning food. We love sitting outdoors at the many different options of outdoor seating. Very popular spot.
Yummy & healthy! Many places in Durham offer Southern comfort food. Refectory is a healthier option if you prefer to have your not to cover your food with pork gravy. Indoor & outdoor seating.
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The Refectory Cafe
2726 Durham-Chapel Hill Boulevard
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Yummy & healthy! Many places in Durham offer Southern comfort food. Refectory is a healthier option if you prefer to have your not to cover your food with pork gravy. Indoor & outdoor seating.
The food here is excellent. Healthy ingredients served quickly. Indoor & outdoor seating. Reasonable cost. Rarely a packed house as many Durham restaurants can be. We can almost always walk right up, order and find a seat. Quiet, cozy atmosphere. They just added an awesome outdoor patio area.
Pho & Poke House
2816 Erwin Rd
The food here is excellent. Healthy ingredients served quickly. Indoor & outdoor seating. Reasonable cost. Rarely a packed house as many Durham restaurants can be. We can almost always walk right up, order and find a seat. Quiet, cozy atmosphere. They just added an awesome outdoor patio area.
Not your typical pizza- gourmet alternative with fresh ingredients. So yummy!
Enzo's Pizza Co.
2608 Erwin Rd
Not your typical pizza- gourmet alternative with fresh ingredients. So yummy!
Terrific mediterranean food served quickly. Reasonable prices. Order at the counter and they'll bring it to you. Indoor & outdoor seating. Don't forget to try the Baklava- so good!
Mediterra Grill - Durham
2608 Erwin Road
Terrific mediterranean food served quickly. Reasonable prices. Order at the counter and they'll bring it to you. Indoor & outdoor seating. Don't forget to try the Baklava- so good!
Southern BBQ with indoor & outdoor tables. We don't eat much barbecue but have been here a couple times. Very tasty. Good beer selection. It's off the beaten path but well worth the stop and you can get out of the crowds downtown. Just 5 min from our house. This is a great spot to eat after enjoying a hike at the Eno River State Park nearby.
Picnic
1647 Cole Mill Rd
Southern BBQ with indoor & outdoor tables. We don't eat much barbecue but have been here a couple times. Very tasty. Good beer selection. It's off the beaten path but well worth the stop and you can get out of the crowds downtown. Just 5 min from our house. This is a great spot to eat after enjoying a hike at the Eno River State Park nearby.
Reliable and close to home. It's not gourmet but it's tasty. Easy take-out, too.
Bennett Pointe Grill
4625 Hillsborough Road
Reliable and close to home. It's not gourmet but it's tasty. Easy take-out, too.
We love shopping and hanging out at Durham's 9th St business district. Great to support local shops & restaurants and 9th St has many. Elmo's is a fabulous diner. Comfort food at its best with some healthier options offered as well. Expect a crowd on the weekends at brunch time.
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Elmo's Diner
776 9th Street
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We love shopping and hanging out at Durham's 9th St business district. Great to support local shops & restaurants and 9th St has many. Elmo's is a fabulous diner. Comfort food at its best with some healthier options offered as well. Expect a crowd on the weekends at brunch time.
Bustling mexican restaurant. Small, crowded space so in good weather we like to head outside to their rooftop seating. Order at the counter & they'll call your name when it's ready. When other places shut down, you can count on getting food from Cosmic late at night. Having trouble finding it? Look up- it's upstairs, not street level.
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Cosmic Cantina
1920 Perry Street
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Bustling mexican restaurant. Small, crowded space so in good weather we like to head outside to their rooftop seating. Order at the counter & they'll call your name when it's ready. When other places shut down, you can count on getting food from Cosmic late at night. Having trouble finding it? Look up- it's upstairs, not street level.
If you're looking for a great steak or tasty tapas, head to Metro 8 Steakhouse on 9th St. which is a fun, active local shopping and restaurant scene. Long before downtown Durham became the place to be, there has always been 9th St. If you truly want to know Durham as the locals do, you need to go to 9th St. Don't miss our independent bookstore, The Regulator also.
Metro 8 Steakhouse
746 9th St
If you're looking for a great steak or tasty tapas, head to Metro 8 Steakhouse on 9th St. which is a fun, active local shopping and restaurant scene. Long before downtown Durham became the place to be, there has always been 9th St. If you truly want to know Durham as the locals do, you need to go to 9th St. Don't miss our independent bookstore, The Regulator also.
Healthy greens cafe with many different smoothies to choose from. Small cafe on Durham's iconic 9th St business district. Easy & quick meal on the go.
Happy + Hale
703B 9th St
Healthy greens cafe with many different smoothies to choose from. Small cafe on Durham's iconic 9th St business district. Easy & quick meal on the go.
Food, drinks & live jazz music often. Great downtown spot.
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Beyú Caffè
341 West Main Street
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Food, drinks & live jazz music often. Great downtown spot.
Drinks & Nightlife
Popular, welcoming bar/music venue. Very LGBTQ friendly.
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Pinhook
117 West Main Street
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Popular, welcoming bar/music venue. Very LGBTQ friendly.
Great live shows. Lots of outdoor seating also with easy, laid-back ambiance. Food trucks often as well as food served by Motorco. Almost always a crowd hanging out here in the evenings.
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Motorco Music Hall
723 Rigsbee Avenue
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Great live shows. Lots of outdoor seating also with easy, laid-back ambiance. Food trucks often as well as food served by Motorco. Almost always a crowd hanging out here in the evenings.
LGBTQ club but welcoming to all allies. Part of the lower Rigsbee evening hangout scene (Motorco, FullSteam Brewery, food trucks, etc.). Vibrant night life. Backyard space has corn hole games, outdoor bar & seating. Feels like you're at the beach back there. Mostly recorded music with good DJ's though live music sometimes.
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The Bar
711 Rigsbee Avenue
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LGBTQ club but welcoming to all allies. Part of the lower Rigsbee evening hangout scene (Motorco, FullSteam Brewery, food trucks, etc.). Vibrant night life. Backyard space has corn hole games, outdoor bar & seating. Feels like you're at the beach back there. Mostly recorded music with good DJ's though live music sometimes.
Entertainment & Activities
Minor league baseball doesn't get any better than a night at DBAP. Fun, laid-back way to spend the evening (or afternoon) watching baseball and hanging out with friends. It's an experience you shouldn't miss- classic Durham!
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Durham Bulls Athletic Park
409 Blackwell Street
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Minor league baseball doesn't get any better than a night at DBAP. Fun, laid-back way to spend the evening (or afternoon) watching baseball and hanging out with friends. It's an experience you shouldn't miss- classic Durham!
Parks & Nature
Beautiful gardens everywhere. Fun place to stroll aimlessly with a date or hang out on the lawn with your toddler or pooch. Frequent spot for wedding photos.
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Sarah P. Duke Gardens
420 Anderson St
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Beautiful gardens everywhere. Fun place to stroll aimlessly with a date or hang out on the lawn with your toddler or pooch. Frequent spot for wedding photos.
A Durham treasure. Miles and miles of trails all around the river. Don't miss crossing the river on the suspension bridge. Great spot for taking your dog for a walk. Picnic tables. Ranger-led programs.
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Eno River State Park
6101 Cole Mill Rd
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A Durham treasure. Miles and miles of trails all around the river. Don't miss crossing the river on the suspension bridge. Great spot for taking your dog for a walk. Picnic tables. Ranger-led programs.
Owned & managed by Duke's forestry department but their trails are open to the public. Stay on the trails because the Duke Forestry Department has on-going research studies throughout the forest. Peaceful, quiet right in town. There is an access into the Duke Forest just 2 blocks from our home (walkable) at the end of Inwood Road. Many more access points along Hwy 751 near Constitution Drive. Great for runners or peaceful walking.
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Duke Forest
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Owned & managed by Duke's forestry department but their trails are open to the public. Stay on the trails because the Duke Forestry Department has on-going research studies throughout the forest. Peaceful, quiet right in town. There is an access into the Duke Forest just 2 blocks from our home (walkable) at the end of Inwood Road. Many more access points along Hwy 751 near Constitution Drive. Great for runners or peaceful walking.
If you're looking for a lofty peak from which to watch the sunset, this is the best Durham has to offer. It's not the Great Smokies but it's a great local spot. Bring a picnic and sit atop the big boulders while the sun goes down. Good hiking trails here too. Just a short 10-12 min drive from our house.
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Occoneechee Mountain State Natural Area
625 Virginia Cates Road
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If you're looking for a lofty peak from which to watch the sunset, this is the best Durham has to offer. It's not the Great Smokies but it's a great local spot. Bring a picnic and sit atop the big boulders while the sun goes down. Good hiking trails here too. Just a short 10-12 min drive from our house.
Arts & Culture
Not really a museum but an historic site. This is the actual Duke family homestead. See their home, walk the grounds of their land, learn about Durham's most well-known family.
Duke Homestead
Not really a museum but an historic site. This is the actual Duke family homestead. See their home, walk the grounds of their land, learn about Durham's most well-known family.
Not really a museum but a home preserved from the 1700's. Gorgeous grounds- fantastic spot to take a picnic and enjoy good weather or take a peaceful stroll on the Poet's Walk down by the Eno River.
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Ayr Mount
376 Saint Marys Road
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Not really a museum but a home preserved from the 1700's. Gorgeous grounds- fantastic spot to take a picnic and enjoy good weather or take a peaceful stroll on the Poet's Walk down by the Eno River.
Be sure to catch a musical show or Broadway play at DPAC. The acoustics of this building are out of this world (often noted by the performers themselves while on stage). The staff goes to great lengths to ensure that your entire experience is a great one.
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Durham Performing Arts Center
123 Vivian Street
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Be sure to catch a musical show or Broadway play at DPAC. The acoustics of this building are out of this world (often noted by the performers themselves while on stage). The staff goes to great lengths to ensure that your entire experience is a great one.
Great smaller venue for live music shows, theater and dance productions and a great cinema, too. Annual iconic festivals are held here such as the Full Frame Documentary Festival and the Gay/Lesbian Film Festival (one of the best in the South Atlantic region).
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The Carolina Theatre
309 West Morgan Street
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Great smaller venue for live music shows, theater and dance productions and a great cinema, too. Annual iconic festivals are held here such as the Full Frame Documentary Festival and the Gay/Lesbian Film Festival (one of the best in the South Atlantic region).
Shopping
This is Durham's iconic & historic Shop Local scene. One of a kind boutiques, crafts stores, Durham apparel, and more. Restaurants. nightclubs, etc. Long before downtown Durham was "the scene" there was 9th St and it's still a beloved local treasure. Don't miss our independent bookstore, The Regulator!
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9th Street
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This is Durham's iconic & historic Shop Local scene. One of a kind boutiques, crafts stores, Durham apparel, and more. Restaurants. nightclubs, etc. Long before downtown Durham was "the scene" there was 9th St and it's still a beloved local treasure. Don't miss our independent bookstore, The Regulator!
Getting Around
Bus route 6 picks up & drops off at this intersection near our house. Cost is $1. Route will take you to Duke west campus, Duke Hospital, near Sarah Duke Gardens and ultimately (25 min) to downtown. Bus stops here every hour near the half-hour mark. For full info go here: https://godurhamtransit.org/maps-schedules/godurham/6
American Drive & Hillgrand Drive
Bus route 6 picks up & drops off at this intersection near our house. Cost is $1. Route will take you to Duke west campus, Duke Hospital, near Sarah Duke Gardens and ultimately (25 min) to downtown. Bus stops here every hour near the half-hour mark. For full info go here: https://godurhamtransit.org/maps-schedules/godurham/6
Bus route 6B picks up & drops off at this intersection near our house. Cost is $1. Route will take you to Duke west campus, Duke Hospital, near Sarah Duke Gardens and ultimately (25 min) to downtown. Bus stops here every hour near the top of the hour mark. For full info go here: https://godurhamtransit.org/maps-schedules/godurham/6b
Morreene Rd & Tremont Dr
Bus route 6B picks up & drops off at this intersection near our house. Cost is $1. Route will take you to Duke west campus, Duke Hospital, near Sarah Duke Gardens and ultimately (25 min) to downtown. Bus stops here every hour near the top of the hour mark. For full info go here: https://godurhamtransit.org/maps-schedules/godurham/6b