Fun Things to do in Raleigh This Summer 2022

Raleigh, NC offers plenty of fun things to do throughout the year. Whether you’re looking to take in some live music or appreciate the works of art around the city, there’s always something new and exciting going on that you can enjoy with your friends and family during your downtime. In fact, there are so many activities to choose from that it can be difficult to determine what to do first! This list will help you make the best possible decision by presenting you with eight fun things to do in Raleigh this summer! You won’t want to miss out on these amazing opportunities!

Solas Festival

There’s a lot of stuff going on at UNC-Chapel Hill. You know, like basketball and academic research. But did you know there’s also tons of live music? Chapel Hill is home to a three-day (June 10–12) festival named Solas, which will feature more than 80 acts playing on seven stages. There are more than 40 bands who have performed at Solas before (including Mumford & Sons, Old Crow Medicine Show and Andrew Bird), but there will be plenty of acts on hand for your first time as well. Plus, there’s comedy—standup from people like Mike Birbiglia and Nick Offerman; an improv show; a pair of films from North Carolina legends Joel and Ethan Coen (The Man Who Wasn’t There and O Brother Where Art Thou?); an evening with Irish storyteller/philosopher Ken Kesey, who wrote One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest; and even local yoga instruction. Best part: A ticket costs just $5 per day or $15 for all three days. Even if you only catch a few shows while you’re out exploring Fayetteville Street or wherever else downtown feels welcoming during June nights, it’ll be worth it. Just make sure you don’t wait until June 12 to get yourself tickets. If you are interested to visit Raleigh and you are looking for flight ticket?  Let me tell you Book a Spirit Flight here are the best deals for you and enjoy your journey at a cheap price.

Heritage Crafts Weekend

The third weekend of May, you can take part in an exciting, educational and entertaining day of learning about and making crafts that date back to pre-Revolutionary War America. Held on two locations in Wake County—Historic Stagville (near Durham) and Historic Kenmore Plantation (in Wake Forest)—this annual event offers opportunities for hands-on workshops on a variety of topics such as rug hooking, basketry, woodcarving and papermaking. Other activities include tours, demonstrations, historical reenactments and contests. This is a great family event that lets you step back into colonial life while enjoying some interactive fun! Heritage Crafts Weekend includes several events at both Stagville and Kenmore throughout May; plan ahead so you don’t miss out on any of these engaging activities. Team RAA Spring 5K Run/Walk: Spring is finally here—and you know what that means: it’s time to dust off your running shoes and prepare for RAA’s Spring 5K race! This annual event always sells out, so register early and plan ahead if you’re thinking of joining us on April 23rd. Your registration fee ($25/adult or $15/student) gets you much more than just a timed 5K run along scenic Wade Avenue in North Raleigh; after all, who doesn’t like getting swag? Seriously though, proceeds from the race go toward helping adult patients diagnosed with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease.

North Carolina State Fair

For three weeks each year, people from all over North Carolina (and beyond) flock to Raleigh for a chance to chow down on fair food and have fun. The 2019 NC State Fair will be held from October 3–14, 2019. If you’re interested in attending, tickets start at $10 and can be purchased here. However, before planning your trip, make sure you check out these insider tips we compiled just for our Zumper readers! You may also want to learn about discount deals available for military members. Want to see something cool? There are petting zoos, pig races, pig racing and lamb shearing exhibits plus wild game shows. NCSU Museums: No matter what time of year it is, there’s always something to see at one of the five museums operated by NCSU: Art Museum of NC University; Atrium Gallery; William S. Powell Museum of History & Culture; Natural Sciences Museums; FPG Child Development Institute Children’s Museum Campus: With more than 24 locations across Wake County, Raleigh’s children museum has something exciting for every kid—which means parents get some you time as well!

Crabtree Falls Hike

Just 15 minutes north of downtown, Crabtree Falls is a popular hike. You don’t need to be an experienced hiker or even have great stamina to reach its dizzying summit; there are several trails that lead up and down, as well as stairs and even a bridge for those who want to avoid rock-climbing altogether. It’s an easy trail with beautiful views at every turn—perfect for hikers of all levels! (And if you don’t feel like climbing all the way back down, it drops you off on River Road so you can get close enough to make it back on foot.) The falls are at their best after recent rainfalls, which feed into Blue Ridge Mountain streams. From April to October, bluebells dot all over these woods, making them feel mystical. A great family outing for everyone from your smallest to oldest explorers, but remember that dogs aren’t allowed on these grounds. There are only about 200 parking spots available here; arrive early if you plan on visiting during warmer months! A warning: Cell service here is spotty at best–and nonexistent underground. Be sure to check in before heading out, especially if you’re going alone or with kids. And always bring water, too! Bring jackets: If you’re lucky enough to catch a summer evening while hiking here, take advantage of temperatures dropping once dusk hits. Bug spray will also come in handy when nighttime creeps in around 8 p.m.—summer nights can be chilly at elevation!

Food Truck Friday @ Pullen Park

Food Truck Friday is every Friday through September 27 from 6:00-9:00 pm. It is one of Raleigh’s biggest food truck events, with an average of 20 food trucks setting up shop along with live music and other entertainment. The best part? It’s all free! Park at Pullen Park or ride your bike or walk over. (As always, please leave Fido at home.) Click here for more information. You can also find Food Truck Friday on Facebook and Twitter! And don’t forget—#LetsTrucksYum to Tweet your love. Don’t have a smartphone? Text 839810! You must be registered with Nixle Alerts to sign up. (Info below) Bring Fido: July 29, August 5 & 19; Sept 9 & 23 *Please note that dogs are not allowed in picnic shelters or playground areas during Food Truck Fridays.* Ride Your Bike: Bring your helmet and hit any one of these great trails. Check out Cary’s Website for maps that you can print off before you go so you know what sections will be safe if you’re riding alone!

Escape Room RVA

If you’re looking for a new kind of adventure, you’ll want to check out Richmond-based escape room company Escape Room RVA. The experience involves solving complex puzzles within an hour using clues and hints. Guests are placed into groups of two to eight people and given a room from which they must locate hidden clues, solve puzzles, and unravel secret messages before time runs out. In addition to having fun with friends or family, attendees can practice communication skills while testing their ability to think quickly on their feet—ideal traits for anyone working in marketing or another creative field. There are currently three themed rooms available: Bollywood, where guests become lost actors searching for hidden clues; Blackbeard’s Shipwrecked Tavern, where patrons attempt to help Captain Blackbeard find his missing treasure; and Bunker 51, where patrons use decoded classified documents to find chemical weapons.

Bold Rock Cidery Tour

If you’re a fan of bold and unique ciders, a visit to one of central Virginia’s newest family-owned businesses is a must. Bold Rock Cidery offers tours daily for groups of up to 10 people, where you can learn about their production process, fermentation processes and more. They also offer small-group (6 or fewer) private tours for $20 per person (which includes tastings), as well as historical tour options that focus on what life was like in Albemarle County during bygone eras. We recommend signing up for one of these fun historical tours at least two weeks before your visit so they can accommodate your group’s needs! If you’re interested in scheduling any kind of tour, visit their website and check flight status with Spirit Airlines check in. While there, you can find out if they have any openings left; if not, be sure to get on their mailing list to be notified when new tour times become available. In addition to touring and tasting, Bold Rock also hosts live music events (typically three times a week); we highly recommend checking out an upcoming show while in town. Click here for some upcoming performances. While tickets aren’t required, reservations are highly recommended because seating is limited—to make reservations online, click here. Just be aware that it takes them 24 hours after receiving your request to respond…even though once filled up spots will appear immediately as sold out . . . meaning if you don’t make a reservation soon enough you could miss out completely!

ChocoLab Chocolate Studio Tour

ChocoLab Chocolate Studio is one of three chocolate studios located in downtown Durham. On their ChocoTour, you’ll get a chance to see how premium chocolate is made from bean-to-bar and learn about roasting, winnowing, conching, molding and tempering. Get up close and personal with cacao trees at their nursery across town as well! Sign up for a tour online or just show up – tours typically run every day of the week except for Tuesdays and Saturdays. There are multiple different times available so you’re sure to find something that works with your schedule. Tours start on time, so if you miss it then you have to wait until next time around. Tours last about 1 hour and 15 minutes and are free (with purchase)! Definitely give them a call first though because depending on what’s going on they might be closed for events. They have also done special nights during concerts where it was an opportunity for people to buy drinks at either Bar Crudo or Marche Bacchus while listening to music inside their tiny chocolate lab right off Franklin Street! If there’s no tour happening but you still want some dark chocolate, stop by Slickery Pig Saloon after dinner (719 S West St) where they make all of their own bittersweet chocolates using milk powder, cocoa butter & cane sugar!

Tour the library of the future

The futuristic library, named after famed futurist and State Librarian Martha Kupfer, is now open at North Carolina State University. The Cooper Library gives visitors a glimpse into what they can expect from libraries of tomorrow. Even if you don’t have access to check out any books, it’s worth a visit just for its architecture alone. It features three levels of natural light that shine through large windows on all sides of each floor and outdoor decks where patrons can read outdoors year-round; digital living collections that change based on popularity; conference rooms with high-tech meeting spaces; and designated areas for collaboration. What are some other things we should expect from libraries of tomorrow? How could libraries be used differently from today?

Hiking trail

When most people think of North Carolina’s outdoor spaces, they might imagine white sand beaches and rolling surf. But a new trail promises something entirely different. The Mountains-to-Sea Trail is not for beachcombers and volleyballers. It’s for hikers. Now 90 percent complete, it traverses 1,200 miles of land between Mount Mitchell (the highest peak east of the Mississippi) and Jockey’s Ridge State Park on Virginia Beach—all within our own state lines. Bring plenty of water: No section will be more than 50 miles from an open tap. Chew gum: You don’t want to get blisters while you’re hiking—or after you finish. Grab your family or coworkers: This one isn’t just fun; it’s smart from a safety standpoint.

Marbles Kids Museum

Marbles is one of North Carolina’s best family-friendly museums. There are exhibits that let you explore life in an 18th century fort, and a wide variety of artworks created by kids! If you want to get creative with your children, check out some of their hands-on workshops or take a class. Since Marbles is fun for all ages, it’s a great place for your whole family to spend time together. The museum also hosts special events year-round – check out their calendar on their website for more information. This walkable park not only connects many diverse Raleigh neighborhoods (think Trinity Park, Five Points, Glenwood South), but also celebrates its history as a vibrant railroad hub.

Dine Raleigh’s best restaurants

While you may have your heart set on going to New York City or Paris, if your budget isn’t quite big enough then look no further than right here in Raleigh. There are plenty of amazing restaurants that will not only make you drool but also leave you wanting more. From fine dining and drinking, to burgers and BBQ’s, there’s something for everyone in Raleigh. Here are some awesome things you can do right here in Raleigh.

#1: Laudito Argentine Grill: The food here is absolutely heavenly and their special delicious drink list is pretty unique too! If a good steak is what you’re looking for, then try out Del Frisco’s Grille. If wine is what tickles your fancy, then Bodega Diaz has all your needs covered.
#2: Venture up north to Hillsborough Street at Pitt Street Meats where they serve up some delectable BBQ which will be sure to please even the pickiest eaters out there! They serve breakfast as well so why not head over early before it gets hot outside?
#3: For those who love seafood, Fisherman’s Market has you covered. Enjoy freshly caught fish and enjoy lunch by Lake Johnson surrounded by beautiful outdoor seating. North Carolina also loves their blue crabs and Boiler House serves them steamed with Old Bay Seasoning served with cornbread for just $10! And if tacos are your thing, Verde Cocina does them really really well (with avocados from their own trees!).
#4: When winter rolls around, stop by Fahrenheit 305 on Glenwood Avenue. Feeling adventurous? Try out different flavors like taro root, vanilla cream or Ube that makes an already delicious dessert so much better! But don’t worry if you’re not feeling adventurous because they’ve got traditional flavors like red velvet and chocolate to satisfy your sweet tooth instead.

Looking for a fun family friendly place to spend time outdoors? Then you’ll love places like PNC Arena, North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences, Pullen Park and many others. Also downtown Raleigh is great for spending time outdoors with its wide sidewalks, green spaces and an amazing fountain to cool off in! So whatever your tastes or interests may be there’s something in Raleigh that’s fun for everyone! While visiting Raleigh remember to check out Bentonville Brewing Company on Boylan Avenue. The atmosphere here is great and really relaxed so you can kick back and enjoy a beer or three with some friends. In need of some retail therapy? Look no further than Cameron Village because you will find everything you could possibly want right there on Cameron Street in between Whitaker Mill Road and Fairview Road!