Cultural Resources

Cultural Resources

  • Chris Knapp
  • 10/13/21

A sign of a strong, local luxury real estate market is a strong presence of arts and sciences in the area. Raleigh and Durham are both dedicated to the arts and developing cultural resources. The best example of this is Durham’s tradition of 3rd Friday, a celebration of arts and culture on display throughout downtown Durham on the third Friday of every month, year-round. Thanks to this dedication from the cities in the area, there are plenty of arts festivals and museums to enjoy. The Triangle is also a supportive community for the artists and musicians that call the Triangle home.

Live Entertainment

Several local venues provide access to live entertainment. The Walnut Creek Amphitheatre in Raleigh is the largest venue in the area, and frequently hosts major international touring acts and some of the biggest names in music. PNC Arena in Raleigh sometimes serves the same function but acts primarily as a home to the Carolina Hurricanes hockey team and North Carolina State University men’s basketball team.

Koka Booth Amphitheatre in Cary acts as a concert and movie venue in the summer months, while Lincoln Theater is the most prominent club venue in downtown Raleigh, providing concerts year-round. Dorton Arena, located on the North Carolina State Fairground, frequently holds events such as concerts, sports events, and trade shows.

North Carolina is also home to several professional arts organizations, including:

  • Carolina Ballet
  • Theatre in the Park
  • North Carolina Symphony
  • Opera Company of North Carolina

The Triangle area universities‘ arts organizations also host frequent shows.


Durham has the largest, most diverse music scene of the Triangle area, with styles ranging from hip-hop, jazz, blues, rock, and punk. Popular bands who are from or reside in the area include: The Avett Brothers, The Mountain Goats, Branford Marsalis, 9th Wonder, The Old Ceremony, Megafaun, Curtis Eller, and Hammer No More Fingers among others. Merge Records, a successful independent record label, is headquartered in Durham, as are several others.


The largest festivals that happen in the area include the following music and film festivals:

  • Hopscotch Music Festival
  • Moogfest
  • ProgDay
  • American Dance Festival
  • Flicker Film Festival
  • Full Frame Documentary Film Festival
  • Escapism Film Festival
  • Retrofantasma Film Festival
  • Nevermore Film Festival
  • North Carolina Gay and Lesbian Film Festival


Some of the most prominent museums include the North Carolina Museum of Art, the North Carolina Museum of History, and the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences. All of these museums are massive and contain a mind-blowing amount of content that changes throughout the year, maintaining a sense of novelty.

The North Carolina Museum of Art is located near the State Fairgrounds and is one of the best art museums in the Southeastern United States. The museum contains a large assortment of American, European, and Ancient art in addition to major rotating exhibits of artists such as Claude Monet. The museum is also home to one of the largest art parks in the country.  North Carolina Central University supports its own art museum, and UNC-Chapel Hill maintains the Ackland Art Museum.

Chapel Hill is home to Morehead Planetarium, one of the oldest and largest planetariums in the United States. It was even used to train some of the first astronauts in celestial navigation. For child-friendly activities, Marbles Kids Museum in downtown Raleigh and Kidzu in Chapel Hill are creative and active learning environments for kids.

Triangle NC Landmarks

The North Carolina State Capitol is a national landmark located in downtown Raleigh that was built in the late 1800s. The Capitol serves as the office of the governor, and as a meeting place for the North Carolina Supreme Court, and continues to be occupied to this day.

The Mordecai House is located in Raleigh and is the oldest residence in the area still on its original foundation. At one point, it was one of the largest plantations in the area and is now a historic landmark and local history museum. The home is part of the Mordecai Historic Park, which includes several historic locations, such as the birthplace of US President Andrew Jackson, the only U.S. president born in North Carolina.

Ayr Mount is another historic plantation open for visitation. Ayr Mount is indicative of the rich history of the area and contains a collection of memorabilia from the Federal Period through the development of the state.

Bennett Place in Durham is the site of the single largest surrender of troops in the American Civil War, which occurred when Union General Sherman and Confederate General Johnston met there in April of 1865.


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