The Triangle and its suburbs are popular relocation destinations, both because of the good quality of life here, and their appealing central NC location that makes weekend getaways from Raleigh, easy! Here are two must-do trips.
The Raleigh area’s proximity to getaway spots near the beaches AND mountains is one of the things that makes it a perfect fit for families that like to explore. And fall, when the heat of the summer has passed and the leaves are changing colors, is the perfect time to pack your road trip kit!
But where to go? In just a few hours, your weekend getaway could have you walking on a beach, steaming coffee in hand… or kicking up fallen leaves as you meander mountain trails.
You can’t go wrong, either way. So, let’s look at two areas popular for quick weekend trips.
THE BEACH: THE OUTER BANKS
A series of barrier islands, known as the Outer Banks, offer both ocean and sound views with white sand beaches. Cape Hatteras National Seashore protects part of the beaches in the Outer Banks from Ocracoke Island to Bodie Island, which is around 70 miles. Here you’ll find pristine beaches, turtle nest viewing, and camping on the beach for those who want to settle in closest to the stars.
If you prefer a more stable roof over your head, there are many hotels and rental homes available in the area. While quieter in the fall months, you’ll still find a variety of activities that all ages can enjoy.
You can climb to the top of the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse for views that extend miles in every direction, or take the ferry in your car to Ocracoke Island and see the famous wild horses. There is plenty to discover on this quiet Island, including more beautiful beaches, a lighthouse, and a small town filled with shopping and restaurants.
While staying in the area, you can visit the Wright Brothers National Memorial in Kill Devil Hills to see the place where man first took to the skies. This National Park offers an information center, and you can walk past the markers where the original flights landed and climb the hill to the memorial.
For a unique experience, spend an afternoon at Jockey’s Ridge State Park. It’s the largest sand dune in the southeast. You can climb and tumble down the dunes. On windy days, a local vendor shows up with kite surfing equipment. Happily, when your beach weekend getaway from Raleigh is a wrap, you’ll be coming back to a place with just as much natural beauty.
THE MOUNTAINS: ASHEVILLE
Head less than four hours in the other direction, and you’ll arrive in the mountains and the trendy town of Asheville. This community is known for its local restaurant and bar scene, along with shops filled with work by local artists.
Of course, you’ve probably heard about its biggest attraction, the Biltmore Estate. Built by George Vanderbilt, Biltmore is the largest home in America. You can take a tour of the home — there are several to choose from — visit the winery for a tasting, and explore the grounds.
While visiting Asheville in the fall, it’s almost a requirement to enjoy a scenic drive on the Blue Ridge Parkway. This drive extends for over 100 miles with the most breathtaking scenery, and it’s made all the more stunning with the leaves changing colors. There are even a few hiking trails along the way if you want to stretch your legs.
Or, put on your walking shoes and discover the Urban Trail with its intriguing stations. The trail extends for 1.7 miles, leading you through the history and legends of the area. The stations along the way consist of cool artwork and architecture, such as the Flat Iron statue.
Asheville in sweater weather is so relaxing, and among the best times to explore the historic downtown area (and navigate fewer crowds than in the summer months). There’s an abundance of hotel rooms and B&Bs for all budgets.
Autumn really is a perfect time for a weekend getaway from Raleigh, with the promise of lovely weather, outdoor festivals and fewer crowds. But, like us, we know you’ll be happy to return home to the nature, convenience and lifestyle that Raleigh and its suburbs offer. If you’re ready to make the Triangle home, we hope you’ll, contact us for help finding your dream home!