A Century of Chowan Through Photographs

200 E. Church St., Edenton, NC. 252-482-8005. This permanent exhibit depicts life in Chowan County from 1850 to 1954 and is located in the Swain School Building. This exhibit features a variety of scenes from bygone days. Free. more details

Ackland Art Museum

S. Columbia St. at Franklin St., Chapel Hill, NC. 919-966-5736. This collection of 15,000 objects broadly covers the history of European painting and sculpture, including masters such as Rubens, Delacroix, Degas and Pissarro. It’s particularly strong in Asian art and more details

Afro-American Cultural Center

401 N. Myers St., Charlotte, NC. 704-374-1565. A multi-disciplinary arts organization preserving the rich artistic heritage of African-American culture through exhibitions, performances, workshops and hands-on activities. more details

Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge

US 64/264, Manteo, NC. 252-473-1131. The refuge has more than 150,000 acres of wetland habitats and a wide variety of wildlife ranging from wood ducks and alligators to black bears and red wolves. Plant species including the Atlantic white cedar, more details

Appalachian Cultural Museum

University Hall Dr., Boone, NC, 828-262-3117. This museum, which is part of Appalachian State University, is dedicated to the life and culture in the mountains of western North Carolina. AC. more details

Appalachian Heritage Museum

175 Mystery Hill Ln., Blowing Rock, NC, 828-264-2792. This home built in 1903 for the founding fathers of Appalachian State University, B.B. and D.D. Dougherty, contains authentic turn-of-the-century decor. Visitors learn how mountain families lived in the early 1900s. AC. more details

Appalachian Ski Mountain

940 Ski Mountain Rd., Blowing Rock, NC, 828-295-7828, 800-322-2373. Skiing since 1962. Family ski resort open mid-November through March. Home of French-Swiss Ski College. Outdoor ice skating rink. Ski and gift shops. AC. more details

Artspace

201 E. Davie St., Raleigh, NC. 919-821-2787. This nonprofit visual arts center presents exhibitions, educational programs and artists working in open studios. Free. more details

Asa Biggs House

100 E. Church St., Williamston, NC. 800-776-8566. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, this 19th-century dwelling of Judge Asa Biggs serves as a visitors center. Located in historic downtown Williamston. more details

Atimore-Oliver House Museum

510 Pollock St., New Bern, NC. 919-638-8558. Built in 1790 by prominent New Bernian Samuel Chapman. Furnished with 18th- and 19th-century antiques, the museum also features a room of Civil War memorabilia and a unique doll collection. Free. more details

Beaufort Historic Site

100 Block, Turner St., Beaufort, NC. 252-728-5225, 800-575-7483. Preservation efforts have kept Old Beufort much as it was when the town was incorporated in 1723. Tour the historic district via double-decker English bus and hear costumed guides tell of the more details

Bennett Place State Historic Site

4409 Bennett Memorial Rd., Durham, NC. 919-383-4345. The site where Confederate Gen. Johnston surrendered to Union Gen. Sherman 17 days after Lee’s surrender at Appomattox and ended the Civil War in the Carolinas. Reconstructed farmhouse, outbuildings, interpretive center and museum. more details

Biltmore Estate

1 Lodge St., Asheville, NC, 828-274-6333, 888-804-8258. A privately owned national historic landmark, Biltmore Estate is America’s largest home, with gardens, shops, restaurants and an award-winning winery that offers a self-guided tour and free tastings. AC. more details

Birthplace of Pepsi

256 Middle St., New Bern, NC. 252-636-5898. On this spot in his pharmacy, Caleb Bradham invented “Brad’s Drink,” which later he patented as Pepsi-Cola. Today, you can relax and enjoy a Pepsi-Cola at the re-created soda foundtain. Free. more details

Blowing Rock Attraction

US 321 S. & Rock Rd., Blowing Rock, NC, 828-295-7111. Beautiful scenic walk overlooking John’s River Gorge. Observation tower, gardens, small garden waterfall and unique gift shops. Come visit and learn about the legend of the Indian lovers. AC. more details

Blowing Rock Stage Company

152 Sunset Dr., Blowing Rock, NC, 828-295-9168, 800-295-7851. The professional summer theater of the High Country offers performances June through August at the Blowing Rock Arts Center. Rocket Players Youth Theatre performs two shows each season for young audiences. AC. more details

Botanical Gardens – Asheville

151 Weaver Blvd., Asheville, NC, 828-252-5190 A 10-acre garden of plants native to the Appalachian Region. Visitors center with gift shop. Free. more details

Brem House Artisans Gallery

211 East Blvd., Charlotte, NC. 704-375-7800. Built in 1902-1903 for one of Charlotte’s most prominent families, the Colonial Revival-style house was designed by Charles Christian Hook, one of Charlotte’s first resident architects. Free. more details

Brevard Music Center

1000 Probart St., Brevard, NC, 828-884-2011, 888-384-8682. Home of the Brevard Music Festival, which is held for seven weeks each summer (late June through mid-August). More than 55 different concert events, from opera to chamber music. AC more details

British Cemetery

British Cemetery Rd., Ocracoke, NC. 252-926-9171, 888-493-3826. This is the final resting place for four unidentified British sailors from the HMC Bedfordshire, which was torpedoed and sunk off the coast of Ocracoke in May 1942. Today, because of this tragic more details

Cajun Pig

496 Main St., Chimney Rock, NC. 828-625-0701. Saturday-night live bluegrass music in a smoke- and alcohol-free facility. Family entertainment. more details

Campbell House Galleries

482 E. Connecticut Ave., Southern Pines, NC. 910-692-4356. This historic home of the Arts Council of Moore County provides three spacious exhibit areas and offers paintings and pottery for sale by local artists. Free. more details

Carolina Beach State Park

1010 State Park, Carolina Beach, NC. 910-458-8206. Spot the rare Venus’ flytrap and other species of plants. Wind your way through habitats along intriguing trails or enjoy fishing and boating. Covers 712 acres with five miles of hiking trails, boat more details

Cashie Wetlands Walk

101 York St., Windsor, NC. 919-794-5553. Boardwalk in a natural wetlands environment with cypress trees and other swampland flora. Walk takes visitor to the edge of the Cashie River, which is 20 miles long and as deep as 80 feet more details

Cataloochee Ski Area

1080 Ski Lodge Rd., Maggie Valley, NC. 828-926-0285, 800-768-0285. First ski area in the Southeast, with 10 slopes and trails. One expert, two advanced, four intermediate and three beginner; two double chairlifts, one quad chairlift and one rope tow. Snowboarding more details

Catawba County Museum of History

30 N. College Ave., Newton, NC. 828-465-0383. Housed in the former Catawba County Courthouse (circa 1924). Regional in its scope of the Catawba Valley area history, the exhibits include a rare British Revolution-era redcoat, a 1930s racing car, and a more details

Century of Flight Monument

The site adjoins the Aycock Brown Welcome Center at Milepost #1 on U.S. Hwy 158 in Kitty Hawk, NC. (no telephone). Set against the open sky of Kitty Hawk on the Outer Banks of North Carolina, the Monument to a more details

Charlotte Museum of History/Hezekiah Alexander Homesite

3500 Shamrock Dr., Charlotte, NC. 704-568-1774. Visit the oldest existing home in Mecklenburg County, the Revolutionary War-era home (circa 1774) of Hezekiah Alexander. Museum features exhibits of local interest, a gift shop and nearly 15,000 artifacts. AC. more details

Charlotte Nature Museum

1658 Sterling Rd., Charlotte, NC. 704-372-6261, 800-935-0553. Nature center with live-animal room, nature trail, butterfly pavilion and puppet theater. AC. more details

Charlotte Regional Farmers Market

1801 Yorkmont Rd., Charlotte, NC. 704-357-1269. Farmers market featuring locally grown produce, handmade crafts, baked goods and plants. Owned and operated by the NC Department of Agriculture. more details

Chatham County Courthouse & Historical Museum

Intersection of 15-501 & 64, Pittsboro, NC. 919-542-3603, 800-316-3829. Built in 1881 and designed by a local lawyer, this is the fourth courthouse built in the county since 1771. Extensively renovated in 1959 and again in the late 1980s, the more details

Cherokee County Historical Museum

87 Peachtree St., Murphy, NC. 828-837-6792. Reflects the life of the Cherokee Indian during the time of the Cherokee nation and the removal along the Trail of Tears to Oklahoma. Depicts the early life of the white man in Cherokee more details

Chimney Rock Park

US 64/74A, Chimney Rock, NC. 828-625-9611, 800-277-9611. Spectacular 75-mile views, sheer cliffs and unique rock formations. Trails lead to 404-foot Hickory Nut Falls with trail specialists available to answer questions. AC more details

Columbia on the Scuppernong

A103 Main St., Columbia, NC. 252-796-2781. This 35-acre district consists of a collection of buildings dating from the 19th century to World War I. Architecture styles range from Victorian to Craftsman, Tudor Revival to Romanesque. Self-guided tour. Free. more details

Columbia Theater Cultural Resources Center

304 Main St., Columbia, NC. 252-766-0200, 888-737-0437. Housed in the renovated Columbia Theater, a former movie palace that had fallen into disrepair. The focus of the CTCRC is on human interaction with the environment on the upper Albemarle-Pamlico peninsula, especially more details

CP&L Visitors Center

8520 River Rd., Southport, NC. 910-457-6041. Offers over 30 energy-related exhibits covering production of electricity, electrical safety, alternative energy sources and energy conservation. Free. more details

Dan Nicholas Park & Campground

6800 Bringle Ferry Rd., Salisbury, NC. 704-636-2089 (park). 704-636-0154 (campground), 866-767-2757. This 425-acre park offers a 10-acre lake for paddleboating and fishing. Other agttractions include live animal exhibits, nature center, tennis courts, picnic shelters, playground, volleyball, horseshoes, ball fields, miniature more details

Dan River Adventures

724 Webster Rd. Stoneville, NC. 336-427-8530. Gentle float trips on river running through Rockingham and Stokes County, past rocky cliffs, dense forest and mountain laurels. AC. more details

Daniel Boone Native Gardens

651 Horn in the West Dr., Boone, NC, 828-264-6390. The gardens feature a collection of North American native plant material in an informal landscape design, along with an authentic log cabin which once belonged to the Boone family. Self-guided tours, more details

Diggs Gallery

601 S. Martin Luther King Jr. Dr., Winston-Salem, NC. 336-750-2458. Diggs Gallery offers 10 to 15 exhibits each year. Most highlight African Diaspora and African-American art and culture. Visit the Sculpture Gardens and take in the breathtaking John Biggers Murals, more details

Discovery Place

301 N. Tryon St., Charlotte, NC. 704-372-6261, 800-935-0553. One of the nation’s top hands-on science museums, featuring an OMNIMAX Theater, planetarium, Life Center, Science Circus, Rain Forest and more. Provides ever-changing entertaining facilities for a variety of experiences in science. more details

Downtown Arts District Winston-Salem

Sixth & Trade Sts., Winston-Salem, NC. 336-761-1955. Set against a backdrop of murals, it features Gallery Hops for the first Friday evening of every month. Explore working studios, galleries and shops. Free. more details

Duke Homestead State Historic Site & Tobacco Museum

2828 Duke Homestead Rd., Durham, NC. 919-477-5498. National Historic Landmark features Duke family’s mid-1800s home, tobacco barns and original factory. Museum, film and living history demonstrations of life on a typical yeoman farm in the 1800s. Free. more details

Duke Primate Center

3705 Erwin Rd., Durham, NC. 919-489-3364. Research and study center. Home to hundreds of prosimian primates including lemurs, lorises and bush babies. Outside walking tour and inside viewing of nocturnal prosimians. Advance reservations required. AC. more details

Duke University Museum of Art

2001 Campus Dr., Durham, NC. 919-684-5135. Features medieval sculpture; stained glass; extensive pre-Columbian exhibits; African, American, European paintings and sculptures; Greek and Roman antiquities; and Chinese jade. Free. more details

DuPont State Forest

DuPont Rd., Hendersonville, NC. 828-251-6509. The forest encompasses more than 10,000 acres with waterfalls and rolling land bordered by moderately steep hills and mountains. The forest is open to the public for hiking, horseback riding, biking and fishing (with a more details

Eno River State Park

6101 Cole Mill Rd., Durham, NC. 919-383-1686. Birdwatching, boating/sailing, fishing, hiking, picnic shelter. Free. more details

Executive Mansion

200 N. Blount St., Raleigh, NC. 919-733-3456. Victorian-style mansion, home to North Carolina governors since 1891. Built from native North Carolina materials, it has been occupied by 25 governors’ families. Free. more details

Fearrington Village Center

2000 Fearrington Village Center, Pittsboro, NC. 919-542-2121, 800-316-3829. A breathtaking scene when the gardens are in full bloom. The Belted Galloways (fondly known as belties) graze the meadows while guests enjoy formal tea. Shops, restaurants and more in this country more details

Fields of the Wood

Hwy. 294, Murphy, NC. 828-494-7855. This 200-acre Bible park offers a gift shop, bookstore, gospel theater, picnic areas and a nature trail. An entire mountainside displays the Ten Commandments written in stone. Free. more details

Folk Art Center

Blue Ridge Pkwy., MP 382, Asheville, NC, 828-298-7928. Home of the Southern Highland Craft Guild. Full schedule of fine craft exhibits of regional, national and international scope. Daily craft demonstrations April through December. Home of the Allanstand Craft Shop, which more details

Fort Dobbs State Historic Site

438 Ft. Dobbs Rd., Statesville, NC. 704-873-5866. Site of French and Indian War fort. Archaeological sites, artifact displays, nature trails and recreational facilities. Named for Royal Governor Arthur Dobbs. Free. more details

Gardens of Greensboro

Hobbs Road just north of Friendly Ave., Greensboro, NC. 336-373-2199. Three unique public gardens (Greensboro Arboretum, Bog Garden and Bicentennial Garden) feature the diversity of plants found in the Piedmont Triad region. Free. more details

Gertrude Smith House

708 N. Main St., Mount Airy, NC. 336-786-6856, 800-576-0231. Built by merchant and landowner Jefferson Davis Smith, this Victorian-style home contains period furnishings and is on the National Register of Historic Places. Free. more details

Greensboro Children’s Museum

220 N. Church St., Greensboro, NC. 336-574-2898. Experience an exciting, colorful place brimming with hands-on exhibits and activities with 1- to 10-year-old children in mind. Fly a plane, dig for buried treasure, wrap yourself up in a gigantic bubble and more details

Greensboro Cultural Center at Festival Park

200 N. Davie St., Greensboro, NC. 336-373-2712. Browse through this architectural showplace housing 15 visual and performing arts organizations, five art galleries, rehearsal halls, a sculpture garden, restaurant and an outdoor amphitheater. Free. more details

Greensboro Historical Museum

130 Summit Ave., Greensboro, NC. 336-373-2043. Discover American history through the stories of Piedmont people and events in 12 galleries and two restored houses. Learn about the 1960 Greensboro sit-ins that kindled the Civil Rights movement, the lasting legacy of more details

Grove Arcade Public Market

1 Page Ave., Asheville, NC, 828-252-7799. Originally completed in 1929, the Grove was returned to its former glory in 2002. Come visit locally owned-and-operated shops and restaurants showcasing the foods, crafts and wares of western North Carolina artisans. The Arcade more details

Guilford Courthouse National Military Park

2332 New Garden Rd., Greensboro, NC. 336-288-1776. More than 200 acres and 28 monuments of soldiers, statesmen and patriots of the American Revolution honoring the March 15, 1781, battle. The battle is considered to have changed the course of the more details

Haw River

US Hwys 15-501 & 64, Pittsboro, NC. 800-316-3829. Running through Guilford, Rockingham and Alamance counties before crossing into Chatham County, the Haw offers views of river-bank forests as you paddle its meandering course. more details

Hayti Heritage Center/St. Josephs AME Church

804 Old Fayetteville St., Durham, NC. 919-683-1709. Formerly the sanctuary for St. Joseph’s AME Church (founded in 1869), one of the first autonomous African-American churches in America. A National Historic Landmark. Free. more details

Haywood Hall House and Gardens

211 New Bern Pl., Raleigh, NC. 919-832-8357. Oldest house within Raleigh’s original city limits on its original site; built in 1799 by State Treasurer John Haywood. Learn about his descendants, family portraits, furnishings and about 200 years of Raleigh’s growth. more details

Hickory Ridge Homestead & Living History Museum

591 Horn in the West Dr., Boone, NC, 828-264-2120, 888-825-6765. Living history recreated by docents in traditional costumes, working with traditional tools, engaged in hearth baking, candle-making, weaving, tin-smithing and other activities among original mountain cabins. Live-in program for groups, more details

Historic Bethabara Park

2147 Bethabara Rd., Winston-Salem, NC. 336-924-8191. A National Historic Landmark and the site of the first Moravian settlement in the state, it celebrated its 250th anniversary in 2003. Experience frontier life as you walk through the 1788 church, reconstructed palisade more details

Historic Downtown Hendersonville

443 N. Main St., Hendersonville, NC. 828-697-2022. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Features a serpentine street lined with trees, floral planters, thriving specialty shops, antique stores and restaurants, historic depot and curb market. Home to many activities more details

Historic Downtown Statesville

704-878-3436. Includes the historic downtown area and four outlying residential districts. Many of the commercial and residential structures are on the National Register of Historic Places and date from 1860. Many fine examples of period architecture, including the City Hall more details

Historic Durham Athletic Park

500 W. Corporation St., Durham, NC. 919-687-6555. This historic ballpark served as a major film location for the hit movie “Bull Durham” and was the original home of the Durham Bulls for more than 50 years. more details

Historic Johnson Farm

3346 Haywood Rd., Hendersonville, NC. 828-891-6585. This late-19th-century tobacco farm and early 20th-century tourist retreat is operated year-round as a heritage education center and farm museum. Over 15 acres with nature trails, forests and streams. AC. more details

Historic Main Street – Sylva

Main St., Sylva, NC. 828-586-2155, 800-962-1911. Classic, turn-of-the-century Main Street, which underwent renovation in 1997 as part of the Main Street USA Program. Restaurants and shops line the street. The state’s most-photographed courthouse is on the hill above. Free. more details

Historic Oak View County Park

4028 Carya Dr., Raleigh, NC. 919-250-1013. This antebellum farmstead features an 1855 Greek Revival house, detached plank kitchen, cotton gin museum, an herb garden, picnic facilities, a barn and a new 3,000-sq.-ft. museum called the Farm History Center. On the more details

Historic Oakwood

Oakwood is a nineteenth century neighborhood and historic district located near downtown Raleigh, North Carolina.. 919-733-3456. A Victorian neighborhood listed on the National Register of Historic Places, with restored homes built between 1870 and 1912. This 20-block area may be more details

Historic Shaw House Properties

Morganton Rd. & Broad St., Southern Pines, NC. 910-692-2051. Three historic houses (1770-1820) are furnished with plain-style furniture, depicting life in the early Sandhills. Free; fee for tour groups. more details

Historic Stagville

5828 Old Oxford Rd, Durham, NC. 919-620-0120. State Historic Site features 18th- and 19th-century buildings dedicated to preservation and African-American cultural historic studies. Once among the largest plantation holdings in the South. Free. more details

Historic West End

W. Fourth St., Winston-Salem, NC. This circa-1890 historic neighborhood has curvy streets, terraced lawns, and Queen Anne, Colonial Revival, Craftsman and Victorian-style homes. An architectural walking tour highlights homes, antique shops and eateries. Free. more details

Historical Rosedale Plantation

3427 N. Tryon St., Charlotte, NC. Circa 1815, this is one of the few remaining examples of 19th-century Catawba River Valley plantations. Tours include the manor house, eight acres of grounds and extensive gardens. more details

Holmes Educational State Forest

1299 Crab Creek Road, Hendersonville, NC. 828-692-0100. A managed forest designed to promote better understanding of the value of forests through exhibits, audio stations (talking trees), signs and ranger-conducted classes. Picnic areas and hiking trails available. Free. more details

Horace Williams House

610 E. Rosemary St., Chapel Hill, NC. 919-942-7818. Built in 1840 with additions in 1855 and 1880. Monthly art exhibits, chamber music concert series, house tour, many special events. Free. more details

Horn in the West Outdoor Drama

591 Horn in the West Dr., Boone, NC, 828-264-2120. Set in the southern Appalachian region of NC during the Revolutionary War, the historical outdoor drama follows frontiersman Daniel Boone and his band of mountain settlers as they struggle against the more details

Hyco Lake

NC Hwy. 57 N., Roxboro, NC. 336-599-4343. Constructed in the early 1960s and covers 3,750 acres. Its 160 miles of shoreline provide recreation activities including boating and fishing, camping and picnicking. more details

IMAX Theatre at Marbles

201 E. Hargett St., Raleigh, NC. 919-834-4040. The theater features a seven-story IMAX screen projecting images 10 times the site of traditional movie images. more details

Iredell Museum of Arts and Heritage

1335 Museum Rd., Statesville, NC. 704-873-4734. Located in the 1899 Water Pump Station, the museum’s permanent collection includes glassware, noteworthy portrait miniatures, historical artifacts, vintage clothing, furniture, farm tools, and numerous paintings and sculptures from notable local artists. AC. more details

JC Raulston Arboretum

4301 Beryl Rd., Raleigh, NC. 919-515-3132. A nationally known arboretum dedicated to discovery, evaluation and promotion of well-adapted plants for the home landscape. The 8-acre garden includes a White Garden, Japanese Garden and award-winning 350-foot perennial border. Free. more details

Joel Lane Museum House

728 W. Hargett St., Raleigh, NC. 919-833-3431. Built circa 1760, this landmark is Wake County’s oldest existing building. During the 1700s, it was the site of numerous historic political events. Costumed docents give tours and tell the story of the more details

Jordan Lake Educational State Forest

2832 Big Woods Rd., Chapel Hill, NC. 919-542-1154, 800-316-3829. Listen to the wind in the trees or listen to the trees tell a story on the 3/4-mile Talking Tree Trail. View a variety of wildlife, including birds of prey, deer, more details

Julian Price Memorial Park

Blue Ridge Pkwy., MP 297, Blowing Rock, NC, 828-298-0398. Part of the largest developed area along the Blue Ridge Parkway. The park offers a wide variety of recreational activities including camping (primitive only), hiking, boating (no power or sail boats) more details

Krispy Kreme

259 S. Stratford Rd., Winston-Salem, NC. 336-724-2484. Winston-Salem is the home to this doughnut giant, founded in 1937. Numerous variations of the “original glazed” doughnuts can be purchased. Watch for the flashing “Hot Doughnuts Now” sign and come in to more details

Lake Lure Tours, Marina & Beach

US 64/74A, Lake Lure, NC. 828-625-1373, 877-386-4255. One of the most spectacular lakes in the Blue Ridge Mountains. Offers hourly boat tours, twilight and dinner cruises, boat rentals, and beach and water park. more details

Land of the Waterfalls

Brevard, NC, 800-648-4523. There are many scenic waterfalls in the Brevard area of Transylvania County and the Pisgah National Forest. Major falls include: Connestee, High, Looking Glass, Rainbow Falls, Toxaway and Whitewater. Free. more details

Legends of Harley Drag Racing Museum

1126 S. Saunders St., Raleigh, NC. 919-832-2261. Check out the only Harley-Davidson drag racing museum in the world, located on the second floor of one of the largest Harley dealerships in the United States. The newly expanded showroom is the more details

Levine Museum of the New South

200 E. Seventh St., Charlotte, NC. 704-333-1887. This interactive regional history museum features changing and traveling exhibits that offer a view of Charlotte’s past. People of all ages will find the hands-on history educational and entertaining. more details

Marbles Kids Museum

201 E. Hargett St., Raleigh, NC. 919-834-4040. An interactive museum about the world. Features interactive exhibits and programs for all ages focusing on global trade, telecommunications, changing cultures and the global environment. AC. more details

Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Gardens

900 Rock Quarry Rd., Raleigh, NC. 919-834-6264. A colorful variety of trees, shrubs and flowering plants encircles a life-sized bronze statue of the national civil rights leader. The King Memorial Wall surrounds the statue and includes 2,400 bricks inscribed with more details

Mattye Reed African Heritage Center

1601 E. Market St., Greensboro, NC. 336-334-3209. Located on the North Carolina A&T State University campus, the museum houses one of the best collections of African culture in the country. More than 3,500 art and craft items from more than more details

Mayo Lake

Hwy. 49 N., Roxboro, NC. 336-597-1755. This 2,800-acre lake with a 120-acre park offers camping, walking, canoeing, kayaking, picnicking and fishing. more details

McDowell Nature Center

15222 York Rd., Charlotte, NC. 704-588-5224. Hands-on nature center with a newly installed insect display and interactive games. Nature center also offers eight miles of hiking trails in the 950-acre McDowell Nature Preserve. more details

Mineral and Lapidary Museum of Henderson Company, Inc.

400 N. Main St., Hendersonville, NC. 828-698-1977. Displays include NC minerals, dinosaur egg cluster, Smithsonian minerals, English minerals, fluorescent minerals, geodes, petrified wood and large logs, coral, artfully crafted jewelry, gemstones and Cullinan Diamond replicas. more details

Mint Museum of Art

2730 Randolph Rd., Charlotte, NC. 704-337-2000. North Carolina’s first art museum and one of the leading museums of the Southeast with holdings of art in American paintings, pre-Columbian art, regional crafts, historic costumes, African art, gold coins minted in Charlotte. more details

Mint Museum of Craft & Design

500 S. Tryon St., Charlotte, NC. 704-337-2000. Featuring the technical virtuosity and inspirations of craft artists from all over the world. Exciting collections of ceramics, fiber, glass, metal and wood are showcased in this museum located in Center City Charlotte. more details

Mordecai Historic Park

1 Mimosa St., Raleigh, NC. 919-834-4844. Visit an antebellum plantation house and outbuildings, home to five generations of an influential Raleigh family. Tour of the park also includes the birthplace of President Andrew Johnson. AC. more details

Morehead Planetarium and Science Center

250 E. Franklin St., Chapel Hill, NC. 919-962-1236. Visit the premier NC astronomy education facility where American astronauts formerly trained. Enjoy dazzling 30- to 45-minutes Star Theater presentations, a huge outdoor sundial, rose garden, gift shop, and science and art more details

Moses H. Cone Memorial Park

Blue Ridge Pkwy., MP 294, Blowing Rock, NC, 828-295-7938. This federal park, which is located on the Blue Ridge Parkway, offers 3,600 acres of forests, meadows and wildflowers; a bass lake and trout lake; 26 miles of carriage roads for more details

Mount Airy Museum of Regional History

301 N. Main St., Mount Airy, NC. 336-786-4478. A nonprofit organization dedicated to preserving and interpreting the natural, historic and artistic heritage of the backcountry region of northwestern North Carolina and southwest Virginia. More than 15,000 square feet of exhibit more details

Mount Mitchell State Park

2388 State Highway 128, Burnsville, NC. 828-675-4611. Mount Mitchell is the highest peak (6,684 feet) in the eastern U.S. and offers a cool climate and easy access from the Blue Ridge Parkway. Restaurant, tent camping area, museum and picnic area, more details

Museum of Anthropology

Wake Forest University, 1834 Wake Forest Rd., Winston-Salem, NC. 336-758-5282. Families will enjoy permanent exhibits consisting of cultural objects from the Americas, Africa, Asia and Pacific. This intimate museum is the only one in the Southeast devoted to the study more details

Museum of Early Southern Decorative Art (MESDA)

924 S. Main St., Winston-Salem, NC. 336-721-7300, 888-348-5420. Housed in Old Salem, it is the only museum dedicated to exhibiting and researching the original decorative arts of the early South. Guided tours of the 24 “period” rooms show the visitor more details

Museum of Life and Science

433 W. Murray Ave., Durham, NC. 919-220-5429. A 78-acre, 68,000-sq.-ft. regional, interactive science technology center. Includes aerospace exhibit, wildlife, Ellerbee Creek Railway, Magic Wings Butterfly House and Aventis Crop Science Insectorium. AC. more details

Museum of North Carolina Handicrafts

49 Shelton St., Waynesville, NC. 828-452-1551. Comprehensive exhibit of heritage crafts includes wood carvings, quilts, coverlets, pottery, great collection of Seagrove and Jugtown pottery, china painting, handcrafted jewelry, Cherokee and Navaho artifacts, and some period furniture, all located in historic more details

Museum of Yancey County History

3 Academy Street, Burnsville, NC. 828-678-9587. The museum is housed in the historic John Wesley McElroy House, which was headquarters for the NC Home Guard during the Civil War. Now home of the Rush Wray Museum of Yancey County History. more details

Mystery Hill

129 Mystery Hill Ln., Blowing Rock, NC, 828-264-2792. A self-guided tour of four fun-filled areas: the Mystery House, the Hall of Mystery, Bubble-Rama and the Appalachian Heritage Museum. AC. more details

Nantahala River

Bryson City, NC. Popular whitewater river rushes through the Nantahala National Forest. more details

Natural Science Center of Greensboro

4301 Lawndale Dr., Greensboro, NC. 336-288-3769. Hands-on museum, zoo and planetarium offering fun for the whole family. Roam through the Dinosaur Gallery, learn about gems and minerals, visit snakes in the herpetarium, pet animals in the zoo’s petting area, or more details

Nolichucky River

Pisgah National Forest, NC. 828-682-6146. A free-flowing river through the Pisgah National Forest, it pours through one of the deepest canyons in the East and creates challenging whitewater rafting. more details

North Carolina Arboretum

100 Fredrick Law Olmsted Way, Asheville, NC, 828-665-2492. Miles of nature trails offer leisurely walking as well as challenging hiking; cultivated gardens reflect the unique culture of the Southern Appalachian Mountains; and a state-of-the-art greenhouse complex is fascinating. Free more details

North Carolina Aviation Museum

2222 Pilots View Rd, Asheboro, NC. 336-625-0170. Step back in time to America’s greatest era and tap your foot to the sounds of the big bands in Asheboro at the NC Aviation Museum. You will see many examples of America’s more details

North Carolina Botanical Garden

Old Mason Farm Rd. off Fordham Blvd., Chapel Hill, NC. 919-962-0522. One of the largest natural botanical gardens in the Southeast consists of 600 acres of preserved land and includes nature trails, carnivorous plant collections, aquatics and herb plants. more details

North Carolina Central University Art Museum

1801 Fayetteville St., Durham, NC. 919-560-6211. Collections include paintings, sculptures, prints, African art and artifacts. The museum has temporary exhibitions of African-American art from national, regional and local artists, and also exhibits works from local public school students. Free. more details

North Carolina Collection Gallery

Wilson Library, South Rd., UNC-Chapel Hill. 919-962-1172. Historic rooms and exhibit selections from the NC Collection’s extensive holding of books, maps, photographs and museum objects. Free. more details

North Carolina Homespun Museum

111 Grovewood Rd., Asheville, NC, 828-253-7651. This museum preserves, in photos and artifacts, the history of Biltmore Industries and the people involved. Bolts of woolen homespun cloth, the old-time clock and one of the original looms are on display. more details

North Carolina Museum of Art

2110 Blue Ridge Rd., Raleigh, NC. 919-839-6262. Houses the finest collection of Old Master paintings in the Southeast and offers educational programs, performances and films. Includes gift store and cafe. Free. more details

North Carolina Museum of History

5 E. Edenton St., Raleigh, NC. 919-715-0200. Explore compelling exhibits that capture the spirit of North Carolina and its people. Long-term exhibits highlight the state’s Civil War days, healing systems and the N.C. Sports Hall of Fame. Special programs include more details

North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences

11 W. Jones St., Raleigh, NC. 919-733-7450, 877-462-8724. The Southeast’s largest nagtural history museum offers four floors of exhibits, live animals, a store and Arco Cafe. Highlights include the world’s only Acrocanthosaurus dinosaur; Willo, the first dinosaur discovered with a more details

North Carolina Pottery Center

233 East Ave., Seagrove, NC. 336-873-8430. Exhibits and activities bring to life the history and heritage of North Carolina pottery. The center provides information and displays to assist visiting over 90 potters in the Seagrove area and hundreds of potters more details

North Carolina State Capitol

1 E. Edenton St., Raleigh, NC. 919-733-4994. Built between 1833 and 1840, this National Historic Landmark is one of the best-preserved examples of a civic building in the Greek Revival style of architecture. Free. more details

North Carolina State Legislative Building

16 W. Jones St., Raleigh, NC. 919-733-7928. Home of the North Carolina General Assembly. Free. more details

North Carolina Zoo

4401 Zoo Pkwy., Asheboro, NC. 336-879-7000, 800-488-0444. The nation’s largest walk-through natural-habitat zoo, with more than 1,000 animals and 1,500 plant species. AC. more details

Old Greensboro Historic District

Greensboro, NC. 336-379-0060. Visit this revitalized turn-of-the-century commercial and industrial district of antique shops and sretaurants. Self-guided tour brochures available at the Greensboro Area CVB. Free. more details

Old Salem

601 Old Salem Rd., Winston-Salem, NC. 336-721-7300, 888-348-5420. Founded in 1766 to house professional Moravian craftsmen, Salem, a congregational town and trading center, was a haven for entrepreneurs. Now known as Old Salem, it is one of America’s most authentic more details

Pack Place Education, Arts & Science Center

2 S. Pack Square, Asheville, NC, 828-257-4500. A unique cultural centerpiece in downtown Asheville housing five of western North Carolina’s premier attractions in one complex: The Asheville Art, Colburn Gem & Mineral Museums, and Diana Wortham Theatre, The Health Adventure more details

Paramount’s Carowinds

14523 Carowinds Blvd., Charlotte, NC. 467-280-3548, 800-888-4386. The Carolinas’ premier 100-acre water and theme park has more than 50 attractions for all ages including thrilling rides, like Top Gun; The Jet Coaster; musical revues and shows; Zoom Zone children’s area; more details

Pattersons Mill Country Store

5109 Farrington Rd., Durham, NC. 919-493-8149. An authentic turn-of-the-century country store and doctor’s office/pharmacy. Features collections of mercantile and pharmaceutical Americana and tobacco marketing memorabilia. Free. more details

Person County Museum of History

309 N. Main St., Roxboro, NC. 336-597-2884. Located in turn-of-the-century home of W.W. Kitchin, governor of state (1809-1813). Museum complex includes the Kitchin Home, Woodsdale General Store, Dr. John H. Merrit’s office and a tobacco barn. Free. more details

Pisgah Covered Bridge

6925 Pisgah Covered Bridge Rd., Asheboro, NC. 336-626-0364, 800-626-2672. Historic covered bridge (circa 1910), one of only two in North Carolina. Hiking trails, picnic tables and parking available. Free. more details

Pittsboro Historic District & Antique Walk

Pittsboro, NC 919-542-3603, 800-316-3829. Recently added to the National Register of Historic Places, the district stretches beyond the original four-block center of the town. It includes Chatham Mills, the Patrick St. Lawrence House, the Pittsboro Community House, the county courthouse, more details

Pullen Park

520 Ashe Ave., Raleigh, NC. 919-831-6468. Small amusement park with 1910 Dentzel carousel, train, kiddie boats, indoor pool, pedal boats, concessions, playground, picnic areas and community center. Arts center, Theatre in the Park. Free; fee for programs, rides. more details

Ray’s Splash Planet

215 N. Sycamore St., Charlotte, NC. 704-432-4729. A one-of-a-kind indoor water park featuring a giant slide, lazy river, vortex pool and water playground. For the fitness-minded we have a state-of-the-art fitness center with a cardiovascular theater and aerobics studio. AC. more details

Replacements, Ltd.

1089 Knox Rd., McLeansville, NC. 336-697-3000, 800-737-5223. The world’s largest retailer of old and new china, crystal, flatware and collectibles. More than 8 million pieces of inventory in more than 150,000 patterns. Daily tours of showrooms, museum, warehouse and restoration more details

Ritler Ridge Vineyards

5 Piney Mountain Church Rd., Candler, NC. 828-665-7405. Beautiful vistas highlight this winery in the heart of the Blue Ridge. Free. more details

Riverside Cemetery

53 Birch St., Asheville, NC, 828-258-8480. Dating back to the early 1800s, this is the final resting place for many of Asheville’s most famous sons and daughters including writers Thomas Wolfe and O. Henry. Unusual monuments and mausoleums, massive oaks more details

Rowan Museum Inc

202 N. Main St., Salisbury, NC. 704-633-5946. This 1854 courthouse, which survived Stoneman’s raid, is one of the finest examples of pre-Civil War architecture in the state. Home of the Rowan Museum, reflecting artifacts and displays on the life and more details

Roxboro Uptown Historical Walking Tour

Main St., Roxboro, NC. 336-598-0918. rudc@esinc.net. Tour the historical district in uptown Roxboro, which is listed on the National Register of Historic Sites. See varying styles of architecture and the history museum. Free. more details

Salisbury Historic District

215 Depot St., Salisbury, NC. 704-636-0103. The 30-square-block area consists of downtown Salisbury and the West Square residential district. This National Register of Historic Places district includes the Dr. Josephus Hall House, which was built in 1820 as the Salisbury more details

Sarah P. Duke Gardens

Duke University, West Campus, 420 Anderson St., Durham, NC. 919-684-3698, 800-367-3853. Fifty-five acres of landscaped and woodland gardens feature more than 2,000 kinds of plants, five miles of walks and pathways with bridges, courts, lawns, waterfalls, ponds and pavilions. Includes more details

Scenic Byway-Devil’s Stompin’ Ground Road

State Route 902, Bear Creek, NC. 919-733-2920, 800-316-3829. This byway takes its colorful name from a local legend attached to a clearing, a circular path said to have been worn down by the devil’s pacing as he plotted new forms more details

Seagrove Area Potteries

Seagrove, NC. 800-626-2672. Visit more than 90 potteries in the Seagrove area and view the heritage and craft of Seagrove pottery making. more details

Sliding Rock

US 276, Brevard, NC, 828-877-3265. Located in Pisgah National Forest just north of Brevard, 7.6 miles from the junction of US highways 64 and 276, is Sliding Rock, one place where you’re invited to “take the plunge” down a 60-foot more details

Smith-McDowell House Museum

283 Victoria Rd., Asheville, NC, 828-253-9231. Once the home of mayors, a Confederate major and friends of the Vanderbilts, this restored antebellum mansion is the oldest surviving house in Asheville. The museum features history exhibits, period rooms decorated with furnishings more details

State Farmers Market

1201 Agriculture Dr., Raleigh, NC. 919-733-7417. Visitors enjoy 75 acres of indoor and outdoor specialty shops, restaurants, garden center, fruits and vegetables from across the state. Free. more details

Tannenbaum Historic Park

2200 New Garden Rd., Greensboro, NC. 336-545-5315. This seven-acre park was the 18th-century farmstead of Joseph Hoskins. Hoskins served the Guilford County community as a constable, tax collector and as sheriff. The Colonial Heritage Center offers a variety of exhibits more details

Tarboro Historic District National Recreation Trail

Two-mile trail beginning at the Blount-Bridgers House. Stroll by structures representing Colonial, antebellum and Victorian architectural periods. Significant historic sites are the Pender Museum, the Town Common, the Cotton Press Complex, Calvary Church and churchyard, and the National Main Street more details

Taxidermy Hall of Fame of North Carolina/Antique Tool Museum/Cre

156 N.W. Broad St., Southern Pines, NC. 910-692-3471. On exhibit is every kind of North Carolina wildlife (within the law), state and national taxidermy ribbon winners, and the oldest rock on earth. AC. more details

The Penn House

342 Maple Ave., Reidsville, NC. 336-349-1099. Magnificent 12,500-sq.-ft. Colonial home located on 3.5 acres of beautifully landscaped lawn. Tours on request; call ahead for information. Free. more details

Thomas Wolfe Memorial State Historic Site

52 Market St., Asheville, NC, 828-253-8304. Boyhood home of author Thomas Wolfe. Fictionalized as Dixieland in his first novel, “Look Homeward, Angel.” AC. more details

UNC Charlotte Botanical Gardens & Sculpture Garden

9201 University City Blvd, Charlotte, NC. 704-547-2870. Greenhouses and two outdoor gardens provide year-round interest. Highlights include a diverse orchid collection, native carnivorous plants, huge display of rhododendrons throughout the native garden and a unique winter garden. Free. more details

University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

250 E. Franklin St., Chapel Hill, NC. 919-962-1630. Chartered in 1789, the nation’s first state university covers more than 700 acres. Historic tours available by appointment. Free. more details

Waterworks Visual Arts Center

123 E. Liberty St, Salisbury, NC. 704-636-1882. Founded in 1959 as the Rowan Art Guild and accredited in 1999 by the American Association of Museums, the Waterworks recently moved from its original location. The new gallery offers exhibitions, studio classes, more details

West Point on the Eno City Park

5101 N. Roxboro Rd., Durham, NC. Features a reconstructed 1778 working gristmill, McCown-Magnum House built in the 1880s, Hugh Mangrum Museum of Photography, re-creation of a 19th-century blacksmith shop, hiking trails and amphitheater. Site of Festival more details

Western North Carolina Air Museum

1340 Gilbert St., Hendersonville, NC. 828-698-2482. Home of a unique collection of airplanes and memorabilia celebrating the Golden Age of General Aviation. Located adjacent to the Hendersonville airport, you can chat with the aircrafts’ owners or watch these vintage machines more details

Western North Carolina Farmers Market

570 Brevard Rd., Asheville, NC, 828-253-1691. A 36-acre, state-owned farmers market featuring fresh produce, jams, jellies, plants and handmade crafts. Also contains a restaurant and garden center. more details

Western North Carolina Nature Center

75 Gashes Creek Rd., Asheville, NC, 828-298-5600. A living museum exhibiting and interpreting the plant and animal wildlife of the Southern Appalachian Mountains. AC. more details

Wet ‘N Wild Emerald Pointe Water Park

3910 S. Holden Rd., Greensboro, NC. 336-852-9721, 800-555-5900. The largest water park in the Carolinas offers more than 35 rides and attractions. Enjoy Thunder Bay, one of only four tsunami pools in the country; the Hydra Fighter II, an awesome more details

Weymouth Center

555 E. Connecticut Ave., Southern Pines, NC. 910-692-6261. 1920s Georgian mansion located on 24 acres with extensive gardens, arts and humanities activities. This former home of author James Boyd is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Also home more details

Weymouth Woods Sandhills Nature Preserve

1024 N. Ft. Bragg, Southern Pines, NC. 910-692-2167. Named for Weymouth, England. A 571-acre nature preserve of longleaf pine forest, home of the endangered red-cockaded woodpecker, a permanent resident of the Sandhills. Tour the nature center museum, dedicated to the more details

William B. Umstead State Park

8801 Glenwood Ave., Raleigh, NC. 919-571-4170. Over 5,400 acres of natural area located in Wake County. The park offers hiking trails, bridle and bike trails, picnicking, and camping. Rowboats and canoes are available for rental during the summer. more details