Nothing could be finer than springtime in the Triangle Area!  Blue skies, colorful flowers, budding trees and gentle breezes make spending time outdoors a pleasure. Our part of North Carolina boasts a large number of opportunities to enjoy the natural beauty of this season. Here are a few highlights...

The NC Botanical Gardens located in Chapel Hill has free admission and offers a large variety of native plants, including the venus fly trap. Families can enjoy the education center, giant outdoor chess set, and the original cabin of playwright, Paul Green.

The Botanical Gardens also maintains Coker Arboretum, which is located on campus at UNC-Chapel Hill. This shaded garden with meandering pathways is located near Morehead Planetarium and Franklin Street. It’s a great place for a picnic lunch or a quick game of frisbee while visiting the university.

The Sarah P. Duke Gardens, adjacent to Duke University, is a beautiful place for picnics, special occasion portraits, and wildlife sightings. Terraced flower gardens, arched bridges and open spaces provide for hours of exploration and recreation. The Duke Gardens offers a terrace shop & cafe on site. Find out more about special programs and nature camps here.
 

Photo courtesy of NCMA.
 

The NC Museum of Art features a park that “connects art, nature and people.” With miles of recreational trails, visitors can picnic, jog, bike or stroll while enjoying the beauty of nature and art. From March 22-25 this year, the Art in Bloom festival will feature exhibits, presentations, workshops, a walking tour, and a special gift shop & trunk show. It’s the perfect place to spend an afternoon with your favorite garden enthusiast.

 

The annual Orange County Garden Expo and Plant Sale in Hillsborough is May 4-5 this year. The show includes both public and private gardens, and features a plant sale. The Hillsborough Gardening Club’s website provides lots of helpful information about area events, native plants & pollinators, and vegetable gardening.

 

Looking for an escape from urban life? Look no farther than Duke Forest. This serene escape is over 7,000 acres and spans across Durham, Orange & Alamance counties. The forest is used for education, research and recreation. The Pine Cone Pacer is a 5K Run/Walk event that is being held April 14th. Learn more about  recreational opportunities, such as fishing, picnics, horseback riding, by checking out their website.

 

Roses rule at the Gene Strowd Rose Garden. Located in the heart of Chapel Hill this garden is adjacent to the Chapel Hill Community Center & Park. The labyrinth-style brick pathway winds around 130 different varieties of roses grown in over 350 bushes.  The colors and fragrances will make you “stop and smell the roses”. This small garden is a perfect outing when you are short on time.

 
Plan an outing to one (or more) of these beautiful sites and enjoy what nature - and our local area- has to offer! And if you find another favorite place that we should feature, let us know.