Top 20 Places to Take Kids in and around the Triangle
2020's Best Places for Kids in the Triangle!
2020's best places to take kids in the Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill area, based on KidsOutAndAbout's annual reader survey. But there is LOTS more to do around the Triangle...Get great ideas here at KidsOutAndAbout.com! What is listed below are just the starting point: Browse through our site and packed daily calendar, sign up for our free weekly e-newsletter, and be sure to visit our Everything That's Free page.
North Carolina Zoo
The North Carolina Zoo is your wildlife destination in 2020! Nestled in the heart of North Carolina, on, we provide 1,800 animals room to roam on 2,600 acres. All kinds of animals call the Zoo home!. Marvel at a herd of African elephants in their expansive habitat complete with a natural wading pool. Spend the day exploring the Zoo along shaded walking trails while feeding giraffes, watching playful seals and sea lions and creating new friends at our expansive Kidzone play area. Your visit also supports the Zoo’s animal conservation efforts in North Carolina and around the world. The Zoo is closer than you think!
Museum of Life and Science
Located less than five miles from downtown Durham, the Museum of Life and Science is one of North Carolina’s top family destinations. Situated on 84-acres, our interactive science park includes a two-story science center, one of the largest butterfly conservatories on the East Coast and beautifully landscaped outdoor exhibits which are safe havens for rescued black bears, lemurs, and endangered red wolves. Other popular attractions include over 60 species of live animals, Dinosaur Trail, Ellerbe Creek Railway, and Into the Mist.
Marbles Kids Museum
At Marbles Kids Museum, kids are encouraged to use their marbles - learning new things through imagination, discovery and play.
Frankie's Fun Park
Attractions include Go-Karts, Miniature Golf, Bumper Boats, Batting Cages, Arcade, and MORE! Enjoy great food too, like Johnny Rockets at the Greenville Park, and Frankie's Restaurant at the Raleigh Park.
North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences
The NC Museum of Natural Sciences is the largest institution of its kind in the South East and one of the nation’s most amazing museums about the natural world. This Museum asks four basic questions about the natural sciences—what do we know?, how do we know?, what’s happening now?, how can you participate?—with an integrated suite of onsite, offsite, online and outdoor experiences.
This public park has it all! Experience paddle boat rentals, kiddie amusement park rides, outdoor theater, swimming, and a fantastic playground.
Featuring Miniature Golf, Go-Karts, Laser Tag, Batting Cages and Mega Arcade! We specialize in birthday parties and group outings!
My Local Library
Of course, the libraries in the Research Triangle area are not really ONE place, but MANY places... but it's important to emphasize how valuable libraries are for family learning and fun. The libraries in our area are wonderful about posting their events to the KidsOutAndAbout calendar so you always can get ideas for free things to do with your kids that celebrate education and imagination. KidsOutAndAbout.com takes this opportunity to salute the wonderful children's librarians who serve our community with such dedication. They're proud that locals voted them #3 in best places to take kids this year!
DefyGravity Durham Trampoline Park
DefyGravity is a cutting-edge Trampoline Sports Arena that is part entertainment venue and part sports gym. It is a 13,000 sq. ft. facility with wall-to-wall steel-frame trampolines including the world-famous Angled Wall Trampolines, an expansive Olympic Foam Pit and one of the largest Trampoline Dodgeball cages in America.
North Carolina Central University Art Museum
The NCCU Art Museum is a vital teaching resource and cultural institution on the campus of North Carolina Central University. It houses one of North Carolina’s leading collections of works by African-American artists and by others dealing with the black experience.
Sky Zone Trampoline Park
Jump into Sky Zone - the world's first all-walled trampoline playing court! Sky Zone features an array of fun, fit and low-impact activities ranging from Freestyle Jump, Ultimate Dodgeball and SkyFit fitness classes to birthday parties!
Wheels Fun Park - CLOSED
Wheels Fun Park has been a family owned and operated facility in Durham, NC since 1980. Join the fun with 8 attractions in the park including roller skating, play gym, go karts, batting cages, mini golf, and maze. There are also 2 snack bars, 2 video game areas and a full menu grill. We specialize in events such as birthday parties, private parties, company outings, team parties and family reunions.
YMCA of the Triangle
Since 1857, YMCA of the Triangle has provided facilities, programs and services that positively influence the quality of life throughout our community. Today, the YMCA of the Triangle is one of the largest YMCAs in the country. The YMCA of the Triangle offers resident camping, after school care, sports, fitness, mentoring and outdoor programs for children, teens, adults and families.
City of Raleigh Museum
As part of its mission to “Preserve Raleigh’s Past for the Future,” the museum collects and cares for artifacts, curates exhibits, and provides educational programming that all highlight and interpret Raleigh’s history and heritage.
Imagination Station Science Museum
Imagination Station Science & History Museum exists to stimulate an interest in science, technology, and history while improving the quality of informal science education through dynamic hands-on science learning.
Morehead Planetarium and Science Center
The Morehead Building houses the GSK Fulldome Theater, as well as the Science Stage, exhibits, and Morehead classrooms. The UNC Visitors Center, Morehead-Cain Foundation and UNC Morehead Observatory are also in the Morehead Building.Morehead's programs include classes for adults and children, special courses for teachers, summer camps for children, afterschool programs, memberships, public viewings of astronomical events and public lectures.
North Carolina Museum of Art
The North Carolina Museum of Art serves the people of North Carolina and all visitors as a premier destination for compelling encounters with art.
North Carolina Symphony Orchestra
The North Carolina Symphony is a vital and honored component of North Carolina's cultural life. Its 175 performances annually are greeted with enthusiasm throughout the state, in communities large and small, in concert halls, auditoriums, gymnasiums and outdoor settings. Under the artistic leadership of Music Director Grant Llewellyn.
Ken's Korny Corn Maze
Ken's Korny Corn Maze is North Carolina's first and longest operating corn maze. It offers family fun that can be found nowhere else. Come see what the talk is about!
North Carolina Botanical Garden
The North Carolina Botanical Garden (NCBG), part of the University of North Carolina, is a 1,000-acre assemblage of display gardens and natural areas in and around Chapel Hill, North Carolina. The Garden celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2016 and is nationally known as a center for the study, display, interpretation, and conservation of southeastern native plants. Through its educational, recreational, therapeutic horticulture, and research programs, it extends opportunities for connection with nature to people of all abilities and backgrounds.
Winners in Special CategoriesIn the second part of our survey, we asked readers to select their favorites in six categories. Here were their choices.
Favorite Place for Arts EducationMusic Beyond Measure Studios
Music Beyond Measure Studios is a unique, family-owned music school highly dedicated to planning educational strategies for the future of committed musicians and artists alike. Whether you desire to pursue a musical career, record your next project, build your repertoire, prepare for an audition, or you just want to take music lessons for the sake of enjoyment, our services are very beneficial and rewarding. We offer a plethora of services: Music Lessons (to children and adults, ages 4 and up), Summer Camps, Birthday Parties, Recording Sessions, Arranging, Mixing & Mastering, Songwriting, Performance Opportunities, and Artist Development. Call our Music Hotline to book your FREE Trial Lesson today, no obligation: (919) 294-8413.
Favorite Place for Sports/Physical EducationSoccer Shots RDU
Soccer Shots is an engaging children’s soccer program with a focus on character development. Our caring team positively impacts children’s lives on and off the field through best-in- class coaching, curriculum and communication.