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Layover Ideas Raleigh-Durham Airport RDU

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Top 5 Layover Ideas for Raleigh-Durham Airport

Long layovers can be a drag, but not at the Raleigh-Durham Airport. This bustling hub, known by its IATA code RDU, offers a variety of engaging activities within a short distance. Here are the top five layover ideas that can be explored within 12 hours.

1. Ava Gardner Museum

Located at 325 E. Market St, Smithfield, the Ava Gardner Museum is a treasure trove for movie buffs. This museum showcases a large collection of memorabilia related to Ava Gardner, Smithfield’s most famous daughter. With childhood photographs, movie posters, and some of Ava's film wardrobe on display, this museum is an interesting excursion for anyone interested in classic cinema.

2. Duke University Nasher Museum of Art

The Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University in Durham is a must-visit for art enthusiasts. The museum offers nine different permanent collections, including art from the Medieval, Renaissance and pre-Columbian eras, and contemporary works from 1945 to the present. It also features wonderful collections of Latin American, Russian, and African art.

3. Exploris

At Exploris, located at 201 E Hargett St, Raleigh, you don’t need a passport to tour the world. This Global Experience Center allows visitors to learn about different regions and cultures around the world through interactive exhibits. It’s a great place for both children and adults to learn about the relationships between humans and the natural world.

4. North Carolina Museum of Art

The North Carolina Museum of Art, located at 2110 Blue Ridge Rd, Raleigh, is the state's premiere art museum. With over 181,000 square feet of exhibit space, the museum houses works from artists such as Claude Monet, Sandro Botticelli, and Peter Paul Rubens. It also features collections of Oceanic, African, and Jewish ceremonial art. The museum’s 100-acre park, complete with a walking trail, sculpture installations, and an amphitheater, is a delight to explore.

5. North Carolina Museum of History

The North Carolina Museum of History, located at 5 E Edenton, Raleigh, tells the story of North Carolina's history from Colonial times to the present day. With informative displays, artifacts, photographs, flags, and more, this museum offers a rich educational experience for both children and adults.

Helpful Tips & Resources

Need help navigating your way through an unfamiliar airport? Look no further than iFly.com for expert tips and advice. Here are some helpful tips to help you travel stress-free through RDU Airport:

  • Don't let heavy bags slow you down! Make use of our airport's complimentary baggage carts, available for all travelers in the baggage claim area.
  • If you have some time before your departure, relax, grab a bite at one of RDU's restaurants, peruse the shops, or jump on the free internet and surf galore!
  • If you are flying in business or first class (or are a member), check out where the airline club lounges are located.
  • Once you have passed through security, you can use the airport map to find your gate, as well as the various restaurants and shops that are available on your route.
  • Surf to your heart's content. Jump on Raleigh-Durham airport's internet (free!)
  • For those (dreaded) early-morning flights, consider one of the airport hotels on or near RDU to spend the night prior to your flight. In many cases your parking for the trip's duration is free!
  • Have a flight arriving and want a fast way to get to your destination? Here are a few taxi and limo airport service providers that service the airport.

Nearby Attractions for an Extended Layover

If you find yourself with a layover of 12 to 48 hours at Raleigh-Durham Airport, there are several attractions within a reasonable distance from the airport that are worth exploring. Here are some excellent options for an extended layover.

1. Sarah P. Duke Gardens

Located at Duke University in Durham, the Sarah P. Duke Gardens is a stunning 55-acre public garden. The gardens are divided into four sections, each with its own theme. From the vibrant blooms in the Historic Gardens, the native plants of the Blomquist Garden of Native Plants, to the tranquility of the Japanese-style Garden of Peace, the gardens offer a relaxing escape from the hustle and bustle of the airport.

2. Pullen Park

Located at 520 Ashe Avenue, Raleigh, Pullen Park is the fifth oldest amusement park in the U.S. and the 16th oldest in the world. With its historic carousel, train rides, pedal boats, and picnic areas, the park offers a fun-filled day for families. The park also features an arts center, an aquatic center, and tennis courts.

3. North Carolina State Capitol

The North Carolina State Capitol, located at 1 E Edenton Street, Raleigh, is a historic landmark and working government building. Visitors can tour the building, view exhibits about the history of the state, and even observe the state legislature when it is in session. The Capitol is surrounded by a beautiful square with monuments and memorials.

4. Eno River State Park

Eno River State Park, located in Durham and Orange counties, is a great destination for outdoor enthusiasts. The park offers over 30 miles of trails for hiking and mountain biking, as well as opportunities for fishing, canoeing, and camping. The park is also home to several historic mill and home sites.

5. Marbles Kids Museum

Located at 201 E Hargett St, Raleigh, Marbles Kids Museum is a hands-on, interactive museum that inspires children to be creative thinkers, active learners, and confident individuals. The museum features exhibits on a variety of topics, including art, science, health, and the environment. It also houses a giant-screen IMAX theater.

Updated on: November 22, 2023