Destination guide

Soak up North Carolina history in Durham

Ask some people, and they’ll say Durham is an exciting college town with the kind of nightlife that’ll get anyone bopping. Ask others, and they’ll describe it as a major historic area whose centuries-old heritage can be felt on street corners, and in preserved homesteads. The truth is, Durham is all of this and more. Home to Duke University and North Carolina Central University, it has artistic attractions alongside buzzing brewpubs and tantalizing restaurants, and you can soak it all up like a local resident with Durham vacation rentals, which include historic homes with relaxing porches and hot tubs in their backyards.

Things to do

Attractions for the whole family in Durham

Head over to the Durham Performing Arts Center, a state-of-the-art performance venue where you can enjoy Broadway musicals, acerbic stand-up comedy, and gigs from major names in rock and pop. Or, you can survey the exhibits at the Nasher Museum of Art, which boasts Mayan and Peruvian treasures, and particularly focuses on artworks by those who have been marginalized by history. Kids, meanwhile, will particularly adore the Museum of Life + Science. It lets visitors play with interactive science exhibits, walk amid colorful, fluttering butterflies, meet alligators and black bears, and walk amid life-sized dinosaur statues.


Living history in Durham

Take a trip to Bennett Place State Historic Site to pay homage to the site of the largest troop surrender during the Civil War. You can see reconstructed buildings, museum exhibits, and living history demonstrations of the events of April 1865. Just as poignant is Stagville, which was one of the largest slave plantations in the South. Guided tours will take you to the plantation owners’ houses, as well as the cabins where the enslaved community slept. Another historic area close to Durham vacation rentals is the American Tobacco Campus. A monument to Durham’s tobacco-making heritage, its industrial buildings have been transformed into a hip campus studded with restaurants and live music venues.


Seasonal escapes to Durham

The city itself has enough going on to keep you busy whatever the weather, but if you’re susceptible to the heat, then steer clear of summer and aim to visit in either spring or fall. It’ll be warm and fine, providing all the impetus you need to head out to explore the historic streets and outdoor attractions around Durham.

Natural features

Getting close to nature in Durham

Durham may be a historic urban center with the converted industrial spaces to prove it, but all of this is sandwiched between 2 swathes of nature at its most untamed. To the west is Duke Forest, a vast area owned by Duke University, where you can hike into the deep forests and feel like you’re a million miles away from city life. To the east of Durham, you’ll find Falls Lake State Recreation Area, where you can recline on sandy beaches or go looking for vibrant wildflowers, towering oaks, and charming locals like white-tailed deer and wily red foxes, as well as bluebirds and goldfinches.

How to get there

Transportation options to and around Durham

Fly into Raleigh, NC (RDU-Raleigh - Durham Intl.), the closest airport, located 10.5 mi (16.8 km) from the city center.

If you'd rather travel by train, the main station serving the city is Durham Station.

Can I find a vacation rental around Durham?

Yes, our 2020 property listings offer a large selection of 241 vacation rentals near Durham. From 133 Houses to 51 Condos/Apartments, find a unique house rental for you to enjoy a memorable stay with your family and friends. The best places to stay near Durham for a holiday or a weekend are on HomeAway.

What is the best area to stay when traveling to Durham?

Whether you're traveling with family or friends, here are the areas with the largest selection of vacation rentals for a holiday trip or just for a weekend in Durham:

  • Downtown: 33 vacation rentals
  • East Durham: 22 vacation rentals
  • Duke Park: 18 vacation rentals
  • Albright: 20 vacation rentals
  • Downtown: 27 vacation rentals

For other neighborhoods, please use our search bar to access the selection of vacation rentals available.

What are the popular points of interest near where I can stay when traveling to Durham?

HomeAway offers a large selection of vacation rentals near lovely places in Durham. From HomeAway travelers, the most popular points of interest to stay for a holiday trip or just for a weekend are:

  • Duke University: 213 vacation rentals
  • Eno River State Park: 172 vacation rentals
  • Durham Performing Arts Center: 248 vacation rentals
  • North Carolina Museum of Life and Science: 214 vacation rentals
  • Streets at Southpoint Mall: 281 vacation rentals

But there are many other points of interest around Durham listed on HomeAway where you can find your place to stay. Please use our search bar to access the selection of vacation rentals available near the point of interest of your choice.

Can I rent Houses in Durham?

Yes, of course. HomeAway has 133 Houses in Durham. Our other popular types of vacation rentals in Durham include:

  • Condos/Apartments: 51 rentals available
  • Cabins: 11 rentals available
  • Cottages: 11 rentals available

But you can also enjoy a great stay in one of our other vacation rentals including Farmhouses and more.

Can I find a vacation rental with pool in Durham?

Yes, you can select your preferred vacation rental with pool among our 50 vacation rentals with pool available in Durham. Please use our search bar to access the selection of vacation rentals available.