Exploring Durham: Neighborhoods and more

Home | Exploring Durham: Neighborhoods and more

By Carl JohnsonCarl Johnson Real Estate

Featured Photo by Sean Pavone/Shutterstock.com

This issue, we explore the northern tip of our Triangle, featuring the highlights that make up Durham, North Carolina. As the middleman between smaller Chapel Hill and larger Raleigh, Durham offers a unique position in the Triangle with its small town southern charm, major university lifestyle, and a biotech industry headquarters! Follow along as we discuss neighborhoods, parks, and attractions that make up the hot spot that is Durham.

Durham is known for its diversity and innovation. Durham’s history has been made up of entrepreneurs from the tobacco industry to the historic Black Wall Street. Durham is home to one of the first sit-ins of the Civil Rights Movement and currently hosts many black-owned businesses. This city is known as an education hub with its world-class academic programs at Duke University and North Carolina Central University. Duke University Medical Center is recognized throughout the country for being a life-saving treatment center and has helped Durham become known as “The City of Medicine”.


Spacious lot sizes to city living, historic charm to new construction, even high end neighborhoods with golf courses all come together to make up the neighborhoods of Durham. You can find the perfect home for any lifestyle in Durham, all while being minutes to the city, Research Triangle Park (RTP), and the Raleigh-Durham Airport.

If you are looking for new construction and low maintenance living, Providence at Southpoint is perfect! These townhomes built by David Weekley offer top notch design and service with their construction that is in a perfect location minutes to RTP, both Duke University and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC), Downtown Durham, and the airport. Providence at Southpoint features greenspaces in a walkable community, covered porches, private backyards, and square footage can be over 2,000 sq. ft. while still maintaining the easy townhome lifestyle. Located right off of I-40, Providence at Southpoint is an ideal location for popular areas such as Jordan Lake and the shopping and restaurant area of the Streets at Southpoint.

Providence at Southpoint; Photo Courtesy of David Weekley Homes

If you are looking for a popular Durham neighborhood that has a ton of great amenities look no further than Treyburn! This neighborhood located in the northern part of Durham has a preserved 1,600 acres of wooded area surrounding it, a local elementary and middle school within the community, the Treyburn Country Club with its Tom Fazio Golf Course, great swimming facilities and tennis courts.

Another unique Durham neighborhood that is just north of the downtown area is Croasdaile Farms. This is a planned residential community with strict architectural guidelines and community standards for its homes that are built giving it a luxury feel throughout. The neighborhood offers detached single family homes as well as luxury townhomes and apartments.  Lots are available today for new construction homes. The area has three ponds, over 4-miles of walking trails, and tons of historic charm from its past as a large working farm.

If you are looking for a large community that is located in south Durham, look no further than Parkwood! This community is noted as being the first ever neighborhood in the U.S. to have an HOA. Parkwood now houses over 3,000 homesites with great low HOA dues all while having two community pools, a clubhouse, and hosts multiple events for its residents all year long. You can find three ponds, walking trails, a community garden, ball fields, multiple playgrounds and even a lake! All of this is minutes to RTP and the features of downtown Durham.

If historic charm and city life are more your style, the area of Trinity Park is a great housing option to consider. This 40-block tree lined street area is known as one of Durham’s oldest central neighborhoods and is on the National Register of Historic Districts list. You can find beautiful brick homes with welcoming porches and courtyard style lawns. This area hosts a Trinity Park Home Tour to show off some of the unique homes that are right in Downtown Durham!

The Great Outdoors

The beautiful wooded hills, many calm lakes, and abundant wildlife are all major attractions for people from all over to the state of North Carolina. Durham is bursting with plenty of natural spaces and is a main reason that this area continues to be so popular. Here you can find all the best of the North Carolina great outdoors mixed with a location close to the city. A great local spot is the Eno River State Park only ten miles north from Downtown Durham offering hiking, fishing, and paddle boarding all within minutes of the city! As a state park you can reserve one of the many picnic pavilions Eno River offers and enjoy the park for the full day.

A unique outdoor highlight in Durham is Duke Forest. This 7,000 plus acres of land is owned and maintained by Duke University. Duke Forest has been used for research, teaching, and recreation by the university since the 1930s. They offer many volunteer opportunities to help educate on land preservation as well as positive uses of natural resources. Don’t forget your camera when you visit as there are a plethora of beautiful trees and flowers to enjoy!

Photo by CeGe/Shutterstock.com

Just fifteen miles east of downtown Durham is Falls Lake. This lake offers over 300 campsites, 25 miles of hiking trails, and 14 miles of what is one of the most premiere biking trail systems in the Triangle. Falls Lake truly has it all when it comes to a perfect lake getaway! Boating, fishing, and swimming are all permitted on this over 12,000 acre reservoir.

While in the heart of the city, Durham Central Park is a great place to check out. From hosting the local farmer’s market to live music and events throughout the year, Durham Central Park promotes getting out and staying active while within city limits. The park covers 5 acres and offers a large 9,000 sq. ft. pavilion which is a great place to host weddings, corporate events, concerts and outdoor gatherings. A popular attraction in the park is the kid friendly Mount Merrill interactive play area which has everything from a boulder climb to slides. Visit the Durham Central Park’s website, www.durhamcentralpark.org to see what events and activities they will be hosting next!

Things to Do

Durham features many great attractions that are fun, educational, and one of a kind. A great local place to visit in north Durham is the Museum of Life and Science. This 84 acres of open space is designed to promote science and nature experiences and spark the imagination. The science center offers multiple camps, exhibits, events for both kids and adults, hands-on activities and even a small zoo all while promoting the community. It is an experience you don’t want to miss, fit for any age group, all while being five miles from downtown Durham. 

The American Tobacco Campus is a local attraction that evolved along with Durham as they both moved from this major industry to reinvent themselves as a modern hot spot. Part of that evolution was the repurpose of past factories into popular destinations with restaurants, shopping, residential housing, and offices.

The American Tobacco Campus hosts the Durham Bulls Athletic Park (DBAP) where you can catch the Triple-A baseball team playing and the beautiful Durham Performing Arts Center where you can see professional Broadway performances in a theater that is nationally ranked. These two major attractions set the campus apart from other similar attractions. If you are looking for a unique place to host a private or corporate event, try Bay 7 on the American Tobacco campus. This award winning 10,000 sq. ft. flex space is perfect for any large gathering. If you are looking for the next best thing in food, stop by PopUp on campus where they host rotating start-up restaurants that are cutting edge. The American Tobacco Campus truly has it all and is a must visit for everyone in the city of Durham!

The American Tobacco Trail is a 22.6 mile trail that runs through Durham, beginning across from the DBAP. For those who love to bicycle, hike, run or walk, the trail offers a beautiful place for all to enjoy.

Research Triangle Park (RTP) is the largest research park facility in the United States and a major draw to brilliant minds from all over the world. This commercial district and its businesses support over 60,000 employees. RTP has over 300 companies that call its campus home including industry leading biotech, robotic, and other life science companies that work out of its state-of-the-art facilities. The park itself has all business needs covered from offices, labs, apartments and housing, restaurants, shopping, and even fitness and wellness centers. The park hosts events from yoga to formal education presentations throughout the year that employees and the public can take part in. RTP is only 15 minutes from downtown Durham.

A great local Durham gem is the Durham Co-Op Market which is a community-owned grocery market, shop, and cafe! While downtown, visit the market for lunch where you can find products from local honey and granola to deli meats and breads.

Durham: More Than a Hot Spot…. A Lifestyle

From a weekend spent on Falls Lake to a quick and easy commute from historic Trinity Park homes to the offices in RTP, Durham offers it all. Durham is unique and special, as it is a place you can call home while still being only a short drive to vacation like amenities. The city of Durham offers a strong sense of community and inclusion throughout, promoting its local small businesses, live events from music to farmer’s markets, and an overall healthy outdoor lifestyle of walkability within its communities. The homes of Durham offer something for everyone! If you want new construction, historic details, low maintenance and more you can find your fit in Durham!    

Carl Johnson

Carl Johnson, Realtor, Broker

I’ve lived in the Triangle area since 1986, and it has always been home in my heart. I attended the University of North Carolina School of the Arts for high school and college, where I studied voice. After graduating, I decided to enter the business world, where I worked in several marketing, publishing and advertising endeavors, one which took me across the United States prior to my real estate career. After years of local real estate experience, I am now the proud Founder of Carl Johnson Real Estate and lead my company of experienced agents, along with our in-house operations and marketing teams. We are a referral driven company putting our clients first while going above and beyond expectations with a focus on detail and client needs. Learn more about Carl Johnson and Carl Johnson Real Estate by visiting www.CarlJohnsonRealEstate.com.