Thursday, January 29, 2009

Raleigh, North Carolina - Winter Escapism Trip

The weather forecast on the local tv station shows our 4 days rainy stay

This winter break, we headed south to escape from the chilling weather in Philadelphia. We decided to have a road trip to North Carolina, one of North America's south states. It takes roughly about 9 hours [if you drive non stop] to drive from Philadelphia to Raleigh, the capital city of North Carolina.

One of the most critical factor you must consider when you wanna have a trip to the nothern hemisphere countries is to check the weather forecast when you plan for a trip. Unfortunately, we did not do that! Eventhough it was warmer in Raleigh [10 to 15C] compared to Philly [-6 to 2C], it rained non-stop for the entire 4 days of our stay there. Darn it! Well, since we already confirmed the hotel booking online, we had no other choice but to enjoy our stay in the pouring rain.

Raleigh downtown. A cool & slow pace city.

Raleigh is an old and small city. Most of the bulidings are old with a southern architecture. Really cool town. Relatively, all shops will be closed at 7pm. We arrived there at 8pm and were surprised to see that all the shops were closed except fast food eateries, convenient stores and pubs.

Old buildings in downtown Raleigh

Raleigh State Capitol building in the heart of the old city

The people here converse with their heavy southern accent, and this is kinda new for us. We need to listen carefully everytime we had a conversation with the locals The radio stations play western and country songs which we have never heard before. Cool*

N.C Museum of History: Hey! Vicks was invented here!

After roaming around the city, we stopped by at the local cafe. This is Mecca Cafe, established since 1930. Classic interior design. Common American diner.

We went to JC Raulston Arboretum Botanical Garden of North Carolina University, North Carolina Museum of History and Cary Town, 20 minutes away from Raleigh downtown. One thing about Raleigh is that it is surrounded by lakes around the Greater Raleigh area. We managed to go to 2 of those lakes, namely the Crabtree Lake and Bunn Lake . Bunn Lake is actually a private lake and we did not know that. We ended up being chased by 3 guardian dogs when we made a stop to take pictures. We survived anyway. Phew*

Crabtree Lake - Public lake & park

Crabtree Lake view in the rain. We are sure the view will be nicer on a bright sunny day.

The dogs stared at us, making sure we are away from their master's property after they chased us away. Bad dog! Bad dog!

On the last day at Raleigh, we went to the old town and the Legend of Harley Davidson Drag Museum. We are a slow driver. And one thing that we realised about this trip of ours was that we were never being honked at by any driver when we drove around the town. This shows how slow the pace is, compared with Philly where we always get honked at. Definitely irritating.

The Harley Davidson Drag Museum

One of the drag bike at the museum

Eventhough it rained heavily during our stay there, we managed to enjoy ourselves and we learned a couple of good lessons. They are:-

Lesson #1: For each trip, check the weather forecast before you do the online hotel booking
Lesson #2 : DON'T stop anywhere you like before you are pretty sure that the place is a public spot and there is no guardian dog hovering around.


  1. Kacak adajak sceneries kat Philly. Apa ria tek kamek da nangga rah tibi. Kamek suka nangga dak bengunan lamak, mom & pop's diners, taman-tamannya juak...bes!

  2. Philly kacak aih. bnyk public park, old buildings and free museums. infact rmh kmk urg dlm fairmount park, the biggest public park in U.S. kacak especially masa spring & fall. We will post entries pasal Philly next time.


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