5 Quirky Date Night Destinations in Raleigh

Date night doesn’t have to be the same each time. While we all love cuddling up at the movies or trying new restaurants or embracing a bit of high culture at museums, every once in a while, date night needs to be shaken up. Each city has a hidden world of strange, quirky, and delightful things to do. Try any one of these on your next date night and embrace the weird, whimsical part of life.

Duke Lemur Center

An 85-acre sanctuary for endangered primates that is a step above your traditional visit to the zoo. The Duke Lemur Center is home to one of the largest and most diverse populations of lemurs in the world (outside of Madagascar). Lemurs are some of the most adorable primates in the world, but they are also Earth’s most threatened group of mammals. There are several options for guided or self-guided tours throughout the center.

The Tower Escapes

Escape Rooms have become popular date night activities because it is outside the typical wheelhouse of date night ideas. At The Tower Escapes, you’ll have an option to play the escape game in a real tower. You’ll feel like Rapunzel, trapped in the tower, and will love solving the puzzles and challenges required to escape. Choose from several experiences, including a Medieval adventure, Bootlegger’s Den (where you and your fellow bootleggers must evade the police at the height of prohibition) or become members of a CSI Squad attempting to solve a murder. 

New Hope Valley Railway

Taking a ride in an old-fashioned locomotive is a popular way to spice up date night. On New Hope Valley Railway, you’ll enjoy the chugging of the train engine and the beautiful scenery around you – the North Carolina piney woods. But if a standard train ride doesn’t appeal to you, try the “Operate-a-Loco” tour where you and your date can become the train engineers yourself. Fulfill a childhood dream by driving a real railroad locomotive. 

Go Ape

At night this family-fun adventure becomes a romantic, quirky date setting. The Sundown Sessions at Go Ape Adventures combine the thrill of soaring above the trees on a zipline with the beauty of a moon high above, the peace of a sleeping forest, and the magic of glowing lights at night. There are two tours to choose from, the Treetop Adventure and the Treetop Journey (a shortened, easier version of the Adventure package).

North Carolina Museum of Art Park

Behind the NC Museum of Art is a beautiful 164-acre park that features lush landscaping and artwork by dozens of different, unique artists. The Park offers a special “Art + Nature + People” Scavenger Hunt that helps its visitors make the most of their time. You’ll search for rare bird species, climb a rock sculpture, and regard the local art from entirely new perspectives. 

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