I’ve already written a few posts on ideal photography locations in Virginia and specifically in Roanoke, so now I wanted to create a list of the top photography locations in Raleigh, NC. Raleigh is a place full of history and diverse culture, with an endless supply of places to visit and photograph. Hopefully this list is helpful to you if you are seeking new places to take photos around Raleigh.
As the capital city, Raleigh contains a lot of history and historical sites. The most iconic historical site is the capitol building which adopts a Greek Revival style of architecture, making it a great location for architecture photography. It isn’t the only historical building however. The Mordecai House, North Carolina Executive Mansion, Haywood Hall House, Borden Building, Joel Lane House, and Yates Mill are a few of the more popular buildings among the many historical sites in Raleigh. Other popular sites in Raleigh include the Raleigh City Museum, Museum of Natural Sciences, Museum of Art, City Cemetery, and City Market. These are only a handful of the many sites offered in Raleigh, so get out, grab a camera, and explore some of the most robust collections of historical sites in North Carolina.
Outdoors and Recreation
If you enjoy the outdoors, Raleigh has some wonderful places for you to explore and enjoy the scenic views. If you are walking around downtown Raleigh, there are a couple small parks and arboretums to visit and take pictures. Other popular parks around Raleigh include Lake Johnson Nature Park, Lassiter Mill Historical Park, William B. Umstead Park, and Fred Fletcher Park. These parks boast of beautiful scenery and hiking/walking trails. Lake Johnson Nature Park and William B. Umstead Park feature water views of a lake and Lassiter Mill even has a few small waterfalls. All of these outdoor locations are beautiful places to visit and capture photos.
Pullen Park is a public park with beautiful scenery close to NC State campus. Pullen Park also features a Carousel with hand carved animals, a small train that circles the park, and pedal boats to ride around Lake Howell. Known as the 5th oldest operating amusement park in America, Pullen Park is a place full of history and lovely scenic views.
Exploring Downtown Raleigh
Because Raleigh is so eclectic and diverse, exploring downtown is always interesting and entertaining. At the heart of the Triangle, downtown Raleigh is quickly growing and expanding, creating a unique place to visit. I love walking around downtown snapping candid pictures of the city life, from the nightlife crowds to the eclectic coffee shops. There is always something going on downtown and it is a great place for candid, urban, and lifestyle photography.
Downtown Raleigh features a wide range of visual and performing arts, concerts for well known and emerging bands, a farmer’s market, and various coffee shops, breweries, and restaurants. There are also endless events happening daily Downtown, so be sure to check out any events you are interested in! A popular event in Downtown is First Friday. First Friday is a chance for you to visit all the cultural “hot spots”, such as art galleries, studios, and museums. These venues stay open later on the first Friday of every month giving you a chance to explore downtown and enjoy art, food, and music. The large variety of local entertainment gives you endless possibilities for photography.
I hope this post gives you a good sense of where to go and what to photograph when taking pictures around Raleigh. If you’re looking for photography locations in Roanoke, VA, check out my previous blog posts. Enjoy exploring Raleigh!