People who think of Raleigh as a family destination must be unaware of the incredible Raleigh nightlife. It has a thriving live music scene, delicious international cuisine, events, and fantastic bars and clubs. You can have a fun-filled evening on your next North Carolina road trip if you choose to visit Raleigh.
Further, Raleigh nightlife is not just for adults. There are a lot of family and kid-friendly places, including comedy shows, restaurants, arcades, and much more. So check out our sampling of nightlife options, and have a blast!
Raleigh Nightlife Mesmerism: Unique Attractions
There is no shortage of great nightlife options in Raleigh. If you are limited on time, then the best picks would be live music, international cuisine, and a pub-crawl tour. Find out more below!
We have summarized out sampling of Raleigh nightlife into the below slides to save you some time; check them out now!
1. Live Music & Concert Venues
A key ingredient to Raleigh nightlife is its live music. Raleigh has recently become so famous for live music that Rolling Stone featured it under ‘The Best Music Scenes Right Now’ in 2020. You can find a show any night of the year if you are in Raleigh.
Be it concerts, music festivals, or live music in restaurants, you will get a multitude of different genres in Raleigh. It will make your nightlife experience highly upbeat and exciting. You can start by trying out the live music at 42nd St. Oyster Bar & Seafood Grill. Not only can you enjoy the delicious seafood, but you will also enjoy live music from great upcoming local artists.
If you want to enjoy a live concert, then check out the website of PNC Arena. Although the venue has not hosted many events recently due to COVID-19, it has hosted some music giants in the past, such as Billie Eilish, Celine Dion, Backstreet Boys, Jonas Brothers & so on. This is a huge venue that hosts sporting and other live events as well. So if you are in the right place at the right time, you will definitely find a good concert.
There are many more venues to explore, and music is Raleigh’s heartbeat. Therefore, live music tops the list of best Raleigh nightlife activities.
2. Must-eat Restaurants in Raleigh
If you love seafood, then the top pick is the 42nd St. Oyster Bar & Seafood Grill. Not only is it worthy of topping the charts because of its splendid live music, but also for the extensive and scrumptious seafood spread available here. Further, its vintage decor, jazz music, and unique license plate collection on display all add to its glory as the top place to be in Raleigh.
Brewery Bhavana is another exciting place to be when it comes to food. The restaurant is famous not only for its 40+ craft beers to choose from, but also for the authentic Laotian cuisine. If you love Asian food, then this is where you should drop by. If you are short on time, then leave everything else and just eat one of the tastiest meals you have ever had. The glass ceiling, flowers, and book shop within the premises all add on to its uniqueness. It is a one-stop destination for your meals and nightlife.
Although the list is never-ending, another place worth mentioning is Jose & Sons. As the name suggests, you will find mouth-watering Mexican and Spanish delicacies here; from tacos to paella, everything is available.
Apart from these, you can even taste the Greek, Indian, or the good old American cuisines in Raleigh. It is a foodie’s paradise.
3. How About Some Balmy Laughter?
If you don’t already know, Raleigh is brimming with comedy clubs in every nook and corner. The most renowned club is the Goodnights Comedy Club, which has been in existence for more than 30 years and has hosted the likes of Jay Leno, Ellen Degeneres & Jerry Seinfeld. You can find a good show every night; just check out their calendar, and you are all set.
Raleigh is the city to go to with your family, as it has plenty of fun attractions for children. When it comes to nightlife and comedy, other kid-friendly cities fall short of good options. This is not the case with Raleigh, however. It has great comedy options for all ages. There are three shows on Friday and Saturday at ComedyWorx, which are open to all ages. These take place at 4 and 8 pm.
However, if you love adult comedy, and then from 10 pm onwards, there are 18+ shows at ComedyWorx on the 3rd Friday of every month. They even have interactive and theatre-style comedy. We are sure it will be a fun evening if you visit this club.
If you really love improvs, then try Raleigh Improv. The comedy will be unpredictable, but booze and a fun evening will be guaranteed.
4. Bars, Pub Crawls & Booze!
If you love to drink, you have to check out some of the most famous bars in the city. The best way to do this is to book a Trolley Pub Tour. This is an extensive multi-stop tour of the best pubs and bars in downtown Raleigh.
If you prefer enjoying one bar at a time, then one of the best bars to check out is Fox Liquor Bar. It has a great cocktail, food, and wine menu. You can try the cheese or meat platters with your favorite brew and enjoy the music or dance to it. This bar serves what is arguably the best bourbon whiskey in the city, so do check it out. It is closed on Sundays but through the rest of the week it’s open from 5 in the evening to 2 am. Nightlife is never-ending when it comes to Raleigh.
If you like your drinking time to be quiet, cozy, and relaxing, visit Drink Drank Drunk. Order from their beer and wine menu and enjoy the city view in the outdoor seating space. You don’t have to deal with crowds here; it is a small place but with a very relaxing environment. If you are a solo traveler and want to intermingle with the locals, this is the place to be. Not many tourists know of this place, so this is a Raleigh secret spot.
5. Assorted Raleigh Nightlife Options
Raleigh nightlife has ample unique entertainment options. If you love retro tunes, then you must check out the Collins Raleigh: The 80’s & 90’s Bar. You can enjoy the music you have grown up to, sip the best brews, and dance your heart out. You can transport yourself to the era gone by and enjoy the wonders of the past.
If you love events of any and every kind, drop in at Ruby Deluxe. You will find everything from dancing to live shows to thrilling music as well as an arcade and a bar. So sip the brew, play some pool, enjoy a show, and you have got yourself an eventful concoction of nightlife. However, you need to be 21+ to enter, but they have some special shows that are 18+ too. So plan your visit accordingly and check out their events calendar.
Another adventurous outlet could be Neptunes Parlour. You can pick from draft beers, cocktails, brews, and many other options. Cocktails are made from fresh ingredients that give them the unique flavor that you won’t find anywhere else. You can enjoy the DJ music and dance till you drop. However, the most exciting offering is classic arcade games such as pinball. At times they even have retro music, so you can go back in time as you enter the place.
Wrapping Up Raleigh Nightlife Attractions
Raleigh nightlife is sprinkled with unique attractions. No matter where you go, you will catch soothing live music. Bundle it with fantastic Laotian or Mexican food and garnish it with amazing comedy shows. Visiting Raleigh can be a fun trip for everyone, and that is why it is one of the top cities to visit in North Carolina.
Check out the really great accommodations in Raleigh on our platform Rental Trader. You can enjoy Raleigh nightlife to the fullest once you are carefree about the most suitable accommodation. Choose from a vast selection of vacation rentals, hotels, homestays, and more. For more information about Rental Trader, visit our website to list a property or book the lodging for your next adventure.