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Scoop, There It Is: Durham's Best Ice Cream Shops

Durham's best ice cream shops offer plenty of opportunities to beat the summer heat, whether you're looking for a unique flavorful scoop or a classic sundae.

Posted By Discover Durham Staff on Jul 11, 2024

When it's hot outside, the answer is always ice cream. With flavors like Tuscan melon white nectarine and strawberry black sesame brittle on gingersnaps, Durham's ice cream flavors crush the competition.

If you're craving a cold, sweet treat on your visit, or if you're on a mission to try every unique flavor in the Bull City for bragging rights, here's the inside scoop on all our unique, destination-worthy shops where ice cream comes in an array of flavors, textures and vessels. Enjoy this sweet guide to all things creamy with a little sprinkle and crunch.

Andia's Ice Cream

205 S. Gregson St.

Make your way to The Can Opener, Durham's permanent food truck park, and look for Andia's Double Decker Bus. If you're familiar with the Raleigh-based ice cream shop's original location, you know you'll find some tasty seasonal flavors and trendy treats that Andia's customers across the Triangle have grown to love.

Jeni's Splendid Ice Cream

908 W. Main St.

Splendid, indeed. Jeni's is a recent addition to Durham's ice cream scene, nestled in the Brightleaf District between Goorsha and Gojo. Relax with a cone on the patio, sampling flavors like the signature brown butter almond brittle, wildberry lavender and brambleberry crisp. Touting the "milkiest chocolate in all the world," Jeni's makes for a fine destination on National Chocolate Ice Cream Day in June.


2618 Hillsborough Rd.

Everyone and their dog is going loco for Locopops! To indulge in some ice cream on a stick, try the Mexican chocolate pop blended with semi-sweet chocolate, rich cream, cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves. For those looking for vegan options, there are vibrant flavors like cherry lime, pomegranate ginger and passionfruit margarita. Don’t forget a pup pop for your four-legged friend.

The storefront of Locopops stands ready to welcome in guests in Durham, NC.

Get yourself and your pup a popsicle at Locopops. Photo: Discover Durham

La Monarca Michoacana

2000 Avondale Dr.

Mango tango, pina colada mimada, coco bongo ... we’ve got your attention now, right? La Monarca has the flavors. Now, you get to decide whether you want to enjoy them in a cone or in a cup.

A customer sips a colorful frozen treat at La Monarca Michoacana in Durham, NC

Stop by La Monarca Michoacana to see all the amazing, unique frozen treats they have on offer. Photo: Discover Durham

Localicious Caribbean Ice Cream

3600 N Duke St.

Having spent 40 years perfecting their craft, it's no wonder Localicious Caribbean Ice Cream is so tasty. This ice cream shop serves up delicious, hand-crafted scoops at their Durham location to all seeking a yummy way to beat the heat. They have a large selection of Caribbean-inspired flavors like Pina Colada and Pineapple Upside-Down Rum Cake, including vegan options, so you can get a little taste of the islands right here in Durham.

The Milkshake Factory

359 Blackwell St.

Opening in August 2024, The Milkshake Factory promises to be a tasty addition to the American Tobacco Campus. This shop has a long history of crafting amazing chocolates and a robust record of serving up fabulous milkshakes. If milkshakes aren't your thing, there's no need to worry. The Milkshake Factory also serves an assortment of sundaes and floats.

The Parlour

117 Market St.

Fans of The Parlour know their staples (cookies n’ cream, salted caramel, Vietnamese coffee, etc.) very well, but their limited and seasonal flavors are always unique and delicious. It's blueberry lemon season now, so nab a creamy peach and mascarpone scoop before it’s going ... going ... gone. Vegans rejoice, there are typically at least two to three flavors that are dairy-free and still remarkably delicious. If you find yourself craving The Parlour's flavors but aren't downtown, not to worry. You can grab a cone or a shake at the drive-through window of The Parlour Jr, which you can find at The Common Market in Old West Durham.

A couple share a sundae at The Parlour in downtown Durham, NC.

Share a sundae with your sweetie at The Parlour. Photo: Lissa Gotwals / Discover Durham

Pincho Loco Ice Cream

1918 Perry St.

You may love sprinkles as an ice cream topping and a waffle cone as an ice cream holder, but have you ever had a homemade sprinkles waffle cone? Mind blown. Stop by Pincho Loco for a delicious rainbow-colored cone filled with all kinds of yumminess. Try the native Latino flavors on the menu: tequila, Tiger Tail (vanilla, Mexican vanilla and chocolate), guava, tamarind and more.

A man enjoys a cup of ice cream outside of Pincho Loco in Durham, NC.

Try out the unique flavors and cones at Pincho Loco. Photo: Eric Waters / Discover Durham


2708 Chapel Hill Rd.

Offering a unique frozen treat experience, Pistachio serves Persian ice cream in flavors like matcha green tea, lavender, saffron pistachio and vegan sour cherry. Pistachio has a menu you'll be hard-pressed to find anywhere else. The menu also has more commonly seen flavors like mint chocolate chip and cookie dough. This ice cream shop truly is a one-of-a-kind destination for all those who appreciate a good scoop.

Rose’s Noodles, Dumplings & Sweets

121 N. Gregson St.

The only thing better than a scoop of ice cream is a scoop of ice cream between two cookies. Rose’s takes the ice cream sandwich to a whole new level. If your tastebuds are craving something complex, try the strawberry black sesame brittle on gingersnaps.

Hands hold up artisanal ice cream sandwiches from Rose's in Durham, NC.

You don't want to miss the artisanal ice cream sandwiches at Rose's. Photo: Discover Durham

Salt N Cocoa

1125 NC-54

This casual, modern spot for trendy Thai-style rolled ice cream is an ideal stop for a treat in South Durham. They serve organic coffee, soft serve ice cream and Asian treats like made-to-order taiyaki: fish-shaped waffles with your choice of filling like red bean, custard or Nutella.

Simons Says Dip This

117 W. Parrish St.

With 24 different Belgian chocolate-dipped flavors and tons of toppings including cotton candy, the flavor combination possibilities at Simons Says Dip This are endless. You can go classic cookies n' cream. Or for a pairing of your salty-sweet dreams, try the butterscotch dip with potato chip toppings.

Two Roosters Ice Cream

800 Taylor St.

If you’re looking to cool off in a wide-open space with a scoop of ice cream, head to Two Roosters at Golden Belt and check out the specialty flavors. Try the custom lemony concoction recommended by a fan of Two Roosters: lemon ice cream with lemon curd and yellow sprinkles. With locations in Raleigh and Durham, Two Roosters has been named the best ice cream in the state by Food & Wine magazine.

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