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Squad Goals! Best Group Activities in Durham

Estimated Read Time:
5 min

Extend that selfie stick and experience these insanely fun group activities in Durham.

Sure, traveling solo can be incredible. You don’t have to share your food; you do what you want when you want. Sometimes, though, it’s fun to split mouthwatering cuisine or get lost in an escape room with some pals.

Whether you’re with a large family, co-workers, a wedding party, or all of your college friends, Durham has something exciting for the group. Here’s what to do in the Bull City when traveling with your crew.

Games for the Group

For those who need some quality team-building time...

If you're sick of ice breakers, trust falls, and untying the human knot, you're in luck. Durham has plenty of team-building activities to promote communication, collaboration, and — most importantly — good times for all.

Test your team members' communication, collaboration, and brain power as you unearth clues, crack codes, solve puzzles, and escape at one of Durham’s many escape rooms. Whether it’s from a submarine attack at Escape on Purpose, a beach rental during a hurricane at Mission X Escape, aliens from a cryogenic chamber at NC Escape, or solving a murder with Bull City Escape, there’s no shortage of options to keep your team engaged and active.

Bull City Gaming is focused on bringing competitive gaming and esports to Durham and surrounding areas, while growing the gaming community. Bring a friend (or two, or eight) to various esports events held throughout the year. Keep the fun going and activate your inner gamer at Augmentality Labs, a virtual reality arcade, for a VR adventure with your crew. If classic board games is more your thing, try Moon Dog Meadery, with an entire wall of games to choose from and individually rent based on the group’s interests.

Throw around some axes, bond with your teammates for much-needed stress relief at Urban Axes, and then head next door to Boxcar Bar & Arcade for the ultimate drinking and gaming experience. Turn coworkers into family with a planned scavenger hunt that will take you on an epic journey around the museum led by the Museum of Life and Science team. (The first team back gets office bragging rights for eternity.)

Crafts with the Crew

For those who want to keep busy, but maybe in a less competitive way...

So, you’re looking for an activity that fosters creativity, facilitates social interactions, and builds trust. We got you. Durham has plenty of artsy spots for your team.

Get your artistic juices flowing with a private party at The Scrap Exchange, Durham's creative reuse arts center. Create anything from a wind chime to a piece of jewelry or learn an obscure skill like Japanese disk braiding. Take your creation home or display it on your desk to intimidate your coworkers with your crafty skills.

Nothing brings people together like a little wine or a glass of beer — just add in a creative craft and you’ve got a fun and memorable experience for all. From birthday parties to couple’s nights, mobile events to private classes, these spots will help your group collaborate and let loose. Take your group to Crafts & Drafts, a D.I.Y. bar with a mission to "bring communities together through creative exploration and continuous learning" to relax and create. Choose a craft (or bring your own) and let the creativity flow while you sip on some bubbly. Head to AR Workshops for a unique group experience where you and your pals can work on a project. Live a little and paint a little — with family, friends, and coworkers at Durham’s female-owned franchised Wine & Design.

Adrenaline-flowing Adventures

For those who need to test your limits via land or water…

Curling. Laser tag. Rock climbing. Sign your group up for an epic adventure experience like no other to get the adrenaline pumping through their veins.

Escape the hustle and bustle for a taste of the outdoors on a bicycle, canoe, or kayak nature tour. Harness your inner adventurer with guided trips from Two Sisters Adventure Company or Frog Hollow Outdoors. Take your group to the Triangle Rock Club for state-of-the-art facilities that offer both lead and top rope climbing, expansive bouldering terrain, and comprehensive fitness areas. Host a group sporting event at Triangle Curling Club's Durham rink when the ice is ready monthly. Your group will receive a curling tutorial, usage of all necessary equipment, and instructors will guide you through a mini curling match.

Xtreme Park Adventures is the ultimate outdoor destination offering fun adventure for groups of all ages. Shoot lasers at your annoying coworker while playing laser tag or accidentally shoot your boss with a paintball (woops!). Bond with your college crew or bachelor party friends while ziplining. Channel all your energy and cut loose with your best flips and tricks at Sky Zone Trampoline Park, an indoor trampoline park complete with a dodgeball court. If jumping isn't your thing, just hang out and grab some snacks in the party room.

If playing fantastic courses in an air-conditioned facility surrounded by big screens, bright lights, shared plates and local brews sounds like fun, then book your next round at Topgolf, coming soon to the Research Triangle Park. There’s no pressure to crush a Happy Gilmore-style drive; just make sure your group is ready for chill vibes and fun hangs.

Family Freakin’ Fun

For those who need to let the kids burn off steam and make some long-lasting memories with the fam...

Whether you’re on a spontaneous road trip with your kids or gathering for a family reunion, these spots will help families create great memories that will last a lifetime.

Take the family on a self-guided tour around town using our Public Art & Inspiration Guide. See 40,000 square feet of murals on more than 15 acres at UHill Walls and take pictures in front of Major the Bull, plotted out by regions of Durham within the guide. At UHill Walls, for families, in particular, there’s plenty of room for the kids to roam safely in a courtyard as parental figures indulge in a craft beer from Gizmo Brew Works or a glass of wine and dessert at Aperitif.

Fill up baskets with juicy berries at Bahama Bluebs or head to Elodie Farms to meet friendly goats. For an older family crowd, savor a five-course farm dinner on the farm during their summer series, hopefully with a cameo by JoJo, the farm’s mini donkey.

Stunning year-round, Sarah P. Duke Gardens is a magical garden wonderland offering a range of fun and imaginative programs for a group of children and families. Explore the discovery garden, meet the chickens, or adventure around the 55 acres of specialized gardens filled with unique plants and flowers. With lots of open green spaces and pavilions, it's the perfect spot for a family picnic.

We can't say enough about the Durham Bulls, our world-famous baseball team. From spring until fall, you and your peeps can catch a ballgame. Enjoy fireworks nights, 'afforda-bull' Thursday night games and a host of other discounted concessions. Ensure memory-making moments with entertainment between innings, local food vendors, a playground in the outfield, and more.

Totally Awesome Tours

For those who need to see the sights with your crew...

Explore the rich history of Durham with an informative tour and all kinds of insider knowledge you can’t get anywhere else.

Capture a historical perspective of the community while tasting culinary gems that form Durham’s celebrated food scene with Triangle Food Tours or Taste Carolina Gourmet Food Tours. Sip on an adult beverage (BYOB), while a comedian spins history into jokes on a big blue bus with Bull City Laughs. Experience the places that have shaped Durham’s history with Preservation Durham, Tobacco Road Tours, and Brown Hat Tours. Whistle Stop Tours will teach you more about Durham’s African American history with stories from numerous performers, activists, public historians, natives and long-time residents. Reserve a spot on a custom group tour available for birthdays, family reunions, professional retreats, class field trips, and more. Pedal your way across downtown Durham at speeds of three to five miles per hour on the 14-seat Trolley Pub by Biker Bar NC. The bike is BYOB and music, so beer, wine, and your tunes are welcome.

No need to travel to Madagascar to see lemurs up close. Head to the Duke Lemur Center (DLC), the world's largest sanctuary for endangered lemurs outside their native home of Madagascar, for various tours, including a VIP behind-the-scenes look. Book a group tour and follow a designated guide from station to station to see lemurs and learn about the mission of the DLC.

Savor Durham’s tantalizing craft beer scene as you taste unique brews and capture an inside look at the brewing process on a Mystic Farm & Distillery tour, or round out your libation adventure with a behind-the-scenes tour of Durham Distillery as they lead with their award-winning gin renaissance in the South.

Grub for Groups

For those who need the scoop on where to chow down with your group...

You finally got the whole crew together. Now you've got to find the best place to go eat.

Whether it’s an office function, special occasion, or a night out with friends, spend it around family-style Italian platters from Maggiano's or Cucciolo. Take your party to the next level with a private room at It's a Southern Thing, Counting House, Lulubangbang or Parizade. The search tool on the Meetings page of our site lists more restaurants with private rooms for groups.

Your squad can get various cravings in one spot at Boxyard RTP, the Durham Food Hall and Golden Belt. Boxyard RTP has everything from Korean barbecue to traditional barbecue, cotton candy, and plenty in between. Meanwhile, at the Durham Food Hall, there are giant burritos from Ex Voto Cocina, as well as seafood, noodles, pizza, sandwiches and coffee. Golden Belt is a revitalized mixed-use space that offers food and drink options, live shows, and a vibrant collection of art by artists who create, show, and sell their work from studio spaces. Play soccer pool and cornhole at Hi-Wire Brewing and indulge in sandwiches, pizza and ice cream on the sprawling lawn.

In an izakaya, (Japanese pub), ordering omakase entrusts your order to the chef — essentially a chef’s tasting menu. Available to parties of 8-14 people, chef Billy Cotter at Dashi will prepare the most delicious dishes of the day for your crew. Omakase dining in the izakaya is by reservation only and must be made at least seven days in advance.

You’re in good hands with founder Lashonda Fort-Modestat and the team at Melanated Wine. Make a wine-tasting reservation online for your group to sip back, relax, and uncork the culture to delicious wine.

Calling all coffee lovers (and people needing a daily caffeine dose). Every Friday at 10 a.m., Counter Culture Coffee features coffee and a complementary brewing method. They guide guests through the tasting and share details about the coffee's origin. Register and reserve a spot for your group online.

Planning a group event and looking to add some Durham flair? Hire Che the Black Bourbon Guy for a bourbon tasting session or order healthy and flavorful dishes from Indulge Catering, LLC.