Durham is the fifth-largest city in the state of North Carolina and is the county seat of Durham County.
It can trace its history back to the Great Indian Trading Path, which helped to establish transport routes and encouraged people to settle there.
The area was colonised by the British in the mid-1700s and was given its present-day name thanks to King Charles I of England.
However, it was not until the 19th century and the arrival of the railroads that Durham really began to prosper.
Durham was chosen as a stop where steam locomotives could fill up with water during cross-country trips, so settlements sprang up to accommodate and serve the depot.
A thriving tobacco industry was developed along with a crop of new textile mills.
Durham was inevitably affected by the decline in manufacturing in the 20th century, but it managed to find a new niche for itself thanks to the establishment of the Research Triangle Park, Duke Medical Center and Duke University.
These days, Durham hotel guests will find that the metropolis is more comfortable as 'the city of medicine' than 'the city of tobacco'.
Durham Travel Tips
If you are heading to Durham, you will most likely land at Raleigh-Durham International Airport, which is served by a number of carriers including Delta.
Although direct flights are occasionally available, you will probably have to take a connection from another city such as New York or Las Vegas.
The city is also served by Amtrak rail or Greyhound buses if you are already in the US and do not want to travel to Durham by air.
Guests at Durham hotels will find that the city is not especially well-served by public transportation, especially when compared to other large destinations such as Chicago or New York.
While it does not have a subway, it does have a good network of buses. Duke University has its own transit system and can take passengers to various city locations. There are also Megabuses available from Jackson Street and Bull City Connector buses. The Bull City buses are free and are ideal for Durham visitors, as they travel to almost all of its key tourist attractions.
What to pack:
Durham has a humid climate, so although you will find Summers to be warm, rain is never far away thanks to frequent storms. It is therefore a good idea to pack your waterproofs and plenty of changes of clothes to cater for the heat.
You will find Spring and Fall to be more comfortable times to visit, but keep cover-ups such as cardigans and jackets in your Durham hotel because the temperature can drop rapidly in the evening.
What to do and where to go?
Residents of the Millennium Hotel Durham will find lots of places to quench their thirst for knowledge in the city. Make sure you take the time to go and find out about the latest research that is taking place at Research Triangle Park.
The past comes alive in Durham thanks to its prominent role in American historical events including the Civil War. A museum trip or a walk along the tobacco trail is a must for tourists.
Once you have enjoyed finding out about Durham's past, present and future, you could mull everything over by taking a walk in one of its beautiful green spaces. Have a look at a copy of the Durham travel guide for an overview of places to visit.
Arts and Culture:
Nasher Museum of Art
Hayti Heritage Center
The Durham Performing Arts Center
The American Tobacco Trail
Duke Homestead and Tobacco Museum,
Parks and Recreation:
Sarah P Duke Gardens
Cameron Indoor Stadium
Eno River State Park
Area: 245 sq km
Currency: US dollar ($)