Whether you are about to relocate to North Carolina, or just moved there, there is certainly a lot to discover and different reasons to celebrate. It’s a great place with mild climates and a diverse geography that ranges from coastal beaches to large forested parks and rocky mountains. Also, the cost of living isn’t as expensive as in other nearby states.
North Carolina is the 28th largest state in the U.S. and currently the ninth most populous (with more than 10 million inhabitants). At certain times, this population grows even more with all the tourists attracted by the contact with nature and sports such as climbing, skiing, and rafting. The research and technology job market is also attracting more and more millennials.
No matter how many benefits your new home offers, starting to live in a brand-new place is always a challenge. So take a look at these tips on how to feel established when moving to North Carolina.
Become a Regular at Local Businesses
One of the best ways to feel welcome in the neighborhood is to support local businesses. While large chain stores invest heavily in marketing and e-commerce, local businesses may be smaller and offer fewer benefits and product variety. Still, they welcome customers in a particular, personalized way.
You can easily make yourself known in the city patronizing local businesses such as coffee shops, groceries, and small stores. Instead of buying books or furniture from large retailers, visit a small local bookstore or department store.
The same goes for service providers such as dentists and doctors. If you still don’t know anyone, use the internet to your advantage by searching for a dentist in Fuquay Varina, NC to find options closest to your new address.
Find a Community of People Who Share Your Interests
Today everybody has more contacts and virtual friendships via social media and mobile apps. That doesn’t mean you can’t look for real people with the same interests now that you are living in a new place. The best way to socialize is to look for clubs with themes that you like. This experience will allow you to make new friends and even learn new things.
For example: in Raleigh, NC, there are lots of social clubs that can help new residents feel right at home. If you like to read, check out the Wonderland Book Club, with meetings every last Friday of the month at the Center for Excellence. If you prefer to connect with others through religion, the Catholic organization Knights of Columbus has a headquarters in Raleigh. There are also groups of scouts, veterans, art clubs, and teams of different sports, from chess to golf.
Get Involved in Local Activities
Another great way to meet new people (and possibly new friends or even business contacts) is to get involved in local activities in the neighborhood. You can do this in several ways: simply going there and buying a ticket, helping financially as a sponsor, offering to help organize an event as a volunteer, etc.
North Carolina has a lot of great festivals and you’re sure to find one where you feel represented. Different cultures and ethnicities are represented at events such as the African American Cultural Celebration or the Chinese Lantern Festival. You can also go back in time by visiting the Carolina Renaissance Festival, where you can visit an old village just outside of Charlotte and visit castles, pubs, and old cottages.
If you prefer live music and food, take the time to attend the Wilmington Riverfest, a three-day festival that attracts over 250,000 people each year in October.
Make Use of City Resources
Cities in North Carolina offer many public resources where you’re sure to feel right at home – and even have the opportunity to meet new people.
If you are in Raleigh, there are more than 200 public facilities spread across the city with different activities, such as recreational centers, playgrounds, swimming pools, historic sites, etc. If you prefer artistic and cultural activities, Raleigh has two arts centers (the Pullen Arts Center and the Sertoma Arts Center), which frequently hold exhibitions and art classes.
Spend Time Exploring Your New City and Its Neighborhoods
Tired of spending all your time at home? Take advantage of your move to North Carolina to get out and adventure more. You can spend some time walking or biking around in your new city, talking to locals, or going on road trips to explore neighboring towns. North Carolina has more than 50 state and national forest parks.
Some activities are really unique and amazing. If you head to the Reed Gold Mine in Midland, you can visit a historical exhibit on the first documented gold find in the United States – and even try your luck looking for some gold that the pioneers forgot.
For those who prefer to spend some time in contact with nature, an unmissable adventure is to enjoy the nature trails of the Chimney Rock State Park, located 25 miles from Asheville, where you can visit some of North Carolina’s most spectacular scenery.
Enjoy the Best of North Carolina
With a thriving economy and some natural beauty envied by residents of other states, North Carolina is a dream destination for young people seeking a new job, as well as people looking for a quiet place to enjoy retirement. There is no shortage of attractions in and around cities, with hundreds of nature trails, lakes, rivers and waterfalls, forests, parks, and mountains. There are also all kinds of community festivals combining culture, music, and gastronomy. Even so, North Carolina has managed to maintain that small-town personality that makes everyone who arrives feel right at home.