According to Sir Walter Wally, our local groundhog, we’ve got six more weeks of winter ahead of us. NC winters aren’t consistently brutal (admittedly, we’re writing this on a 70-degree day), but shorter days, bare trees and lower temps are enough to knock the spring out of anyone’s step. This time of year, we totally get that the urge to hibernate is strong, but hear us out—despite dreary days, there are still plenty of ways to get out and live your best life right NOW (yes, even in February). So rethink those cuffing season commitments because we’ve got a winter blues treatment plan so strong, you’ll be all, “no blanket, who dis?”
We're giving away THREE, 1-hr soaks in the world famous natural hot mineral baths, good for two people, anytime! Watch the video and enter to win! Don't wait…this giveaway ends 2/28 at 8p!
Grab your favorite peeps, perfect your Spotify playlist and hit the road to Hot Springs, NC, where naturally hot, healing mineral water gets pumped up from deep underground. Just past Asheville, it's a picturesque drive from the Triangle and well worth it. At Hot Springs Resort & Spa you'll find outdoor jacuzzi-style tubs filled with naturally heated, bubbling mineral water. Book tubs by the hour (pro tip: get one with a view of the French Broad River) and feel your stress melt away. It's a cold world out there, but inside your tub, it's toasty AF. And if you're feelin' fancy, they've got plenty of spa treatments you can tack on too. Camp overnight onsite or snag one of their adorably rustic cabins to make the most of the trek out there—you'll want to take one last dip in the hot springs before vacay is over.
Jump for joy at DefyGravity. It’s a MASSIVE cutting-edge trampoline sports arena unlike anything you’ve ever experienced. Part entertainment venue and part sports gym, it's the ultimate destination for active social outings, intense individual workouts, competitive team sports, and creative fundraisers. DefyGravity is a 13,000 sq. ft. facility with wall-to-wall trampolines, including the world-famous Angled Wall Trampolines, an expansive Olympic Foam Pit, and one of the largest Trampoline Dodgeball cages in America. Bounce around and burn off some stress at one of the Triangle's most unique and exhilarating atmospheres.
Find some peace away from your daily stress with a trip to Skin Sense’s Salt Cave in North Raleigh. Hundreds of giant blocks of Pink Himalayan Salt line the cave, emanating a warm, pink glow that’s better than any S.A.D. fighting vitamin D light you’ve got. It’s a tranquil sanctuary, ideal for meditation or relaxation. Get a fresh perspective by hanging upside down in one of their zero gravity chairs or namaste at one of their yoga classes. Take a deep breath in for pure, mineral-infused air. Breathe out and get rid of all those nasty toxins. Repeat as needed. Ahh..we feel calmer just thinking about it.
Beat the blues AND Sunday Scaries with one dinner. Head over to Pompieri’s Sunday night Family Meal for a four-course dinner, complete with unlimited pizza. The only catch? This meal is all about being present and connecting with the folks at your table so (brace yourself) there’s a ‘no phone’ policy. But don’t freak out—with a slice of pizza in each hand you wouldn’t be able to text anyway.
Equipped with cozy fireplaces, local art, and plenty of cushy seating, Vita Vite is like the living room you always wanted. Pick your favorite wine from their expertly curated selection and settle in for the night. Vita Vite comes from the Italian words for "life" and "vine"—the idea that life revolves around wine and food, bringing people together in a common space of appreciation for the beautiful things that can enrich life. We can get behind that!
Step out of the cold and duck into a 100-degree studio to namaste at Hot Yoga. Teachers in training host weekly sweat seshs at Indigo—pop into one of these donation-based community classes for as little as $5. On a freezing Saturday morning, we’re happy to pick-up some zen vibes, bask in the warmth and let Indigo foot the Duke Energy bill.
Okay, so if you’re really committed to staying home 'till spring, the least you can do is spruce the place up a bit. It’s cold and bare outside, but you can turn your home into a lush greenhouse, worthy of a million IG likes. Tear yourself away from the couch long enough to get over to the ZEN Succulent. Stock up on modern terrariums and plants to turn your humble abode into a full-fledged forest—the greenery will serve as a kind reminder that spring is indeed coming back, we promise.
Dimly lit with retro booths and A+ cuisine, Poole’s is the perfect spot to dig into comfort food and embrace that winter bod. While everything Poole’s serves is ahhmazing (it is Ashley Christensen’s flagship spot, after all), if you really want to say ‘eff the diet’, you’ve got to order something that’s really worth it—and Poole’s maraconi au gratin definitely is. It’s iconic for a reason: arriving to your table fresh out of the oven, you can spot gooey cheese bubbling under its golden brown, crispy exterior. Kraft’s got nothing on this.
When you eat better, you feel better—but it’s not always that easy. Praise hands for Living Kitchen for making healthy food, delicious food. Forget flavorless tofu and wilted salads. These guys offer up an all-green, veg and vegan menu featuring all kinds of delights, from the chia breakfast bowl to the sweet potato sushi roll to the living burrito to coconut cacao pudding. In terms of bevs, you'll find a wide range of coffee and tea options, including fresh kombucha, but the endless list of fresh pressed juices and smoothies is not to be missed. Treat yo self to some green dining—your body will thank you and your taste buds will too!
If hours of Netflix have turned your brain to mush, it’s time to back away from the TV and strap on those thinking caps. Test your brainpower with over 60 different mind-boggling 3-D puzzles, mazes and full-body games at the NC Museum of Natural Sciences' latest brainy exhibit.