New Bern: Best Things to Do

Wikimedia Commons - Photo by Smallbones

New Bern is a city in North Carolina, United States. This city is where the popular soft-drink, Pepsi, was born.

Besides being the birthplace of Pepsi, New Bern is also known for its historical buildings, like the Tryon Palace.

The city is also home to several great museums and art galleries, such as the New Bern Firemen's Museum, Craven Arts Council & Gallery Bank of the Arts, and North Carolina History Center.

While in New Bern, don't forget to also explore the diversity of the food scene the city has to offer.

Scroll down below to know more about New Bern!

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SIGHTSEEING

Enjoy the scenic view of the Neuse and Trent River at Union Point Park. This popular public park is a perfect destination to enjoy a picnic, a walk, or even fishing. The park features several awesome facilities such as a walkway, picnic tables, grills, and a playground. The highlight of this park is The Gazebo, which offers an amazing view of the waterfront, and it is often used for events like festivals and weddings.

Union Point Park

Popular park along the Neuse & Trent Rivers featuring play equipment, a large gazebo & a boardwalk.

Address : 210 E Front St, New Bern, NC 28560, United States

DOWNTOWN

Learn about the history of North Carolina at Tryon Palace. In this replica of the 1760s Royal Governor's mansion, there are paintings and displays. Visitors can join a guided tour to get more information. Surrounding the building is a well-kept beautiful garden and several historical buildings such as the Dixon House, Stanly House,
and Hay House.

Tryon Palace

Replica of the 1760s Royal Governor's mansion, with 16 acres of gardens, tours & a history center.

Address : 529 S Front St, New Bern, NC 28562, United States

SHOPPING

Shop for unique gifts at Mitchell Hardware. This old-fashioned hardware store plus a gift shop is definitely the place you must check out while you're in New Bern. Besides unique gifts, here you will also find amazing old-fashioned candy. You can also look for gifts at Carolina Creations that has an amazing collection of art from the local artists like sculptures, paintings, glasswork, jewelry, and etc.

Mitchell Hardware

Mitchell Hardware is an authentic hardware store and a must-visit in New Bern, NC.

Address : 215 Craven St, New Bern, NC 28560, United States

Carolina Creations

Carolina Creations is a gift shop with locally made stuff available.

Address : 317 Pollock St, New Bern, NC 28560, United States

FOOD & DRINK

New Bern has a diverse and various choices of food. You can find Southern, Indian, Italian, Mexican, Japanese, and even Viatnemesse in New Bern. And for the drink, Pepsi is definitely a must since New Bern is where the soft drink first invented.

CULTURE

New Bern is a city that is rich in cultural diversity. It can be seen from the number of museums, art galleries, theaters, festivals, and entertainment performances. The diversity if the food scene in New Bern also adds to the charm of the city. In the 19th century, New Bern even had the nickname as the Athens of North Carolina because of the port and its tradition of being a center of culture.

BEST TIME TO VISIT

Peak season: October is the time to visit New Bern. The weather during this time just starts to cool down, and since summer can be so hot in New Bern, it is better to visit New Bern when the temperature starts to cool down so that you can explore the city comfortably. October is also the month when the Mum Festival is held. Mum Festival is a festival where family fun, entertainment, attractions, exhibitions, and food meet.

HOTEL

Stay at the Courtyard by Marriott New Bern and enjoy the view of the Neuse River from the window of your room. This pet-friendly hotel also provides amazing facilities to make your stay even more comfortable, such as an outdoor pool, a business center, and a fitness center. It is also located near some of New Bern's popular attractions such as the Union Point Park and Tyron Palace. Another great option of accommodation is the Benjamin Ellis House Bed & Breakfast that is housed in a Greek Revival Style building that was built in 1853. The inside of this accommodation is decorated with antiques and artworks that create a warm and homey atmosphere.

Courtyard by Marriott New Bern

Unpretentious hotel with free WiFi & parking, plus an American-style bistro & an outdoor pool.

Address : 218 E Front St, New Bern, NC 28560, United States

Benjamin Ellis House Bed & Breakfast

Quaint rooms in an 1853 Greek Revival–style B&B offering a breakfast buffet in a homey dining room.

Address : 215 Pollock St, New Bern, NC 28560, United States

RESTAURANT

Mj's Raw Bar and Grille is the perfect place to visit if you're craving for seafood and meat. delicious dishes such as steamed seafood, rolls, wraps, and sandwiches can be ordered here. Don't forget to also order their specialty menus like Mj's Signature Crab Cakes, Grilled o Blackened Fresh Tuna, and Soft Shell Crabs. Moore's Olde Tyme Barbeque Chicken & Seafood is also a great restaurant that serves various kinds of foods made of pork, chicken, and seafood. All of the ingredients used for the food are fresh, so deliciousness is guaranteed.

Mj's Raw Bar and Grille

Seafood, meat & a kids' menu in a laid-back hangout with local artwork, coastal accents & a bar.

Address : 216 Middle St, New Bern, NC 28560, United States

Moore's Olde Tyme Barbeque Chicken & Seafood

No-frills barbecue joint with an on-site smokehouse serving traditional fare from a counter.

Address : 3621 Doctor M.L.K. Jr Blvd, New Bern, NC 28562, United States

CAFE

Enjoy a cone of ice cream in an ordinary atmosphere at the Cow Cafe. This cow-themed cafe and ice cream shop offers more than 60 flavors of homemade ice cream. Besides ice creams, this cafe also serves various kinds of menu, from sandwiches, salads, wraps, and plates. Grab a quick bite at the Baker's Kitchen Restaurant & Bakery. The place that is known for its Butter Syrup is the perfect place to visit if you're craving fresh and homemade bread, baked goods, pies, biscuits, cinnamon rolls, pies, cookies, dinner rolls, and many more. The cafe that is situated in a beautiful brick building also creates a warm atmosphere that makes your eating experience even more enjoyable.

Cow Cafe

Cafe & ice cream shop serving cones, sandwiches & more in comfy digs with cow-themed accents.

Address : 319 Middle St, New Bern, NC 28560, United States

Baker's Kitchen Restaurant & Bakery

Unfussy eatery serving all-day breakfasts, sandwiches & American lunch mains, plus baked goods.

Address : 227 Middle St, New Bern, NC 28560, United States

BAR AND NIGHTLIFE

Enjoy a glass of tasty crafted beer at Morgan's Tavern & Grill. The tavern that is housed in a former garage and dominated by brick and wood beams has various kinds of drinks from their taproom, some of them are Blue Moon, Stella Artois, Morgan's Golden Ale, and Morgan's Porter. You can also order for some delicious meal when you're here to complete your drinking experience. You can also have an amazing night time at Mickey Milligan's Billiards, which is the best place to go if you want to have awesome drinks as well as a great game of billiard.

Morgan's Tavern & Grill

Quaint American tavern in a former garage with exposed brick & wood beams plus a deck.

Address : 235 Craven St, New Bern, NC 28560, United States

Mickey Milligan's Billiards

A laid-back bar with straightforward pool hall and plenty table.

Address : 3411 Trent Rd, New Bern, NC 28562, United States

INTERESTING PLACE

Come to the Birthplace of Pepsi Cola, the place where the Pepsi-Cola was first invented. Here, you will have the opportunity to learn about the history of the drink. You will also find some memorabilia and antique products that are displayed. Since the place doubles as a store, you can also enjoy some ice-cold Pepsi and popcorn here.
Learn about the history of firefighting in New Bern at New Bern Firemen's Museum. The museum that was established in 1955 provides a great tour with a lot of information about the history of the New Bern Fire Department, and you can also learn about the Great Fire of 1922 here as well. Old fire trucks and items related to fire fighting are also displayed around the museum.

New Bern Firemen's Museum

Museum dating back to 1955 telling of the oldest fire company in the state & the Great Fire of ’22.

Address : 420 Broad St, New Bern, NC 28560, United States

Birthplace of Pepsi Cola

Birthplace of Pepsi Cola is a site with plenty of memorabilia and antique products.

Address : 256 Middle St, New Bern, NC 28560, United States

INSTAGRAMMABLE SPOT

Craven Arts Council & Gallery Bank of the Arts is an art gallery that was founded in 1974 and aims to promote the work of artists around North Carolina. The gallery is also often used as a venue for live music performances and other special events. The interior of the building makes this museum even more amazing to check out.
North Carolina History Center at Tryon Palace is another place where you can learn about the history of North Carolina. Displays of artifacts, pictures, and interactive historical activities at the museums provides great information to the visitors.

North Carolina History Center at Tryon Palace

Modern family-friendly museum with hands-on displays about NC history, a waterfront cafe & a store.

Address : 529 S Front St, New Bern, NC 28562, United States

Craven Arts Council & Gallery Bank of the Arts

An eye-catching site with spectacular local entertainment located in the heart of the New Bern City.

Address : 317 Middle St, New Bern, NC 28560, United States