New Bern Tourism and Attractions


New Bern, North Carolina is a historic city with a deep roots dating back to the colonial days! It is the original colonial capital, and will celebrate its 300th Anniversary in 2010. There are 36 area homes listed on the National Register of Historic Places, and there is a vibrant historic district that dates back to the early 1700s. Some of the sites to see include:

The Tryon Palace Historic Site and Gardens is the site of the former Colonial Capital. Nestled in New Bern's Historic District, this grand site attracts visitors from across the country, and around the world. Unlike most historic places, this is a living exhibit that displays the daily life activities of the colonial times. There is a working Blacksmith, busy kitchen and garden staff growing and preparing meals, a busy loom making fabrics, as well as many other displays. There are special events and tours year-round.

Take a stroll through the Historic District where you will see a large number of colonial and Civil War era homes in beautifully restored glory. Since New Bern was a neutral city during the Civil War, much of the this area was spared from destruction and still exists today. Here you will find a variety of architectural designs from Colonial, Victorian and Craftsman along the mature oak lined streets.

You can visit the Birthplace of Pepsi right in the heart of downtown New Bern. The current Pepsi Store is located on the exact spot where Caleb Bradham created "Brad's Drink," now known as Pepsi-Cola.

The Bank of the Arts (Craven Arts Council & Gallery) serves as a cultural resource for the community and school system. The Council continues to offer a variety of artistic expressions to the community and the schools in the form of classes, exhibitions and concerts or regional and national artists.

Some other local "must-see" New Bern Historic sites:

  • Christ Episcopal Church
  • First Presbyterian Church
  • Centenary Methodist Church
  • First Baptist Church
  • Cedar Grove Cemetary
  • Old St. Paul Catholic Church (first Catholic Church in North Carolina)
  • St. John's Masonic Lodge and Theatre (oldest continuous use theatre in US)
  • New Bern Academy Museum (first chartered school in North Carolina)
  • Harvey Mansion
  • US Customs House
  • Baxter Street 4-faced Clock (one of the few remaining working clocks)
  • Craven County Court House
  • Fireman's Museum
  • and many more historic private homes