This North Carolina State Government trifecta is rich in history, easy to arrange and engaging to both middle and high-school students. If you homeschool a 4th grader studying North Carolina history then its a no-brainer!

One of the beautiful and convenient parts of this 3-stop tour is that once you've parked all three locations are within walking distance. Metered street parking is available on most of the side streets near the capital but the two-hour meter limit might be cutting things a little close if you want to take your time and enjoy everything each venue has to offer. A better and longer-term parking option would be the public parking lot on Jones Street next to the Museum of Natural History. (See map below) From this point you are not more than 1,000' from any stop on the tour.

Our suggested order would be take in the State Capital and Legislative Building before noon, brown bag or visit one of the street vendors for lunch and then hit the Executive Mansion for a scheduled 2pm tour in the afternoon. You may even have time to stop in the NC Museum of Natural Sciences in-between.

Downtown North Carolina State Government: Tour Stop 1
The North Carolina Executive Mansion

200 N Blount St Raleigh, NC 27601

A beautiful example of Victorian Architecture the North Carolina Executive Mansion is built with native North Carolina timber, stones and fibers and is locally referred to as "The People's House". It has been home to North Carolina's Governors and their families since 1891 and FDR is often quoted as saying about the residence that he considered the NC Executive Mansion to be "the most beautiful governor’s residence interior in America". The :30 minute guided tours of the first floor are led by friendly and knowledgeable volunteer docents.

Keep in mind that tour arrangements must be made two weeks in advance so be sure to get out ahead in the planning of this stop.

Tour Days and Times:

Wednesdays and Thursdays, March 14 through June 21.

10 a.m., 10:30 a.m., 2 p.m., 2:30 p.m., and 3 p.m.

Reservations: Make these at least 2-weeks in advance.

Homeschool groups of 10 or more should make reservations two weeks in advance through the Capitol Area Visitors Center online on or by phone at (919) 807-7950.

Smaller homeschool groups and families and may join scheduled tours if space is available and should make reservations with Rachel Moore at 919-715-3962 or

Downtown North Carolina State Government: Tour Stop 2
The Historic North Carolina State Capital

1 E Edenton St, Raleigh, NC 27601

Officially a National Historic Landmark and run by the National Parks Service the North Carolina State Capital was completed in 1840 and is considered one of the Nation's most intact examples of a Greek Revival public building. Built of local stone, the building replaced the previous stuccoed-brick State House destroyed by fire in 1831. Homeschoolers will enjoy learning more about the history of the building and its surrounding landmarks, statues and monuments.

If you are interested in incorporating the site and its history into your homeschool curriculum the National Parks Service has published a free online lesson plan complete with history, maps and supplemental resources.

Reservations: Make these at least 2-weeks in advance.

To schedule a homeschool group of 10 or more for a guided tour of the State Capitol, please call Capital Area Visitor Services (CAVS) at least two weeks ahead of your intended visit at 919-807-7950 or 866-724-8687 or visit them online at

The building is open Monday-Saturday from 9:00am to 5:00pm; closed Sundays and most major state holidays. Please call ahead to confirm hours of operation. Guided tours are offered Saturday at 11:00am and 2:00pm. The grounds are open at all times. Call 919-733-4994 or visit the capitol's website for further information.

Downtown North Carolina State Government: Tour Stop 3
North Carolina State Legislative Building

16 W. Jones Street, Raleigh, NC

The North Carolina State Legislative Building is the current meeting place of the North Carolina General Assembly, the state legislature of the U.S. state of North Carolina. It was opened in 1963, replacing the North Carolina State Capitol as the home of the legislature since 1840. The Historic State Capital still serves as the home of the North Carolina Executive Branch and the Judicial Branch is located at 2 East Morgan Street in case you were wondering.

Throughout the building, provisions are made for easy public access and observation of the legislative process which is available without reservation when the legislature is in session.

Free admission. Hours: Mon.-Fri., 8am-5pm; Sat., 9am-5pm; Sun., 1-5pm.

Reservations: Make these at least 2-weeks in advance.

Guided tours for 10+ available M-F with advance notice through Capital Area Visitor Information at 919-807-7950 or

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