With two vibrant cities only 30 miles apart – Greensboro and Winston-Salem – the Triad area overflows with history, cultural and performing arts, beautiful gardens, creative cuisine and nightlife. Both cities have historic downtowns and arts districts. Both are college towns – with UNC Greensboro and Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem – as well as several other colleges and universities that bring diversity and a youthful culture to the cities.

Both offer an array of lodgings, including the magnificent Grandover Resort, O. Henry Hotel, Proximity Hotel and Graylyn Estate.

You’ll want to spend leisurely time at historic Old Salem (, Reynolda House (, the Greensboro Historical Museum (, Carolina Theatre ( and the Greensboro Children’s Museum (

Celebrate fall with one of Winston-Salem’s largest fall festivals, Old Salem Museums & Garden’s Harvest Day: Pigs and Pippins (pork and apples) on Oct. 18 ( Make your own applesauce and see how an apple cider mill works.

Halloween week is the perfect time of year to sign up for the Carolina History and Haunts Tour ( Listen to the stories of the local haunts and see where some of Greensboro’s departed inhabitants may still linger.

On Oct. 25 or Oct. 30, as night falls on Old Salem, join a Legends & Lanterns Tour (

Winston-Salem’s annual Piedmont Craftsmen’s Fair ( is a cue that fall sensations are making way for the winter holidays. Winston-Salem’s largest craft fair showcases the works of more than 120 fine artisans from throughout the Southeast for a two-day art extravaganza Nov. 22-23.

Join visitors from near and far Nov. 22-Jan. 1 to witness one of the Southeast’s largest holiday light displays. Tanglewood Park’s Festival of Lights ( includes more than 1 million lights that transform more than 4 miles of rolling countryside into a twinkling wonderland.

The Reynolda House Museum of American Art’s Candlelight Tours, Dec. 4-6 (, feature the stories of the Reynolds family holidays, decorations from the Roaring ’20s and holiday music played on the Aeolian organ.

Mark your calendars for Jan. 18-25, when the U.S. Figure Skating Championships ( come to the Greensboro Coliseum.

Area info: and Zenda Douglas