Durham, NC
Admission Difficulty
Very Hard
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3 College Junior

Nightlife: Do not participate in the night life very frequently.

1 person found this useful Report
College Freshman

Nightlife: I am a graduate student. I don't "party" because I am at school to learn. The graduate program I am in has options of social gatherings, which have been nice.

4 Recent Alumnus

Nightlife: Frat parties get a bit monotonous, but there is always something going on

2 College Junior

Nightlife: Not good, not too bad.

2 College Senior

Nightlife: Shooters. Oh youre tired of Shooters? sweet, because we're still going to shooters because you have NO OTHER OPTIONS. Seriously we go to UNC and NC state to change it up, because devines is awful, and there are not other options


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Rankings View more rankings . . .

  • 109th
    Biggest Party Schools
  • 205th
    Best Drink Prices
  • 1263rd
    Tamest Party Scenes

Student Author OverviewWhat's This?

Duke’s social scene involves a large amount of on-campus, organization-sponsored parties with copious amounts of alcohol. Beyond that, finding clubs and bars is not particularly difficult in Durham, and these locations are popular places to go dancing after scoping out fraternity parties on West Campus. For those who must have alcohol to get a party going (which is, arguably, the case for just about every campus in America), there are many parties happening on campus, where drinks are free and no one checks IDs. Duke Police will occasionally shut down parties that have gotten completely out of hand (resulting in EMS calls) or for excessive noise. Beyond that, the police are very lenient and reasonable. Be aware that off campus, undercover cops with the Alcohol Law Enforcement (ALE) division will cite you for underage drinking. 

In Durham, the traditional "Duke" club is Shooters II, a Western, saloon-themed club and bar complete with mechanical bull. 

Facts & Statistics

Primary Areas with Nightlife
  • Chapel Hill's Franklin Street
  • Downtown Durham
Favorite Drinking Games
  • Beer pong
  • Card games (Kings)
  • Flip cup
  • Power hour
  • Quarters
Useful Resources for Nightlife
Closing Time
2 a.m.
Cheapest Place to Get a Drink
On campus: fraternity sections have free-flowing alcohol.
Organization Parties
Most every student association, be it fraternity, sports team, or club, throws parties with plenty of drinking and dancing. Sometimes they are held at clubs in the area, but on-campus parties are just as common.

Club ListingsWhat's This?

Mt. Fuji

905 W. Main St. # 21B


(919) 680-4968


2200 W. Main St.


(919) 286-9712


Alivia's is a European-style bistro.

900 W. Main St.


(919) 682-8978

Devine's Restaurant & Sports Bar

904 W. Main St.


(919) 682-0228

Bar ListingsWhat's This?

Talk of the Town

This bar offers music and live DJs. There are open-mic nights, jam sessions, jazz, and R&B nights.

108 E. Main St.


(919) 682-7747

Shooter's II

Shooters boasts two bars, and booths and tables for customers. It also has a dance floor, though not quite as large as some other clubs in the area.

827 W. Morgan St.


(919) 680-0428


Visions is popular with females and offers a dance floor and pool tables. There is line-dancing and karaoke on certain nights.

711 Rigsbee Ave.


(919) 688-3002

The Tavern

There's a jukebox, pool tables, and dart boards at this bar. Plus, students can enjoy the beautiful weather on the outdoor patio!

1900 W. Markham Ave.


(919) 286-7665

Satisfaction Restaurant & Bar

Satisfaction is one of students' favorite bars. Nightly drink specials draw students here, and it can get packed on basketball nights. Satisfaction serves a large variety of beers on tap and in bottles.

905 W. Main St.


(919) 682-7397

Charlie's Pub & Grill

Charlie's is a great local bar. It's a favorite of many students for its laid-back atmosphere and proximity to campus.

758 Ninth St.


(919) 286-4446

Carolina Brewery and Restaurant

Carolina Brewery has won several awards for its drinks and food. They brew more than 20 specialty beers including Dunkelweizen, Funky Monk Ale, and To Hell n' Bock.

460 W. Franklin St.

Chapel Hill

(919) 942-1800


Player's is in nearby Chapel Hill and is a favorite of students and alumni. It offers great drink specials and has a huge dance floor with a variety of music playing throughout the night.

159 1/2 E. Franklin St.

Chapel Hill

(919) 929-0101

James Joyce's Irish Pub

Try Joyce's for a night of traditional, Irish-style drinking.

912 W. Main St.


(919) 683-3022

What to Do if You're Not 21What's This?

Durham Performing Arts Center

The Performing Arts Center has lots of concerts and shows all year long.

123 Vivian St.


(919) 688-3722

Student Polls

What's the best way to get to the popular nightlife spots?    Based on 37 responses

  • 3% There are no good options.
  • 11% Use a designated driver.
  • 11% School-provided shuttles/buses.
  • 0% Public transportation.
  • 32% Taxis.
  • 43% Walk.

Rate the off-campus bar and club scene on the following topics    Based on 33 responses

Very poor
  • Convenience to get to
  • Cover charges
  • Distance from campus
  • Drink prices
  • Fun
  • Variety/number of options

What is the party scene like on campus?    Based on 37 responses

  • 11% Parties? What parties?
  • 3% Good parties are few and far between.
  • 5% Some decent frat/house parties, weekends only.
  • 76% Lots of options Wednesday-Saturday.
  • 5% Tons of raging parties almost any night of the week.

What is the biggest party event of the year?    Based on 5 responses

  • 80% LDOC (Last Day of Classes)
  • 20% Frat formals during the end of Spring semester

Where can you find the best parties?    Based on 5 responses

  • 80% Fraternities
  • 20% DTD
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