Five-Star Trails: Raleigh and Durham is a guide to the best day-hiking trails within a two-hour drive of the urban areas of Raleigh and Durham. Raleigh is North Carolina’s capital and an anchor for the state's famous Research Triangle that includes Durham and Chapel Hill. Amid this metropolitan complex that also embraces Cary, Apex, and Wake Foresthome to more than 1.7 million peoplethe author leads readers to myriad places for scenic beauty, to sites of historic significance, and to neighborhoods that showcase the charms of urban life. All of the routes stay true to the book's "Five-Star Trails" title, based on the book series' rating system for scenery, trail condition, suitability for children, difficulty level, and solitude. To be selected for the book, each trail must truly shine in one or more of those areas while, at the same time, all of the trails combine to offer diversity for a wide range of hikers. Thus, this is the guidebook for a hiker seeking an arduous climb to a scenic overlook as much as it is for a weekend walker who wants an easy trail for his or her family.