625 Virginia Cates Road, Hillsborough
Sometimes, you just need a break from it all. In the Triangle, there are few better escapes than the lookout at Occoneechee Mountain State Natural Area, some 867 feet above the Eno River. As mountains go, 867 feet isn't much, but ours is not a mountainous area, so you take what you can get. Walk the three miles of trails—mostly low-grade elevation with a few steep climbs, which you'll feel the next morning—until you reach the apex, then behold the world below. Not much compares, at least not around here.