NC Icons

From our most iconic foods to beloved state symbols, consider this your go-to guide to North Carolina.




The Krispy Kreme Doughnut

The glazed, pillowy-soft doughnuts, invented in Winston-Salem in 1937, are a Tar Heel tradition.



In a state naturally rich in red clay, potters like the legendary Sid Luck carry on a long-held North Carolina tradition.


Few culinary traditions run as deep as collards in North Carolina.


In the 19th and 20th centuries, hundreds of textile mills supported a booming industry that created entire communities, turned North Carolina into a manufacturing powerhouse, and helped to weave the very fabric of our state.



Tryon Palace

During Christmastime in New Bern, 18th-century holiday traditions come to life at North Carolina’s first State Capitol.


A Pirate’s Life

Take to the high seas — er, Taylor’s Creek in Beaufort, that is — to learn more about North Carolina’s infamous pirates.

Mountain Primer

Find out what makes our ancient Appalachian Mountains so magnificent in this primer on our peaks.

The Wild Horses of Shackleford Banks

Sturdy through storms and sun, North Carolina’s wild horses roam on.

The Fried Bologna Sandwich

Like the old-school, paper bag special, a fried bologna sandwich is a nostalgic Southern staple.

The Tractor Factor

North Carolina Commissioner of Agriculture Steve Troxler has a deep appreciation for the machine that changed the landscape of our state.

The Carolina Shad Boat

This graceful, traditional fishing vessel — our state historic boat — was ideal for maneuvering in shallow water, but its history runs deep.

The Crystal Coast Shrimpburger

Fried shrimp, tartar sauce, slaw, and ketchup on a steamed bun — the shrimpburger is an icon of North Carolina.