Planning a Trip
You can reach Wilmington via I-40, U.S. 117, and U.S. 421 from the northwest; U.S. 74/76 from the west; and U.S. 17 from the northeast and south.
Wilmington International Airport, 1740 Airport Blvd. (tel. 910/341-4125; www.flyilm.com), lies half a mile from the center of town. Taxis meet arriving planes. The airport is host to the following major and commuter airlines: US Airways (tel. 800/428-4322; www.usairways.com) and A.S.A. Delta Connection to Atlanta (tel. 800/282-3424; www.delta.com).
Greyhound (tel. 800/231-2222; www.greyhound.com) offers regular service to Wilmington. The bus station is at 201 Harnett St. (tel. 910/762-6073).
The Cape Fear Coast Convention and Visitors Bureau, 24 N. 3rd St., Wilmington, NC 28401 (tel. 877/406-2356 or 910/341-4030; www.cape-fear.nc.us), offers free brochures on the many attractions and accommodations of the Cape Fear Coast. The efficient staff can provide a self-guided walking-tour map of historic Wilmington and background details on other area attractions. The center is open Monday to Friday from 8:30am to 5pm, on Saturday from 9am to 4pm, and on Sunday from 1 to 4pm.
The North Carolina Azalea Festival (tel. 910/794-4650; www.ncazaleafestival.org), held in early April, is the city's most-frequented event. City gardens burst into bloom, and the festivities include garden tours, beauty pageants, and a parade. The dogwoods get almost as much attention as the azaleas. Call or visit the website for more details.