Exploring Winston-Salem and the Piedmont Triad Region

Winston-Salem, NC

There are plenty of things to like about Winston-Salem, home of the Wake Forest University main campus. Anchoring the Piedmont-Triad region of North Carolina, which also includes Greensboro and High Point, Winston-Salem’s balance of urban opportunity and natural beauty consistently earns it high national marks for quality of life. With annual temperatures averaging a pleasant 69 degrees, the “City of Arts & Innovation” is a vital hub halfway between North Carolina’s eastern beaches and western mountains.

With a population of more than 230,000, Winston-Salem is North Carolina’s fourth-largest city, ranked as one of the nation’s “Most Livable” by Partners for Livable Communities. Winston-Salem has been nationally ranked among the best places to launch and maintain a business by the likes of Forbes and Money Magazine. Additionally, Bloomberg Businessweek included Winston-Salem among the ten most “Fun, Affordable” cities in the United States.

CLICK HERE for a list of the Top 30 things you need to know about Winston-Salem before moving here.

Just some of the attractions in Winston-Salem include the Reynolda House Museum of American Art, Old Salem Museums & Gardens, BB&T Field, the Children’s Museum of Winston-Salem and much more. Home to a nationally influential biotechnology center, a thriving local arts scene, ACC sports and many family-friendly cultural opportunities—with corporations from Reynolds American Inc. to Lowe’s Food Stores headquartered here—it’s easy to see why the city of Winston-Salem is one of the few urban areas that have had more incoming than outgoing local professionals over the past decade.

Winston-Salem ranked #2 among most affordable cities in the U.S.   Read More.

Piedmont Triad Region

Winston-Salem is in the heart of North Carolina’s Piedmont Triad region, which is home to more than 1.5 million people. It is situated halfway between Atlanta and Washington, D.C., less than 90 miles from the Charlotte metro area and the Raleigh/Durham metro area.

Business and industry

The Triad, and Winston-Salem in particular, is a hub for banking, finance, entrepreneurship, biotechnology, medical and high-tech enterprises, all of which build upon the area’s traditional industrial base.

Wake Forest actively supports downtown Winston-Salem’s Wake Forest Innovation Quarter, a magnet for area entrepreneurial, life science and information technology enterprises. Honda Aircraft located its world headquarters and production facility at Piedmont Triad International Airport in Greensboro, while FedEx also established a major hub for its operations at PTI. The area also is the center of furniture manufacturing and sales, and is home to the annual High Point Furniture Market, the largest event of its kind in the world.  Other major local employers include VF Corporation, Ingersoll-Rand, Hanesbrands, Reynolds American and Wake Forest University Medical Center.

Winston-Salem was recently named by Businessweek magazine as one of the top 20 cities in the nation for “The Best Places to Start Over”.

Quality of life

The city’s low cost of living and attractive quality of life make it a destination for new businesses and professionals eager to pursue a career and raise a family. A 2005 survey by Mercer Human Resources Consulting named Winston-Salem the least expensive U.S. city in which to live. Residents also enjoy the city’s mild winters and moderate year-round climate.

Taking advantage of the climate, a wine-making industry has taken root in the region, with many wineries beginning to flourish. Designated as the first American Viticultural Area in North Carolina, the nearby Yadkin Valley provides excellent conditions for growing European varietals such as Chardonnay, Riesling, Viognier, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Syrah, and Cabernet Franc. Convenient access to the Yadkin Valley wineries means that area residents and visitors can easily explore many wineries in one easy day-trip.

North Carolina also prides itself on the quality of its higher education, and Winston-Salem is home to five colleges and universities, including Wake Forest, Winston-Salem State University, Salem College, University of North Carolina School of the Arts, and Piedmont Bible College. In 2008, Winston-Salem was a finalist as one of the most intelligent cities in the world according to the Intelligent Community Forum.


Winston-Salem is well known for its arts culture; the city is home to a professional symphony and an opera company, several museums and art galleries, and numerous theater groups.  The city ranks among the nation’s leaders in per capita contributions to the arts, and is home to the highly regarded University of North Carolina School of the Arts and the biennial National Black Theatre Festival.


Need a reason to get out and enjoy Winston-Salem’s year-round mild climate?  You’ll find plenty of golf courses, camp sites, hiking trails and fishing spots, and the nearby mountains and foothills make it easy to pursue cycling, canoeing, kayaking and rafting. Winston-Salem is just four hours from North Carolina’s renowned beaches to the east and two hours from the scenic Blue Ridge Mountains to the west.


Sports fans can enjoy the excitement of Atlantic Coast Conference action or take a short trip to Charlotte or Raleigh for NBA, NFL or NHL games and NASCAR races. The surrounding Piedmont Triad also hosts many minor-league baseball teams and professional golf and tennis tournaments.


Thanks to its ideal geographic location in the Southeast and its suburb infrastructure, North Carolina enjoys extensive and efficient transportation service.  North-south Interstates 77, 85 and 95 and east-west Interstate 40 criss-cross the state and place Charlotte within one day’s drive of 55 percent of the U.S. population.

Direct flights are available to Piedmont Triad International Airport in Greensboro from most major U.S. metropolitan areas. The airport is only 30 minutes from campus. The city is located near the intersection of Interstates 40 and 85.

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